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BenHermanski
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« Reply #20 on: January 15, 2012, 02:04:02 PM »

Guys, I would appreciate your opinions on how a Zoom would make for representable demo recordings.

I am asking this, since I like the feeling and sound of both my playing and my singing when performed at the same time. Feels and sound just more natural to me.

Last night I played for a couple of friends in their dining room and the acoustic in there was stunning. Very loud, but at the same time very clear. In brief, excellent conditions to play unplugged. Since I would like to capture both the sound and the feeling of such a performance, I thought that maybe a recording device like a Zoom could come in handy. What do you think?

Again, I just need demo recordings to give the people some sugar til I have both the time and money for some professional studio recordings bigrin
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« Reply #21 on: January 15, 2012, 02:58:16 PM »

Ben,

Portable recorders with built-in mics range in quality from crummy to very very nice.  Most of the Zoom line works well for folks for your latest stated purpose.  If you want to simply grab a live performance with all of the room acoustics thrown in - there's nothing simpler these days than a Zoom H4n or H2.  The H4n has added flexibility than you can use it as an audio interface for your computer software should you choose to do so - as it has proper XLR connectors for other microphones, etc.

There's folks here that regularly use the Zoom H series for capturing live performances.  Search the forums and you'll find recordings.
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« Reply #22 on: January 15, 2012, 03:03:59 PM »

Thank you, Scott! 

Anything nice/terrible about the H1 that you would have experienced?
I only found statements that it is not that robust but the sound quality is comparable to that of the H4 and puts other recorders in the same prica range in their place...

Lots of used H2 s in the bay, however. Will keep an eye on them!

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« Reply #23 on: January 15, 2012, 03:05:42 PM »

Ben,

Portable recorders with built-in mics range in quality from crummy to very very nice.  Most of the Zoom line works well for folks for your latest stated purpose.  If you want to simply grab a live performance with all of the room acoustics thrown in - there's nothing simpler these days than a Zoom H4n or H2 or H1.  The H4n has added flexibility than you can use it as an audio interface for your computer software should you choose to do so - as it has proper XLR connectors for other microphones, etc.

There's folks here that regularly use the Zoom H series for capturing live performances.  Search the forums and you'll find recordings.

Well, I can't find any recordings here - however I know some of the regular posters in this forum use zoom pocket recorders.  I swear I've seen the posts and heard the recordings.

I just went shopping for these after posting in our local Craigslist - don't know if you have something like that in Europe.  Should be able to pick up the H1 for under 100 Euro.

-Scott
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« Reply #24 on: January 15, 2012, 03:08:56 PM »

Thank you, Scott! 

Anything nice/terrible about the H1 that you would have experienced?
I only found statements that it is not that robust but the sound quality is comparable to that of the H4 and puts other recorders in the same prica range in their place...

Lots of used H2 s in the bay, however. Will keep an eye on them!



I have not used any of these except for the H4 (before the re-do of the LCD panel) and that was a few years ago.  I have not met anyone that has purchased either the H4 series or the H2 that doesn't like their purchase.  The H1 is newer and I don't know anyone that has used one of them.  However, I'm seriously thinking of buying one for my piano tuning side business.

I've hauled my laptop and recording interface to some piano tuning jobs to record a before/after performance and burn to CD.  I charge an extra 35$ for this and some folks really like the confirmation that yes, I made an improvement to their piano tuning.

The H1 would pay for itself in a couple of jobs.  Very tempted to buy right now.

-Scott
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« Reply #25 on: January 16, 2012, 12:52:28 AM »

I went thru these posts pretty quickly so sorry if I missed something but on the double track subject....
I put at least the fundemental acoustic rythm on 2 tracks but I only play once. Just 2 mics in different places. The expanse comes from the slight delay or just phase differences of the 2 tracks.
Pan them out and you can just hear sound swell. They can even be 180 degrees out of phase if you pan them out. Used to have just one tube preamp which  flopped its signal 180.
If you put both in the center,  signal would pretty much go away being 180 out. But when you spread them..vrooom.BIG. That's pretty much what 2 mics are doing placed differently. Also certain notes may come out stronger on 1 mic so there's this shimmer that happens with that side to side as well. Sometimes if I have enough tracks I'll used pick-up in the center and mics left and right. Finger pickin really gets a shimmer to it, I think,  with any of these options because these individual notes being plucked are more likely to have the different notes being stronger that I was talking about.
 I'm curious about recording the same instrument doing the same part twice, if that is what was meant. What is advantage that would make it worth doing that as compared to just using different mics to different tracks...one time.
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« Reply #26 on: January 16, 2012, 03:54:15 AM »

I'm curious about recording the same instrument doing the same part twice, if that is what was meant. What is advantage that would make it worth doing that as compared to just using different mics to different tracks...one time.

It gives some interesting spatial effects, makes the sound feel like it's has expanded if that makes any sense. If you like you can check out my doubletracked instrumental. Since notes can't possibly be played with the exact same attack two takes in a row, the spatial effect is such that a melody line can jump right to left or left to right. Better with headphones. . .
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BenHermanski
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« Reply #27 on: January 16, 2012, 12:28:28 PM »

@flatlander: Thank you! That will also be an option that I might try in the near future.

@jpmist: That ist the desired effect!! And therefore, unfortunately, requires playing to a click track...  crying

I will try to record some demos with a Zoom handy recorder, soon, and will see how that works for the desired effect of just a decent demo recording.
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« Reply #28 on: January 16, 2012, 12:49:32 PM »

It gives some interesting spatial effects, makes the sound feel like it's has expanded if that makes any sense. If you like you can check out my doubletracked instrumental. Since notes can't possibly be played with the exact same attack two takes in a row, the spatial effect is such that a melody line can jump right to left or left to right. Better with headphones. . .
I hear ya but in my mind two out of phase mics do the same thing, same principal. Like put on directly in front of soundhole straight at it and one, one top of neck at, well it couldn't be 90, but quite an angle. Then you have 2 different sounds from different places and waves clashing a little. But that's for acoustic. On electric you don't have that option unless you artificially delay one track in processing. I need to read that link though and maybe check out that way but I can tell you I get a whole lot of that effect just by using two different mics. If you have a DI or something with a phase switch try that. I would have though 180 out would kill it, but if they are spread out ..SWELL CITY................
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« Reply #29 on: January 16, 2012, 02:30:10 PM »

I hear ya but in my mind two out of phase mics do the same thing, same principal. Like put on directly in front of soundhole straight at it and one, one top of neck at, well it couldn't be 90, but quite an angle. Then you have 2 different sounds from different places and waves clashing a little. But that's for acoustic. On electric you don't have that option unless you artificially delay one track in processing. I need to read that link though and maybe check out that way but I can tell you I get a whole lot of that effect just by using two different mics. If you have a DI or something with a phase switch try that. I would have though 180 out would kill it, but if they are spread out ..SWELL CITY................

Flatlander - these are not the same effect.  What you are referring to is a spaced mic stereo recording.  This is an entirely different effect than double-tracking and panning.  You should try it to convince yourself.  Once you try it, you'll hear the differences.  While both offer a stereo spread, the effects in the brain are rather different.

Did you listen to the track I posted in the first page?  That's a true double-tracked rhythm acoustic example.  Note that I did not use chorus, even though the effect has quite a bit of what sounds like chorus processing on it.  That's because of the double tracking.  I have the capability to record all different kinds of mics simultaneously (I can even do a mid-side recording since I have a figure-8 pattern ribbon mic and the signal routing in my DAW software to accomplish it), and yet I choose to do double tracking often simply because the effect is more along what I like to hear.  

Here is a great article at SAE recording institute about different methods to record acoustic guitar and talks about all 3 methods mentioned in this thread, and mic position tips.  Ben, if you buy the Zoom, place it at position A, as that is the type of recording the Zooms offer, a stereo x-y pair.

http://www.sae.edu/reference_material/audio/pages/Guitars%20acc.htm

-Scott

Also, here is another great article on recording acoustic guitar with interviews of 4 different recording engineers.  Most seem to prefer mono miking, then multi-tracking.  They explain their reasons.

http://emusician.com/tutorials/emusic_sixstring_strategies/

Again, try it out - you'll like it, but you will have to be more precise in your playing for the effect to be present.  Ben, you can still do this with the stereo X-Y that the zoom has, but you'll have to do in a post process, where you will mute one side of the X-Y pair on each of the takes.

-Scott

(I don't have access to my 'studio' right now - guests from out of town) but I can do this very simply out in the living room.  I'll see if I can knock out a demo for you later tonight or some time this week).


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« Reply #30 on: January 16, 2012, 03:10:53 PM »

Thanks, Scott, the A position was what I had in mind for the Zoom, as well.

Regarding the height in which I will place the Zoom:

Since I play and sing simultaneously, do I place the Zoom at a height relatively in the middle between my mouth and the soundhole, or closer to either one? Does it matter?

As far as distance is concerned, I have read that about 7 feet away from me would be an appropriate place to capture every detail of the sound...
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« Reply #31 on: January 16, 2012, 07:45:52 PM »

Thanks, Scott, the A position was what I had in mind for the Zoom, as well.

Regarding the height in which I will place the Zoom:

Since I play and sing simultaneously, do I place the Zoom at a height relatively in the middle between my mouth and the soundhole, or closer to either one? Does it matter?

As far as distance is concerned, I have read that about 7 feet away from me would be an appropriate place to capture every detail of the sound...

This all depends on the room in which you record.  Best thing to do is some experimentation using what you have indicated as a starting point.  There is not exact/right answer.

-Scott
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« Reply #32 on: January 17, 2012, 04:00:48 AM »

OK, I did some living room couch demos tonight.

Here's the setup:  My Larrivee L-03, me playing a simple chord progression.

Recording setup:  Tascam US800 interface, Electro-Voice PL80a microphone placed at 12th fret, about 4-5 inches away from fretboard, aimed down toward soundhole, Samson Q2U microphone about even with sound hole, aimed at upper waist location.

Two takes involved.

Take 1, stereo recording with EV hard panned left, Samson hard panned right.
Take 2 same thing.

Listened to take 1 while recording take 2

4 files exported from my DAW software.  Stereo recordings 1 and 2 from the 2 takes.

Then the magic of double tracking comes with the other two files which are the individual unique mics, with take 1 in left, take 2 in right.

I have photos of this if you want to see them.  I'll upload them to imageshack later on if there are any takers.

Stereo recording take 1 - Scott Lake

Stereo recording take 2 - Scott Lake

Double Track export using EV mic from both previous takes -Scott Lake

Double track export using Samson mic from both takes - Scott Lake

I will start a new discussion thread on this topic because I think it's one that people have interest in.
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« Reply #33 on: January 17, 2012, 08:52:07 PM »

Thanks Gord & Scott!

I kinda lost the fun in the past when trying to double my tracks. I have to practice a lot more to play accurate in recording situations (excitement kicks in and leaves me playing faster than intended), because I know that I can play tight live! I am used to play with drummers, not with click tracks 

However, I will experiment with doubling the tracks, as well as copying one track and fumble a little with it to make it sound the way I want it.

Recording with two mics also sounds like a decent option!

I'm not sure what system you're using but....When you double track guitars
in Pro Tools you can use Elastic Audio to alter the timing and feel of your
tracks. This also enables you to fix most strumming errors regarding
timing. But over time the more you record; your timing and feel should
get better so that you don't need to make major alterations to your takes.
You may just want to lay your takes back a bit to sit nicely with a drum
track. Elastic Audio makes it so simple.....
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« Reply #34 on: January 17, 2012, 09:31:49 PM »

Good articles, thank for posting!

http://www.sae.edu/reference_material/audio/pages/Guitars%20acc.htm

-Scott

Also, here is another great article on recording acoustic guitar with interviews of 4 different recording engineers.  Most seem to prefer mono miking, then multi-tracking.  They explain their reasons.

http://emusician.com/tutorials/emusic_sixstring_strategies/
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« Reply #35 on: January 18, 2012, 12:17:27 AM »

I'm not sure what system you're using but....When you double track guitars
in Pro Tools you can use Elastic Audio to alter the timing and feel of your
tracks. This also enables you to fix most strumming errors regarding
timing. But over time the more you record; your timing and feel should
get better so that you don't need to make major alterations to your takes.
You may just want to lay your takes back a bit to sit nicely with a drum
track. Elastic Audio makes it so simple.....


That's cool!  I don't have that option in my DAW.  I have time and pitch manipulation, but nothing to line up dynamic peaks in recordings while leaving pitch alone.
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« Reply #36 on: January 18, 2012, 12:36:32 AM »

I like simple. This is a blue yeti mic on stereo setting into audacity with zero processing. I think it sounds pretty decent for what my setup cost. Let me know what you think!

http://www.box.com/files#/files/0/f/64402215/1/f_845017353
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« Reply #37 on: January 18, 2012, 01:26:08 AM »

I've been busy as heck and haven't had time to read all the links. But I will! Thanks everyone. This info is great.
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