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Which vocal effects unit should I get - Rock music Dynamic Microphones
Old 19th September 2011
Here for the gear

Which vocal effects unit should I get - Rock music


I'm looking at getting a vocal effects unit for live performances and i'm slightly unsure as to what will get me the sound thats in my head, as I'm confused.

I'm looking for something that the likes of Seether, Papa Roach, Shinedown etc. I'm not trying to get their exact sound (whats the point haha), just looking to improve my noooooob sets for a more professional tone.

Totally appreciate any help n advice that you guys can give.

Old 19th September 2011
Lives for gear

The best thing a vocalist can do for their vocal sound is go to a good vocal coach and buy a mic that suits their voice.

Some of the vocal fx pedals are really cool. But most sound engineers doing live sound, hate dealing with fx that aren't in their control. The pedals with preamps in them and the levels they hit the stagebox can cause some problems.

The bands you've mentioned have vocalists with natural sounding, big voices. Their recorded sounds are compressed and with delay. Some are fattened up with double tracking others are fattened up through other treatments...

Here are a couple of recommendations for you. Practice your songs until you can always get the pitch of the first note correct even without the backing. Just check against a keyboard or guitar to see if you are accurate. Record your vocal performance and listen out to hear if the starts and endings of your phrases are powerful and intelligible. If they start quiet and end quiet then you need to support the start and end words with enough breath and with good mic technique.

Pedals like the Boss and TC Electronic ones would work if you bring your own PA system to gigs or if you hire your own sound man to get used to working with the pedals if you do decide to buy them.

Some people sound a million dollars on an SM58 whilst others singing on one will have all the nuances in their voice missed out by that mic! Some people suit a bit of bass roll off or high pass filter of the mixer whilst others don't need it. So what I'm saying is that you need to find what's right for your voice. Any problems at your end such as trouble with pitch or timing or diction or having pleasant vowel sounds etc should be worked at.

Hope I've been of help.
Old 20th September 2011
Lives for gear
Yeah, not a big fan of vocal processors. A couple of things that might help:

1. Find the right mic. Most vocal mics have a kind of characteristic sound and you want to find the one that flatters your voice. Head over to GC and try em all out with their PA.

2. A tiny bit of EQ can help. Once you're set up with the mic, find a soundman you can trust or learn to set the board up yourself and use a touch of EQ to get things set where they mix the way you want them.

3. I don't know how useful compression and reverb/delay are in the real world. A lot of sound guys put them on the monitors because it makes your voice in the monitor sound more natural, but I kinda think it's better to hear how you really sound and work the mic to make it sound better: pull back a little, choke up close, move off to the side-learn how little changes in position change your sound and use that.

Unfortunately, learning to use your instrument (the human voice) takes a long time, just like learning another instrument, and everytime you've got a mic in your hands be listening to help grow better at it!
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