I’m enrolled in the Introduction to Music Production on coursera.org and the first week was all about sound, audio interfaces, and microphones. As part of my first week, my assignment is instructions for recording an acoustic guitar.
The first step is going to be connecting the microphone to the audio interface. Before connecting the XLR cable to the condenser microphone, ensure that the 48v phantom power on the interface is turned off and the gain is turned all the way down to prevent clicking from running through your system. After the XLR cable is connected to the microphone then plug the other end into the audio interface and you can turn on the phantom power and adjust the gain.
At this point we’re nearly ready to record, but first you’re going to want to measure the loudest point in the recording to ensure that you aren’t going to get any distortion in the recording. Check the sound meter on the outside of the audio interface to ensure that you’re not hitting the peak or red.
Now that you’ve taken precautions to prevent distortion you can record your music. Since we’re using an omnidirectional condenser microphone you’re going to get more sound from the room than if we used a cardioid microphone. Keep this in mind to prevent other noise from getting captured in your recording. Moving your guitar closer or further away from the microphone is going to provide different sounds, but I prefer getting close to the microphone so that I’m only about 12-18 inches away from the microphone so that the microphone is capturing the acoustic guitar as directly as possible.