Muddy guitars..

Discussion in 'Live Sound [BG]' started by jpizzay, Jul 18, 2013.

  1. jpizzay


    Jan 10, 2012
    We've recently been rehearsing in a studio. The problem we're facing is the muddy guitar sound. It's pretty much like there is way too much low end coming out. I've already asked them to turn the bass down on their amplifiers and to leave the bass to me, obviously. But even with their bass knobs at zero, there is still muddiness. I don't have much experience with eq'ing a guitar so I don't know what else to tell them. We have two guitar players, lead and rhythm and i'm pretty sure they're running distortion.

    Both guitars are Fender Stratocasters.

    I'm playing through a Sadowsky Metro Vintage 4, plugged into an Orange 500w Terror Bass and Ampeg 8x10 cab. My sound is coming out clean and clear.

    I'm sure some of you have had this issue. Any ideas on how to make those guitars sound cleaner?
  2. claytitan


    Mar 12, 2008
    Probably lousy cabs. Lose the 4-12. Get a single 12. Make sure they aren't standing off axis.
  3. Duckwater


    May 10, 2010
    USA, Washington
    High pass filter will help as well.
  4. jpizzay


    Jan 10, 2012
    You're gonna have to explain what you mean. I'm not following.
  5. Gearhead17

    Gearhead17 Supporting Member

    May 4, 2006
    Mount Prospect, IL
    412 Guitar cabs put out a lot of low end. A single 12 guitar cab is great for recording since you can lower the volume and low end content of the setup immediately. Usually a clearer tone.

    Check the pedals that are hooked up - are they boosting the low end heavily there? Pedals/amps - usually the typical "0"/flat setting on guitar amps are far from flat sounding and can easily have boosted low end.

    Off-axis: look up a mic placement article to see what we are talking about. Start reading about the different techniques and sounds you can achieve.

    Hopefully that explains it decently. How are the guitarists getting their sound captured for the recording?
  6. jpizzay


    Jan 10, 2012
    Where did you guys get that the guitars are running through 4x12's? they're running through 1x12's max. But they are running through pedal boards. They might be boosting lows and not even know it... Maybe telling them to favor their bridge pickups might help as well?
  7. MatticusMania

    MatticusMania LANA! HE REMEMBERS ME!

    Sep 10, 2008
    Pomona, SoCal
    Post #2. An assumption was made, and then seen by others without fact checking.
    A great example of how the worlds history is all screwed up.
  8. Gearhead17

    Gearhead17 Supporting Member

    May 4, 2006
    Mount Prospect, IL
    I ran with the 412 assumption since those cabs have too much low end blasting right away - I was hoping for a simple fix.

    The pedal boards could be completely nuts. Bridge pickup use would be helpful too. Maybe narrow down each pedal for use on the recording. Use one distortion pedal at different settings to complete the song. Record it in parts and you will end up with similar, but different tones for the mixing process. Much easier later on.

    Where is the mic placed relative to the speaker? Honestly, a quick move of the mic and presto; the tones will not be so muddy. What kind of mic is being used? Good high end extension?
  9. jpizzay


    Jan 10, 2012
    We're not mic'ing anything at the moment.
  10. Cycho


    Nov 30, 2010
    I assume the guitars sound muddy when playing live, not just in the recording. I don't know why Stratocasters would sound muddy; they are usually pretty bright sounding. What kind of strings are they using? What do they sound like with the pedal boards bypassed? I think a few key experiments would solve this problem. Try to isolate guitar from pedal board from amp from cab.
  11. So help us, help you...

    What exactly are the guitarists using? Are you saying that the tone in the room is muddy? Have you moved the amp to different places in the same room? Do other people hear the same 'muddy' sound that you do? Have you guys tried guitar-> amp no pedals? How does that sound? Are the guitar amps tube amps? Are the tubes in good condition? Is the issue really 'too much low end' or is there not enough mid and high end?