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  #1  
Old 04-07-2008, 09:31 PM
tvent tvent is offline
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Default Mic acoustic guitar ( live )

I realize this is primarily a recording forum, but given the amount of expertise here I am hoping...
What do you recommend for mic'ing acoustic guitar in a live setting?
I need to mic an acoustic guitar, harmonica, and a grand piano for a live Jazz band that will play in a mid-to-small sized auditorium.
Any advices will be greatly appreciated. Any opinions on that Shure green bullet harmonica mic 520DX currently for harmonica?
Oh, and does anyone know the proper way (American English - yes a bit of an oxymoron) to spell mic'ing (as in the verb "to mic" ? )
Thanks,
Tim
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  #2  
Old 04-11-2008, 01:52 PM
your one guy your one guy is offline
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Default Re: Mic acoustic guitar ( live )

why, with the number of good "drop in" pickups for acoustics, would you even consider the headache of mic'in live?
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Old 04-12-2008, 02:00 AM
tvent tvent is offline
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Default Re: Mic acoustic guitar ( live )

I guess because I am not familiar with what a "drop-in" pickup is (or familiar with acoustic guitar in general for that matter.)
Please do tell
I am also interested in keeping the artist happy. Is a drop-in something that most guitarists like the sound of and does it intrude on them to the point that the intrusion is not worth the benefit to the sound? How does it sound compared to any normal mic'ing technique for acoustic guitar, BTW?
Sorry for the 20 questions, I haven't worked with many acoustic guitar players.
Thanks,
Tim
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Old 04-12-2008, 10:25 AM
Naagzh Naagzh is offline
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Default Re: Mic acoustic guitar ( live )

Quote:
I guess because I am not familiar with what a "drop-in" pickup is (or familiar with acoustic guitar in general for that matter.)
Please do tell
I am also interested in keeping the artist happy. Is a drop-in something that most guitarists like the sound of and does it intrude on them to the point that the intrusion is not worth the benefit to the sound? How does it sound compared to any normal mic'ing technique for acoustic guitar, BTW?
Sorry for the 20 questions, I haven't worked with many acoustic guitar players.
Thanks,
Tim
Since you're dealing with nothing but acoustic instruments, I'm not sure a pickup is necessary (and if an acoustic player doesn't have one, he probably doesn't like 'em). Just point the guitar mic away from the piano, maybe place a gobo in between them. The Green Bullet mic has kind of a filtered sound to it, which might not be great for acoustic music, not to mention that those mics usually get plugged into a guitar amp. An SM57 into the PA will work just fine.

As for an acoustic guitar mic, you could try an SM57, an LDC, I'd definitely try a beta 58 (supercardioid pattern, great off axis rejection)... whaddya got?
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Old 04-12-2008, 09:28 PM
PTUser NYC PTUser NYC is offline
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Default Re: Mic acoustic guitar ( live )

Quote:
As for an acoustic guitar mic, you could try an SM57, an LDC, I'd definitely try a beta 58 (supercardioid pattern, great off axis rejection)... whaddya got?
I would suggest a Small Diaphragm Condenser, not a large one, for acoustic guitar. Neumann km184, AKG 451 are both classics, but htere are lots of others.
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Old 04-13-2008, 03:48 AM
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Default Re: Mic acoustic guitar ( live )

I'd take DI input and run it through a tube. In my book isolating sources is far more important than using a great mic; and if you do it live, you probably mustn't use anything too visible for isolation. So, I think overall it is best to use the guitar itself to isolate it from other instruments, thus using such a guitar that has a mic inside already.

Tube preamp does wonders for a DI'd instrument.
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Old 04-13-2008, 11:00 PM
tvent tvent is offline
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Default Re: Mic acoustic guitar ( live )

First off, thanks for the info.

Naagzh, what I have currently at my disposal are a few 58's 57's, some sennheiser e835's, some CAD e100's (large diaphragm condensers), and I just picked up a sennheiser e914 small diaphragm condenser.

PTUser NYC, My budget won't quite reach the KM184's, so I am hoping the e914 will work well on the acousic guitar - anyone used this mic? I'm not finding many reviews on it and the ones I have found were for drum OH's (for what reviews are worth)

I was planning on using the CAD e100's on the piano ( I have a pair), and now the Senn. e914 on the guitar. There will also be a bass player that will use a small amp on stage, we are planning on just taking the D.I. output from the amp and run it into the console. I do have an AKG D112 I could sit in front of the bass amp though. I also have some clamp-on AKG condenser mics (418's and a 419.)

I forgot to mention that there will also be a trombone played from time to time by the piano player.

This is a Jazz trio with the harmonica duties being taken care of by the acoustic guitar player. He will also have a few small percussive instruments to shake around too. Supposedly a bluesy sound from the harmonica which is why I thought of the shure bullet thing. Would the 57 work with a harmonica? Do they just mount it on a stand or do they hold it in their hand? I was concerned that a stand-mounted mic might not pick up the harmonica well once the player started cupping their hands over it (obviously I've never mic'd a harmonica either

JFreak, the DI you mentioned, was that assuming the guitar has a mic inside it? Do you place a mic in an existing guitar as some sort of retrofit? Would that make for a "boxy" sound? Could I just clip one of the AKG 418's in the hole?

Thanks again guys!
Tim
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Old 04-14-2008, 09:25 AM
Naagzh Naagzh is offline
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Default Re: Mic acoustic guitar ( live )

Quote:
First off, thanks for the info.

Naagzh, what I have currently at my disposal are a few 58's 57's, some sennheiser e835's, some CAD e100's (large diaphragm condensers), and I just picked up a sennheiser e914 small diaphragm condenser.

Acoustic guitar pickups galore.

That's what JFreak is talking about, and I think he's right that isolating sources should be priority #1, especially since the harmonica will be played by the guitarist! That's an awfully critical detail to leave out!

A small diaphragm condenser has a pretty wide pickup pattern, and it will probably get lots of harmonica bleed.

And, yes, the harmonica should get right up against the grill of a 57 or 58, which should be stand-mounted. You could of course try the green bullet, but do you have a mount for it?
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  #9  
Old 04-14-2008, 12:56 PM
tvent tvent is offline
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Default Re: Mic acoustic guitar ( live )

I'll be behind the mixing console, so I should be able to mute the guitar mic to prevent bleed from the harmonica (I don't think he will be playing them both at the exact same time.)
As for the green bullet mic, I think it is designed to be held in the hand of the person playing the harmonica. Not sure if it can be stand mounted.
Thanks for the links to the pickups, BTW.
Thanks,
Tim
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Old 04-14-2008, 09:25 PM
PTUser NYC PTUser NYC is offline
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Default Re: Mic acoustic guitar ( live )

Talk to the harmonica player. If he plans to hold it in his hands, a 58 might be better, since the round top gives him something to hold on to.

The Green Bullet is a classic Harmonica mic, but it is usually meant to be plugged into an amp for a very specific distorted chicago blues style thing. If he's looking for a more organic or acoustic sound, stick to the 58. i fact, if he doesn't already own a green bullet and an amp for it, I think that;s a pretty good indication that you're looking at a 58.

Also, the inclusion of the word "jazz" makes me even more 'sure' that you don't want a green bullet. The addition of trombone suggests it to me too.

If the guitarist is waring the harmonica on a neck stand, then the mic will go on a mic stand, and a 57 is fine too.

I don't know the e914 - sorry!
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