Academy Dashboard Forum Production Production Techniques Pro sounding wide stereo rock guitars (that do not suck in Mono)

  • This topic has 4 replies, 3 voices, and was last updated 1 year ago by Jason Millner.
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    Alexander Appel

      Dear Plappers community,

      I recently purchased the fantastic 'Mixing Heavy Rock with Marc D. Nelson' course and when I downloaded the multitracks, the stereo guitar tracks caught my attention the most.

      Not only that they were sounding very good from the start, but what impressed me was their mono compatibility! These are definitely two guitars panned hard left and right with a nice stereo width. When I record guitars I can achieve that too with double tracked guitars, panned hard left and right. But when I then listen to them in mid/side mode, the mid always sounds a little duller because of phase cancellations. With the stereo tracks from the course, the mid and sides sound exactly the same, what could be the trick here?

      I also tried out phase correlation tools or changing the polarity of one side, but that definitely doesn't do the trick.

      If you do not have the course mutlitracks, you could hear the same effect very well on Billy Talent - Fallen Leaves  - with the intro guitars. There is no difference between the mid and sides. And when you collapse it from stereo to mono it just gets a bit quieter, but the sound quality stays the same.

      Does anybody have some experience on how to track guitars to achieve that?

      Highly appreciate your responses 🙂

      • This topic was modified 1 year ago by Alexander Appel.
      • This topic was modified 1 year ago by Alexander Appel.
      • This topic was modified 1 year ago by Alexander Appel.
      Arthur Labus

        Hi Alexander,

        first: usually the provided tracks would be mono guitar tracks and that would be your job to arrange them. Is there really a stereo guitars track ?

        In general (IMHO): if i have a double tracked guitar track, i mean really played and recorded twice - i have the best stereo foundation. I wwould never try to check that in M/S configuration. Hard panned, there should be near zero audio in the middle ?

        Listened to the Billy Talent song. It sounds to me like there would be just one guitar recorded (its very consistent, in fact perfect), so i assume they use a widening technique.
        Easiest one is to double the track and apply 12ms delay between the tracks.
        Also pitching the doubled track with amount of 0,02% (i do that with Audacity) is very effective.
        Mostly i am just lazy and use Voxengo StereoTouch free plugin 😉 It use delays to create the effect, the presets are always fitting.
        However, the best method is still to have two different takes.

        So: what tracks in particular are provided in this course ?


        Alexander Appel

          Hi Athur,

          all guitar tracks of the course are provided as stereo tracks, so putting the mono guitars into decent sounding stereo mix is already done.

          Thanks for the hint, I will try that, and could even post the results here. I am afraid that does not do the trick, but let's see.


          • This reply was modified 1 year ago by Alexander Appel.
          Alexander Appel

            I found it.

            First of all the phase cancellations must have been due to my IR loader. Once I printed the tracks, the phase problems were gone! If the guitars are tracked properly and you pan them hard left and hard right, they fold to mid and sides equally. Even though in this case it sounds a bit harsh over headphones.

            Double Tracked - Left - Right - example:

            The other technique that works is to have one guitar mono in the middle and make a stereo track out of the second guitar, then flip the phase of one side of this stereo track, put a stereo widener on it and blend the two tracks until mid and sides are equally loud. This is in general smoother sounding and fits better to this part.

            Double Tracked - Mid - Sides - example

            • This reply was modified 1 year ago by Alexander Appel.
            • This reply was modified 1 year ago by Alexander Appel.
            Jason Millner

              Hi Alexander,

              I always record guitars in mono. If using two mics on a cab, I'll blend the two tracks together (check the phase first) and bounce them to a single mono track before mixing. Even with many of the downloads we get on this site that give you a mic and a DI for each part, I blend them and bounce to a single mono track.  I'll do that for both the left and right side.

              When mixing doubled guitars, I often start with both up the middle, and eq them so that there is separation even when they are together in mono. I find that when I do this and then hard pan them, they sound even wider than they normally would.


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