How to record in a church with domes and arches?
polytope
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#1
27th February 2013
Old 27th February 2013
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How to record in a church with domes and arches?

I was doing some listening in a Ukrainian church that has a dome and circular arches everywhere. Some of these spherical walls act like sound reflector. In other words, depending on where I stand, the sound of someone speaking from the other side could appear to be right next to me. It's a bit creepy. Otherwise, the church has a nice reverb tail and no obvious undesirable resonance.

I'm about to record a choir singing in such a church in a month. How would you go about doing it? What are the things that I should watch out for? I'm thinking of a high ORTF pair angling downwards pointing at the choir.
#2
27th February 2013
Old 27th February 2013
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I'd caution to not get too far away from the choir on the theory you're going to capitalize on the lush reverb-- in my experience, the reverb will find its way to the mics wherever they are, there isn't any way to keep it out-- it's the clarity of the source that's not so easy or automatic to capture in spaces like these.
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polytope
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#3
27th February 2013
Old 27th February 2013
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Originally Posted by joelpatterson View Post
I'd caution to not get too far away from the choir on the theory you're going to capitalize on the lush reverb-- in my experience, the reverb will find its way to the mics wherever they are, there isn't any way to keep it out-- it's the clarity of the source that's not so easy or automatic to capture in spaces like these.
Should I forget about omnis?
#4
27th February 2013
Old 27th February 2013
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Maybe or maybe not... the first foray into a new space always carries some element of exploration and danger to it, what I'd do is set up a few different sets of mics (and then multi-track the event) and you'll be able to judge, after the fact, what sorts of approaches are going to work better than others.
#5
12th August 2013
Old 12th August 2013
  #5
Old thread, I know, but this interests me since the room that I originally wanted to record in is a vacant century old Russian Orthodox church, the owner of the property never returned my calls. I have recently been given access to a parish that I have recorded in before in a flute/guitar duo setting, and the reverb in that room was problematic for the flute, but great for my guitar.

Has there ever been a situation where, in a highly ambient room, using cardioids can help tame the room if the room is too much?

Tradition in Orthodox/eastern rite circles frowns on musical instruments in the church, and part of the design is that the volume of the human voice is the same regardless of location. I have visited Orthodox churches where the residing priest -ruins- this phenom by having a sound system installed. Seriously, the times their headset fails due to a dead battery and they have to wing it with just the acoustics of the room, the room alone was a major improvement.
polytope
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#6
12th August 2013
Old 12th August 2013
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Originally Posted by kmaaj View Post
Old thread, I know, but this interests me since the room that I originally wanted to record in is a vacant century old Russian Orthodox church, the owner of the property never returned my calls. I have recently been given access to a parish that I have recorded in before in a flute/guitar duo setting, and the reverb in that room was problematic for the flute, but great for my guitar.

Has there ever been a situation where, in a highly ambient room, using cardioids can help tame the room if the room is too much?
It is not so much about taming. It just has a narrower pickup pattern so only sources from certain directions are more readily picked up. Since reverb comes from all around, if the cardioid mics are directed at source, more direct sound is present in the recording.

To report back, I ended up with an omni pair without any noticeable problem. I was rather surprised.
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