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Post new topic What's the best way to record dobro with limited resources?
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Author Topic:  What's the best way to record dobro with limited resources?
Michael Haselman


From:
St. Paul
Post Posted 27 Sep 2017 1:45 pm     Reply with quote

I have a Gibson Hound Dog with the built in pickup. I'm just recording backing tracks for a duo project. Plugged into my Red-Eye preamp, into the audio interface, could not get better than a tinny sound. Would just micing it with a Shure 58 work? Where do you place the mic if so? I don't think there's any way to make that built in pickup sound good.
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Tony Prior


From:
Charlotte NC..
Post Posted 28 Sep 2017 12:47 am     Reply with quote

I owned a Hound Dog way back and used it on quite a few recordings, direct to a preamp and also with a mic.

If you are mic'ing it you still need a mic preamp, place the mic near or around the outer cone where your right hand is positioned, away from you, not towards your body. You can move the mic a few inches either direction and you can hear the difference in the tone. Use something like a Shure 57 or even a low cost small diaphragm mic.

The preamp can also be the beast that causes the tinny sound.

Aloso if you have not done it, you may want to pull the cone and make sure the little pickup is mounted properly at the bottom of the cone, not too tight or too loose. That can also make a huge difference when using the PUP for recording.
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Les Cargill


From:
Oklahoma City, Ok, USA
Post Posted 5 Oct 2017 3:03 pm     Reply with quote

The Red-Eye ( either make; more than one thing is called a "Red-Eye" )is unlikely to be a source of tinny sound. The Dee-Eye version is very high impedance. It's just a dobro and a peizo; those upper mids will add up.

I have never had anything but wonderful luck with a Behringer ECM8000 on acoustic instruments. They're omnidirectional so mic technique is less of an issue and they're easy on the wallet. You can do the same with a Panasonic omni capsule but the ECM8000 is in a much handier package.

Never tried one on upright bass, however. So dunno about that. URB is tricky.
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Godfrey Arthur


From:
Philippines
Post Posted 9 Oct 2017 9:12 pm     Re: What's the best way to record dobro with limited resourc Reply with quote

Michael Haselman wrote:
I have a Gibson Hound Dog with the built in pickup. I'm just recording backing tracks for a duo project. Plugged into my Red-Eye preamp, into the audio interface, could not get better than a tinny sound. Would just micing it with a Shure 58 work? Where do you place the mic if so? I don't think there's any way to make that built in pickup sound good.


Yes adding a room mic track will thicken things up a bunch.

But record your pickup as well at the same time if you have a way to split your pickup.

Micing is basically a "use the force..Luke" endeavor.

Wear headphones as you move the mic around either close to the speaker or a few feet away and when you get a sound that pleases you, that's where the mic goes.


Experiment with settings on your amp as you listen through your headphone as that will help what the mic hears.

The closer the mic, the less of the room you hear, but room sound is good too so don't rule that out.

If you have two mics, put one on the speaker, then one a few feet away in the room.

And by a "few feet" at least 3 feet away from the other mic so you don't go out of phase. If you have phase reversal on your mic inputs, then no problem.

Make sure you quiet anything going on in that room so extraneous noise doesn't get picked up on the track.

A 58 although for close vocals, depending on how loud you play your amp will pickup up enough of a signal to mix in with your DI track. And then the magic is in the mixing after that, blending the two tracks.

You can also take the windscreen off the 58 (just unscrew it) and turn it into a 57, the usual go-to for micing guitar amps.




If you have amp modeling software like Ampfarm et al you can enhance either track to come up with a better image of your guitar.

You can also just mic your dobro without an amp.

Again use the force Luke on the mic placement.
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Jonathan Cullifer


From:
Nashville, TN
Post Posted 10 Oct 2017 8:17 am     Reply with quote

What is the input impedance on your preamp? Sounds like it may be lower than it should.

Last dobro project I did, I recorded the pickup and used a Sennheiser 421 and a SM57. I don't know which track was used in the project, but I think it was the 421. The 57 did fine as well.
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Michael Haselman


From:
St. Paul
Post Posted 10 Oct 2017 12:43 pm     Reply with quote

Not sure at all of the impedance. I believe it's a Fishman that came with that era of Hound Dogs. Lots of good advice here, though. Thanks all!
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Howard Parker


From:
Clarksburg,MD USA
Post Posted 11 Oct 2017 6:51 am     Reply with quote

Michael Haselman wrote:
Not sure at all of the impedance. I believe it's a Fishman that came with that era of Hound Dogs. Lots of good advice here, though. Thanks all!


If the original Fishman "donut" pickup (I think they refer to it as the "Classic"), tinny output is typically a sign that the pickup needs to be retensioned. That is done with the cone tension screw. Very carefully move the screw back and forth, no more than 1/8 turn. Hopefully you'll hear the pickup "bloom" at one spot and the dobro will sound like a dobro Winking

It that doesn't work then re mounting the pickup may be in order.

Some knowledge of this pickup will be required.

I've adjusted hundreds of these pickups. They are a PIA and no longer recommended for a variety of reasons.

Hope this helps.

Howard
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