Reply To: How to record my Melodica


If you already own an I-Pad, it can be fitted with gear and Apps to use as a mini recording studio. We have used these to record ideas before we actually go into the studio. Some of the of Monsters of Melodica contributors in other countries use these to record their melodica parts and send their recordings files to us to use. What is great about the I-pad mini recording studio is that you can also down load a backing track of your favorite tune and assign it to a couple of tracks and record your Melodica on a separate track and even add more Melodica tracks or other instruments to enhance your recording. Also most apps come with effects like reverb, echo and delay and with helpful effects like compressors, limiters and EQ that really help your recordings sound great. You will need a microphone and there are several available at a low cost to start with.

For the professional, probably the most important aspect of recording a musical instrument is the pre-amplifier, microphone selection and placement of microphone, as these generally determine the tonal quality that is needed to reproduce the instruments true sound. Now that does not mean that you can’t create a different sound and use different techniques, this is up to you. As Daren mentioned, condenser, dynamic, ribbon and tube types of microphones are most commonly used. There are several other types of microphones available, even USB microphones that work well on your computer. Depending on the Melodica you are going to record, a little trial and error on the placement of the selected microphone will be required to capture its best sound.

During the Monsters of Melodica recording we have used several types of microphones. Generally, we use “Condenser” microphones like Neumann U-87, U-67, TLM-103 and AKG 414 when used in a group section. It fits our sound the best. If there was only one microphone I could ever use, I would want it to be the Neumann U-87.

When we record bass Melodicas we like to use dynamic microphones Like
Sennhiezer MD421, (black) Electrovoice RE-20 and Shure SM7 (not Shown)

We rarely use a single microphone to record all four Melodica’s at one time. On this occasion we use an old RCA ribbon microphone for a track. This was actually a lot more work as the volume level of our Melodica’s were so different, the Hammond Soprano and Hyper were actually recorded about 2 feet further back then pictured.

Recording your performance is a fantastic way to know if you are playing the musical piece correctly or if you need to make corrections or modifications to your playing. Many times after recording, I hear things that I don’t hear when I am actually recording, mostly because I tend to concentrate on the performance and not the overall sound.

And remember, your smart-phone can be an excellent recording device as a starting point.

Monsters of Melodica

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