Mic Amp vs Direct

Discussion in 'Amp Central Station' started by doghouseman, Jul 27, 2020.

  1. pugnax

    pugnax Tele-Meister

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    Same - one reason I’m a huge fan of the Lehle volume pedal. It’s nice having a buffered clean split right at the top of the chain that can get manipulated later regardless of whatever madness is coming out of the amp.

    Thanks, Eeyore.
     
  2. Arafel

    Arafel Tele-Meister

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    I haven't tried the IRs yet, but I like to mic my stuff. I currently use a Hard Truckers loaded with Celestion Century Vintage Neos paired with a Dr. Z EKG for my preferred setup, and a Swart Atomic Space Tone Jr for secondary. Both are mic'd using an sE GuitaRF for isolation, running an SM57 and an sE Voodoo VR1 ribbon. That mic pairing with the isolation from the GuitaRF seems to work really well.

    I'm old school though. Almost all my pedals are analog. The only digi pedals I have are a TimeFactor and a Ditto looper. And at home I listen to vinyl, rather than CDs, and I can hear the difference.
     
  3. doghouseman

    doghouseman Tele-Meister

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    in your head man....
    I used a FloorPOD at my last gig. Not really the same as my Bogner, but it was a lot less set up time.
     
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  4. beagle

    beagle Friend of Leo's

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    Provided nobody throws bottles, it doesn't really matter. If they do, at least you can get away quicker. :D
     
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  5. mjtrip001

    mjtrip001 TDPRI Member

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    I saw an interview with John McLaughlin where he says he doesn't use amps anymore, and he runs through a Duncan Twin Tube pre-amp pedal..
     
  6. larsjm

    larsjm TDPRI Member

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    I saw an interview with Sarah McLachlan with a bunch of forlorn-looking starving dogs on the video screen behind her. It plugged direct into my heart.
     
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  7. Tjeppen

    Tjeppen TDPRI Member

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    I use a DI with attenuator out of my second speaker output on my Twin Reverb to the P.A.-mixer.
    Sounds pretty good to me.
     
  8. Vermoulian

    Vermoulian Tele-Meister

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    If you play through a regular old amp, the speaker is a big part of your final sound, so if you take the signal from some jack on the back before the output, your guitar will sound different than what you hear when you play. Whether that's better or worse is an open question depending on a bunch of factors, but it will not sound the same. Many people invest a lot in getting specific speakers (consider the endless Celestion vs. Eminence vs. Jensen vs. Weber vs. Warehouse vs. EV vs. JBL discussions on any amp forum) and if you do that but run your guitar direct, it's wasted effort and money.

    If you want what gets amplified or recorded to sound as close as possible to what you hear, a mic would be the best solution. Of course, many mics are not purely transparent either, and a Shure SM-57 will emphasize different frequencies than a Sennheiser e609 (to pick two common guitar mics that I have actually side-by-side compared). But you'll get closest to "your sound" with a good mic.

    However . . .

    If your speaker choice is not critical to you, then in any given situation, the direct sound, even if different from the live sound, may well be good enough for your situation. If it obviates the need for extra equipment, or just makes things easier, rock on.

    And, there are now a lot of guitar systems that include speaker emulators in the signals they send from their direct outputs, and it is entirely possible to dial in a very good sound through one of those. For best effect, one should probably work from the start to get a good direct sound dialed in using whatever emulators or processors are available, but I think things have gotten to the point where in many if not most situations, almost nobody could tell the difference between a mic recording and a well-set-up digital sound with emulated amps and speakers.
     
  9. nedorama

    nedorama TDPRI Member

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    Do you have a room that you can play your amp at a reasonable level to get good tone?
    Does the room sound good, and does the amp sound good in the room?
    If yes to all three, then mic it. If the room doesn't sound good, you can still shove an e906 or 57 on the grille, but distance micing is out.

    Live, prefer a mic.

    At home, I'm looking to get a reactive load box as even with a Princeton amp above 4, it's too loud for the rest of the family, and the music room is an open room (no door) so sound travels quickly... My Tremolux and Dr. Z MAZ18 sound amazing when opened up, but I can't at home - hence using a reactive load for recording, or my Eleven Rack, which I bought used as a practice amp (headphones) and an audio interface.
     
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  10. kennl

    kennl Tele-Afflicted

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    ALWAYS better?
    no
     
  11. Maguchi

    Maguchi TDPRI Member

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    Micing amps is tried and true and I tend to like micing because I've done it a lot and feel comfortable with getting a good sound that way. But I've fooled around with cabinet and speaker emulators and the line outs of amps are starting to sound a lot better these days. If you're going to use a mic, a Shure SM57 works great and they are sturdy and bulletproof. You can get an SM57 for $100 new and $70 used. Try both and see which you like better.
     
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2020
  12. Nick Fanis

    Nick Fanis Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

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    Short answer:Yes

    Long answer : Yes

    I have done the whole simulation, direct,reamping,Palmer ...yada yada thing..

    Nothing sounds like the real thing (except the UA OX that costs a million dollars) and it is WAY faster and SIMPLER to do it...just do this and you are DONE in ten seconds,no muss no fuss:

    20200730_120027.jpg
    20200730_120020.jpg
     
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2020
  13. eibod49

    eibod49 TDPRI Member

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    Ken,
    I listened to you on Soundcloud and really enjoyed everything I heard. Will be looking to add much of your music to my playlists. On tube vs. SS, a guy in my group got a Katana and I wondered why he didn't get a tube amp. I was really surprised and impressed with the tone he gets with it playing his G&L Bluesboy. I know I should learn about profilers, but I have a VHT 12/20, a Blues Junior and a Monoprice 15W in the tube camp and a Line 6 75W Spider, a Fishman Loudbox 100 and an Ibanez Troubador in the SS category. The VHT is nice, the Blues Junior is noisy, but the Monoprice with a Tone Tubby Key Biscayne is a real gem.
     
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  14. klasaine

    klasaine Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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    Thank you for listening!
    I used to be a tube amp/all analog snob ... for decades. I have a dozen vintage, boutique and everyday driver tube amps as well as some good mics and a space to set them up and record them in. Due to the cv19 situation at hand, I have had to seriously up my home recording game. I got a higher end Universal Audio interface and it came with a couple of handfuls of free UA plugins. One of them was a (softube) Marshall Plexi. I was impressed enough to spend some dough on a few more 'amp' plugins. I have a load box for my heads so I also decided to try some (Two Notes) cab IRs. All I can say is that I am impressed by how far the emulation thing has come. Seriously impressed!
    Having said that - I do still mic my amps at least 1/2 the time.
    Best of both worlds is my motto.
    *My soundcloud stuff, some tracks are mic'd amp, some are head w/IR and some are totally 'in the box' ... and I can't remember what's what.
     
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2020
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  15. Anacharsis

    Anacharsis Tele-Meister Ad Free Member

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    Yes, try both and decide for yourself if at all possible. It's all about what suits you and your music. There is no objective better on an aesthetic choice like this.
     
  16. doghouseman

    doghouseman Tele-Meister

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    in your head man....
    OK, played the gig this weekend. Decided to go direct. Sounded Fantastic. In fact, I could NOT tell the difference between the direct sound and my previous micing at the same bar.

    The direct sound came out of a Two Notes La Crunch. This box is impressive. I have been playing for 40 years, in all kinds of different situations, and I dont get impressed that easily. I have been downsizing lately, sold my Marshall 2000 DSL head and took the speakers out of my 4X12. I think I hit the jackpot with this little box. Sounds very much like a Marshall.

    Used the XLR out, with a ground lift. If it had a stereo effects loop I would be REALLY impressed. Even so, two channels, with a plexi sound on one side, and a hot rodded 800 on the other side. Nice and warm due to the 12ax7 tube. I put a SD-1 in front of it for a little more boost during solos. Once I dialed in the effects loop, it sounded really good.

    They also make a Black Face version of this for you Fender guys. I would encourage you Fender guys to check one out if you are trying to downsize like me and don't want to pay 2K for a Kemper.

    [​IMG]
     
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  17. klasaine

    klasaine Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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    The Two Notes stuff is scary!
    I'm a convert, at least for recording. If I start doing casino gigs again I'll probably invest in one of the preamps or the Cab M+.

    *A buddy of mine has the UA "Ox" and where it surpasses the 2 Notes is in its reverb algorithms, but not $700 better (and no one wants me to send them tracks with reverb anyway). It's also not what I would call "road ready". The Captor X could get run over by a car and not be damaged.
     
  18. Collin D Plonker

    Collin D Plonker Tele-Meister

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    There are no fast rules. Especially with all the great new year.
     
  19. Mutato

    Mutato Tele-Meister

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    I've been using my POD 2.0 for years on demos and recently on some releases. Works fine. Depends on the hands working the controls...
     
  20. cyclopean

    cyclopean Friend of Leo's

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    how is the "club circuit" not the "pro circuit"? you're still getting paid at the end of the night and 98% of the touring bands (national and international) i see in non pandemic times are at clubs, bars, or "nontraditional venues".
     
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