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10 Great Tuts About Recording Electric Guitar

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Read Time: 5 min
This post is part of a series called How to Record Guitar.
An Awesome Guide to Guitar Mixing
Guitar Tones From the 1950s to the Millennium

Electric guitars are the key ingredient in many musical genres today, adding rhythm, melodies and foundation to many tracks. But capturing a great live sound in the studio isn't simple. Here are 10 great sources of advice, tricks and tips for the next time you're recording electric guitar.

1. How to Record Electric Guitar in Your Home Studio

"Tips and tricks for recording electric guitar. Check this vid for some fresh ideas. mic choice and placement ideas."

2. How to Record an Electric Guitar on Your Mac

Here's some tips and advice from the official Apple site:

"It’s easy to record great electric guitar sounds on your Mac. You don’t even need an amplifier or effects pedals — GarageBand, Logic Pro, Soundtrack Pro, and many other Mac-compatible audio programs include plug-ins that can mimic vast collections of vintage and modern gear.

"There are several ways to connect your guitar. This tutorial helps you pinpoint the right method for you. You’ll also learn how to fine-tune your software and hardware to capture the perfect sound." Read more.

3. Electric Guitar Tone & Effects When Recording Tracks Tutorial

"Electric Guitar Tone & effects when recording tracks quick tips tutorials."

4. Recording Electric Guitar

Some great ideas from Mix Online Magazine.

"Let's assume for the purposes of this discussion that we're starting with a good guitarist, with a good instrument and a good sound at the amplifier. Otherwise, there's nothing I can do in the control room to get a good sound. I can improve upon it, but I can't get a really great guitar sound. The first thing that I do, whether it's with a guitar or another instrument, is go out and listen to the source. You don't want to hear something for the first time after it has passed through a microphone, a mic cable, a fader and a pair of speakers. If there's a really killer sound coming out of the amplifier, I'll do whatever I have to do to capture that sound." Read more.

5. How To Record Electric Guitar with Guitar Rig 3 in Audacity

"This is a tutorial about how I use Guitar Rig 3 as a VST plugin for Audacity."

6. How To Get Expensive Guitar Sounds From a Cheap Home Studio

From the Audio Recording Center:

"I'm always amazed by how many people working in home studios think you need a $750,000 console, a 48-track digital machine, an arsenal of $2,000 microphones, and tons of outboard gear to make your tapes sound "professional." It's just not true.

"What you need is some basic knowledge about the physics of audio (most of which you can learn by dropping a pebble in a puddle of water), and some pretty basic and inexpensive equipment. This is especially true for recording the electric guitar. Trust me--if it were brain surgery, I would have become a brain surgeon and made my mother a much happier woman. And while I have the opportunity . . . for all you kids who want to grow up to be recording engineers--don't do it. Become brain surgeons. They make a lot more money, drive nicer cars, and never have to worry about where their next gig is coming from." Read more.

7. Episode 9 - Recording Electric Guitars

"How to record electric guitars using an sm57 mving coil mic. Centered off center close and distant techniques. Frequency response of each technique."

8. The Guitarist's Guide to Recording on your Computer

Some great product advice from TweakHeadz Lab.

"It might seem strange for some of you to think I might know anything about guitars, with my small claim to notoriety being sampling and programming, but the truth is, I was originally a guitar player who played in real bands. I've been recording acoustic and electric guitars so long I'd rather not tell. I've also gone pretty deep into midi guitar and have programmed guitar patches on synths for MIDI guitars. The good thing for you is that you get the advantage of some hard won tips on recording guitars and making your playing sound the best it can be. Lets start with a basic guide to ways to record your guitar on your computer.

"First you need a way to get audio into your computer. The ideal way is to get an audio interface that has a Microphone preamp for recording acoustic guitar, vocals, drums, etc. and Instrument input for recording electric guitars and basses. These don't have to be expensive, and many are custom designed for the guitarist. They might come with digital models of guitars and amps built right into the interface or in the software that comes in the package." Read more.

9. Coyote Circle Studio - Recording Electric Guitar

"Here I show how, with only a small amount of gear and a few small changes in setup you can create several different guitar sounds. I'm playing a 1987 Fender American Standard Stratocaster with stock pickups through a 1967 Fender Basmman with a 2x12 cabinet."

10. Recording Electric Guitar

And finally, Sound on Sound Magazine add their advice to the mix.

"The theory of evolution says that the longer something has been evolving the more complex it tends to get, and this is certainly true of the electric guitar, which has been evolving for over half a century. Electric guitar sounds rely on the instrument itself, the amplifier through which it is played and also on the loudspeaker system used. Further variables are introduced when miking techniques are taken into consideration, though these days miking is only one of the ways of recording an electric guitar — we also have a number of effective DI techniques from which to choose." Read more.


That brings us to the end of our 10 great tuts about recording electric guitar. Which did you find most helpful? Would you like to let us know of other electric guitar tuts? Do you have some tips of your own you'd like to add? Please let us know in the comments.

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