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Thread Acoustic Guitar EQing Techniques

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  • 5 participants
1 Acoustic Guitar EQing Techniques
In the studio, I use a condensor as well as DI on my acoustic.
At home I use a 57 as well as DI, for doing demos.

Anyone have any suggestions on EQing acoustics? What frequencies tend to be the nastiest, how to fix that super high sound from the bridge pickup. Reverb settings for some warmth? Type of EQ: Parametric, Shelving, Band-Pass?

What's your technique?

With an Sm57 it is very hard to get a good acoustic guitar sound. They are great for putting in front of an amp but not an acoustic guitar. If you use a DI on the acoustic try to find someone who makes a preamp to maych the impedance of the pickup to that of the mixer. It can make a huge difference to the body of the sound. I very rarely ever record from the pickup as a good mic always sounds better unless you want a particular bridey sound. Also if you use a mic and a pickup at the same time you may find they are out of phase slightly and if you move the DI track a bit and line it up with the mic track it can improve that.
There is a good article on recording acoustic guitar at
Yeah, there's no magic settings you can dial. Every guitar has its own character, its own strengths and weaknesses. Bring in different mics, different players, and different rooms, and well, thats why there's a recording industry :). A good technique in general when trying to eq things is to use a parametric eq to sweep the frequncy spectrum (with a medium to small Q value, turn the gain up and sweep the frequncy across the available spectrum)... as you're going across the available spectrum, listen for the problem areas and then you can gently tweak those out. Be subtle. You can create all kinds of problems in a final mix by trying to fix too many problems too drastically using eq's. Fixing the problem at the sound source (mics, pickups, etc) will yield much better and easier to work with results.
I'm late to reply to this post but maybe someone will get something from my own technique of recording acoustic guitars.

First: I never record a direct signal from an under-the-bridge pickup. The sound from there is quacky and harsh to my ears.

Second: Mic placement is everything. I use a small diaphram condenser out front pointed directly at the 12th fret. The I put a large diaphram condenser over my right shoulder tilted to capture the sound from the top side of the guitar. That sounds odd but makes perfect sense if you like the sound of a guitar while you're playing it.
The mic is picking up almost exactly what your ear is hearing.

Third: Compression. I do different things with compression depending on the song. Sometimes its on one or the other mic and sometimes on both. Experimenting is a good thing.

Fourth. New strings are an absolute must for serious recording.

Well, thats my humble process for recording acoustic guitars. Hope someone gets something from it.


Quote: Fourth. New strings are an absolute must for serious recording.

i'm not sure i agree with that one. especially on classical guitars, i don't like the sound of brand-new bass strings.