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Discover the industry secrets to recording crisp, rich instrument tracks and vocals in any type of recording environment. Join renowned audio engineer Bobby Owsinski as he walks through the process of miking and tracking a complete song by Underground Sun recording artist Iyeoka and A-list session musicians in a top-of-the-line studio—in a way that is applicable to any recording space and musical genre. Learn how to select the correct microphone and polar pattern for each instrument, with hundreds of revealing listening examples for drums, acoustic and electric guitar, piano, keyboards, and more. These professional techniques offer critical insights for those just getting started in the recording process, and a trustworthy reference guide for more seasoned engineers. Bobby also demonstrates how to monitor and sculpt EQ settings, why and when to process your input signal, and how to choose the right outboard gear for the track. This course employs 360-degree, 3D visualizations that provide an unprecedented perspective of the equipment, players, and microphone placements discussed. Plus, with the raw audio files provided, you can critically listen to every recorded example at home with your DAW of choice at full 24-bit resolution.
One of the by-products of using a built-in pickup with an acoustic instrument is that it allows the player to record with the headphones. That means that the player can record near the monitor speakers or in the control room, since the transfer feedback will be diminished. (music playing) After you've plugged the instrument into the direct box in the output of the box into a console, like preamp or DAW, flip the ground switch to find the quietest setting.
(music playing) The real secret to getting a great sounding direct recording is compression and plenty of it. Depending upon the type of pick up that's being used, the output can be less than that of a microphone and not as tonally balanced. That's why it's important to always use some compression to keep the sound at relatively same level. Plug a hardware compressor either into the output of the mic preamp or an insert on the console. If you use the compressor plug-in, it might cause a delay in the sound to make it difficult for the player to play to.
Start with the compressor set to a 4:1 compression ratio with the attack sets to its lowest and the release set to its fastest. (music playing) Set the threshold so there's about 5 or 6 dB of compression happening. Depending upon the type of rhythm that the musician is playing, you may want to decrease the attack time so the compressor reacts faster. Be aware that the sound will begin to dull if the attack is too fast. Increase your release time so it agrees with the pulse of the track.
Set the output control so that the level stays around -10 dB. (music playing) That's how you record an instrument with a pickup. Plug into a direct box and select the ground switch position that has the least amount of noise, add a hardware compressor to the signal chain with the settings outline in this movie, then lower the threshold control until there's about 5 dB or 6 dB of compression indicating on the meter.
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