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6 posts since 11 Feb, 2013

Postby lakdn; Mon Feb 11, 2013 12:54 pm How to EQ acoustic guitar?

Sorry for the noob question but I've searched how to EQ and I end up with results I'm still not satisfied with. (and yes I record with a condenser mic.)

I want a sound similar to this:

I've been tweaking like crazy these past days and I can't seem to get that richness and fullness of the guitar, especially on the bass. If I emphasize the bass, it just becomes muddy. I've been using that track above for references and I can't get results near it. Any suggestions would be helpful.

Last edited by lakdn on Mon Feb 11, 2013 1:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.
181 posts since 5 Oct, 2012

Postby Quietinthedark; Mon Feb 11, 2013 1:54 pm

Your question lacks the necessary parameters.

What kind of guitar?
What kind of mic(s)? & where positioned?

There are others but those are the most immediate.

That sound would be easier for me to get with a smaller bodied acoustic & two condenser mics. Any acoustic under a Dreadnought. And it sounds like it is stereo.

And very little EQ unless the above were lacking in some way.
6 posts since 11 Feb, 2013

Postby lakdn; Mon Feb 11, 2013 1:59 pm

I use a dreadnought Takamine acoustic guitar, and record with a fairly cheap condenser mic, NADY SCM-800. I recorded them positioned in the front of the soundhole of the guitar. I'm just concerned about the EQ and the compressor settings right now and reproducing that quality of sound.
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2786 posts since 15 Nov, 2006, from Hell

Postby Burillo; Mon Feb 11, 2013 2:03 pm

often times, correctly recorded acoustic guitar doesn't need any EQ at all.
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Postby MickGael; Mon Feb 11, 2013 2:38 pm

Forgive me if you already know this:

The best EQ you can use begins with where you place the mic (not to mention what pick you use, the strings, how hard to strum, where you strum, etc).

In a nice room, backed off a bit from the soundhole can yield a full, natural sound. In less than ideal situations, you may find the sound boomy or indistinct.

You may want to explore the tried and true technique of pointing the mic at the 12th fret. Angle up towards the headstock for more overtones, towards the saddle for more fundamentals.

Explore other positions. Repositioning by even a few inches will reveal changes in tone.

PS - LCD condensers are not necessarily the best choice. I have several high-end condensers, and often use an AEA R84. Even the far more affordable NADY ribbon I have sometimes beats out the $$ mics.
Last edited by MickGael on Mon Feb 11, 2013 2:48 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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2329 posts since 3 Jan, 2005

Postby fedexnman; Mon Feb 11, 2013 2:43 pm

Id experiment with mic placement 1st and re record it till it sounds right . 1st try aiming the mic at where the neck joint meets the finger board somewhere around the 12th fret area and back away 6 - 8 inches to even more than a foot if it sounds right . If you need more bass tilt the mic just a tad towards the sound hole while still in the 12th fret neck joint area . If you dont have 2 condensors available use 2 dynamic mics shure sm58 and/ or sm57 in an xy pattern aimed at the 12th fret area for a stereo mic effect , you can also add reverb or a slight delay to a mono guitar track to make it sound fuller , but you need to get it sounding right at the source 1st guitar mic pre headphones before you start to process things . Use google , bing or yahoo to learn mic techniques for acoustic guitar .
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22330 posts since 27 Jul, 2005, from the wilds of wanny

Postby thecontrolcentre; Mon Feb 11, 2013 2:48 pm

I've been recording a lot of acoustic guitar recently, and I'm finding it best if I take my time getting the mic position right, so the sound is right to start with. Get your headphone's on and listen ... dreadnoughts can be a bit boomy if you're not careful about mic position. Obviously it's very important that the guitar sounds good before you even start recording.

The guitar in the youtube clip sounds like a smaller bodied acoustic, with very little treatment. Maybe an exciter? I've found SKNote's Presence plugin very useful to brighten things up.
4384 posts since 22 Jan, 2005, from Sweden

Postby lfm; Tue Feb 12, 2013 12:34 am

Burillo wrote:often times, correctly recorded acoustic guitar doesn't need any EQ at all.

Having a Martin D-28 and a Neumann mike, that's probably true.
But also adjusting to fit into mix may need EQ anyway.

Otherwise you obviously try to compensate if you can for cheaper equipment than that.

Good reverb is neat for acoustic guitar to get that big sound.
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173 posts since 30 Jun, 2009, from moon

Postby replicant X; Tue Feb 12, 2013 12:48 am

In the mix, a hight-pass filter solves everything.
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6 posts since 11 Feb, 2013

Postby lakdn; Tue Feb 12, 2013 8:16 am

Recorded pointing my mic towards the 12th fret, compressed a little and tweaked the EQ a bit using Ableton's EQ eight, boosting the highs and cutting some bass and the results are still muddy. I can't get anywhere close the recording in the youtube clip. In the video, the bass is clear and punchy and the highs are crisp. Mine still remains muddy. My results:

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22330 posts since 27 Jul, 2005, from the wilds of wanny

Postby thecontrolcentre; Tue Feb 12, 2013 8:27 am

117 posts since 19 Nov, 2011, from Mao, Balears

Postby EdC; Wed Feb 13, 2013 4:32 pm

The very first thing you need to do is LISTEN to the guitar. It sounds obvious but it's often under stimated by pro engineers too.
What I mean is to walk around in the studio while the guitarist is playing and listen with your ears; if the most of the time you hear a mudded sound it could be related to room acoustics (the only alternatives are guitar or player or combination of these factors) and there is basically nothing you can do with EQ or mics besides worsening the situation. You have to move the guitar player, place absorbers and try to goal for a very good sound that comes directly to your ears. After this is accomplished you can start to worry about mic placing and try to obtain the same sound in control room just by moving or changing microphone.
Then, as usual if you use digital equipment, stay low on levels (peaks should only on occasions reach -6 dbfs; better to stay around -12); the beautiful and delicate transients of an acoustic guitar are not seen on level meters but can be easily clipped if levels are too hot..
54 posts since 17 Dec, 2009

Postby etarr; Wed Feb 13, 2013 6:11 pm

6 posts since 11 Feb, 2013

Postby lakdn; Fri Feb 15, 2013 10:31 am

Thank you for the suggestions
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Postby BERFAB; Fri Feb 15, 2013 10:51 am

replicant X wrote:In the mix, a high-pass filter solves everything.

What does this mean, exactly? Are you rolling off the top end or enhancing it?
So many plugins, so little time...

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