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Recording an "in your face" guitar tone -need some help-
by symorian on 2012-07-28 16:13:28.7540

It's been some time that I had a previous post here and I've been a POD HD300 owner for some time now.

I still have problems understanding the recoding mentality.

I've been searching for solutions in the garbage that we call Internet and losing my way everyday a bit more.

I have a POD HD300 & Ibanez Xiphos guitar with default Dimarzio pickups.

I've been trying to get a good bare guitar sound recorded.

Despite eliminating fx's like delay + reverb and E.R. on cab simulation, I still cannot get that guitar sound. When I listen to what I've recorded and compare it to other "guitar-alone" recordings on youtube and etc. I always find a difference between them and mine seems like there is a 10% reverb with it.

How can I obtain that Flat and direct sound???

I'm asking this because when I start mixing rhytm guitars with sampled drums and 2nd guitar parts it gets even weaker just because the starting tone is also weak.

Just in case you will have recommendations,

I do not use 100% gain. only %55.

I do use Noise Gate. -54 dB with 5% decay.

I do use "Screamer" in my fx chain.

MIDs at 50% and presence is 78%.

reverb is at "0" (zero)

What should I do in order to strengthen this tone??

SHOULD I double track it?

When i do so, some phasing occurs related to that "weak sound".

Help is much appreciated!

Re: Recording an "in your face" guitar tone -need some help-
by jimsreynolds on 2012-07-28 17:07:40.3410

Have you tried Bobbo's guide and demos yet?   May be a good reference point.">">">">

Re: Recording an "in your face" guitar tone -need some help-
by symorian on 2012-07-28 17:14:46.7870

Thank you For that!

I've just found about it after posting this and also left a reply on that topic.

I'm going to take a look at it and try to find my way out.

You know what,

This is something very experimental, i mean about "getting the tone" thing. Because most of the users on the internet do not give out their secrets and instead duplicate the typical answers with round words or this is the nature of it i mean if there are lots of details to deal with, it is impossimple to implement all of them at one place.

But while trying to get the basics I always end up with nearly trying to be a sound engineer which is a complete another story with proffessional classes in schools and reading pages of info.

DAMN! That thing is hard man.

I just want to save more time on writing the music playing around with it instead of running after the recording process but unfortunately I don'T have enough time and money to get into a professional studio hire it for writing process and recording demos.

I'll have a look at that guide, hope it helps me to get the overall idea.


Re: Recording an "in your face" guitar tone -need some help-
by jimsreynolds on 2012-07-29 01:21:11.5870

Personally I figure that the world propers just as much by people taking an idea and extending it as it does on true originality and archetypes.  That means that if someone creates something good then I will use that and make the adjustments I feel are needed, if any.   Someone said "If I have seen further it it is by standing on the shoulders of giants".  Can't remember who, might of  been Isaac Newton, or maybe Danny Devito.  The whole Internet is built on the concept of re-use and that seems to work.

Your point about investing too much time in 'sound engineering' and not enough time in music resonates with me in a big way.  I love fiddling with my HD but I don't want it to be inbetween me and my music goals for too long. 

Re: Recording an "in your face" guitar tone -need some help-
by Akeron on 2012-07-29 03:11:17.0970

symorian wrote:

You know what,

This is something very experimental, i mean about "getting the tone" thing. Because most of the users on the internet do not give out their secrets

Except in guitar related forums. I see many people giving detailed enthusiastic answers here and there. In theory, with all this knowledge you should be a super mega maxi ultra ecc ecc musician. In practice, only if you really have the talent you could get something great out of this huge mass of information...

Re: Recording an "in your face" guitar tone -need some help-
by symorian on 2012-07-29 05:51:59.7480

Indeed, I have the talent. But this is a very relative thing. I have the talent but not enough time to turn it into something, in practice.

I DO NOT WISH to be a super ultra mega star... I'm 30. Living in Turkey with limited life standards and I work regularly from 8 am to 6-7 pm, 5 days a week, sometimes even on weekends. You can figure out the rest of the story.

I just want to get something that will only satisfy me, a perfectionist. But again for being a perfectionist I think I'm not saving enough time for my goals and not looking at the right place for answers OR not asking the right/direct questions.

If to return to the main concept of this post,

Should I try to double/quad tracking harder  instead of waiting to get something from very first tracking of the first guitar part? I'm asking this because, if I do quad/double tracking, play with drums, add basses, spend hours on mixing and then find out that I actually was wrong with the beginning guitar tone then BUMP! all the work seems to be for nothing and back to the beginning. I just want to avoid this.

Also, I'm confused about double and quad tracking. Copies of the same track, panning, replaying the same riff... etc. WHAT ARE THEY EXACTLY? What is a double tracking in literature? Two takes of the same riff with different tones? Two copies of the same riff with little delay in one of them?

Will this really worth to try and strenghten my overall guitar sound? I have tried it before but This time phasing issues start to occur because of the "already" weak guitar tone that I chose to start with.

Maybe this time my point is clear.

Also I'm not a super experienced about billions of brands of guitars and amps and strings etc. What are the real percentages of those individual factors that affect the overall thing in recording? I mean old strings ve new, pickups, the wood of the guitar body, type of amp simulation. Can you give me a clue which one plays approximately how much role in overall process? Maybe I'm just losing time for trying to look for the answer on the wrong side o

EDIT : I have a Xiphos. For example maybe you're going to advice me to change my guitar??? But cost vs effectiveness. As I told before I have a very limited budget and opptions and want to make sure if this will be worth of it.  This is the thing what I'm talking about.


Message was edited by: symorian

Re: Recording an "in your face" guitar tone -need some help-
by Astaroth_CY on 2012-07-29 07:19:30.1780

Generally when people say "double track" they mean you record another take and run it in parallel, and probably pan the two takes opposite each other. One thing that the Pod allows you to do is record your raw signal and then amplify it with two (or four) different patches, that way sort of creating a second take even though the guitar playing behind it is the same as the first. The benefit this gives you is extra tightness in case you are playing lots of stacatto or sharp metal riffs (it can be difficult to replicate the exact timing with true double-tracking). You can pretty much do the same thing by using a dual-cab signal chain with the two channels panned hard left/right and recorded in stereo direct from the Pod - you essentially get two different amplifications of the same raw guitar track instantly. Then again, you could double-cab but pan center in order to get a more elaborate combined sound (many guitarists do this, e.g. Tom Scholz, John Petrucci etc.), and then have a few different ones of this setup for double tracking. EVen better.

If you are a traditionalist, just go with straight double-tracking using a couple of different single-cab effects. If you want to use the power of the Pod HD to its fullest, then go dual-cab (read meambobbo's guide) and record the two separate channels that you can then mix individually on your DAW.

Yes, this is really a great way to strengthen weak guitar sound. However, I have been able to get seriously punchy and meaty tones out of single cab effects on the Pod HD. It is incredibly powerful. Once again, read meambobbo's guide. One of the biggest revelations I had is how to use the RES level in the cab DEPs... It makes your guitar sound HUGE, but that's not the only thing, there are a bunch of parameters you should play with.

I don't know how important the guitar itself is - what is important is definitely the pickups. I used to use the stock Vintage pickups in my Ibanez RG570. I swapped them out for all DiMarzios (D-Sonic, True Velvet middle, LiquiFire) and the difference is astronomical. Pickups are cheap, that set cost me about $200.

Re: Recording an "in your face" guitar tone -need some help-
by symorian on 2012-07-29 08:31:27.2690

Hey Astaroth_CY,

Thank you for spending your time to answer this.

What I forgot to mention is, I use Dimarzio but, it is the D'activator which is factory default for that Xiphos. Maybe I should get rid of those and replace them with more remarkable ones?? Now many people say they're crap compared to the very first times they were introduced.

About the manual, I have downloaded it and started to read it.

About the POD HD and amplifying with two different cabs(dual cab), I don't think that POD HD 300 is capable of doing this??? Am I wrong? Are you talking about POD HD 500?

Also should I record the guitars in complete clean tone or with slight gain in order to alter it with different patches afterwards?

What is the best DAW choice to get the maximum effectiveness with ease? I use Fruity Loops Studio 8. Maybe it's time for me to make a change?

Also is it clever to play around with recorded audio in Soundforge(not a DAW, an audio editor) or should I completely get used to using a DAW like my Fruity to its most until I give up changing the DAW software as I've suggested above?

Thank you,

Re: Recording an "in your face" guitar tone -need some help-
by Astaroth_CY on 2012-07-29 10:55:46.0850

Depending on the kind of music you play, I would consider getting better DiMarzios in there. The D-Sonic is an excellent bridge pickup for modern or progressive metal type sounds (it is pretty much the John Petrucci pickup), and also sounds fantastic for alt rock like Foo Fighters and Stone Temple Pilots. It can also do a decent job for more "vintage" 80s metal sounds like Iron Maiden and Judas Priest, although a Super Distortion would be better if you play exclusively that type of music.

Sorry, I missed that you have the HD300, yes indeed that can't do dual cabs or DEPs (not yet anyway on the DEPs, possibly in a future update?). In that case you can do one of two things:

- Record multiple takes with different effects (not vastly different though, just change the cab or the amp EQ a little bit, and make the two/four effects complement each other). Record the fully amplified "Post" signal.

- Record one take, but take the raw Pre signal (yes, this is possible with the Line 6 ASIO driver, but I haven't done it yet so couldn't tell you how) and then re-amplify it a few times with the different effects. As for how to do this, look around/google for instructions, this feature has been around since the Pod XT (or the 2.0) and has probably not changed much.

If you are playing extremely tight metal riffs (like Iced Earth, lots of triplet chugs like that), I would go with the raw Pre recording. If you are playing looser music, then just record separate takes on Post.

As for what DAW to use, it is really a personal choice here. I've used Cubase in the past and it was not bad for a beginner, but Pro Tools is probably much better. I have very limited experience with Fruity Loops so don't really know its pros and cons. Maybe try getting some trial versions of a couple different ones. If you don't want that much deep control and breadth of features, Audacity does a very reasonable job as a free and basic DAW.

You should record straight into your DAW, and always record using ASIO drivers so that everything is synced up properly with no latency. The Pod HD has its own ASIO driver that should already be installed if you've used HD Edit.

Re: Recording an "in your face" guitar tone -need some help-
by symorian on 2012-07-29 15:42:54.0210


thanks for the suggestions. I'll give them a try, especially started to look for useful pickups that would fit into my sound.

On the other hand,

After comparing my recorded guitar parts to some professionals' like Lamb of God's guitar-only tracks(**) for the Wrath & Sacrament album, I discovered that actually I'm not that much bad about or far from getting a good tone,


when I compare them I realized that there is too much "air" in my tone which prevents it being an "in your face" and solid one as if it is recorded in a room. Despite eliminating all the reverbish fxes and E.R. I still got this and I know that this is not related to reverb. I think this is something related to EQ settings, especially that sweet spot for the MIDs. But at this point I do not know wether I should adjust it during recording or apply a proper Parametric EQ to the recorded guitar track. Which is better to get that completely DRY sound?

Now I recall that some months ago I had found an article on this and there was the answer to that with the help of an EQ chart. to cut that breath/air/deepness or call it whatever suitable. But now I cannot find that guide.

Are you familiar with this? Or any advices particularly on that detail?

** I gave up comparing finished works of other people's home recordings on Youtube since drums, bass parts, second guitars everything can trick you and this is a good way to compare and see the vital differences.

EDIT : This is similar to vocal recording. Cutting/eliminating that breathe sounds and getting a more direct/dry vocal sound or another example is the drums being recorded in a room and as it appears on the album as dryish as possible. Maybe this gives you a better clue about my problem narrowing the range of possibilities which causes trouble for me.

Message was edited by: symorian

Re: Recording an "in your face" guitar tone -need some help-
by mushaf on 2012-07-29 19:26:21.8090

Hi there ,

If I might add my 2 cents , I think you're getting that whole reverb feel because I think you employ the CAB models i.e, your amp model is on 'FULL' mode. The cabs offer a small amount of reverb no matter how hard you try to remove it . I'll post a sample of my recordings once I get home . Now with the new update for HD300 , we can opt for the CAB = none :-) . This might just give ya what you need :-)

Re: Recording an "in your face" guitar tone -need some help-
by symorian on 2012-07-29 20:02:46.7560

Thank you for that suggestion.

I haven't noticed that before. I quickly tried it and there is some difference. but this time, I'm going to need to adjust the overall tone to get closer to the one with the cab. Because this new tone is thinner and fuzzier compared to the one with the cab simulation. But this sounds as if it comes from a closer spot.

Is it possible for me to get that sound & tone to the same level as I previously had with the cab simulation "on"?

EDIT : I played around with it but it seems like there is no way to get a sweet tone without cab simulation??
But on the other hand there is a small option next to "amp" knob. FULL / PREAMP. I see that in my all presets I used it as "FULL" but when I switched it to "preamp" the tone sounds a bit tighter/centered.

Re: Recording an "in your face" guitar tone -need some help-
by Astaroth_CY on 2012-07-29 20:43:58.9180

I don't agree with mushaf, I think the "reverb" he/she is referring to is just residual noise after playing a note, which would be eliminated with the use of a gate. Try the regular Noise Gate with Decay at 0% and increase the Threshold value until the "reverb" goes away, and you'll see what I mean. If you're going Studio Direct, you'll need a cab, or else you will have crappy tone.

Re: Recording an "in your face" guitar tone -need some help-
by symorian on 2012-07-29 21:12:01.4400

Yes you're right about that...

But I'm already using NG with -54dB with decay at 5% with Gate+NR option... whatif more of that NG kills the overall feeling? I think this time how tense I play comes into account to compensate this??  =(

What do you think about proper EQing that I have mentioned 2 posts above?

Also about your recommendation on pickups, can this be because of SNR of my pickups?

Re: Recording an "in your face" guitar tone -need some help-
by Astaroth_CY on 2012-07-29 21:22:07.9590

I keep forgetting that you are not using an HD500 and that you are dealing with certain limitations... If you have the regular NG, then yes, increasing the threshold will affect your tone negatively. If you are using the Hard Gate, however, it will not affect your tone at all, but it can be slighlty harder to set up properly.

I would say, read meambobbo's guide for EQ advice and anything else like that. It's a very intricate subject that he covers very well.

I have never used the pickup your guitar has, so I don't know what it sounds like or its properties.

The information above may not be current, and you should direct questions to the current forum or review the manual.