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Flamenco Guitar Mix Effects Pedals, Units & Accessories
Old 14th November 2012
Gear Maniac
Aniol1349's Avatar

Thread Starter
Flamenco Guitar Mix


yesterday I had a chance to record a flamenco guitarist, I had four mics on the guitar from which I kept three.

The mics were:

147M pointing on 12th fret (unused)
u87 from underneath pointing on his right hand
akg414 pointing on his felt hand/fret board
Golden Age R1 as a room mic.

The room was quite dead so I had to use plugin reverb, I've used SSL X-Reverb

Recored on SSL AWS 900+ with SSL Alpha link converters

In the attachments I have rough mixes,

please give me some advice on getting the best sound from this guitar.

I didn't almost use any compression; when recording I was running 2 mic's through LA2A's and 1176 output transformers without compressing.

Any ideas how to get this guitar sound even better?

Attached Files

Carlos - Alegrias de Cadiz.mp3 (5.19 MB, 900 views)

Carlos - Bulerias.mp3 (6.52 MB, 65 views)

Old 14th November 2012
Hi Aniol...

I have recorded a lot of flamenco stuff, and believe me it is a challenge.

I was record producer and mixer for Ojos de Brujo, which is a Spanish flamenco band and Grammy awarded. I have recorded some other flamenco players...but let's get to the point..

Listening to the guitar sound itself, it sounds like it has been recorded in a very dead room and sounds too nasal, mostly the first track.

Performance does much of the trick, also, may be the takes are not the good ones.

Also, I think I used tube mics by that time, and you should look for the sweet spots for that particular guitar. One good spot is between the hole and neck end, taking much care in not getting the awful frequencies that come from the hole itself, so be aware, may be face the mic towards the neck a bit.

As well, other good sweet spot comes from the bridge and away, a lot of wood and presence comes from there.

If you intend to choose multiple mics, be careful before recording and find a good placement between the mics and look for the most brilliant sounding combination.

For the above thing, there is this trick... choose two mics and place them until it sounds really muddy and then only then reverse the phase in one of them, hopefully it will cancel the ugly stuff.

I usually record with two microphones, but going for one really, and give all the importance to the main microphone.

I recall recording some stuff in a Blumline array, the downside is you need 2 really good mics of the same model, in a pleasant sounding space.

Don't be afraid of wall reflections, what would be of flamenco without them !

Old 14th November 2012
Gear Maniac
Aniol1349's Avatar

Thread Starter
Thank you so much for your reply!

The room was very dead indeed! The prerformance - probably not the best as well, the guy didn't play for a long time and I've manage to convince him to record! In a month or so we will have another go!

The mic's I've chosen were experimental, so now I can chose more carefully,
I could maybe try two u87 in the settings you suggested. The only problem is going to be the room again, all the live rooms in the studio are quite dead so I will really maybe have to use convolution reverb for this.

I really agree that even it's only one instrument there's so much to capture in flamenco guitar!

I'm still going to try properly mix it, and I can't wait to haev another go!

Thanks alot!
Old 15th November 2012
High again Aniol,

As you mentioned earlier, you are gonna try with U87, it is indeed a great mic, just be aware that recording Digitally, they tend to sound with this bright resonance thing.

Just to let you know.

Some other thing... if you have problem with boominess, may be try a small capsule mic..a good one though.

IF you can go mobile with your gear, try a liver space. Halls are great...and stairways!

Capturing a flamenco guitar is really hard. Good luck.

Old 16th November 2012
Gear Maniac
Aniol1349's Avatar

Thread Starter
Thanks again!

all the advice much appreciated!
I got myself a nice auditorium which is acoustically controlled and it is a nice sounding big room.

I'm looking forward to my next recording!


Last edited by Aniol1349; 16th November 2012 at 11:08 AM.. Reason: Spelling
Old 16th November 2012
Good to hear you got a nice room arranged.. good luck
Old 19th November 2012
Lives for gear
Originally Posted by Aniol1349 View Post
Any ideas how to get this guitar sound even better?

First, the guy is not a very good player. He's ok, but the tone
just is'nt there.
Its obvious that the guitar itself is lacking good tone as well.

If you dont have those two things, you're done. All the transformers
in the world and the best hall on earth will not help unfortunately.

Why is he playing Tomatito's bulerias? Hope he's not passing it off as his own.
Old 19th November 2012
Take it easy

Originally Posted by joecandy View Post
Why is he playing Tomatito's bulerias? Hope he's not passing it off as his own.
There are somethings that are best said by PM and not openly, besides is not good to suppose right on the spot that he's stealing the music. Ask first.

He's not that bad of a player, he's getting there...

The buleria has some spots that needed to be punched or something...everybody punches in.

Old 20th November 2012
Gear Maniac
Aniol1349's Avatar

Thread Starter
We are not trying to steal anyone's songs, they won't be used anywhere he just wanted to have them for himself..

I've never recorded anyone playing flamenco so I can't really compare, obviously he's not pro but I think He has quite a good feel and skill.

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