Academy Dashboard Forum Production Mixing Do you like L-R widening overdrive guitars or not and why?

  • This topic has 7 replies, 5 voices, and was last updated 3 years ago by Matthew Kirschner.
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  • #71867
    Kevin
    Participant

      A question specifically meant for the guitar players among us. Yet, if you are not a guitar player, I appreciate your opinion as well.

      #71879
      Guido tum Suden
      Keymaster

        Hi Kevin,
        I fear, you have to be more specific with the question.
        Are we talking, two guitar tracks with different content, two guitar tracks playing the same but recorded separately, or one recording on two tracks, one recording with two stacks … ?
        In general I would say it absolutely depends on the song and on what is being played.

        Guido

        #71881
        Kevin
        Participant

          Hi Guido,

          I am sorry. Let me clarify. What I mean is this:

          Widening guitars as two recorded (read re-amped), nearly identical parts with a different amp, panned hard L - R. "Nearly identical" because I've copied the GT part of one chorus underneath another chorus and vice versa.

          As engineers, we all know and like the effect of that "larger than life" guitar-wall-of-sound that gets projected out of your speakers. However, by applying this technique, you immediately deflect the attention of the listener to the impact of the effect and not to the guitar part itself, which might be great if it are acoustic strums, but if you do that with an electric guitar in overdrive, playing power chords you don't have much space left for other instruments in the stereo image as well as in the frequency spectrum.

          Moreover, if there is another distortion GT that plays a solo for example and you want to have that solo in the center, you have to change the tone of either the solo guitar and/or the widespread LR guitars with EQ because, well, the center between the speakers is a ghost spot and you want to avoid muddiness, phasing, cancelation, superimposing, and all kinds of other nastiness that will transpire randomly.

          I can imagine that guitar players don't like it if you change their tone, so my question is:

          As a guitar player, do you like L-R widening overdrive guitars or not and why?

          #71895
          Jerry Hammack
          Participant

            Not sure I agree about the net result to the listener's attention. It's not a given. Creating a Haas effect, detuning, or using widening plugins in parallel can give you some more width without diminishing the presence of the original signals. Just a thought!

            #71931
            Kevin
            Participant

              Thank you, Jerry for your input. It's not a given, indeed. But actually that was not my question... : )

              #72000
              Dave Le Sange
              Participant

                Hey Kevin,

                I'm not a guitar player, I'm a bassist, but I record & mix a lot of electric guitars.

                To answer your question very simply - yes, I like wide overdriven guitars because they're exciting.

                Now for the caveats...

                Generally, I'd agree with you, guitar players are often not stoked if you fiddle with their tone in the mix - especially on solos. However, as a 3rd party mixer, I won't hesitate to remove unnecessary low end or scoop a little bit of midrange to make room for the vocal.

                Do whatever you need to do to avoid phase cancellation & mush.

                I like the widening trick Warren does (pan gtr one way & its reverb etc to the opposite side) if I've only got the one guitar track.

                If possible, at the time of tracking, I get the guitarist to lay down doubles with a different guitar amp configuration - even better if you can get a different player too!

                Your technique:
                "Kevin" Widening guitars as two recorded (read re-amped), nearly identical parts with a different amp, panned hard L - R. "Nearly identical" because I've copied the GT part of one chorus underneath another chorus and vice versa "/Kevin"

                So, this is a cool approach, & using the different choruses to keep the parts ever so slightly different is a great idea in the absence of discrete doubles.

                I'm guessing as you re-amped that you had the DI tracks too. If you re-amp the recorded amp sound, you may struggle to get a different enough tone (I have made this mistake a few times - always record the DI, Dave)

                If you are re-amping the DI, then go for the sound the song needs, leave the original tone alone as far as poss. Generally guitarists don't mind you adding bits as long as they can still hear their original tone.

                Hope I've been helpful, or at least easy to ignore.

                Dave

                • This reply was modified 4 years ago by Dave Le Sange. Reason: Forgot to answer half the question
                #72063
                Kevin
                Participant

                  Thank you, Dave. That is a very helpful reply. Really appreciated!

                  Kevin

                  #77279
                  Matthew Kirschner
                  Participant

                    Hi Kevin,

                    I am a guitarist/producer/novice engineer for my online band. I do the cross fade reverb that I learned from Warren and I do love the extra thickness it creates! I do always double track all my rhythm tracks for that reason. Yes they are each panned hard L/R.

                    Matt

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