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Recording a Brodmann hammer piano from 1812
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RFrommann
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9th January 2013
Old 9th January 2013
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Recording a Brodmann hammer piano from 1812

Hi all

Happy new year to all of you
This year starts with a little challenge for me. I was asked to record a public concert of students playing Beethoven sonate c-minor and variations on a Brodmann hammer piano in the exhibition room of a museum for archival purposes. A big shoe-boxy room, filled with historical instruments. No good acoustics, I'm afraid.
Available mics:Schoeps Pair MK2S or MK21, Neumann Pair KM140, Neumann SM69fet
To avoid too much noise from the audience, I think of placing the mics (MK2 Pair or KM140 Pair) quite close in the piano curve. On the other hand the instrument might produce quite a bit of mechanical noise due to age and construction, which would lead me to a position a bit further away.
Any ideas or experience around here, to help me finding a good starting point?

Thanks in advance
Ronald
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9th January 2013
Old 9th January 2013
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I'd probably opt for starting with the MK21 fairly close in, in a narrowish AB. I wouldn't worry about mechanical noises too much ... you won't get around them, and they speak directly to the charm and history of an antique instrument. I've recorded many old pipe organs, and the noises are truthfully a part of the experience.... so leave 'em be. :-)
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Michael Hughes
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9th January 2013
Old 9th January 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RFrommann View Post
... filled with historical instruments
...
One of the rooms I used to like for room-recordings of a band that played my co-writes was The Fire in Philadelphia. On the back wall of the room was mounted the harp from some otherwise forgotten/destroyed piano. It may have been intended only as a piece of funky decor, but it definitely affected the sound - in what I thought was a positive, albeit subtle, way. Of course The Fire was (and I suppose still is) a room for mainly rock, punk, and indie. But it did prove to me the impact of having 'passive' instruments in a listening space.

best,

john
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12th January 2013
Old 12th January 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jabney View Post
One of the rooms I used On the back wall of the room was mounted the harp from some otherwise forgotten/destroyed piano. It may have been intended only as a piece of funky decor, but it definitely affected the sound - in what I thought was a positive, albeit subtle, way. Of course The Fire was (and I suppose still is) a room for mainly rock, punk, and indie. But it did prove to me the impact of having 'passive' instruments in a listening space.

best,

john

Sorry to derail.

We have a piano harp resting against the wall in our bathroom, it can make for an interesting visit!!!
RFrommann
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13th January 2013
Old 13th January 2013
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Thanks for your input, Michael
Good point regarding the typical noises of the instrument.
At the moment I think of setting up different pairs to compare them later:
1. Pair of Schoeps CMC6 +MK21 in the Crook (AB, ca 35cm)
2. Neumann SM69 fet in Blumlein a bit further out and higher
3. Neumann Pair of KM 140 (ORTF or AB) just outside the piano. Just in case the ambient noise is too much.

For the Hammer piano won't have too much of a low-end, I am thinking of placing a Gefell UM70 in omni or a Schoeps MK2S over the bass strings to be able to mix them carefully to the main pair for a better fundament.
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