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3.1    Vocal Mics and Recording Vocals:

There's a ton of good vocal mikes available. Vocal mics generally have tonal characteristics that make them specifically sound better for vocals. Some popular models are: ElectroVoice RE-20s, Shure SM-7s, Beyer M260s. Large diaphragm condensers are a popular choice, but you have to be careful about  having a fairly dead room because they suffer from some weird off axis responses. Large diaphragm condensers also have a specific sound that might not work well with all singers or music styles.  The M260 ribbon, for example, has a very tight pattern and good off axis response, so it should work better in a bad room.

With most vocal recordings, position the mic anywhere from 1 to 3 feet in front of the singer, elevated so they're facing slightly upward. It helps to have the singer seated on a bar stool, so they don't get closer to the mic as the song progresses. The best distance for the mic depends both on the singer's volume and on the responsiveness of the mic, as well as how much you want to hear the room.  Also, if you point the mic at the singers mouth, you'll hear their tongue and lip noises, so you may want to point it somewhere else.  Aiming for the head will bring out the nasal sound, while the chest often has a bassy resonance to it.

You should have a music stand so the singer doesn't have to hold a lyric sheet, and a good headphone mix is vital. Vocals are generally the focus of a song, and a singer is more inspired when monitoring a good mix. Also use a pop filter to kill some of the transients before they even reach the mic, this eliminates the time consuming, and signal degrading process of de-essing (that doesn't always work the way we want it to!)  It's also important to keep the singer hydrated... it keeps their vocal cords in good condition and also helps cut down on lip, toungue and mouth noise.  It's best to use room temperature water (rather than cold).

If you'd like to add warmth to the voice, try the 300Hz to 500Hz range. This is mostly below the vocal range, but adds nice resonances. This effect can sometimes be achieved by simply moving the mic closer to the singer. The 1kHz to 3 kHz range is the element that makes higher notes shrill, and a little cut here might help. Between 4kHz and 10kHz lies all of the pops and hisses. If the pop filter didn't work, try up here. Above 10kHz, a cautious boost can add sparkle. A 3 dB boost here will also help the vocals survive a bounce better. Be forewarned that EQ changes on the voice are very noticeable, and should be done in a very subtle fashion. Compression for vocals should be done very carefully as well. It's real easy to make a vocal track sound squashed and unnatural. A good compressor really makes a difference with vox, because cheaper models usually color the sound in a negative way.

One place a large diaphragm condenser seems to shine for vocals is when trying to get a sexy, breathy female voice. This is done by having the performer sing quietly (and breathy) and have the mic fairly close. The track will pick up the warmth of the voice from the proximity effect of having the mic so close. It's important that you don't get the mic too close, it'll get muddy or boomy. You may have to add a little presence to the voice by giving a small boost above 10kHz. This will keep it from sounding too flat.

When mixing background vocals with a lead, there are a few tips that can help. Try to roll off the low end and the lower midrange of the backing vocals a little, making them less powerful. Also try using more subtle effects, so the background doesn't get too full and crowd out the lead. Rolling off the highs works well sometimes (depending on the sound of the singers).  Also, leaving the lead a little dry, and adding some reverb to the backgrounds will make them sound diffuse, and farther from the listener, or behind the lead singer.

It's a good practice to mix your vocal track early. This way you can build around the vocals... remember that they're the focus of the song. The majority of the vocal range is in the mids, with a bit of warmth below 500 Hz. Cutting the rest of the mix a little bit in this area will help the vocal track sit well. Be careful though, so the track sits in the mix, but isn't way out front.  It's also best to fit the instruments around the singer, rather than trying to cut a hole in the instruments to squeeze the vocals in.

Vocals can be thickened a little bit by using a delay and a pitch shift. Try adding a quick delay, between 5 and 25 milliseconds, than pitch shifting the delayed track a few cents up or down. This just smears the vocal a little, making it sound a little fatter.  This will mess with the phase of the signal, however, and may make it so the song is not mono-compatible, so be careful, and check the results in mono.  If your song is not going to be released, this is not necessary.

3.2     Recording a Guitar Speaker Cabinet:

The SM-57 is disputably the most popular mic for a guitar cabinet, although many mics work great. In a multiple speaker cabinet (2 x 10, 2 x 12, 4 x 12, etc) check all the speakers because one may sound better than the others. This takes a little patience until you know the general sweet spot. Keep the mic angled at a small angle to the grille cloth (not perpendicular), and about 1" out. Point the mic at a portion of the cone, not near the center or edge. Crank the amp as loud as possible (make sure you turn your gain down on your mic pre... this tends to be a hot signal with a loud amp!

Now, monitoring through headphones (preferably while someone else plays) move the mic to slightly different positions on the cone, at different distances and different angles. There is a lot of flexibility available. Adjust the final position to taste. You should be able to get a good sound without using EQ if you're patient enough. This is the best way to get a natural sound (EQ colors your recording too much if used heavily).

I usually use a little compression when tracking. I just flicker the gain reduction LED's a little bit(1 or 2 dB) with a 2:1 or 4:1 ratio. I usually leave the attack and release times in the middle of their adjustment ranges (20ms-80ms attack, 350ms-650ms release). Besides the small amount of compression and the appropriate distortion, I record it dry, and add effects at mixdown.

I cannot stress how much better a track sounds if you spend the time to fine tune amp settings, guitar tone control settings and mic placement to get the best recorded sound. I also record a preamp output to a second track, because the high bass and mids are much more defined, and I can combine the two tracks for a fuller sound. Another tip that works good if you're recording on analog tape... try running the levels to tape a little hot (+3 to +6dB). A small amount of distortion from the tape machine can sound good sometimes. You can experiment with this... Split your mic signal into two channels. Record a mic'ed amp on both tracks. Record one track at 0 dB peaks and the other with 6 dB peaks. On playback, match the volume of the two channels. Listen to it, you should be able hear the distortion from the tape. Note: This works for analog recorders ONLY; a digital deck will clip very ungracefully, and should never be pushed over 0 dB.

I sometimes use a closet as an isolation booth in my studio. I have heavy cushioning on the lower 3' of the sides, back and floor of the closet. I use a closed back 8" 100w speaker box wired to my amp (which is outside the closet). I can then crank the amp and get it quite a bit louder without disturbing my family and neighbors. The 8" provides remarkable bass since it's pressed into a thick padded corner. Using a single 8" is much quieter than a 4 x 12 anyway. I have a small mic stand designed for mic'ing amps, and it fits great with the speaker in there. This does require the use of an effects processor (unless I want a dry guitar), because I'm recording in an unreflective area.

If you want a little natural reverb, try mic'ing the amp in a mid to large sized room and use a distant mic as well as the one kissing the grille cloth. You may have to play with the location a bit to find a good one. Be wary of phase problems... you'll hear certain frequencies drop out and act strange. You'll need to change the distance between the source and the far mic to remedy it. Also note that this technique doesn't work good in rooms with poor acoustic properties. You'll need quite a bit of gain on the distant mic, so a quiet place to record is important. It also helps if you use a high output, low self noise mic. I use this same technique on acoustic guitars too.

Although it's the most commonly used mic for guitar, the SM-57 is not the only good choice. Although I've never tried, I've heard recommendations for using an Electro Voice ND257 to get a better sounding high end. Also try using a Shure Beta 56. It's got a fuller midrange, higher output and is nice and quiet.  Another great mike to use is the Sennheiser 421.  It's sound is very similar to a 57, but it sounds a lot fuller and clearer.  I've most recently been using a Sure Beta Green 4.1, it's a small diaphragm condensor with a cardioid pattern.  I like the extra detail and clarity I can attain with it.

Using a multiple amp setup is a very nice way to get a full sound. Y-cords can be used to split your signal to several amps, all mic'ed individually to get a diverse, thick tone. If they are tracked separately, you can also add a little time change with a delay and really thicken things up. Experiment with using a clean amp and a distorted amp at the same time. The multiple amps can be in different rooms, or together and recorded as a whole.  In any set up like this, you must pay attention to the phase of the signals.  Sum all of the signals to a mono buss, and listen to make sure the sounds are working together.  You may need to reverse the polarity of one or more mic, or relocate the mics slightly to correct the problem.

Finally, try using a small amp like a Pignose, etc lying on it's back on the floor.  Dangle the mic several feet above it in a medium sized room.  This gives a suprisingly huge sound... this is a technique used on many Frank Zappa recordings.

3.3    Recording Electric Guitar Direct

It's possible to record electric guitar without using a microphone, much like you can with a bass. The resulting tone is usually quite different than a mic'ed cabinet will produce, but good recordings can be made with some patience and practice. This technique is most useful when you have to be really quiet, or if your studio is not isolated enough from outside sounds, and you're getting these ambient noises on tape (kids playing, sirens, phones, traffic, planes... )

One method is to use a preamp output from the back of your amp, (through a DI to match impedances and eliminate hums) and into the mixer. Note that you MUST leave a speaker load attached to your amp ESPECIALLY with a tube amp. You'll notice that this type of signal generally sounds harsh and edgy (even more with solid state amps). This happens because a lot of the characteristic sound of a guitar amp comes from the power amp and speakers. You can use the EQ on your amp and the tone control on the guitar to help shape the sound and make it sound more full.

Besides just using a normal DI, there are several special speaker simulators that help to simulate the power amp and speaker of your amp. Some of these offer line level inputs (from the preamp out), while others have speaker in/out jacks so you can put the box between your amp and cabinet. You'll then pick up some of the tone from your power amp. A number of these also have a selectable speaker simulation... it will shape the output a little to make it sound like a closed back cabinet,open backed cabinet, and even different specific brands. The best known brand is probably Hughes and Kettner Red Box, which is the size of a stomp box, uses a 9v battery, AC adapter or phantom power. There is a web page available for those who like circuit building...There are several original amp and speaker simulators, as well as other goodies. Check it out at: http://www.netaxs.com/~lxh2.

Several manufacturers also make guitar preamps that offer distortion,multi effects processing, speaker simulation and a balanced output. These offer a lot of tonal possibilities right from the start, and some are very convincing.  One of the best boxes for this is the Sansamp PSA-1.

In any event, if I use a direct track, I almost always back it up with a mic'ed track. Sometimes I'll record them simultaneously, other times I'll do it separately, any of the techniques can be combined at once.

3.4    Recording Acoustic Guitars

Getting a faithful reproduction of an acoustic guitar or bass takes a good deal of patience to master. Generally speaking, don't put the mic directly in front of the sound hole... it'll usually get too muddy. I find that it works better to put the mic either ahead of or behind the sound hole, and aimed towards it. An SM-57 will give you a good tone with enough experimenting, although I prefer a more expensive and transparent condenser. Acoustic guitars also seem to respond very nicely with a room mic to pick up the ambience, or just use a single mic far enough away to pick up both the guitar and the room's reflections.  If you'll be distant micing, it's better to use a large diagphragm condensor in omni mode.  This will give you the most natural sound of the guitar's interaction with the room.  For obvious reasons, you'll need a very quiet area to record this way.   

Try an X-Y mic setup on an acoustic, and pan the resulting channels a little left and right of center.  This provides a full sound without being too wide.  An X-Y pattern is using 2 of the same mics with the capsules about 1" apart.  The body's of the mics will point away from each other at an angle between 75* and 120*.  Record this to a stereo track.

3.5    Recording Bass:

The electric bass can be recorded well in one of two ways... by mic'ing a speaker cabinet or by plugging directly into the board or other outboard gear and eliminating the power amp and speaker.

Mic'ing a bass amp is very similar to mic'ing a guitar amp, but there are a few other things to consider. One of the important things is speaker size; a 4x10 sounds considerably different than a 1x15. The smaller speakers have a better defined low end. You can hear the dynamics of the player much better with a cabinet like this, but there tends to be a lot of midrange that some players will object to. This midrange hump also takes up valuable real estate in the mix, talking some space away from the guitars and other instruments. The 1 x 15" will produce deep bass; much more power than the 10" speaker will give. A 15" has a higher possibility of getting muddy, especially with more articulate playing, because the large cone reacts more slowly than a 10". Usually, you'd use a dynamic cardioid mic, but a slightly more distant condenser can give good results too. It helps to raise the bass cab off the floor a bit with a cushion to stop the room resonances you sometimes get. Also, make sure you don't turn the amp up too loud. The low frequencies overload mics pretty easily. You might have problems with "standing waves" creating a boomy sound. These are frequencies that have wavelengths that are multiples of your room's dimensions. You need some form of bass trap to absorb these low frequencies. The best positions for these are corners. Blankets, drapes and normal foam won't work well because they aren't dense enough to absorb low frequencies. Also note that foam and cardboard egg crate is also very flammable and should not be used.

Recording bass direct is also a very popular method. There are several ways of going direct, but basses are generally not plugged directly into the mixer input. Doing so usually creates an impedance mismatch which loads down the pickups and affects the tone. You can use a passive direct box, which is essentially an impedance matching transformer. There are also active direct boxes. These are basically a simple preamp. Speaking of preamps, there are many of these available as well. Some have solid state electronics, while some have tubes. Some preamps offer nothing more than adjustable gain stages and a small EQ, while others have compression, delays, reverbs, flanges, and speaker simulators. As far as direct boxes, there are good clean sounding models from Countryman and Whirlwind. For more of a tone-shaping DI, try models from SansAmp and Avalon.

A neutral sounding DI can be used for isolating any two audio sources, not just a bass. I have to use them between my computer and mixer to avoid a ground loop. I also needed them when I was still using my receiver for my monitor amp. A DI also converts from an unbalanced 1/4" signal to a balanced signal (XLR or 1/4" TRS). For building your own DI, try a Whirlwind TRSP600L balancing transformer. They're designed for a 600 ohm impedance, and can withstand +26 dBm while maintaining a low distortion. They're priced below $100.

Mixing a mic signal and a direct input can give really nice results. If you have enough tracks, record each one to its own so you have more possibilities when you mix. You can combine the two to a single track if you have to. I usually use a stereo compressor for these tracks so the gain reduction is consistent on each channel. Another important thing to accomplish when recording is trying to get a good sound without using much EQ on the console. If you overuse EQ it doesn't sound natural. If you spend the time to dial in your equipment you'll only need to adjust the EQ's a little to help it sit in the mix. A bass roll off around 100 or 150 Hz is important to keep the low bass defined, and a slight boost around 1.5 kHz will add some finger squeak (which sounds good in moderation).

The skill of the bass player has a lot to do with the overall bass sound. A good player will be able to keep their levels fairly even, and will sound good with almost no compression. A nice track like this tends to sit better than if you had to compress a lot. I hardly ever use more than 4 dB of gain reduction and I keep the ratio low with medium attack and release times.

3.6    Recording Drums:  

To start with, drums need to be tuned to really fit in a song. This takes a lot of practice, and most drummers don't know how to do it very well. Try watching the video "Drum Tuning by Bob Gatzen". It's a very helpful resource.  Also, be sure to check the article on Drum Tuning on this site by Jay Kahrs from Brown Sound Studios

There are two main ways to record drums. You can mic each drum, and place a few mics overhead for the cymbals. This gives you a lot of control of how the relative volumes of the pieces of the kit sound in the mix (although it doesn't sound as unified in my opinion.) You have the option of using many different mic types to catch different properties of each drum. Some people will mic both sides of a drum, especially with the snare. You'll need to reverse the phase of the mic under the drum though. The second technique is to use a pair of overhead mics to capture the majority of the kit (6' to 8' out and about 3'-5' apart) and a good mic in the kick, and perhaps a snare mic. Placement of the overheads takes a good amount of experimentation to balance all the drums/cymbals and the ambience of the room (if applicable).

Harvey Gerst, the owner and engineer of  Indian Trail Recording Studio in Texas has this simple 3 mic drum technique.  He's assuming (2) SM-58's and a Rode NT-1.  SM-57's, Sennheisser 421's, or similar mics will work in place of the 58's, and any large diapragm condensor should work in place of the Rode.

Take the ball off one of the 58s and place it where it can pickup the snare and high hat. Point it towards the center of the snare. Make SURE the drummer can't hit it with his sticks. Stick the other 58 inside the kick drum, about 4 inches from where the beater hits the head, but at an angle to the head. Put the Rode over the drummer's right shoulder about a foot above his head, pointed at the mid tom. (You'll experiment with which tom to point it at after you hear the test recording.)



Add a little treble eq to all three mics, roll off a little bottom on the snare.  Set peak levels roughly as follows:

Snare - around -10dB on the meter,
Kick - around -4dB on the meter,
Overhead - around -6dB on the meter.

Have the drummer play for about 2 minutes while you record. Listen to everything. IF something needs to be brighter, add any hi eq that is needed, or roll off some bottom, or move the mic around. DO NOT add any eq to make thing more "bassy". If it needs more bass, you'll add that later during the final mix.  Move any mics if needed.



Have the drummer play again for about 2 minutes while you record. Listen to everything again. Once you're within about 80% of the sound you want, STOP!! You can get that last 20% later - you're ready to record. When you mix down the final in stereo, pan the snare a little to one side and the overhead to the other side. Leave the kick centered.



Don't add any drum eq in mixdown until AFTER you hear how the drums fit in with the other instruments. A little reverb on the snare track will add a lot of warmth to the sound. Don't overdo! On the tracks you want a warmer sound on,  back off the top end a little on the snare and overhead.

Another neat style is to use a pair of baffled omnidirectional mics (a Jecklin Disk) two feet in front of the toms, and at roughly the same elevation. Fine tune position to achive proper balance of kit. The cymbals will lack  a bit of sizzle, and kick could be a bit boomy, but the snare is clear and full.  

Or perhaps try a CAD E-100 and Rode NT-2 about 8 ft. back and 6 ft. apart into any little portable mixer.  Really run the levels high to overdrive the small mixer a bit.  Run the outputs into your regular mixer, and eq to taste and track in stereo.  The result will be a very nice crispy live feel (like a camcorder mic) but it will be in stereo and have a better dynamic range.


The potential exists for phase problems when using a multi-mic setup. The first thing you need to do is find out which sources are conflicting. Usually, only a portion of the signal is out of phase, so moving one mic with some careful monitoring should fix the problem. If the overheads are in phase, and sound good together, move the kick mic. Perhaps it will work better outside of the drum, or on the beater side of the skin. If the overheads ore out of phase with each other, move them until the problem stops, then reposition the kick mic if required. Sometimes a change in altitude of the overheads is also effective.

There are many unusual drum sounds that can be used to create a desired effect in a song. Here are some interesting things to try sometime:   Try using a large ribbon mic about 20 feet away (in a large room), or even in the next room with the door open, then run the signal through an MXR dynacomp.  You can also  try an Sm-57 (or others...) suspended in empty 5 gallon water bottle, placed about 2 feet to the left of the snare drum.

There's a pretty easy method of getting the huge booming bass sounds popularized by rap and electronic bands.  You'll need some type of oscillator or bass synth and a triggered gate.  Basically, you run the oscillator or synth through the gate, and trigger it with the kick drum.  You set the threshold, attack and release of the gate to tailor the "boom" to the correct length and decay rate.  You should use a synth tone that is in the correct key for the song, and somewhere in the 25-60Hz range.   You then mix the drum sound with the gated bass note.   If you're using a MIDI controlled synth bass, you should have the bass note start 1/16th note before the bass drum hits so you can control the attack with the gate. If you just use a sweepable oscillator, you should use a guitar tuner to set the pitch (or you can tune the frequency by ear along with a bass guitar or other instrument if you must).  I prefer a sine wave, but a triangle, saw or square wave will have it's own unique sound.  The drum sound that triggers the gate can also be either an acoustic instrument or a sample or drum machine, as well... each will yield it's own sound.

Some problems you may encounter:

If you're having trouble with a drummer who has an excessively loud hi hat that is bleeding into the snare, ask him to try to play softer. If that doesn't work (and it often won't work...), try substituting a smaller, lighter pair of hats that are quieter.



The idea of blocking off the hats with various home made baffles can work with some bands and some styles of music. This involves placing something between the hat and snare to isolate the sounds. Re-triggering the snare can work with others situations by using the snare signal to trigger a drum machine, or mounting a trigger to the snare head and allowing that to control the drum machine.


Obviously, mic placement can help some; Placing the snare mic under the hat, facing the bottom of the snare helps the hat bleed, but can also pick up a lot of the toms. You can also try micing from under, but towards the front of the kit, pointing at an angle up towards the drummer. This minimizes bleed from the toms, and his body may soak up some of the hat, so it isn't overpowering in the snare.

Important EQ ranges of drums (acoustic or sampled electronic):

Punchiness of bass drum.................. 100 Hz - 200 Hz Bass

drum beater (if present in sample).. 1.5 kHz - 5kHz

Snare rattle ............................ 5 kHz - 8 kHz

Cymbals ................................. Around 10 kHz

3.7    Congas:

For micing congas, there are many possible techniques and microphones to try. An RE-20 will often work, or a stereo pair of Beyer-160 ribbon mics. Also try 414's or 451's 2-3 ft over the drum head and pointing directly between the drums



Try 7-10db of compression on their hardest hits. For EQ, try adding a little upper mids and a little 10k-15k for the attack. you can also add a fair amount of 200-300 for tone and size, depending on the player and the song, but ignore or lightly roll-off low bass. Also try having the conga players over a reflective surface; some engineers prefer this sound.



Another technique is to have a mic pointed straight at the rim of the conga, with the mic body lying almost horizontal. Have it lying about 1" above the plane of the conga head, and 2" away. You can imagine this looking like a magnifying glass from above. Try using a Shure SM-7, SM-57 or a U47 fet


Also worth considering is placing mics under the congas angled up. Have them a few inches below the drum and pointing towards the players eyes. This will have a different sound, but it may work in some instances.

3.8     Recording a Djembe:

There's a few ways to try micing a djembe.  Some people choose to close mic with two microphones -- one for the skin, and one for the bottom where the bass tones radiate. There are a lot of decent choices for suitable mics.  For the skin, try a large diaphragm condenser, a Shure SM-58, or a Sennheiser 421. On the floor below the drum, is where you'll get all of the bass.  You can use a PZM on the floor, a 421, an RE20 or maybe even a kick mic like a Shure Beta 52.  Also, don't rule out a large diapragm condenser for the bottom, either.


There's a second strategy for recording a djembe; get the djembe to resonate in the room.  You'll need a relatively large room that's fairly live to try this.  The further you get from a djembe, the more low end you hear as it reacts with the room.  Try a single condenser a few feet away and then angle/adjust the mic to suit the balance of high & low.   You can also back the mic of even further, and add a mic on the skin.  This will give a lot of liveliness to the bass, but you'll have to watch your phase, and make sure it doesn't get too muddy.  You may also try a small, very live room (like a tiled bathroom) with a solitary omnidirectional mic.

3.9    Recording the Saxophone:

Ribbon mics are fairly popular for sax. Some vintage models including the RCA 44 and RCA 77-DX, help give the tonal properties of early jazz recordings, unfortuantely they have both become very expensive. Other good choices are the Beyer 160 which has a crisp high end; and a Coles 4038 which has a rolled off high end. I would like to mention that ribbons are VERY sensitive to moisture. Protect them from breath/spit with a pop screen. Well, anyways, some condensers also work well, like the Sony C-37A. In most cases, you can place the mic from 3 to 5 feet away from the player, and at about head level. Don't rule out dynamic microphones either; I've heard of good results using a Sennhieser MD 421.

3.10    Recording Flute

For recording a flute, use a good cardioid condenser mic about a foot in front of and above the mouthpiece. Be careful moving a mic toward the center of the flute's body, as this may thin the tone. Thicker tones are found near the ends of the flute. A good tone can be had at the far end of the tube or above and to the left of the mouth hole, beyond the short end of the tube. The thing here is that most of the fundamentals and overtones of a flute comes out of the ends, and additionally, most of the wind tones come out from the mouthpiece, so being conscious of micing the mouthpiece is especially important.

Also, try not to have the actual physical position of the flute equidistant from the floor and the ceiling, as this can cause these weird cancellations from soundwaves bouncing off the floor and ceiling.

3.11     Figure 8 Microphones

A figure 8 pattern is much like a cardioid pattern... only doubled.  A figure 8 mic picks up signals from a narrow angle directly in front of, and behind the mic.  

It used to be that folks mostly used figure-8 mikes, because the only good mikes available were ribbons, which are naturally figure-8 patterns due to their design. These days that's no longer the case.  Today when someone uses a figure-8,  it's either because they want to use a ribbon mike for that ribbon mike sound, or they specifically want a figure-8 pattern.   First let me note that the null (portion of the room that is not in the sensitive area of the mic) on a figure-8 offers much more rejection than a cardiod mic, making it very useful in some applications.  There are several other reasons that a figure-8 pattern may be preferred.  

First, these mics are great for Blumlein stereo micing (which has sort of fallen into disfavor these days).  They offer a very narrow angle of acceptance and will add additional ambience.   They can also be good if you ever have to record vocals in a room with a low ceiling. The extreme null will eliminate a lot of the ceiling (and floor) reflection.  You can also use a figure-8 to record the acoustic guitar for a singer/guitarist. Aim the null at the player's mouth, one lobe at the guitar. You'll still get a little vocal from the opposite lobe (via room reflections), but still the isolation is great.

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