42+ Acoustic Guitar Recording Mic Placement
Microphone placement is the foundation for any solid recording.
Acoustic guitar recording mic placement. For a balanced sound that captures high end place the mic about 12 to 16 inches away from the 12th fret. Youll probably get a more realistic idea of the sound by recording a short example and listening back through your speakers. In an ideal acoustic environment you might get a great sound with the mics as much as three feet away. The 12th fret is the mic position most used in recording Acoustic Guitars in studios today.
So lets dive into the three most common stereo techniques for recording acoustic guitar. While you should always experiment with placement and mic choice generally speaking you will want to use a pair of unidirectional condenser mics placed close to the instrument approximately 6 to 12 inches away. The distance between the mic and the guitar also has an effect on the sound. It doesnt put on its best clothes because its going to record an acoustic guitar but doesnt bother to dress up because its going to record a cheap bouzouki.
The money spot for acoustic guitar recording. Placement is usually dictated by musical genre but most engineers place microphones to capture a good overall balance of the instrument. This article proves to present some different placement techniques for a simple acoustic guitar recording. A good initial location is the spot where the guitar neck joins the body about a foot away from the guitar.
The distance between each microphone should be at least 3 times the distance the microphone is to the guitar Start by placing one microphone around the 12th14th fret and the other at the bridge pointing either at the body or towards the sound hole 6 12 inches away. Any mic placed directly in front will have all detail washed out by the gushing bass frequencies that come blasting out through the sound hole. Adjust each mic so that they sound good on their own. This Large Diaphragm Mic is pointed towards the Soundhole for a fuller body end.
You can make substantial changes to the way your guitar sounds on the recording simply by moving the mic small distances. One way to fine-tune the placement is to listen to headphones while you move the mic around but headphones can be misleading. In an ideal acoustic environment you might get a great sound with the mics as much as three feet away. In most cases aiming at the 12th fret of the guitar will produce best results.
If your acoustic guitar sounds too boomy when recorded try moving the microphone further away from the guitar at least 8 12 inches to reduce the proximity effect and make sure the microphone is not pointing directly at the sound hole. It records whats put before it and there are enough placement techniques close or distant with either a single or double or more type mic set up either condensers or dynamics. This suggests that your second microphone should be placed three times the distance from the first microphone that the first microphone is from the source. The distance between the mic and the guitar also has an effect on the sound.
Another technique when miking your acoustic guitar with a spaced pair is to use the 31 Rule. Turning the mic off-axis towards the players pic hand. Cardioid mics have a characteristic known as proximity effect that creates a deeper bassier sound as you move the mic closer to a sound source. But in home recording you often have to place the mics much closer to eliminate undesirable effects of the room.
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