Mark 5 live use - couple of questions

Discussion for the new Mark V

Moderators: Guitarzan, Grandor, ned, Platypus

K-Roll
Mark II
Posts: 114
Joined: Fri Nov 05, 2010 7:33 am

Mark 5 live use - couple of questions

Post by K-Roll » Thu Apr 18, 2013 2:56 am

Hey guys,

I hope you are all doing well and that things are going fine in your lives.
I might have a couple of questions/concerns that perhaps some of you may know how to solve.

Recently, I've been gigging with my mark 5 and although I am completely pleased with the sound I get in the rehearsal room where we play, ever since we started playing live people usually describe my tone as narrow/wiry or harsh sounding (let's simply call it thin).

This is quite weird as in the rehearsal room everything sits well in the mix, but somehow it seems that once we get the mark 5 running through the PA, it's not performing that well.

Is this something that perhaps a better mic placement might help get rid of?
I mostly use my settings/rig as follows:

7string guitar (mahogany with BKP black dog which is rather medium low output)- mark 5- 4X12 traditional cab. No boosts, no further EQs only a couple of things like phaser, wah and tuner.

my settings for live gigs are as follow (always only on hard bypass loop)
- I play 50-60% of my main rhytms using channel 2 crunch
90w,
gain: little less than max
treble- 3-4 oclock
mids- 9:30
bass- around 11 o'clock
presence - 9 o'clock
channel master- 9 o clock
no EQ in

For faster tracking, harder rhytms and solo fills I use the mark 4 setting on channel 3
90w,
gain: 1 oclock
treble- 1 oclock
mids- 10 oclock
bass- around 9 oclock
presence - 9 o'clock
channel master- 9 oclock
pentode
EQ in representing a mild 'M' shape..

1st slide : middle line (if set more then the sound gets mushy and not clear)
2nd slide : a small notch above middle line (if set more then the sound gets mushy and not clear)
3rd slide : halfway between middle line and the lower un
4th slide : between middle line and the upper one (closer to the middle line)
5th slide : middle line


I noticed that if I lower treble on both channels I lose the amount of gain I want which of course is normal but not wanted, as well as the clarity of chords that are played on the sevenstring.
do you see some drastic settings here which might cause the sound to be rather anemic and thin when miced onstage?

I know it's kinda hard to tell over the internet but any ideas might be helpful thanks ;)

User avatar
screamingdaisy
Donating Member
Posts: 4508
Joined: Mon Jan 24, 2005 4:57 pm
Location: South of Heaven

Re: Mark 5 live use - couple of questions

Post by screamingdaisy » Thu Apr 18, 2013 9:49 am

The only thing that really stands out is that you're running the bass slider fairly low and gutting the low end. Play around with the balance between the 80 and 220 sliders until you find the sound you want. Sometimes "mush" when increasing the 80 is because the setting on the 220 isn't complimenting it.

I'd also consider using the preset to fatten channel 2 up slightly. Use a mild setting if that's your preference, but it might just be what it needs.

Use the preamp to adjust how the amp feels and use the graphic/preset EQ to adjust how the amp sounds.

Since you currently seem to like the way the amp feels but are finding the sound is kind of thin I'd focus your efforts on the graphic EQ. If you get it to sound the way you want but now the feel is slightly off, then go back to adjusting the preamp.

Lastly, if you can try to avoid making adjustments when you first turn on the amp. Play through it for 5-15 minutes to give the amp time to warm up and your ears time to adjust before you make any changes.
Ignore the hype and trust your ears. Play more, buy less = better tone.

K-Roll
Mark II
Posts: 114
Joined: Fri Nov 05, 2010 7:33 am

Re: Mark 5 live use - couple of questions

Post by K-Roll » Thu Apr 18, 2013 10:28 am

I see what you mean with the first two slides fairly low. I somehow tended to reduce them because I felt that the sound gets too rounded and pumping too much bass with the 7th low B string, but I will give it a try today as we're rehearsing.

satch4u3
Mark III
Posts: 182
Joined: Mon May 17, 2010 12:28 pm
Location: Canada

Re: Mark 5 live use - couple of questions

Post by satch4u3 » Thu Apr 18, 2013 3:14 pm

screamingdaisy wrote:Use the preamp to adjust how the amp feels and use the graphic/preset EQ to adjust how the amp sounds.

Lastly, if you can try to avoid making adjustments when you first turn on the amp. Play through it for 5-15 minutes to give the amp time to warm up and your ears time to adjust before you make any changes.
Screamingdaisy's advice is right on the money. Especially the above.
Mesa Gear:
Mark V Head
Two 212 Horizontal Recto Cabs

MrMarkIII
Dual Recto
Posts: 2828
Joined: Mon Jul 16, 2007 1:01 am
Location: SoCal

Re: Mark 5 live use - couple of questions

Post by MrMarkIII » Thu Apr 18, 2013 3:24 pm

No mention so far of where the mic is. Off-axis (not pointed directly at the center of the cone) will remove some thin high end.
You also usually roll off some highs on the board, as guitars tend to come out of the HF horns like screaming banshees.

satch4u3
Mark III
Posts: 182
Joined: Mon May 17, 2010 12:28 pm
Location: Canada

Re: Mark 5 live use - couple of questions

Post by satch4u3 » Thu Apr 18, 2013 5:47 pm

Mic placement does affect the tone that is coming out front for sure. But if your source sound is not right your mic placenment won't matter to much.
Mesa Gear:
Mark V Head
Two 212 Horizontal Recto Cabs

MrMarkIII
Dual Recto
Posts: 2828
Joined: Mon Jul 16, 2007 1:01 am
Location: SoCal

Re: Mark 5 live use - couple of questions

Post by MrMarkIII » Fri Apr 19, 2013 7:19 am

satch4u3 wrote:Mic placement does affect the tone that is coming out front for sure. But if your source sound is not right your mic placenment won't matter to much.
And the OP says:
"This is quite weird as in the rehearsal room everything sits well in the mix, but somehow it seems that once we get the mark 5 running through the PA, it's not performing that well."

K-Roll
Mark II
Posts: 114
Joined: Fri Nov 05, 2010 7:33 am

Re: Mark 5 live use - couple of questions

Post by K-Roll » Fri Apr 19, 2013 8:32 am

we're playing a gig tomorrow at one of the local venues and I'll be certainly using my Q3HD to live record the whole thing just to sit and listen to the whole thing.. do you have any specific tips for live mic placement which you consider as always delivering constant, stable, good sound results?

User avatar
screamingdaisy
Donating Member
Posts: 4508
Joined: Mon Jan 24, 2005 4:57 pm
Location: South of Heaven

Re: Mark 5 live use - couple of questions

Post by screamingdaisy » Fri Apr 19, 2013 9:56 am

Google SM57 mic placement and look at the images that come up. You'll see two general trends for an SM57... Either straight on and pointed right at the centre of the dust cap (more crisp) or rotated 30° off axis (more mellow).

If you can, buy/borrow a mic and record your guitar with it in various positions. Once you find one you like mark your cab so that its easier to place the mic during setup. It's usually best to go a bit too bright rather than too mellow on a live guitar.

Consider marking it with something removable since your taste in mic position may change/evolve with experience.
Ignore the hype and trust your ears. Play more, buy less = better tone.

satch4u3
Mark III
Posts: 182
Joined: Mon May 17, 2010 12:28 pm
Location: Canada

Re: Mark 5 live use - couple of questions

Post by satch4u3 » Fri Apr 19, 2013 10:25 am

Is it possible that the channel of the PA that your in is EQ'd/set wrong or maybe not working 100%? It's odd that you like the tone while at rehersal? I really don't think mic placement is going to have that drastic of a change on the tone. Sure it does change it, there's no arguing that but to take it from "good tone" to weak and brittle. There are so many factors I guess. Could even be a mic issue!
Mesa Gear:
Mark V Head
Two 212 Horizontal Recto Cabs

babow2
Mark IV
Posts: 508
Joined: Tue May 27, 2008 2:33 pm
Location: Petaluma, CA
Contact:

Re: Mark 5 live use - couple of questions

Post by babow2 » Sun Apr 21, 2013 11:47 pm

I spent a day at Mesa boogie two weeks ago with Tien Lawrence and a Mesa artist/studio producer doing nothing but testing recording techniques. I can tell you without a doubt that both mic placement and axis (angle) have a massive impact on tone, especially through a PA. Given the OP's comment, I bet that is the biggest issue here.
Amps: Mark 1 Re-issue Simulclass, Mark III purple, Two Rock
Cabs: 1x12's and 2x12's
Guitars: Tom Anderson Classic; PRS Studio; Heritage H-555, a couple custom Teles

satch4u3
Mark III
Posts: 182
Joined: Mon May 17, 2010 12:28 pm
Location: Canada

Re: Mark 5 live use - couple of questions

Post by satch4u3 » Mon Apr 22, 2013 12:35 pm

I am just speaking from my expereince is all... But mic placement has never completly spoiled my tone. But YMMV.
Mesa Gear:
Mark V Head
Two 212 Horizontal Recto Cabs

LetsBoogie
Bottle Rocket
Posts: 15
Joined: Sat Nov 05, 2011 10:10 pm

Re: Mark 5 live use - couple of questions

Post by LetsBoogie » Sat Apr 27, 2013 8:46 am

you need more lower mids man. Lower mids wont affect the Low B on your 7 string

griff3
Mark I
Posts: 27
Joined: Sun Oct 24, 2010 11:03 pm

Re: Mark 5 live use - couple of questions

Post by griff3 » Mon Apr 29, 2013 12:12 pm

this problem is why I don't run a cab anymore (I use torpedo live from two-notes.)

You can have the most amazing tone you have ever heard and all it takes is a mic out of place and no one will hear anything but a hornet's nest.

You will have to take the time to solve this or forever be at the mercy of soundmen everywhere.

Go into a studio if you have to and try out different mics and different placements until you find one that works nd can be reproduced at every gig. Get your own mic and insist it be used and place it where you know it sounds good. Mark your cab in some way so you know.

Also remember that what you hear in a room is not what the mic hears. You very well may have to make adjustments when you hear what comes out even with good mic placement.

The main thing is to take your time and get a system that can be reproduced every time. Trust me on this one, you will be glad you did it.

ave
Mark I
Posts: 34
Joined: Tue Jul 27, 2010 9:49 am
Location: Worcester England

Re: Mark 5 live use - couple of questions

Post by ave » Tue Apr 30, 2013 2:13 pm

Hello from England.
For what it's worth try something out of the box live.
You run the whole kit at 90 - where you play ? Stadiums ?
Try a whole different mindset - run the live rig at 10 watts global, max the volumes and back off the gain - use the V&Ts on the guitar because that's what they are there for and get the FOH engineer to pipe the foldback aplenty. This way the onstage volume is controlled and with judicious mic placement
( I recommmend the time-honoured SM58 straight betwixt HF and cone on a small mic-stand - never draped o'er the top through the handle ).
I only veer from this with occasional 45 setting on clean Channel 1 with excellent results. I only wish the variable output stage was available to me 30 years ago then I wouldn't have bloody tinnitus !
Mark Five Head
Two vintage Thiele 1x12 (EV)
Two Mesa 1x12 open backs (EV)
Gibson's ES175 & Les Paul De Luxe
Fender 82 Strat (62 reissue)
Guild Songbird
A very good lead !

Post Reply