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Acoustic live guitar

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Anonymous
September 21, 2005 1:33:26 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

Hello,
A songwriter of mine performs live on its own, voice and guitar... Guitar
goes into a D.I. box.
The problem is that he makes quiet arpeggios and loud chords on the same
songs and he usually have problems with monitoring: arpeggios are too quiet,
chords are too loud.
IYO is it better for him to get a pedal EQ to "swich" from arpeggios to
chords or maybe to have the guitar preamped on stage and having a compressor
after that?
Thanks for the suggestions.
F.

More about : acoustic live guitar

Anonymous
September 21, 2005 1:33:27 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

Federico wrote:
> The problem is that he makes quiet arpeggios and loud chords on the same
> songs and he usually have problems with monitoring: arpeggios are too quiet,
> chords are too loud.

If the monitor volume is varying, that means the guitar's volume is
varying; if he doesn't like what he's hearing maybe that means he should
consider working on his guitar technique or finding another instrument
because that's what the _audience_ is hearing too.

Having said that: If he wants an electronic band-aid, I strongly
recommend that he try equipment until he finds something he can live
with. I strongly dislike the idea of mucking only with the monitors
because he needs to know what the audience is hearing... so the question
is which of these approaches produces a sound he's willing to live with.
Anonymous
September 21, 2005 5:20:54 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

"Federico" <plokmichael@tiscali.it> wrote in
news:GN9Ye.771$pJ6.59876@news4.tin.it:

> Hello,
> A songwriter of mine performs live on its own, voice and guitar...
> Guitar goes into a D.I. box.
> The problem is that he makes quiet arpeggios and loud chords on the
> same songs and he usually have problems with monitoring: arpeggios are
> too quiet, chords are too loud.
> IYO is it better for him to get a pedal EQ to "swich" from arpeggios
> to chords or maybe to have the guitar preamped on stage and having a
> compressor after that?

The guitar goes into a DI box. The DI box goes into a preamp. The preamp
goes into an amplifier which feeds the monitors.

Insert a compressor between the preamp and the amplifier.

If he objects to it in the monitors, how does the audience take it?
Related resources
Anonymous
September 21, 2005 5:42:22 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

I say get a volume pedal and learn to use it. Why compress everything,
when he can simply rock his foot to achive the balance he needs?
Anonymous
September 21, 2005 9:25:01 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

Federic wrote:


> A songwriter of mine performs live on its own, voice and guitar... Guitar
> goes into a D.I. box.
> The problem is that he makes quiet arpeggios and loud chords on the same
> songs and he usually have problems with monitoring: arpeggios are too quiet,
> chords are too loud.
> IYO is it better for him to get a pedal EQ to "swich" from arpeggios to
> chords or maybe to have the guitar preamped on stage and having a compressor
> after that?


He needs to learn to place the range of his guitar dynamics within the
available dynamic range of the sound reinforcement system. Fix this at
the source and eschew the downstream gadgetry.

--
ha
Anonymous
September 21, 2005 10:07:47 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

On 21-Sep-05 4:42 PM, Jeff Richardson wrote:
> I say get a volume pedal and learn to use it. Why compress everything,
> when he can simply rock his foot to achive the balance he needs?
>

That is an excellent 'KISS' solution IMHO.

Many years ago I used to play bass guitar with a 10 piece brass ensemble
(10 pc brass, bass guitar, drums and k'boards) back in the UK and I had
a fretted and a fretless bass running through a volume pedal to the rig.

The bandleader/conductor was a demon for dynamics in tunes and when she
called for a change from three F's (fff) to one F (f) (or the other way)
she wanted it there and then and not two seconds later when you had
reached for the volume pot on the body. She also disliked 'stopped
notes' on the changes but felt the natural decay was too long on some
pieces so a volume pedal was the way to go for us.

It didn't take long before I was riding the volume pedal like it was the
accelerator pedal in a car and it became a very natural extension of my
playing.

--
Larry Green
Anonymous
September 22, 2005 12:09:49 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

"Federico" <plokmichael@tiscali.it> wrote in message
news:GN9Ye.771$pJ6.59876@news4.tin.it...

> The problem is that he makes quiet arpeggios and loud chords on the same
> songs and he usually have problems with monitoring: arpeggios are too
quiet,
> chords are too loud.

> IYO is it better for him to get a pedal EQ to "swich" from arpeggios to
> chords or maybe to have the guitar preamped on stage and having a
compressor
> after that?

Maybe you need an expander, not a compressor. The problem is with his
playing; so he needs to be encouraged to play the chords quieter. The way
to do that is *increase* the difference in sound level between chords and
arpeggios in his monitor.

Tim
Anonymous
September 22, 2005 12:16:06 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

>Why bother with any of that when some intelligent practice could let him
>play appropriately?


It's the easiest fix, without having him revamp his style
"appropriatley". Band-aid fix so to speak.
....or just compress/limit 'till there are no dynamics... or just tell
him not to strum the damn chords so hard! :)  but first make sure the
guy can hear, he may be deaf. Easiest way to do this is with a dog
whistle. If everything checks out... tell him not to strum the damn
chords so loud! :) 
Anonymous
September 22, 2005 12:21:21 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

One of the first times I saw Doc Watson years ago, he came in for sound
check, and plugged in (as he almost always has) his Gallagher with
Fishman piezo. He played a little to help the soundman set house and
monitor levels.

Then he said, into his mic: "Now leave it right there, son. I'll take
care of the dynamics from here."

I've always remembered that one.

Steve
Anonymous
September 22, 2005 12:23:34 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

Steve Scott wrote:
> One of the first times I saw Doc Watson years ago, he came in for sound
> check, and plugged in (as he almost always has) his Gallagher with
> Fishman piezo. He played a little to help the soundman set house and
> monitor levels.
>
> Then he said, into his mic: "Now leave it right there, son. I'll take
> care of the dynamics from here."

Well Doc Watson's a complete pro, and ISTR that he said he would have
studied electrical engineering if not for his blindness.
Anonymous
September 22, 2005 3:14:46 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

Tim Martin wrote:

> "Federico" wrote...

> > The problem is that he makes quiet arpeggios and loud chords on the same
> > songs and he usually have problems with monitoring: arpeggios are too
> > quiet, chords are too loud.

> > IYO is it better for him to get a pedal EQ to "swich" from arpeggios to
> > chords or maybe to have the guitar preamped on stage and having a
> > compressor after that?

> Maybe you need an expander, not a compressor. The problem is with his
> playing; so he needs to be encouraged to play the chords quieter. The way
> to do that is *increase* the difference in sound level between chords and
> arpeggios in his monitor.

In the long run he's better off, IMO, to just learn how to play his
guitar within a more controlled dynamic range. That way he'll get across
with or without technical help. I see this as a problem of musicianship.

--
ha
Anonymous
September 22, 2005 3:14:47 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

Jeff Richardson wrote:

> I say get a volume pedal and learn to use it. Why compress everything,
> when he can simply rock his foot to achive the balance he needs?

Why bother with any of that when some intelligent practice could let him
play appropriately?

--
ha
Anonymous
September 22, 2005 3:14:47 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

>>Maybe you need an expander, not a compressor. The problem is with his
>>playing; so he needs to be encouraged to play the chords quieter. The way
>>to do that is *increase* the difference in sound level between chords and
>>arpeggios in his monitor.

Ah yes -- controlling the performer's volume by controlling the monitor
volume. Gotta admit I've done that once or twice...

.... which is one of several reasons that I believe monitors may actually
be more important than the mains!
Anonymous
September 22, 2005 3:14:48 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

hank alrich <walkinay@thegrid.net> wrote:
>Jeff Richardson wrote:
>
>> I say get a volume pedal and learn to use it. Why compress everything,
>> when he can simply rock his foot to achive the balance he needs?
>
>Why bother with any of that when some intelligent practice could let him
>play appropriately?

Because I think the issue is that the pickup isn't reproducing his
dynamics properly. That's often just the way pickups are. I hate
pickups.
--scott

--
"C'est un Nagra. C'est suisse, et tres, tres precis."
Anonymous
September 22, 2005 2:31:33 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

> I say get a volume pedal and learn to use it. Why compress everything,
> when he can simply rock his foot to achive the balance he needs?

I agree, but it may be crucial to the pick-up that the first thing it sees
is the DI, so then you're looking for a DI that has an effects loop. I
think the LA Baggs Para DI has that...

And I disagree with blaming technique, chording and finger-picking often
have different dynamics as a matter of achieving the desired tone. Chording
quietly can be too harp-like, and finger-picking too strongly can be like
slap bass. Riding the volume pedal is a technique in itself though, it
won't be right the first time.
Anonymous
September 22, 2005 9:09:57 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

Scott Dorsey wrote:

> hank alrich wrote:
> >Jeff Richardson wrote:

> >> I say get a volume pedal and learn to use it. Why compress everything,
> >> when he can simply rock his foot to achive the balance he needs?

> >Why bother with any of that when some intelligent practice could let him
> >play appropriately?

> Because I think the issue is that the pickup isn't reproducing his
> dynamics properly. That's often just the way pickups are. I hate
> pickups.

But most guitars have dynamic imbalances and one who is serious about
playing well will find out how to deal with these right at the source.
Pickups go extra nonlinear when one drives them past the point of
resuce. That is avoidable.

BTW, please audition the K&K Pure Western system. The damn thing works.
This is the first acoustic pickup I can tolerate in a guitar of my own.
Have one in the '69 J-50 and am almost wishing I had one in the
McCollum. Man, that into the Evil Twin into the Klein & Hummel TRA100...

Turned Mr. McCollum's ear. <g>

--
ha
Anonymous
September 22, 2005 9:09:58 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

Zigakly wrote:

> And I disagree with blaming technique, chording and finger-picking often
> have different dynamics as a matter of achieving the desired tone. Chording
> quietly can be too harp-like, and finger-picking too strongly can be like
> slap bass.

You contradict yourself right there. It is axiomatic that succesfull use
of sound reinforcement systems, if one seeks anything like a natural
guitar sound, requires development of playing technique that allows
one's dynamics to fit into the available dynamics of the sound system.

Way back before I even owned a compressor, we practiced singing to the
Studer's meters, and we got so that we didn't need to rely on
compression to deliver a usable vocal.

People want to save themselves with technical devices, instead of by
learning to play the instrument.

--
ha
Anonymous
September 22, 2005 11:41:08 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

just get a waves outboard limiter and set it to stun
Anonymous
September 23, 2005 9:56:14 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

genericaudioperson wrote:

> just get a waves outboard limiter and set it to stun

No question a L2 will deal with peaks. But IME, guitarists who exhibit a
lack of overall level control at the source, their picking/strumming
hand, also don't pay admirable attention to tone. And then limiting
those peaks with an L2 will reveal some unfortunate artifacts of guitar
bashing.

--
ha
!