question on recording lever harp

Posted In: Amateur Harpists

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    unknown-user on #164139

    Hallo everybody,

    I was wandering what’s the best way to record lever harp in a home studio, what kind of microphones you need, where to put them and so on, any kind of tip and/or experience will be much appreciated.

    Thanks in advance,


    tony-morosco on #164140

    It is a very individual thing and your taste, the sound you want to go for, the acoustics of the room, and the harp itself are all variables that will effect what you will need to do.

    Personally I prefer using external microphones rather than contact picups that a lot of people seem to like.

    I use two mics. A condenser mic that I position pointing towards the sound board in the treble from the right side about one quarter down the soundboard. And then I use a dynamic mic to pick up the base. I put it in a low mic stand pointing in from the front bottom to the left side of the pillar pointing slightly up the soundboard.

    I typically need a second person to help position them once I have the harp in playing position in order to get the best sound. I run them in to a mixing board on separate channels and record using a Boss stand alone digital recorder to separate tracks so that I can EQ and adjust the balance later on if I think necessary.

    But what will be needed for your harp and in your studio may be completely different, and you may simply have different preferences for both sound and type of equipment.

    Unfortunately when it comes to recording, even if you have all the text book knowledge there is still a lot of trial and error needed when learning to work with a specific space and to develop your preferences.

    Two books I used to get me started and which gave a ton of information when I didn’t know anything at all were:

    Home Recording for Musicians for Dummies by Jeff Strong

    PC Recording Studios for Dummies by Jeff Strong

    The Musician’s Guide to Home Recording by Peter McIan and Larry Wichman

    unknown-user on #164141

    Thank you Tony,

    it’s pretty much what my housband says, it’s his home studio, he says we’ll have to try and experiment, he’s got experience in recording rock bands but harp recording will be something new, we’ll try our best!

    Thanks a lot,


    unknown-user on #164142

    Hi Mickey D. I have used a similar setup to Tony’s. The main difference is that I put the treble mic on the left and the bass on the right to keep the mics from getting in the way. Also I use two small-diaphram condenser mics.

    I have also found that to control transients, the mics can be moved farther from the harp.

    Good luck!

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