Recording With 2 Microphones And Making It Not Sound Weird

If you record something with two microphones, either for stereo effect or to capture two separate sound sources, you run the risk of having it sound weird when you listen to the result combined in your DAW (digital audio workstation software).  This is due to the way the different sound waves interact with one another.  You do remember your wave mechanics classes from school right?  The issue is that there are two versions of each signal that get picked up at slightly different times in each microphone.  For example, if your record a guitar player who is also singing, and you use 1 mi on the voice and a second mic on the guitar, the voice will get picked up in both mics, though it had to travel further to get to the guitar mic.  So when they are combined, you might hear a sort of hollow sound in the voice (obviously it's true for both sound sources).  That's because waves have peaks and valleys.  If the peak of one is happening during the valley of it's other version they can cancel each other out.  Other "weirdnesses" can happen if two peaks combine or if two valleys combine.

There are some things you can do to prevent this, chief among them being the 3:1 rule.  Here is an article all about this situation that explains it very well.  They even use the guitar and singer example.

Check it out here:

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