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Mic Preamp for Acoustic Guitar
Old 8th February 2009
  #1
Gear Addict
 
jwleeman's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Mic Preamp for Acoustic Guitar

What mic + mic pre combo would you recommend for recording acoustic guitar ?
Old 8th February 2009
  #2
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
In what price range?
Old 8th February 2009 | Show parent
  #3
Gear Addict
 
jwleeman's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
No limit. heh
Old 8th February 2009
  #4
Gear Maniac
 
lambro's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
what kind of guitar? what sound characteristics does it have? and what style of playing

strumming, finger picking, hard flat picking...


how do you want to treat the sound? warm it up? preserve it with as little change as possible?, emphasize any thing in particular?
Old 8th February 2009
  #5
70% Coffee, 30% Beer
 
Doc Mixwell's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by jwleeman ➑️
What mic + mic pre combo would you recommend for recording acoustic guitar ?
Great River MP2NV + MFG KM69 Pair in X/Y.

NPNG DMP 2NW + Royer SF12

X2 Purple Biz MK + Josephson C42 MP

There are countless other parings I could recommend. These are just a few that have worked towards stellar results for me.
Old 8th February 2009 | Show parent
  #6
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johnwayne's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
The guitar and player plays a major role in this. Also the way you pick or string and the size of your pick.

After that the mic is most important and then the preamp.

I like the AT 4050, and Oktava 012 with Dav BG and 610 pres.

A decent room is a must as well. A wood floor gives a much better sound than carpet, and if you don't have a wood floor put a board in front of you when you play. You might want to put Bass traps in the corners too.

You also don't want it dead either, so try to find a good balance between them.
Old 8th February 2009 | Show parent
  #7
Gear Addict
 
jwleeman's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
what kind of guitar? what sound characteristics does it have? and what style of playing

strumming, finger picking, hard flat picking...


how do you want to treat the sound? warm it up? preserve it with as little change as possible?, emphasize any thing in particular?
The guitar's an Alvarez RD20S. For the particular application I have in mind right now, the guitar will take a somewhat background role: strumming, occasional riffs between vocals. The song is slow and warm-sounding in general.

Hope this helps a little.
Old 8th February 2009 | Show parent
  #8
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doorknocker's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 15 years
My fave preamp for acoustic guitar is the Chandler LTD-1. It goes well with most mics, the EQ is great though not always neccessary. Recently I even had luck with an AKG 414 B-ULS for acoustic guitar. My fave mic for acoustic guitar in a mix context is the Beyer M201, sometimes the MD-441 too.
Old 8th February 2009 | Show parent
  #9
Gear Guru
 
1 Review written
🎧 15 years
Best Ever

GML Preamp with KM84.

DD
Old 8th February 2009 | Show parent
  #10
Gear Nut
 
🎧 10 years
i don't know if you have access to all of these things, but my two favorite basic signal path options when recording acoustic guitar are:

neumann u87 -> neve 1073 (or 84) -> 1176

or

telefunken u47 -> avalon 737

i know a lot of people complain about the 737's compressor speed (frankly, i don't know what the hell everyone's compressing these days that there's such a problem - too much over-comping if you ask me), but i've never had any problems at all. i think it sounds and behaves beautifully. in fact, i prefer it to most other comps - yes, even vintage urei ones. anyway, point is, if you come up short in either set-up throw in a fatso in the path to smooth things out. it works wonders.

btw- for the first chain, my 1176 is vintage, but it doesn't have to be. the blackface reissues sound exactly the same as a vintage when it was new. just needs to be broken in, which can take years sometimes. but, belive me, it's not gonna sound bad out of the box. it's gonna sound just like a new one did decades ago, before it got used a lot.
Old 8th February 2009 | Show parent
  #11
Moderator
 
Trev@Circle's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Roc Mixwell ➑️
Great River MP2NV + MFG KM69 Pair in X/Y.

NPNG DMP 2NW + Royer SF12

X2 Purple Biz MK + Josephson C42 MP

There are countless other parings I could recommend. These are just a few that have worked towards stellar results for me.
My preference is for Chandler TG2 or Pacifica with KM69s (depending on what I'm shooting for)
Old 8th February 2009 | Show parent
  #12
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
I have had stellar results with the preamps on the Prism Orpheus and Beyer Dynamic MC930 mic's.

Paul
Old 8th February 2009 | Show parent
  #13
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
I've been getting excellent results on steel string recently using my Pacifica with a KM140 on the neck and a U87, UMT70s or L47MP further back. For the background strumming and riffs you're describing, I usually track in mono and will go for a more aggressive pre like Aurora or 312A.
Old 8th February 2009 | Show parent
  #14
Gear Guru
 
elambo's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 15 years
Neumann KM54, if I had to choose one mic.

John Hardy for the preamp, and the Twin-Servo model if you have the cash.
Old 8th February 2009 | Show parent
  #15
Gear Guru
 
1 Review written
🎧 15 years
Elixir, XP, SP, sound awful

This is a bit off topic. I recommend anyone recording acoustic guitar to avoid Elixir and any of the other coated strings. e.g. XP, SP etc.
I believe the coatings cause the upper harmonics to be increasingly out of tune with the lower and the fundamental, like bells, or drums.
I don't have an A/B test here but I haven't made my statement lightly.
I have had extreme trouble, struggling with mixing the Elixirs in particular.
Other recording engineer friends of mine, have also noticed this.

DD
Sound Sound - Homepage
Old 8th February 2009 | Show parent
  #16
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insomnio's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
API and 737 are fine.
KM84, C460b and AT4051 I don't need anything else.
Old 8th February 2009
  #17
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
Whatever you have. What a stupid question.

By the end of this thread (like in every other "what's best" thread), every known mic and pre will be mentioned, so that obviously means there is no "right" or "best" one. Just turn the knobs til it sounds good and move on.
Old 8th February 2009 | Show parent
  #18
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badmark's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Studio Addict ➑️
Whatever you have. What a stupid question.

By the end of this thread (like in every other "what's best" thread), every known mic and pre will be mentioned, so that obviously means there is no "right" or "best" one. Just turn the knobs til it sounds good and move on.
Whoa, who overdid the happy pills this morning?!
Old 9th February 2009 | Show parent
  #19
Jai guru deva om
 
warhead's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
I think the best question is:

What do you have, and what would you change about it to make it "better" in your opinion?

War
Old 9th February 2009 | Show parent
  #20
Gear Addict
 
jwleeman's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
I think the best question is:

What do you have, and what would you change about it to make it "better" in your opinion?

War
well.. ain't got a lot.. i just have a millennia media 4-channel hv3d, and am planning on getting an aurora audio GTQ2 mkII soon.
Old 9th February 2009
  #21
Gear Guru
 
NathanEldred's Avatar
 
7 Reviews written
🎧 15 years
Schoeps (any capsule is going to sound great, depends on room, stereo mic technique, etc though) into Buzz Audio MA2.2 TX is ultimate IMO. There are a lot of great combinations that will yield great results, and some mic/pre combos complement certain guitars better. The above is a good overall choice for a studio that has a lot of different guitars that come through. Schoeps/Buzz is great for drum overheads and piano too.
Old 9th February 2009 | Show parent
  #22
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elambo's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by jwleeman ➑️
am planning on getting an aurora audio GTQ2 mkII soon.
That will be a great pre for acoustic guitar.
Old 9th February 2009 | Show parent
  #23
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by NathanEldred ➑️
Schoeps (any capsule is going to sound great, depends on room, stereo mic technique, etc though) into Buzz Audio MA2.2 TX is ultimate IMO. There are a lot of great combinations that will yield great results, and some mic/pre combos complement certain guitars better. The above is a good overall choice for a studio that has a lot of different guitars that come through. Schoeps/Buzz is great for drum overheads and piano too.
+1 thumbsup
Old 9th February 2009 | Show parent
  #24
Lives for gear
 
CJ1973's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
I have a Focusrite ISA430 Producer Pack (the original version) that this hooked up to a U87 (earlier model) gives one of the best recordings for Maton, Martin, Yamaha acoustic gtrs imo. Ive heard people like Gene Simmons and Richie Kotzen use a very similar set up. Try it out if you can. I swear by it.
Old 9th February 2009 | Show parent
  #25
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rkopald's Avatar
 
2 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
What a timely thread for me! I was just wondering this very question of mic preamps and acoustic guitar. Right now, I'm recording my Santa Cruz D-PW with my Rode NTK through a not very good pre, and definitely need an upgrade. I was hoping to spend ~$500 for a preamp and was leaning towards a Grace Designs M101 or a True P Solo, but after reading this and a couple of other threads I might have to bite the bullet and drop more cash for a John Hardy Jensen Twin servo, a Great River ME-1NV, OR: if I want to sleep in the garage for the spring maybe an Aurora TGQ2. ahh, how I wish money wasn't a limitation! on an slightly unrelated note, I'm also considering buying a pair of Peluso SDCs for my guitar and see how that sounds. So many crazy good options.
Old 9th February 2009 | Show parent
  #26
Moderator
 
TonyBelmont's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Well, you can't go wrong with the basic flavors like Neve or API.. it just all depends on what type of character you want. But, the GTQ2 has always won in my studio.

Also, the mic and placement will make a much bigger difference than the preamp (assuming you are using a high quality preamp). Some mics that have worked for me in the past include U87, U47, KM84's, etc.
Old 9th February 2009 | Show parent
  #27
Lives for gear
 
Dog_Chao_Chao's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
if i dont have the time to experiment and just need a stellar acoustic guitar sound on the fly I just go:

schoeps_flamingo_ for a clear/classic sound
schoeps_1073_ darker,thickier creamier..
Old 9th February 2009 | Show parent
  #28
Lives for gear
 
rkopald's Avatar
 
2 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by TonyBelmont ➑️
Well, you can't go wrong with the basic flavors like Neve or API.. it just all depends on what type of character you want. But, the GTQ2 has always won in my studio.

Also, the mic and placement will make a much bigger difference than the preamp (assuming you are using a high quality preamp). Some mics that have worked for me in the past include U87, U47, KM84's, etc.
Right, thought about that too. Neve is kind waay out of my price range. I've got a price cap of about 1K..
As for mics, I have to work with the Rode for now. I'm thinking about maybe getting a ribbon mic for acoustic guitar work, but I haven't done enough research to know if that's a good solution.
Old 9th February 2009 | Show parent
  #29
Here for the gear
 
camdie's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
I'd recommend a Grace Design M201. It's perfect for Acoustic Guitar.
In fact, I'm selling one on ebay right now....along with a bunch of microphones.

Grace M201

Last edited by camdie; 9th February 2009 at 02:50 AM.. Reason: wrong link
Old 9th February 2009 | Show parent
  #30
Lives for gear
 
camerondye's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
I think the Pacifica is tailor made for acoustic guitar, I think it shines on OH and Ac Gtr duty. The highs on the Pacifica are perfect for those two especially. It's in good company against my Great River, which I think is amazing across the board though.
cam
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