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Anybody recording hard rock with transparent/clean preamps and outboard? Dual-Channel Preamps
Old 27th May 2016
  #1
Gear Nut
 

Anybody recording hard rock with transparent/clean preamps and outboard?

Salutations, Slutz!

Just wondering if anybody has any experience recording hard rock (big drums, distorted guitars, crunchy bass) using transparent/clean style mic preamps and outboard rather than the colored Neve/API transformer/iron sound?

If so, does it sound cool or are transparent pres too unforgiving for say a high gain tube amp?

I ask because I have long been under the impression that I wasn't digging my digital rock recordings due to a lack of pleasant THD in the signal path. But now I'm using a very colored chain on guitars for example: SM 57 -> Vintech Dual 72 -> Universal Audio 1176 reissue -> Apogee Rosetta 200 converters. There is definitely a ton of color now, but to my ear it's just making it sound 'old'. Which is definitely cool I guess, but I'd heard on this forum that a certain widely derided, but undoubtedly well-produced band was using a very similar chain and getting very 'modern' sounding guitars. I doubt I have to tell you which band I'm describing. Anyway it got me wondering if hard rock can sound cool through Forssell, GML, Grace, John Hardy, Gordon etc. Anybody tried this?

In theory it seemed reasonable to me.. A tube amp cranked already creates plenty of harmonic distortion on its own. Maybe capturing it with a super transparent preamp could be cool? Or would it suck? I'd just test in on my own but I blew a fat wad on my hardware 1176 and it's gonna be a moment before I can get a Foressell smp-2 or a Millennia in here.
Old 27th May 2016
  #2
Gear Addict
 

I love recording rock through Millenias. Drums are big, and you get all the crispety-crunchety of the guitars. You get the instruments and, as you say, the mic all up front and in a lot of detail. Maybe not great for fuzzed-out 60's tone, but great for hard rock and metal.
Old 27th May 2016
  #3
Gear Maniac
 
jrasia's Avatar
I record a lot of heavy rock stuff and I would say a clean chain is pretty vital for what I do. I've got a heavily modified soundcraft delta board, john hardy and aea trp preamps in the rack. Pretty 'clean' I would say. When someone brings in their 8x10 fridge with distortion pedals out the wazoo, the last thing I need to do is add more distortion. I want to capture their setup as honestly as possible.

This bands ep was recorded with this chain setup.
https://dronesofnorthamerica.bandcamp.com/
Old 27th May 2016
  #4
Gear Addict
 

PS: LaChapells are great for this sort of thing too.
Old 28th May 2016
  #5
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jrasia View Post
I record a lot of heavy rock stuff and I would say a clean chain is pretty vital for what I do. I've got a heavily modified soundcraft delta board, john hardy and aea trp preamps in the rack. Pretty 'clean' I would say. When someone brings in their 8x10 fridge with distortion pedals out the wazoo, the last thing I need to do is add more distortion. I want to capture their setup as honestly as possible.

This bands ep was recorded with this chain setup.
https://dronesofnorthamerica.bandcamp.com/

Hey jrasia, thanks for posting. Definitely no lack of 'balls', 'mojo' etc. on this band! Great heavy tones. So I can hear pretty clearly that using clean preamps is not going to inhibit the hard rock sound.

-MM
Old 28th May 2016
  #6
Lives for gear
 

Albini using his Neotek desk (in Chicago), might be one of the higher profile examples.

https://www.soundonsound.com/sos/sep...les/albini.htm
Old 28th May 2016
  #7
Sure, but I use ribbons more than condensers. Usually R84s into a Forssell SMP-2A or TRP. If I want color, those preamps and other outboard can still be utilized in post.
Old 28th May 2016
  #8
Deleted User
Guest
Quote:
Originally Posted by Master Moss View Post
Salutations, Slutz!

Just wondering if anybody has any experience recording hard rock (big drums, distorted guitars, crunchy bass) using transparent/clean style mic preamps and outboard rather than the colored Neve/API transformer/iron sound?

If so, does it sound cool or are transparent pres too unforgiving for say a high gain tube amp?

I ask because I have long been under the impression that I wasn't digging my digital rock recordings due to a lack of pleasant THD in the signal path. But now I'm using a very colored chain on guitars for example: SM 57 -> Vintech Dual 72 -> Universal Audio 1176 reissue -> Apogee Rosetta 200 converters. There is definitely a ton of color now, but to my ear it's just making it sound 'old'. Which is definitely cool I guess, but I'd heard on this forum that a certain widely derided, but undoubtedly well-produced band was using a very similar chain and getting very 'modern' sounding guitars. I doubt I have to tell you which band I'm describing. Anyway it got me wondering if hard rock can sound cool through Forssell, GML, Grace, John Hardy, Gordon etc. Anybody tried this?

In theory it seemed reasonable to me.. A tube amp cranked already creates plenty of harmonic distortion on its own. Maybe capturing it with a super transparent preamp could be cool? Or would it suck? I'd just test in on my own but I blew a fat wad on my hardware 1176 and it's gonna be a moment before I can get a Foressell smp-2 or a Millennia in here.
My guess is by similar path you mean a 1073 vs the Vintech dual 72? I own both and the Vintech is more of an old school sound. A 1073 might be "modern" sounding enough for you while still giving you the balls you won't get with a clean pre.
Old 29th May 2016
  #9
Gear Nut
 

Seem like clean pres would be great for metal drums because you would get better transients.
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