3 Tips for Recording Group Vocals with a Single Mic

Using a single mic to record a group of vocalists allows the singers to control their blend and balance more naturally than if they were recorded individually. The result can be a richer, more organic sound.

With that in mind, we’ve put together a few tips that will help you record a small vocal group as a single unit.

1. Figure 8 Pickup Pattern with Two Vocalists

Using an AT4047MP multi-pattern condenser microphone set to  figure 8 will allow you to record two singers with one mic. Place a singer on each side of the mic. The front and rear half of the mic act as if there were two cardioid elements in one housing back-to-back. The balance of the vocalists can be controlled by adjusting their relative distance from the mic.

recording group vocals

2. Multi-Pattern Condenser Mic Set to Cardioid

To accurately capture four singers, arrange them in a half circle around an AT4050 multi-pattern condenser microphone set to cardioid. In addition to controlling their balance and blend in real time, you can also adjust the relative distance of each singer from the mic. Remember to keep the two outermost singers from drifting too far to the sides or the mic’s cardioid pattern won’t pick them up.

recording group vocals

3. Multi-Pattern Condenser Mic Set to Omni   

Switch the AT4050 from cardioid to omnidirectional to allow the singers to fully encircle the microphone. Balance can still be adjusted by physical distance from the mic. Keep the singers close enough to the mic to prevent the sound from getting too roomy.

recording group vocals 3

With these three techniques, you can capture a vocal group of any size with a single microphone. Check out the full video below and keep checking the blog for more pro audio tips.


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