CHAPTER 3 :
Recording tips from the Pros
Move Around the Room
Angle Your Amp
Play with Mic Placement & Angles
Get the Air Moving
Focus the Energy
Re-amping is a recording technique that can salvage or spruce up tracks recorded in a home studio or less-than-ideal recording environment.
It’s also a great way to experiment with sounds
and tones without having to constantly re-record
a part. You can even totally reinvent a part
without compromising the original track. The
basic idea is to take a recorded track, send the
signal to studio monitors or an amplifier, set up
a mic, and record the “re-amped” track.
Let’s say you’ve got something on tape, you love
the performance, but in playback you’re realizing
it’s just a little too dry — it needs a bit of
room ambience. You can always go to a digital
reverb or delay, but if you want to experiment,
or you want a sound that’s just different from
the effects in your software or outboard repertoire, re-amping is another option.
Play the track through studio monitors and put
a mic on the other side of the room, or even a
room or two away, and pick up the natural ambience on a new track. Mix that in and you’ve
added breadth to the original. If you’re working
in a digital environment, you can move that
reverb around and control where the ambient
track sits in relation to the original track.
This can be a particularly handy technique for
recording drums in a project studio. Often a
home studio environment is not ideal for recording drums - it might be too small a room,
or too controlled - which can leave you with
a dry and lifeless drum track. In such a case,
bring up the kick, snare, and toms in the monitor
and put a microphone down a hallway. You’ll
capture a splashy, boomy sound that you can’t
really get with a digital reverb.
Sometimes you just don’t have the means to
capture the guitar sound you have in your head,
or the tone you originally recorded just isn’t
knocking your socks off, but the performance
is killer. Maybe the recorded bass tone doesn’t
have the body you need to hold its place in the
mix. Re-amping can be your solution to salvage
that great performance.
Taking a clean guitar track and sending it to an
amplifier gives you a lot of room to experiment
with tone and effects — and you’re using the actual recorded performance to get your sound, so there are no surprises when you hit the red button.
Taking the direct signal recording of a bass
track and sending that through an amp provides
the same opportunities.
The same applies for just about any instrument
you can think of — re-amping through a live
amplifier is going to give you a number of options not necessarily available at the time you
recorded the performance. There aren’t any
rules - you’re doing this to get a vibe, create
a sound, and capture something special or different.
Experimenting can yield some great and
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