Sunday, June 15, 2008

Guitar Recording Techniques

This is my first post of Guitar Recording Techniques. I'll describe some of guitar recording techniques starts from hardware, software and combination from both hardware and software. Maybe you didn't realize some of the techniques that I'll share. I'll also write the "plus" and "minus" for each one of them.

There are various ways to records our guitar tracks to DAW. Our main goal of trying many techniques are to get the best guitar sound we want. Time, place and price should be our consideration of choosing which technique should be taken.

1. Full Hardware (1), this is the most common way of recording guitar. We need guitar amplifier, cabinet (speaker), mic and mic preamp as our main equipments. This technique is ussualy called "Miking Technique". It looks like this on the schema:

guitar -> (input) amplifier -> speaker <-> mic -> mic preamp -> DAW

Sound that comes from the speaker is captured by mic to records in DAW. We have to do a lot of experiments with mic placement when recording guitar amp's speaker. Placing the mic closer to the centre gives a more focused sound, while moving to the edge gives a more open, slightly warmer sound. Various positions and trying different mics may produce different results.


  • Great guitar sound will be produced
  • Natural sounding
  • Lots of guitar sound possibilities
  • We can't record at 3 in the morning because we need a sound proofed studio
  • More time to spend for trying several mic / cabinet placements
  • Expensive
2. Full Hardware (2), mic and mic preamp are replaced by DI-BOX that has cabinet simulator feature as full hardware (1). The schema would be:

guitar -> (input) amplifier (line out) -> DI-BOX -> DAW

"If you are using a tube amp, it's very important to connect an impendance load --preferably a speaker-- to the direct link to cabinet output in order to prevent damage to your amp"

We have to turn on the cabinet simulator on the DI-BOX. "Behringer GI100" and "Hughes & Kettner Red Box" are some DI-BOX examples that have this cabinet simulator feature. The sound that will be produced by using this technique are limited because cabinet simulation is only depends on DI-BOX. Don't forget to find a good level match from DI-BOX, most DI-BOXes include a pad switch to reduce the level of the incoming signal.

  • Fast settings
  • We can do it anytime and anywhere
  • Limited guitar sound possibilities

The next post will be software, I'll continue tomorrow.

Thanks for reading...

Related Post:
Guitar Recording Techniques (2)
Guitar Recording Techniques (3)


Post a Comment