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Isolation guitar box/chamber DIY - open for suggestions
Old 27th August 2007
  #1
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Purusha's Avatar
 

Isolation guitar box/chamber DIY - open for suggestions

I am thinking to make a Randall or Demeter type of ISO box/chamber for recording metal guitars.
But before I go ahead and start building it and choosing a 12" speaker would like to get some feedback
from all of you who have experiences with it.

My main concern is:

Is it worth it? So far I am stuck with Motherload which is not bad but still missing some density and bite...

Does it have any bad side effect on the sound? Can you hear that it's recorded in a box?

Which type of these two types is better or it's all the same?

What speaker would be the best for metal sound from Celestion?

If someone has any dimensions of these two versions would help a lot also.


Thanks for any help in advance



Old 27th August 2007
  #2
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el cochino's Avatar
 

I have the Randall Isocab and the Motherload, as well, and I use a combination of both and mic the speaker with a Sennheiser 609e. Never tried the Demeter cab, but I think the results will be very similar if you use the same speakers in both cabs. It does sound a little boxey, but I put some rockwool inside the cab, which made it better. For metal guitars, I prefer Celestion Vinatge 30s.
Old 27th August 2007
  #3
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Purusha's Avatar
 

Thanks. So you are satisfied with the combination? Can you explain more about the way you combine these two?

I found some info on the net that says this:

it was the G12T-75 that rose to the fore and is now widely acclaimed as a great rock/metal/thrash guitar speaker. One of the best selling speakers of all time, it has a wide frequency range and excellent sensitivity. Emphasis is on huge bass, relaxed mids and vibrant highs which make for a brutal sound - solid and fat with plenty of sparkle. Its heavy duty aspect means that it handles extreme high gain and distortion like a gladiator.

Can anyone confirm this? Other options would be a 60W vintage model or a 25W greenback.
Old 27th August 2007
  #4
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el cochino's Avatar
 

Since I'm recording in an apartment, I've tried every possible way to get decent guitar sounds at low levels and this is by far the best version so far. Usually, I use a Chandler TG2 - the Motherload goes to the DI input, and the mic in the second channel's mic input. I don't have the summing option in my TG2 so I'm going through the soundboard and adjust the levels of both signals, then sum it to a group before it hits the DAW. You could also record 2 tracks and adjust the levels during the mix, but I prefer to get the sound right in the first place. But I always record a DI signal from the guitar before it hits the amp, too, incase I really want to change the sound later.
Old 27th August 2007
  #5
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Purusha's Avatar
 

Thanks for the info on your technique. I would probably do it the same.

Could you give me the dimensions of the Randall box which you have?

BTW, any chance to hear some of your recordings? A short clip will be fine

Here is something from my latest production done with Motherload only.

http://purusha.smokinggunrecording.com/Never.zip
Old 27th August 2007
  #6
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Has anyone heard the new Celestion G12K-100 series? These are suppose to be the best for new metal for downtuners.

http://professional.celestion.com/gu...erBrochure.pdf
Old 27th August 2007
  #7
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I'd recommend a product you may not be aware of: remote object octave modulator. There's one in use, here in this picture. See if you can spot it.

Old 27th August 2007
  #8
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Purusha's Avatar
 

The small white box on the back table, maybe?
Old 27th August 2007
  #9
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davet's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisgraff View Post
I'd recommend a product you may not be aware of: remote object octave modulator. There's one in use, here in this picture. See if you can spot it.
OK, I give: what is a remote object octave modulator?
I did a google search..nada.
DaveT
Old 27th August 2007
  #10
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nbarts's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisgraff View Post
I'd recommend a product you may not be aware of: remote object octave modulator. There's one in use, here in this picture. See if you can spot it.

heh
Old 27th August 2007
  #11
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I've got a Demeter SSC-1 and it sounds boxey. Came with a Celestion 12". It isn't a greenback, one of the other models. It works OK for what it is, but in the end a small speaker cabinet miked in my bathroom sounds better. More air, depth. I've yet to find an effect that helps.

Maybe the remote object octave modulator. is the answer? Or is someone yanking my chain again?
Davet
Old 27th August 2007
  #12
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ROOM
Old 27th August 2007
  #13
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davet's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by egan View Post
ROOM
Yeah, OK. That's what I thought. heh

DaveT
Old 27th August 2007
  #14
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lowfreq33's Avatar
 

We've got the Randall box at church. It's okay, doesn't isolate completely, but it does reduce the spl significantly. You'll def. want to replace the stock speaker, it's crap. You could try to build your own, but it may be cheaper just to buy one.
Old 27th August 2007
  #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by davet View Post
I've got a Demeter SSC-1 and it sounds boxey. Came with a Celestion 12". It isn't a greenback, one of the other models. It works OK for what it is, but in the end a small speaker cabinet miked in my bathroom sounds better. More air, depth. I've yet to find an effect that helps.

Maybe the remote object octave modulator. is the answer? Or is someone yanking my chain again?
Davet
Ok, ok...I couldn't resist. . You already came to the conclusion that a room is the way to go; so I don't feel too guilty.

I've used a palmer, POD, ampfarm, etc. They all can be made to work with varying degrees of success. I'll tell you one thing that surprised me; something I tried from something I read in a guitar magazine. - use a 6" speaker at very low volumes. The magazine article said small, cheap speakers perform better at low volumes because they are typically constructed with thinner paper. I'll be damned if that article wasn't right on. Huge tones at stupid low volumes. Might be something to try if you have a strict noise/volume requirement. Otherwise, finding a new place to live is probably easier than making a direct guitar sound great.
Old 27th August 2007
  #16
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Purusha's Avatar
 

OK, so I could basically do a Randall type of box with a 6" speaker in it?
It could also be interchangeable with a larger 12" speaker if needed.
Old 27th August 2007
  #17
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davet's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisgraff View Post
Ok, ok...I couldn't resist. I'll tell you one thing that surprised me; something I tried from something I read in a guitar magazine. - use a 6" speaker at very low volumes. The magazine article said small, cheap speakers perform better at low volumes because they are typically constructed with thinner paper. I'll be damned if that article wasn't right on. Huge tones at stupid low volumes. Might be something to try if you have a strict noise/volume requirement. Otherwise, finding a new place to live is probably easier than making a direct guitar sound great.
Chris,
Thanks for the good natured poke in the ribbs. I was thinking about a small/cheap speaker set up the other day. Wondered if it would work. Maybe a 6" car stereo speaker? I'll give it a try.
DaveT
Old 27th August 2007
  #18
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DeathMonkey's Avatar
 

I have some questions with those 1x12 recording isolators, not the least of which is the compromises made in the speaker, cab design, and microphone. While some of them do sound quite good, many don't allow the flexibility of cab design, speaker design and mic placement, three cornerstones of getting the most out of any given amp, right?

IMHO, the better solution is to build an iso box large enough to house a 2x12 or even 4x12's if you have the room. There are plans on the web for a variety of these - but the basic double walled construction with soundproofing insulation/ sound treatment inside/ doors at both ends structure seems to work very well. Roll your cab in one side, place the mic the way you want to on the other, close the ends, viola!

I've seen some really cool designs, with non-parallel walls, with different removable surfaces, built in cab isolators (like GRAMMAs), doors with XLR to XLR connections or speaker cable junctions... even a box just a few inches bigger and two feet longer than a standard 4x12 at least allows a bit more flexibility.

If you have only a few amps that all sound good with, say V30s or Greenbacks ( that 6" speaker suggestion sounds really intriguing!), then it's not that big a deal. In my humble experience, however, being able to match the speakers and miking technique to the amp and to the song is crucial. Heck, most of you guys can get great sounds from anything - I'm just not that bright, so I need every step as open as possible, not only so I can get good sounds, but so I can continue to learn and experiment to hone my skills.

Just my 0.02, but a hunnerd spent at Home Depot might get you better results. heh
Old 27th August 2007
  #19
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Purusha's Avatar
 

I could always place a box in the next room but I don't like long cables and my one year old son would have to listen to
the blast in the floor below so I better try the 6" in the ISO box like Randall but with much bigger part which is covering
the speaker filled with 30cm of rock wool. This will surely kill the sound reflex of the box pretty much, don't you think?
Old 28th August 2007
  #20
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I've gotta tell you in my experience none of isocabs work well. And in addition to this yet you have the 2nd problem also, since you are tracking metal 1x12 ain't gonna do it, it's hard to even get 1x12 cab recorded in the room do the metal thing well.

IMO the suggestion of building an isolation box for your existing cabinet is going to be more effective. However I wouldn't expect any of these to be dead silent. The only isocab that came close to that dead silence thing was AxeTrak & the quality of recorded material through it sucks like with every other isocab, at least for me.
Old 28th August 2007
  #21
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Check this and tell me that guitars suck. http://purusha.smokinggunrecording.com/Burn5.zip

I am almost satisfied with my Motherload. Just missing some density and a bit of a bite which comes
from the real speaker. I am sure there is a way to go around the full 4x12". I do have some experience
with recording in big studios and never needed to use all 4 speakers, half of the box was enough.

I'll give it a try with a small 6" speaker and Motherload
Old 28th August 2007
  #22
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Nice music, I'm up to something close to that style too.

IMO those guitars don't sit in the mix. Anyway I don't think you gonna get better results with isocab. In my experience one can go with 2x12, but 1x12 just doesn't cut metal.

Good luck with your search!
Old 28th August 2007
  #23
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I agree, guitars would sit better in the mix if recorded through a real speaker.

Why do you think 2 x 12" is better? Do you use 2 mics or just cause of the loudness effect?
Old 28th August 2007
  #24
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nbarts's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Purusha View Post
I agree, guitars would sit better in the mix if recorded through a real speaker.
Air is the key! For something to sit in the mix you need air, it's not just about the speaker.

Quote:
Why do you think 2 x 12" is better? Do you use 2 mics or just cause of the loudness effect?
Neither. I spent nearly 2 months trying to get a good heavy tone out of 1x12 cab & I had success to some point. Then I got a 4x12 & micing it was as easy as sticking a 57 in front of it. I believe that has something to do with resonance & the fact that the sound coming from other speakers makes the sound rich & also the way amp head works with the load. 1x12, 2x12 & 4x12 all give different results combined with the same amp head, with 1x12 being radically different. I'm sure thee will be scientific explanation to this, but I don't know much about science, I'm just talking out of my experience. 2x12s work good too, they are even better than 4x12s for some tones, but if you need bass heavy tone 4x12 is the way to go. Judging from your clip you should be fine with 2x12.
Old 28th August 2007
  #25
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Purusha's Avatar
 

Good arguments. You just made me to reconsider this project. Hmm, maybe a Motherload attenuation
would help. In this way you can crank the amp but the speaker is not so loud as it would be otherwise.
Old 28th August 2007
  #26
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Geert van den Berg's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by nbarts View Post
Air is the key! For something to sit in the mix you need air, it's not just about the speaker.

Neither. I spent nearly 2 months trying to get a good heavy tone out of 1x12 cab & I had success to some point. Then I got a 4x12 & micing it was as easy as sticking a 57 in front of it. I believe that has something to do with resonance & the fact that the sound coming from other speakers makes the sound rich & also the way amp head works with the load. 1x12, 2x12 & 4x12 all give different results combined with the same amp head, with 1x12 being radically different. I'm sure thee will be scientific explanation to this,
I guess it has to do with phase, even if you place the microphone close to a single speaker of a cab with multiple speakers the other speakers are still going to interfere with the one you're mic'ing. (in the speakercab, but also outside it)

I find a single speaker gives a more balanced tone, because there's no phasing going on.

I had a long discussion with fellow GS Preben about Iso Cabs and we both agreed on that one of the most made mistakes is that the speaker inside the Iso is being driven too hard. Imagine a small room with a 4x12" you'll notice soon that it will start to resonate, the air in the room compresses and it will be hard to get a good mic'ed sound. Offcourse most guitarists want to turn up their amp to get some poweramp distortion... a load box will give a much more balanced tone inside such a small room or Iso Box. Or just use a smaller amp/speaker...
Old 29th August 2007
  #27
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beau_mckee's Avatar
Have you lookd into the SPL TRANSDUCER? I
ts a new product from SPL and Tonehunter, and is getting fairly good feedback here in gearslutz.
Old 29th August 2007
  #28
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davet's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by beau_mckee View Post
Have you lookd into the SPL TRANSDUCER? I
ts a new product from SPL and Tonehunter, and is getting fairly good feedback here in gearslutz.
Yeow, $1300.00 from Sound Pure!! Anyone try this box yet?

DaveT
Old 3rd September 2007
  #29
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Purusha's Avatar
 

Does anyone know if stuffing the rock wool behind the speaker in the ISO box does any good or bad to the sound?
I was thinking to make a part which covers the ISO box (Randall type) double the size what Randall did and stuff it
with rock wool. Would this dampen it too much?
Old 7th October 2007
  #30
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darkwater's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by lowfreq33 View Post
We've got the Randall box at church. It's okay, doesn't isolate completely, but it does reduce the spl significantly. You'll def. want to replace the stock speaker, it's crap. You could try to build your own, but it may be cheaper just to buy one.
Last time I checked, the Randall Iso cab shipped with a Celestion V30. Crap?
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