Old 04-04-2019, 02:40 AM   #1
Fingers mcginty
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Default Eq matching specific acoustic guitar tone

Hi all. First post ....
Loving reaper so far. I am trying to get close to john martyn's recorded tone. Specifically this one.

https://youtu.be/W6Jvp3QBwgY

The tone is sublime and I know it's probably to do with mic technique , analog tape etc etc but I just want to get in the ballpark. Is there any way to mimic it through some sort of eq matching thingy in reaper?

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Old 04-05-2019, 07:39 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fingers mcginty View Post
Hi all. First post ....
Loving reaper so far. I am trying to get close to john martyn's recorded tone. Specifically this one.

https://youtu.be/W6Jvp3QBwgY

The tone is sublime and I know it's probably to do with mic technique , analog tape etc etc but I just want to get in the ballpark. Is there any way to mimic it through some sort of eq matching thingy in reaper?
I think you're right - it is a good sound.

There's an article about Sound Techniques studios https://www.soundonsound.com/people/...und-techniques

If you can get a good clean, fairly dead, guitar recording (doubling as necc.) you can fake the rest pretty much. I'd use a tiny bit of room reverb, then a touch of compression, and then a little bit of a nice plate reverb.

A lot of budget capacitor-microphones have far to much going on in the top end for tasteful AG - if you're stuck with something like that be prepared to turn down that top end a couple or few dB.
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Old 04-05-2019, 09:29 AM   #3
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Here's Mr. Luff's Spectrum Matcher JS plugin. I've used it on acoustic guitar with varying degrees of success.

https://geraintluff.github.io/jsfx/#Spectrum%20Matcher
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Old 04-05-2019, 02:25 PM   #4
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Slightly OT perhaps but something about the John Martyn track reminded me of this from a couple of years earlier - in fact the guitar tone is not strictly comparable but the vibe is sort of similar. Listen all the way through for some amazing bouzouki / guitar interplay.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l6CAzIHVQtY
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Old 04-09-2019, 09:17 AM   #5
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Here is my first attempt.
Please critique

L
https://soundcloud.com/tommyhayes/singing-in-the-rain-1
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Old 04-09-2019, 10:48 AM   #6
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The playing's fine. Course, the JM track is strummed on a low-ish tuning (it's an open C) so, obv. it's warmer because of that. Yours is pretty dang bright in comparison. You might want to try a steep lowpass at 15kHz and pull down a broad band centred on 1kHz.

There's a patch around 10k that could do with cutting, also.
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Old 04-09-2019, 11:04 AM   #7
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Oops i actually posted the wrong track there but no worries.
It's in open C tuning also but capo'd on the 5th fret.
I have the mic 12 inckes from the soundhole but looking at the 12th fret.
I rolled off some of the woofiness below 100 Hz. Didn't use any other EQ on the guitar. It could be the mic ....it's a cheap MXL V67G. That's all i can afford
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Old 04-09-2019, 11:29 AM   #8
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JRK ....Definitely sounding a bit warmer with the cuts you suggested to my ears anyway

https://soundcloud.com/tommyhayes/singing-in-the-rain-2
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Old 04-09-2019, 01:31 PM   #9
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Quote:
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It could be the mic
well, yes, it is the mic. But that's what eq is for :-)

There's a lot of folks like ribbon mics on AG. But it's hard to find a good cheap ribbon. There's even people swear by the SM57

But if you know that a budget mic has got a hyped top-end and tends to be a bit scatchy, you're ready to knock that down with eq - if it needs it.

The best trick is to make sure you do refer to your reference track(s). If you like a sound, put the tune in a track on your session. You mute it obv, but keep having a listen to it from time to time - just use the solo button.
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Old 04-09-2019, 01:34 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jrk View Post
well, yes, it is the mic. But that's what eq is for :-)

There's a lot of folks like ribbon mics on AG. But it's hard to find a good cheap ribbon. There's even people swear by the SM57

But if you know that a budget mic has got a hyped top-end and tends to be a bit scatchy, you're ready to knock that down with eq - if it needs it.

The best trick is to make sure you do refer to your reference track(s). If you like a sound, put the tune in a track on your session. You mute it obv, but keep having a listen to it from time to time - just use the solo button.
Will do....Thanks
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Old 04-14-2019, 04:26 AM   #11
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Will do....Thanks
OK, I've had a fiddle with Fab filter eq matching - and it broadly agrees with what I said. A low pass at 15k is too much for the guitar - but I'd def. consider it on that vocal. Or a few dBs of shelf maybe. Otherwise, yep a broad cut between 350 and 3.5k and a chunk out around 10k. These could be quite severe - like -6dB

Also, obv, try different guitars.

And don't forget the tasteful reverb. And de-ess that vocal. :-)

There's a nice picture of Martin Carthy in a nest of Neumanns (scroll down a bit)
http://www.soundtechniquesmovie.com/photos/
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Old 04-15-2019, 06:54 AM   #12
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OK i will try that.
I recorded the guitar twice and panned each one alternatively.
What's the best sounding reverb in your opinion and would i apply the same ammount and type on each guitar?
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Old 04-15-2019, 01:09 PM   #13
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Sound Techniques was famous (I've read) for having a nice sounding room - was a go to spot for string o'dubs as well as folk-rock HQ. So I guess your best bet would be a nice warmish room. I've used the Bricasti wooden room Impulse in Reaverb. If you haven't got hold of the Bricasti impulses - you should.

http://www.samplicity.com/bricasti-m...lse-responses/

It's often a good idea to put some eq before such a reverb (on the reverb channel)- you're sort of trying to fake the off axis pickup - so cut out a chunk in the (high) mids? roll off a bit of bass?

A bit of gentle compression after the reverb can help - just a few dB of gain reduction

I'd use the same on both guitars - and probably narrow the width on the verb, it's likely to be a bit wider than you need.

You don't need very much of the room - just enough to set the guitars in a nice space.

If you've got a great sounding room - then just use that. In which case it's all about mic placement.

You probably want a nice plate for the vocal - to taste.

Arguably, you'd want a bit of the room on the vocal as well.

(and possibly, a bit of plate on the guitars :-) )


[Edit] P.S. If you don't mind I'll just have a go at the first attempt that you posted - it won't be right - cos it's already mixed, but you should be able to judge if I'm talking nonsense or not.
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Old 04-15-2019, 01:47 PM   #14
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Wow you are so knowledgeable and i appreciate you taking the time to help me out here. When you say a great sounding room...what exactly do you mean by that? A totally dead room or a room with some reverb? Or somehwere in between?
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Old 04-16-2019, 02:48 AM   #15
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Ha. I'm pushing 60 and I've been recording stuff (with little success) forever. Bound to pick up a bit. But listen to this before you decide if I know anything:

https://drive.google.com/open?id=104...XBfzb_TSPlEQSD

I haven't magically "got that sound" - but I think it's gone in the right direction?

If you're interested in /inspired by the sounds associated with particular studios / production houses / whatever, it's going to be useful to (a) listen to their stuff (b) find out about their equipment / facilities / techniques (c) get on top of the essentials (compression / reverbs / eq etc)


If you're aiming to "fake" the sound with plugins - then you want to start with a clean / dead recording. I've got a corner of my cellar draped with duvets, & a big wodge of rockwool on the ceiling. If you've got a room that sounds nice, that doesn't have nasty resonances, & that musicians like playing in (This won't be the case in most domestic settings - unless you live in a mansion), then you can use that sound. The classic way is to put a great microphone a couple of feet in front of a great player, and you're laughing.
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