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D.I or mic?

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by Marson, Jan 6, 2006.

  1. I need to know whats better when playing shows and recording is it better to D.I the bass or mic it ? Our guitarist say mic but i says D.I so I'm unsure so can you please enlighten me on the subject thank you.
  2. well i understand that but I'd still like some insight on the subject.
  3. Pruitt


    Jun 30, 2005
    Danbury, CT
    I prefer a DI, but that may just be me. :D
  4. Sundogue


    Apr 26, 2001
    Wausau, WI
    There are so many different ways to go about it and each has it's own benefit.

    If you go DI, it can be pre or post EQ, so with DI (pre EQ) you can get a dry signal to send to the soundboard and tailor it from there. Or, you can go post EQ and get a dry signal to the sounboard, but it will be colored with EQ settings from your amp (which is less than ideal, because you EQ to get the overall sound you want from your bass, head and cab plus the room).

    Micing your speakers gives you the ability to send the exact sound you like from your speaker to the soundboard. If you like your sound and want EXACTLY that sound going to the soundboard then micing is really the only way to go.

    However, micing has it's own downside. For one, the sound coming from your speakers may not be what you are after. If it's for sound reinforcement thru a PA, the sound you setup for playing with a band may not be the same as when playing by yourself (i.e. - you may have less bass and more mids to cut through onstage, but it's not the ideal sound you want out front). Also, micing will cause some problems with regards to unwanted sound from other instruments filtering in.

    If it's for recording, then you might want to mic to duplicate the exact sound you get from your speakers (something you won't get going DI). Then again, if you DI you can always play with the sound after it's recorded.

    Lots to consider. I suggest experimenting with it both ways until you can all see for yourselves which you prefer for which environment.

    Personally, I prefer micing in some situations (usually recording) and going DI for others (live, where my onstage sound is decidedly different playing with others than when playing alone).
  5. why do you prefer D.I?
  6. How good of a representation of your sound can you get through the monitors, if you DI?
  7. Sundogue


    Apr 26, 2001
    Wausau, WI
    Whatever sound you get from your bass speaker cab won't be the same through anything else. There are too many variables involved. The monitors have a different speaker, different cab style, different frequency resonance, etc. Same with the PA speakers...or headphones.

    You can get close perhaps...but really only if the bass is the only thing going through that monitor.
  8. mcbc


    Oct 31, 2005
    Cincinnati, OH
    try doing both
  9. yes well wat would i use if i was running different effects in the process , such as delay , distortion , wah and chorus ( not at the same time ) but during the songs etc etc....
  10. Hawkeye

    Hawkeye Canuck Amateur

    For recording, really the best way to go.

    Bass to D.I.
    D.I. thru to amplifier
    D.I. out to preamp (for argument's sake channel 1)
    Mic to preamp (let's say channel 2)
    Record two tracks simultaneously and mix to taste.

    I find I get a more articulate sound from the D.I. and preamp plus a deeper and rounder sound from my Rode NT1 on my combo amplifier which I can mix together for an articulate AND deep tone. It takes 2 channels of audio.

    I read of an engineer who said he also micced Chuck Gainey's electric bass up close to get the clack & click & fret noise of the strings as he played. He said the track sounded like a mechanic working on a Buick alone, but when he mixed it in with the the D.I. and micced cab at a low level (3 tracks total), it really helped to make an authentic electric bass guitar recording.
  11. Ok sorry for not mentioning this earlier when it was broguht up I do not have the luxury of using 2 tracks simultaneously because we only have an 8 track recorder so how can we work from there.
  12. Sundogue


    Apr 26, 2001
    Wausau, WI
    You won't know which you'll prefer 'til you try it both ways.

    Let us know how it worked out.
  13. ok will do i've already done it through mic'ing it so ill try D.I for the next song when we start the album.
  14. DaftCat


    Jul 26, 2004
    Medicine Hat
    That's what I do. Depends on the band genre mostly for me.
  15. georgestrings

    georgestrings Banned

    Nov 5, 2005
    The reason why your guitarist is so set on mic'ing, is that electric guitar sound usually relies quite a bit on the interaction between the guitar, amp, and speakers(ie, controlled feedback) - I ALWAYS mic when playing guitar... However, bass is a whole different animal - I prefer to DI when playing bass, or maybe use a mix of DI and mic'ing... The nice thing about using a DI, is you don't pick up any outside noise(drums) in your signal...

    - georgestrings
  16. weell we multi track to we dont have to worry about outside noise cause no one is near when we do record, and we have solved and said we gonna do D.I and see how it works.
  17. Ryan L.

    Ryan L. Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Aug 7, 2000
    West Fargo, ND
    Live, I have sent up to three signals to the board before--a mic on my cab, the DI out of my SVT4Pro (post EQ), and a DI right from my bass (before going through the head).

    Most times I only send two, the mic and the DI out of my head.
  18. well i gues im gonna have to try some of these ideals thanx for the help guys, if any other suggestions id still like to hear.
  19. JimmyM


    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    I have an idea. Tell your guitarist that if he wants to play bass for you that he needs to do it. If you like DI better, do it DI. 90% of what I record is straight DI and it always sounds great.
  20. snapple


    Nov 25, 2003
    Victoria-Vancouver Canada
    Endorsing Artist: PCL Vintage Amps
    I always do both for recording... you can blend the two, or if one sounds better than the other you can use just that one track.

    For live I think a DI is the way to go. Sure, setup your amp to the sound you want for the room and/or to cut through on stage, but the soundguy can hear whats going on FOH and can tailor suit your tone for the situation.