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  • James Meder

An Approach to Guitar Cab Mic'ing


Happy #MicMonday! I've been trying to dive deeper into consistently achieving amazing guitar tones. I've had a lot of help on some recent sessions thanks to the band Wires, and guitarist Travis Couch. Here we see Travis' Dusky amp mic'd up with the classic combination of a Shure sm57 dynamic and a Beyerdynamic m160 ribbon mic. Both of these mics went into API512c preamps. An Altec 684 omni dynamic is thrown into the equation as a 'wild card', fed into a NonLinear Audio Flexiguy preamp.


This is where things get interesting! I've been sending all 3 mics into channels/line inputs on the Quantum qm168 console. Here I sum any combination of these 3 mics into 1 audio track before being sent to my converters/DAW. In addition to the blend between the mics, I also have the ability to eq them as I see fit on the console. So much flexibility!


Buuuut... the best part of this setup is the single audio track - session organization inherently becomes streamlined and I'm able to focus more on the integrity of the song, rather than endlessly tinkering with guitar tones come mix time. Really stoked on this!


As for the mic summing combination, the sm57 and m160 give a full picture representation to the guitar tracks. The Shure sm57 has a lot of high mid frequency and 'gritty' presence, while the Beyerdynamic m160 adds weight and density to the low mid range as well as having a 'silky' quality in texture. Most of the session, these mics were summed having a 50/50 blend - only favoring one or the other depending on the section of the song, or just to change up the tones on the go.


The wildcard Altec 685 dynamic omni mic only got used for a few specific parts over the 3 songs we recorded. It has a very exaggerated high mid range which causes it's tone to be extra dry sounding. It's usually a 'little much' but served well mixed alongside the 2 other mics for a couple guitar solo sections.


Thanks for reading and feel free to leave comments/questions below. More mic write-ups to follow!


#altec684 #beyerdynamicm160 #shuresm57 #dynamicmic #ribbonmic #audioengineer #mixengineer #guitarrecording #electricguitarmicing

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