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2" tape guitars into pro tools...pleeez explain
Old 23rd January 2003
  #1
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guittarzzan's Avatar
2" tape guitars into pro tools...pleeez explain

From much reading, it seems that most of the "experts" record guitars to tape and then dump to pro tools for editing. I have yet to get a distorted guitar sound I like recording direct to pro tools using the 192 i/o or Apogee. If recording to tape then editing in digital domain, it seems to me that the conversion process that seems to kill my tone going straight to PT would do the same to a tape recorded guitar track. I'm puzzled. Am I going to have to spring for a reel to reel to have good guitar tone come out the other end when the cd is pressed?
I appreciate any insights and feedback.
thx,
Steve
Old 23rd January 2003
  #2
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drundall's Avatar
 

What kind of gear are you using and what kind of sound are you after? We're getting some amazing guitar sounds with the 192 @ 96K.
Old 23rd January 2003
  #3
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Messiah's Avatar
 

Re: 2" tape guitars into pro tools...pleeez explain

The chances are that your problems lie at source and not with the 192 (I don't mean to be patronising!). FWIW, if I'm using PT on a session, I will record to PT first then transfer to 2" later, not first. I'm also fully aware of what the 2" transfer is going to bring to tracks when I'm recording to PT first.

If you are working solely in PT, you may need to compress more to "pull" the sounds together, I know I do it, I generally hit comps quite hard on the front end if I'm working in PT only.

It also depends on what type of guitar sounds you're trying to track. If they're heavy/driven, you could be overdoing the gain at the amp. If they're clean you could be too clean and not compressing enough. Then there's mic selection, placement, EQ on the amp, etc.. It's hard to advise without knowing and hearing what you are doing, but, whatever the issue, I'd imagine there's more to it than what laying out cash for a tape machine will get you. However, it's always good to have the tape option!
Old 23rd January 2003
  #4
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guittarzzan's Avatar
Thanks for the feedback. The clean sounds are fine. The distortion sounds I'm shooting for are somewhere in the genre of the Stone Temple Pilots Core album...high gain, thick and punchy, but not sounding like a metal band. I've read that some guys say to use less gain and thicken it up with compression, but also, a lot of guys say to get the sound you want at the source first and then go from there. So many different ideas for the same problem. I guess I haven't found my magic formula yet.
The gear I'm using is: Sansamp PSA-1, Pod Pro or VHT Pitbull/VHTand Mesa cabs into Vintech X73 pre to Fatso to 192. Mikes are sm57, senn 421, Rode ntv. Yesterday I put an Art Pro MPA tube pre in the chain and it did help a little.
I'm just really picky about distorted guitar sounds and I'm not crazy about what I hear on playback. It sounds great when rehearsing without any conversion in the loop, but once I record it to pt, everything changes; not drastically, but just a little less satisfying in all departments.
...keep the tips coming. Maybe I'll learn something
Thanks,
Steve
Old 23rd January 2003
  #5
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verbular's Avatar
 

Hi, I often use multiple guitar amps for getting sounds, both to analogue and/or digital. Usually 2 amps, but sometimes 3. The signal from the guitar is split and is not an overdub, the amps are usually in the same space with maybe some baffling. There are dedicated guitar splitters out there from companies like Little Labs, if you don't have the opportunity to try a dedicated splitter, try something like a delay pedal in bypass. However, always check for phase between the 2 amps. This is not microphone phase, but phase with the guitar amp speakers, some are wired in reverse to the other. You can remedy the guitar amp phase by making a "flipped" speaker cable on one end. Dedicated guitar splitters usually have some kind of feature to fix this without the need for a flipped speaker cable.

For example, to get something like you described, I may get the basic sound out of the VHT setup, but also use something to enhance the sound, which can range from a battery operated Marshall mini amp, Fender Champ, Fender Twin/Twin Reverb, Fender Deluxe/Deluxe Reverb, Vox AC30, some Marshalls, Hiwatt, etc, basically whatever works and enhances the sound you're after. I would probably have one amp not so distorted, so that it breathes, and the other may be distorted to hell, and mix that to a balance. I probably wouldn't compress that much for distorted sounds unless if it was for an effect, since distorted sounds are compressed enough at the guitar amp stage.

Mics, I usually use SM57's, Royer 121's, AKG 414's, 451's, Sennheiser 421's, sometimes RE20's for close and most of the time (but not all the time) place a large diaphram condensor to get a bit of "air". Obviously, you have to be aware of phase issues when using multiple microphones.

With cabinets with more than one speaker, check each one, there is usually one that sounds best, and they do not sound equal.

Hope this helps.
Old 23rd January 2003
  #6
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loudist's Avatar
 

Quote:
The gear I'm using is: Sansamp PSA-1, Pod Pro or VHT Pitbull/VHT
I believe this is your problem...
Old 23rd January 2003
  #7
Gear Head
 
jackassman's Avatar
 

If you aren't getting good sounds to digital on raunchy distorted guitar in this one specific case I tend to mostly suspect the gear. It takes a specific front end to achieve that goal, and it does not have to involve tape. But this does make life easier.
Old 24th January 2003
  #8
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Henchman's Avatar
You can't just use any amp and turn up the gain. I'm in the process of recording my bands first CD, and we've been having a helluva time trying to find the right amp for the sound we want.
Old 24th January 2003
  #9
Here for the gear
 

I'm going for a very similar guitar sound.

Check out this tone and if it's close to what your after I'll explain
exactly how to get it.

Listen to any of the first three songs:

www.halftheworld.cc/music
Old 25th January 2003
  #10
jon
Capitol Studios Paris
 
jon's Avatar
 

What Slipperman said.

With rock/metal guitars, I usually track to 2" and stay there if at all possible (okay...with drums, gits, bass git and vocals...truth be told).

If I know that the drums have to go to dig for editing, I prefer PT first, then to 2". Or maybe 2" -> PT -> 2".

Mixing just goes so much better and faster off 2" in terms of sonics and the mix coming together.
Old 25th January 2003
  #11
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guittarzzan's Avatar
Hey Pete, I tried to use your link to check out the tunez, but it gave me an error like when a web site is no longer. I'm interested to hear your stuff.
Also, Slipperman, where can I get a listen of your work? I've been reading your info in the other thread and would love to hear some of your guitz.
One more thing, I am thinking about maybe getting an used Fostex or Otari analog recorder, just two or four tracks. If I recorded to tape then dumped to pt, do you think that would up my guit quality a bit?
Thanks for all the info guys...when I'm accepting my grammy for best metal country rap song, I'll say I owe it all to the slutz.
Steve
Old 25th January 2003
  #12
Gear Head
 
Lars FM's Avatar
 

If i remember correctly, STP used to record with a Twin reverb with a stomp box in front- could be a multiple amp setup that is needed.

Lars
Old 28th January 2003
  #13
Here for the gear
 

Hey guittarzzan,

Sorry about the link to our music being down . . . enic was having server trouble apparently.

Anyway, it's fully up and running now I just checked it.
Check the first song on the list and see if this is the kind of tone you're going for and I can give you the complete run down.

http://www.halftheworld.cc/music.html

Click on "Here and Now" and it will play the mp3.

Let me know . . .


Pete
Old 29th January 2003
  #14
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guittarzzan's Avatar
Thanks Pete. That's kind of the sound-kinda not, but it is a cool guitar tone. Sounds a little like a Mesa. I like the intro riff and the vocalist has a good voice too. I would be interested in what gear/processing you used for that sound. I'm not sure it's right what I'm looking for, but it sounds better than anything I've gotten going direct into the digi 192.
Thanks,
Steve
Old 29th January 2003
  #15
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Henchman's Avatar
Here's a link with distorted, non-metal guitars.

Les Paul, and a Fender Tele. One through a 4x12 the other an old Fender amp. I can get the model number. Oktava 319 daedcenter of the cone. Mccurdy tube pre-amp.

Crashing Down
Old 31st January 2003
  #16
mmm
Here for the gear
 

I could not get an acceptable fat warm guitar tone with sansamp alone or a pod. I like AmpFarm better and then reamp to a "real amp" after and mix to taste.yuktyy
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