Miking an acoustic guitar

Joined
Sep 1, 2005
Right now my understanding is that a decent way to mic an acoustic guitar is to place one small diaphragm condenser about 5 inches away perpendicular to the 12th fret and 1 about the same distance away to the left of the hole. I'm wondering if this is accurate, and also if anyone may have any tips on how to get a nice, clear, crisp, bright sound. I'm using two Oktava MK012's (the Chinese knockoffs, not the real high-quailty Russian ones) through a Presonus Firepod into Logic.

The recording is for our production of The Laramie Project. Composing an original score for it, simple acoustic stuff. I have about two weeks to do this, and today is the first day that I'm (hopefully) meeting with the guitarist.

Thanks
Ben
 

Eboy87

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 3, 2004
Location
Chicago, IL
I play acoustic guitar, and to answer your question, let me ask you one. What do you want to pick up? High, mid, low? Placing a mic near the fret board will give you more high freq., while the sound hole will give you lows, and placing the mic near the end of the body, after the bridge, will give you the mids. I place mics just far enough away so that I don't hit them while strumming, since there's nothing worse than playing and hearing THUMMMP in the middle of a song, pluss, you get more bass the further away you place the mic.

There's my 2 cents from a guitarist. Good Luck
 

wolf825

Senior Team Emeritus
Premium Member
Joined
Apr 7, 2003
Location
Eastcoast USA
I"ve mic'd many an acoustic... If you have the opportunity tho, here is one of my favorite techniques: You will need a wired or wireless micro-miniature mic--a Countryman B3 omni directional mic is perfect and my preferred. You will also need some sticky-tack putty--the kind you find in an office supply store.

Ball up the putty so its nice and soft...stick it to the guitar (as you hold the guitar it should be just under the neck near the lowest or second lowest fret but in front of the hole). Attach the mic to the putty so that it sticks upwards and a bit out with about 1/4 inch of space between the putty and the mic capsule. Run the cable to the rear of the guitar and tape into place. Dial it up... You geta clear crisp but incredibly full rich sound--one of the most natural sounds I've come accross.. The more gain you dial in the more you can chose between the full richness or the plucky stringy sounds and the finger sounds. I learned this from a famous Flamenco and spanish folk guitar player.. Best usable sound I have come accross for micing.

Barring not having a good quality omni micro miniaature condenser, in another micing method I like a lot I will take a regular condenser like a AKG 535 or an AT 4041 or you can even use a short range shotgun mic--place it in front of and at an angle to the player so you "aim" accross the front of the guitar/hole with about 12-18 inches of distance. Dial up your HPF to about 200hz to cut some of the room noise... another nice sound..

You will find many techniques for micing--the one that is best is the one that works well for your needs and works well for the player too.

JMO...
-w
 

avkid

Not a New User
Fight Leukemia
Joined
Feb 17, 2004
Location
Howell, NJ
Most artists I work with would say "you're putting what on my guitar?"