Pro-Audio Insider: Wade Goeke of Chandler Limited Print
Wednesday, 13 February 2008 15:54
wadec.jpgWade Goeke is the owner of Chandler Limited. His company produces some of the finest high end microphone pre amps, compressors, and equalizers for recording studios. His client list includes Abbey Road Studios, Billy Corgan, Brian May, The Goo Goo Dolls, Lenny Kravitz, Paul McCartney, Peter Gabriel, and more. He has years of experience in product design and in recording music. We are truly honored to have him join our team of tech columnists to share his knowledge about recording guitar tracks and music in GJD's new Pro-Audio Insider column.

1. Wade, can you please tell us what are the different types of microphones available for recording electric guitar amplifiers?

Large diaphragm tube, Small diaphragm tube, Large condenser solid state, Small condenser solid state, Ribbon, Dynamic, Crystal or Ceramic element (like used in Harmonica micas), Electret.

2. Please tell us about a few of your favorite brands for each of the type of microphones?

Well I tend to be a vintage mic snob but Ill try to be objective.

Large diaphragm tube, vintage- U67 (be careful they vary a lot in sound!), RFT7151 (big black Hitler bottle mic), U47 (again be super careful).

Small diaphragm tube, vintage- KM53 (my favorite mic of all time), KM54.

Large diaphragm solid state, vintage- FET47 (the right one is magic), C414eb.

Small diaphragm solid state, vintage- KM83, KM84, KM86.

Large diaphragm tube, new- Horch RMJ2, Manley Reference (early version)

Large diaphragm solid state, new - C414 TLII

Ribbon, vintage - RCA BK5

Ribbon, new - Royer R121

Dynamic, vintage - AKG D12, AKG D19

Dynamic, new - AKG D112 (love ‘em for toms), Heil

Crystal- Astatic JT30 (funky but oh so cool!)

3. Can you briefly describe the specifics of each microphone type?

Since we're talking guitar what would I use what on? Good question. Firstly there are a couple mics that, to me, just work on everything. U67 and KM53 are the ones for me. KM53 is my favorite mic of all time. It's an Omni that uses the AC701 tube and the same capsule as the M50 ($18,000 each!!!!). I would make a whole record with one and be very happy. Others Im sure have their own choice of desert island mics. For my friend Joe Barresi its an SM57, while I would not be caught dead within 100 miles of one.

I'm a huge fan of Omni mics on guitar. After all guitar amps were meant to project the sound out into the audience right? So why does everyone stick an SM57 right up in the grill? I think this is one of the reasons why ribbons have become popular. The figure 8 pattern picks up more than the sound right at the grill. For electrics my first choice is a KM83 (Omni) positioned back slightly from the amp or a KM53 (Omni tube) in the same position (usually on a Vox, Matchless, or Selmer). An RCA BK5 (another thanks to Joe Barresi) is a great alternative sound to the Neumann. Its sound is not quite as "ribbony" as most and it tends to sound a touch scooped, which is great for rock stuff. especially combos amps. FET47 is another favorite. A good one is thick and warm and has the perfect touch on rock electrics. U67 or course. C414.

4. What was your first microphone purchase?

My first mic was an AKG C1000 and I was using it with a Tascam cassette 8 track. Ah memories! Later I moved to a Tascam 1/2" 16 track and C414BULS. The 414 was great vocals, acoustics, loud electrics-worked well on all of them. Great all around mic. As I gradually developed my setup I moved to a Manley Reference Cardiod. Mine is serial #22 and has the Sowter output (before Manley started making their own transformers) and 6072 tube (Manley has now replaced this with a 12ax7). It is still one of my more treasured mics. Next was a KM83, which I ended up getting for a steal and not really knowing what I had.

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