I made these recordings about a months ago actually, and just now got around to getting them uploaded to the Internets and posting them.
The recording setup was as follows:
Axe: Ibanez RG5EX1. Basswood body. Maple neck Rosewood fingerboard. Edge III double locking tromolo.
Amp: Mesa/Boogie Nomad 100 head.
Cabinet: Peavey XXL 4x12 Slant w/ Peavy Blue Marvel 144 speakers.
Mic: Audio Technica ST-90 MK II
Preamp: M-Audio ProFire 610 recording interface.
Software: Reaper (version 3.31 rev 11433), LAME MP3 Encoder (version 1.30 engine 3.92 MMX),
Procedure: I played some warm up exercises through the amp for a while to give it a chance to warm up. Then I fiddled with the mic position until I found something I didn't hate, and locked the mic stand in place. I strummed the guitar as hard as I could as if I was trying to break the strings to get the hottest possible signal into the mic and preamp, and set the levels on the ProFire 610 and in Reaper so the hottest signal I could generate was just shy of clipping.
I recorded some clean chords (apologies to DonMcLean) and some clean, I guess you would call it single note scalar stuff? (apologies to Masato Nakamura) on the Green channel of my Nomad to demo clean sounds. I then recorded the intro to Five Finger Death Punch's "The Bleeding" (apologies to them too) on the Nomad's orange channel with both the guitar's volume both rolled back and all the way up to demo some edge-of breakup and light crunch sounds. Finally, I recorded something I made up on the spot on the Nomad's red channel to demo so higher gain crunch.
Once that was done, I bent the bridge far enough forward to slacken the strings, blocked it, and pulled the JazzN out and installed the Screamin Demon. Once that was done, I removed the block, set the Demon to the same height from the strings the Jazz had been, double checked that the guitar had remained in tune, and then repeated the above.
At no point was the EQ on the amp or the mic position touched between the two recordings. Nor was any attempt to pretty up the recordings with EQ tweaks, compression or anything else made. They are the raw recordings themselves, as the attempt here was to make as true an A/B comparison as I could. The recordings were then rendered from the 24bit/192kHz sessions in Reaper to 320kbps high quality MP3s with LAME.
Caveats: I know the mic is a cheap vocal dynamic mic that colors the sound, leaving the differences between the two pickups subtle. It is what I have to work with. The other option would have been to take the preamp/recording or slave out from the amp, but neither sounded nearly as good as with the cheap mic. I also know that my playing here is rushed and sloppy and utterly butchering the the original material I was covering. A comparison made with better recording gear with a better axe in the hands of a better player would be ideal, but hey, at least it's something, right?
Here are the clips: