Resources for the Recording Musician
November 13, 2006

Volume issue

I am a newbie starting out recording acoustic guitar to an sm-57 to a lexicon omega into the computer into cubase le.  i am having issue getting good volume.  to compensate i boost up the volume on my speakers really high and the sound becomes very boomy and noisy.  anyone know what might be the issue?  someone suggested that an sm-57 is too weak to record an acoustic guitar.  would buying a condenser mic solve the issue, or are there other things i can try?

First off, are you sure you've got the microphone plugged into the XLR type microphone inputs?
Also, there are 20dB pads on those inputs on the Omega... make sure those are NOT engaged.

Yes, the SM57 is not a great microphone for acoustic guitar, but it will work.  It's not going to give you the kind of more open and detailed sound that a nice small diaphragm condenser would, but it will still work.

Also, the 57 will probably tend to sound "boomy" on acoustic guitar... especially if you are putting it right in front of the sound hole (which is usually NOT the best microphone position for acoustic guitars).

Without knowing a whole lot more about EXACTLY how everything is connected, and how the Omega's software is setup, as well as everything else in your setup, it's tough to tell you exactly what is going on with your setup.

You've posted several posts now, and it's obvious that this is all very new to you (which you also state).  There's no shame in that at all, but you really should consider buying some books on the basics of recording, and also look into finding a professional recording engineer in your area who you could pay for his time to come over and help you personally get everything set up correctly and give you some lessons on how to work the equipment.

Contrary to what all the equipment retailers want you to believe, you can't just buy some software, an interface, and a microphone and suddenly be cranking out major label quality recordings from your simple home studio.  It takes time to study and learn about all of this, and then years and years of practice to actually get good at it.

Don't get frustrated or give up, but I think you're better off finding someone locally to help you out in person where it can be much more interactive and the person helping you can easily figure out what is wrong with your setup.  Maybe also look into some community colleges in your area to see if they offer any courses in recording and music production.

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