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Digital Subscriptions > MusicTech > Dec 2018 > 1O TIPS on recording guitars

1O TIPS on recording guitars

Trying to get the perfect guitar tone? Having trouble with your mic positions? Wonder if you should use more than one mic? And how will the state of your strings affect the sound? You’d best read on for our ten top tips to a top guitar tone…

(aka ‘get the perfect electric and acoustic sound’)

1 Strings, cables and noise

Before you press record, make sure your setup is ready to go. Check your cables and other equipment to make sure nothing is producing crackles and hums. Yes, you can reduce noise with plug-ins later, but the better the quality of your signal to start with, the better your end results. The same goes for strings. Worn out strings will sound dull but conversely, new strings can sound bright so be sure about the sound you want to capture. Oh, and always have spare cables and strings on hand. You never know…

2 Decide on a sound

The guitar sound you are recording can be determined by a host of different factors: the guitar, the playing style, the amp, the microphone being use, the mic technique and any stomp boxes being used. As the person recording, you don’t want to be wasting valuable time experimenting with the sound too much beforehand, so either have something definite in mind if you are the producer or go with the flow and see what happens. A more sonically-aware guitarist might have their own sound, playing style, effects and amp. Do you really want to go messing with that? If you’re trying to create your own guitar sound then don’t be afraid to be more aurally adventurous as your mix develops.

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