Recording Tutorial

Al Schmitt on Using Microphones

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16 Videos | Length: 53min 45sec
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  • Song and Style 4:00

    Song and Style

    Without knowing the kind of music it is, you can't make informed decisions. In this video, Al Schmitt of METAlliance

  • Instrumentation and Musician 6:14

    Instrumentation and Musician

    The musician in the room is your best friend. In this video, Al talks about how the instrumentation and musicians affect the different mic and pre choices he makes.

  • The Recording Space 1:20

    The Recording Space

    Every room brings a new challenge with new opportunities. In this video, Al discusses how he chooses a recording space and what he looks for.

  • Band Setup 2:08

    Band Setup

    From working with the producers or musicians, setting up the band to win is key. In this video, Al discusses exactly that.

  • Musician Interaction 3:51

    Musician Interaction

    If the musician in the room isn't happy, you won't be happy. In this video, Al goes over how he shapes the cue mix for his sessions.

  • Drums 3:17


    Drums, drums, and more drums? In this video, Al teaches you how he mikes the drums.

  • Bass 3:38


    The upright bass is Al's favorite instrument to record. In this video, you'll learn exactly how Al mikes upright basses and guitars.

  • Piano 5:05


    Balancing different microphones is a matter of listening. In this video, Al goes over his process for miking pianos.

  • Guitars 4:40


    Six strings with a rich warm sound, and an iconic sound that shaped generations. In this video, Al teaches you his miking technique for acoustic and electric guitars.

  • Organs 1:28


    In this video, Al goes over how he mikes organs and Leslie speakers.

  • Saxophone 4:34


    In this video, Al goes over how he mikes different reed instruments, such as the saxophone, clarinet, and oboes.

  • Brass 3:33


    Big bands and orchestras have many things in common. One commonality is the brass section. In this video, Al teaches you how he mikes brass sections and the various setups.

  • Strings 2:48


    It's important to always work with the arranger and conductor as a team. In this video, Al talks about his process for strings and why he always believes it's best to work as a team.

  • Percussion 2:06


    Percussion can be a handclap to a conga. In this video, Al goes over his miking process for percussion.

  • Interaction with Producer 2:04

    Interaction with Producer

    A producer's role is to see a project all the way through from the creative and business aspects. In this video, Al talks about his interaction with the producer and how it affects what he does in the studio.

  • First Playback with the Room 2:59

    First Playback with the Room

    There's nothing that does more for a project's compass then the first playback. In this video, Al talks about what he does and how he interacts with the artist during the first playback.

Product Overview

The first—and only—recording engineer to have his Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame®, Al Schmitt has for decades been recording, producing, and engineering music for the greatest talents our industry has to offer. Looking for a world-class Master class? Al Schmitt on Using Microphones is your chance to work alongside this legendary engineer and producer!

In Al Schmitt on Using Microphones, you’ll join Al in the studio as he walks you through his miking process, helps you select proper equipment, and guides you to capture only the best sounds. You’ll learn to consider variables such as song style, instrumentation, and the recording space itself when selecting and placing a microphone; you’ll also watch Al demonstrate his favorite techniques and setups for a number of instruments including drums, bass, piano, guitars (both acoustic and electric), organs, and horns as played across many genres of music.

Beyond equipment and tactics, Al draws on stories from his illustrious career as he explains the importance of skillfully interacting with musicians. He highlights the importance of catering to an artist’s vision and preferences in order to create a session that is both comfortable and effective for all involved.

As though this material weren’t enough, ASoM also features an exclusive interview with its creator conducted by none other than Ed Cherney, his fellow METAlliance® producer and engineer extraordinaire. There’s never been an easier way to advance years in a matter of hours than with Al Schmitt on Using Microphones!

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