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Please critique my jazz recording/mix !
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Jack Luminous
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#1
18th March 2013
Old 18th March 2013
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Please critique my jazz recording/mix !

Here's a little background on the thing : I recorded and mixed that at home so it's not a "remote" recording per se but I posted here because this forum seems more appropriate for acoustic recordings and there seems to be a good wealth of people willing to help in here . It's only the third rehearsal of the quartet and I thought it was worth capturing. They played together in a 40 square meter room. I'm not a pro by any stretch of the word so I welcome any advice/critique/tips and tricks on tone/mic placement/reverb/levels/whatever etc. Don't be gentle, I'm willing to learn.

https://soundcloud.com/jack-luminous/latin-jazz-mix
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19th March 2013
Old 19th March 2013
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For my own taste, I hear too much compression and too much reverb.

I like the bass sound - except for the reverb. It gets a little clicky here and there, but that may be the player. I like that you can hear a lot of wood on the ride cymbal. Everything else sounds just a little thin.
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19th March 2013
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Granted, the room sounds funny. You might want to back out what you are doing to tweak it a bit.
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19th March 2013
Old 19th March 2013
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Nice, I just don't like the reverb, sounds thin and roomy, this song IMHO needs a warmer character
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19th March 2013
Old 19th March 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by leddy View Post
For my own taste, I hear too much compression and too much reverb.

I like the bass sound - except for the reverb. It gets a little clicky here and there, but that may be the player. I like that you can hear a lot of wood on the ride cymbal. Everything else sounds just a little thin.
Thanks a lot. A few days after the fact, I now hear that too. I went overboard on the mix compression lol. And the trumpet is too thin and distant. Anything about the piano ?
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19th March 2013
Old 19th March 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by boojum View Post
Granted, the room sounds funny. You might want to back out what you are doing to tweak it a bit.
Thanks ! The room is a Lexicon MPX1 small hall algo. I will tweak again. I also overused a Sony MU-R201 plate algo on the trumpet.
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19th March 2013
Old 19th March 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Lau View Post
Nice, I just don't like the reverb, sounds thin and roomy, this song IMHO needs a warmer character
Thanks ! Maybe it's time to invest in a better reverb (and learn to tweak better also).
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19th March 2013
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For now, why don't you just put very little reverb?
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19th March 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Luminous View Post
Anything about the piano ?
The piano doesn't bother me except for the reverb.

I'd love to hear it without any reverb or compression at all - just to hear the essence of the room and how you captured them.
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19th March 2013
Old 19th March 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by leddy View Post
The piano doesn't bother me except for the reverb.

I'd love to hear it without any reverb or compression at all - just to hear the essence of the room and how you captured them.
Thanks for the advice. I get now that I put too much reverb and compression on everything. It's my first dabble in acoustic jazz. I mixed a lot of rock/metal demos before. I will try to post a flat mix asap and a new version with more restraint on effects. I recorded the drums with two TOA pencils as overheads, a 441 on the snare and a 421 inside the bassdrum. I put an old AKG 451/CK1 very near the soundboard at the back of the piano. A 421 near the bridge of the contrabass. An old Beyer M260 for the trumpet. The room is 40 square meter and untreated but with irregular walls and non-parallel ground and ceiling. It has a great natural sound IMHO.
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20th March 2013
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Not ideal mics for this kind of recording. Still, a lot better than it could be considering the gear used!

If I was doing this, here's the approach I'd have:
  • The bass is too clicky - it is distracting from the drums, and a little bit too present in the 200-350Hz ish range. Makes it sound slightly boxy.
  • The drums sound a little narrow and poorly defined - spaced pair for drum overheads? Maybe think about using a true stereo microphone setup next time to capture an 'image' of the kit.
  • Back off on the reverb a bit! This isn't a Kenny Wheeler album, and it's not going to sound like it whatever you try and do.
  • The trumpet could do with beefing up a little to help it sit with the other instruments, or alternatively bring down the presence of the bass/drums in the lower-mid region to balance this out.
  • The drums need time-aligning to the other instruments, I can hear the smear on the cymbals and attack of the drums from the sound hitting all the different mics. Get everything aligned back to the drum overheads (drum spots included).
  • Generally a slightly too 'warm' mix overall. Warmth and body are nice, but not to the point where it starts to overbear the finer articulation and detail in the instruments. Check out Rudy Van Gelder's recordings for someone who manages to capture real vividness and 'sparkle' in a jazz ensemble without it sounding harsh or thin (IMO).
  • Gently with the compression - it's all sounding too dense!

Just a few things to think about.. Things can be worked on in the mix here, but there are also things to think about the next time you record this kind of music IMO! BTW, I spend a lot of time recording jazz nowadays, it's a slippery slope but very rewarding!
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20th March 2013
Old 20th March 2013
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Thanks a lot for this very detailed analysis.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexK View Post
Not ideal mics for this kind of recording. Still, a lot better than it could be considering the gear used!
I used what I had at hand obviously. I have some more dynamic mics, SM57, SM7, some old Beyer/AKG etc. and also a pair of Gefell M200. I tried those as drums overheads but preferred the tone of the cheap TOAs (!!). Maybe that was a mistake. I tried a Gefell instead of the 451/CK1 for the piano soundboard close miking but preferred the 451/CK1.

All the mics where fed to Trident 65 onboard pres. I wish I had a Studer for jazz and a Trident for rock but can't afford two desks at the moment !

What mics would you use ideally for such jazz quartet configuration ? What would you swap with what I have ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexK View Post
If I was doing this, here's the approach I'd have:
  • The bass is too clicky - it is distracting from the drums, and a little bit too present in the 200-350Hz ish range. Makes it sound slightly boxy.
I'll try to eq the bass accordingly. The clickiness maybe due to the compression I applied to it, using half a Publison CL20C. I also compressed the trumpet using the other half because the guy was constantly moving back and forth from the mic and there was huge level discrepancies because of that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexK View Post
  • The drums sound a little narrow and poorly defined - spaced pair for drum overheads? Maybe think about using a true stereo microphone setup next time to capture an 'image' of the kit.
Yes it was a spaced pair positioned behind the drum kit, but I didn't hard-pan, more like 10 o'clock left/2 o'clock right. Maybe I should have panned wider. The drums are almost against an untreated wall and I always mic them from behind, putting the mics between the wall and drumset, in order to avoid at best the direct wall reflection. Maybe an ORTF pair would work better. I'll try that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexK View Post
  • Back off on the reverb a bit! This isn't a Kenny Wheeler album, and it's not going to sound like it whatever you try and do.
LOL I'll back off the verb !

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexK View Post
  • The trumpet could do with beefing up a little to help it sit with the other instruments, or alternatively bring down the presence of the bass/drums in the lower-mid region to balance this out.
I think I'll add some lower mids to the trumpet and cut off some 12kHz also. I heard that after mixing but havn't had the time to redo it yet.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexK View Post
  • The drums need time-aligning to the other instruments, I can hear the smear on the cymbals and attack of the drums from the sound hitting all the different mics. Get everything aligned back to the drum overheads (drum spots included).
I can't time align since I'm not using a computer, everything is mixed analog from an 8 track thru the desk to a 1/4'' 2 track. I do not wish to use a computer either. What could I do in that case ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexK View Post
  • Generally a slightly too 'warm' mix overall. Warmth and body are nice, but not to the point where it starts to overbear the finer articulation and detail in the instruments. Check out Rudy Van Gelder's recordings for someone who manages to capture real vividness and 'sparkle' in a jazz ensemble without it sounding harsh or thin (IMO).
To tell the truth I only can wish I had Van Gelder ears and talent but I went for a more modern sound for that mix. More reverb and compressed. I realize now it was a mistake.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexK View Post
  • Gently with the compression - it's all sounding too dense!
I used an Ashly SC55 to compress, about 3-6db gain reduction, as I really like its agressive tone but maybe it doesn't suit traditional jazz LOL I'm a total noob engineer for that style though I listen to it a lot.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexK View Post
Just a few things to think about.. Things can be worked on in the mix here, but there are also things to think about the next time you record this kind of music IMO! BTW, I spend a lot of time recording jazz nowadays, it's a slippery slope but very rewarding!
I will record the same guys next monday. Any more advice welcome about tracking ! Thanks a lot for the precious help already.
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20th March 2013
Old 20th March 2013
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Wow no computer? Good work indeed! just that Im too used to DAW hahaha

Try to get your tracks into a DAW though, you will have more freedom to do your tweaking and editing since you are a newb in this style. You'll need to learn how to get the best jazz sound, (something i don't have) haha

Just don't use the reverb and compressor, concentrate on levels balance and eq to make every instrument in its own frequency pocket

IMHO I'd pan overheads around 70% left and right
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21st March 2013
Old 21st March 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Lau View Post
Wow no computer? Good work indeed! just that Im too used to DAW hahaha

Try to get your tracks into a DAW though, you will have more freedom to do your tweaking and editing since you are a newb in this style. You'll need to learn how to get the best jazz sound, (something i don't have) haha

Just don't use the reverb and compressor, concentrate on levels balance and eq to make every instrument in its own frequency pocket

IMHO I'd pan overheads around 70% left and right
The whole premise of my personal studio was to build a workable config without any computer. And make music the old way. Much more fun IMHO. I'm not in a hurry and I don't do it for money. I love turning pots and pushing faders all day long.
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23rd March 2013
Old 23rd March 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Luminous View Post
Thanks a lot for this very detailed analysis.
No problem! As I said these are just my opinions...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Luminous View Post
I used what I had at hand obviously. I have some more dynamic mics, SM57, SM7, some old Beyer/AKG etc. and also a pair of Gefell M200. I tried those as drums overheads but preferred the tone of the cheap TOAs (!!). Maybe that was a mistake. I tried a Gefell instead of the 451/CK1 for the piano soundboard close miking but preferred the 451/CK1.

All the mics where fed to Trident 65 onboard pres. I wish I had a Studer for jazz and a Trident for rock but can't afford two desks at the moment !
Maybe a Studer or SSL, would be better, but to be honest any desk with good pres and EQ will do.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Luminous View Post
What mics would you use ideally for such jazz quartet configuration ? What would you swap with what I have ?
Ideally? DPA IMK 4061 is special on a bass - stick it through the bridge - you'll be amazed! If you want more sub, a fet47 in front of the f-hole is the way to go, but I personally never find I need it.

Your drummer sounds as though he has quite a dark ride, so maybe something brighter to compliment that - KM84s are nice, as are Calrec CM 1050 although different in character, not as bright. Schoeps are great too. It depends on what mikes you have available to you I suppose! I've had success with Beyer 260s, but that was with quite bright sounding cymbals generally.

I've been using Line Audio CM3s with one placed between the snare, rack rom and hi-hat, and the other placed between the rack-tom and floor tom, the same distance from the snare drum and panned about 50% in the mix - sounds spectacular - incredibly up-front and detailed (you can hear the rolling cymbals etc very clearly) but has a way of attenuating (but not smoothing) the transients from the sticks on the cymbals. I still find myself using a snare spot though - 414 works well. Had success with a Sony C48 in fig-8 a few weeks back too.

Pianos? My go-to mic is the Sony C48 here - super wide sound and has that 3-dimensionality where you can feel the scale of the soundboard/instrument. My initial setup is usually spaced around 20cm and angled ~40º away from each other, about half-way between the soundboard and the lid but as if they are right-up against a curtain hanging from the lid. Move lower-down/closer to the sound-board for more growling pianos generally.

I've never had any success putting mics inside the piano, but horses for courses - everyone has a different way of doing it. My 'standard approach' with the C48s sometimes goes right out-of the window within the first 10 seconds of hearing the instrument/player! For a different tone for example, tube 47s are the complete polar-opposite to C48s. Every instrument is so different - even model Ds can vary quite a bit from one instrument to another, there really is no 'one approach suits all', but there can be a 'one approach is usually a step in the right direction' with this kind of music.

Trumpets can be anything from an 87 through to KM84s, M149, even an M201 right near the edge of the bell! The biggest challenge with trumpets is as you say, the player moving around. It's annoying with saxes, it's even more irritating with trumpet players as they are generally even more directional in their sound. Trumpets, like saxes, are such a varied bunch, it's just a case of trying a few things out.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Luminous View Post
I'll try to eq the bass accordingly. The clickiness maybe due to the compression I applied to it, using half a Publison CL20C. I also compressed the trumpet using the other half because the guy was constantly moving back and forth from the mic and there was huge level discrepancies because of that.
Try just rolling-off some top end? There's not much useful information above 2k in a bass once it's in the mix, almost everything above that is just clicking.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Luminous View Post
Yes it was a spaced pair positioned behind the drum kit, but I didn't hard-pan, more like 10 o'clock left/2 o'clock right. Maybe I should have panned wider. The drums are almost against an untreated wall and I always mic them from behind, putting the mics between the wall and drumset, in order to avoid at best the direct wall reflection. Maybe an ORTF pair would work better. I'll try that.
As above, but also try an ORTF pair just above the drummer's head. I've used this in tandem with my 'undearheads' and had great results.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Luminous View Post
I can't time align since I'm not using a computer, everything is mixed analog from an 8 track thru the desk to a 1/4'' 2 track. I do not wish to use a computer either. What could I do in that case ?
Well I'd worry about the cymbal transients working their way into the other mics. Sounds like it's getting into the trumpet mic especially. Maybe call off the compression and do it manually with a fader ride? Hearing that ride twice is really annoying me.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Luminous View Post
To tell the truth I only can wish I had Van Gelder ears and talent but I went for a more modern sound for that mix. More reverb and compressed. I realize now it was a mistake.
A lot of Rudy Van Gelder's recordings still sound pretty fresh and modern to my ears, maybe not the 50s stuff, but fast-forward to the late 60s and some of those records still set a benchmark IMO!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Luminous View Post
I used an Ashly SC55 to compress, about 3-6db gain reduction, as I really like its agressive tone but maybe it doesn't suit traditional jazz LOL I'm a total noob engineer for that style though I listen to it a lot.
Honest and truthful tends to be the name of the game with Jazz. Any particular colouring tends to be pretty subtle in my experience. It's the subtle things which really draw the listener away.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Luminous View Post
I will record the same guys next monday. Any more advice welcome about tracking ! Thanks a lot for the precious help already.
Let us know how it goes!
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24th March 2013
Old 24th March 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexK View Post
Ideally? DPA IMK 4061 is special on a bass - stick it through the bridge - you'll be amazed! If you want more sub, a fet47 in front of the f-hole is the way to go, but I personally never find I need it.
I already thought about the DPA 4099. It's €400 though (where I live). I plan to get one if things get more serious. For now it's just rehearsals so I wanted to test if I could make do with what I have.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexK View Post
Your drummer sounds as though he has quite a dark ride, so maybe something brighter to compliment that - KM84s are nice, as are Calrec CM 1050 although different in character, not as bright. Schoeps are great too. It depends on what mikes you have available to you I suppose! I've had success with Beyer 260s, but that was with quite bright sounding cymbals generally.
I'll try my pair of Gefell M200 instead of the TOAs, they are definitely brighter, which I didn't like in isolation when I tested them. Maybe it will work better in the mix.


Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexK View Post
I've been using Line Audio CM3s with one placed between the snare, rack rom and hi-hat, and the other placed between the rack-tom and floor tom, the same distance from the snare drum and panned about 50% in the mix - sounds spectacular - incredibly up-front and detailed (you can hear the rolling cymbals etc very clearly) but has a way of attenuating (but not smoothing) the transients from the sticks on the cymbals. I still find myself using a snare spot though - 414 works well. Had success with a Sony C48 in fig-8 a few weeks back too.
I'll try that config tomorrow with the Gefell and see how it goes. It's kind of "inside the kit" overhead technique ? No bass drum mic needed in that config ? Normally I always use 2 overheads, one snare and one BD mic. It has worked well for me for rock music in the past.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexK View Post
Pianos? My go-to mic is the Sony C48 here - super wide sound and has that 3-dimensionality where you can feel the scale of the soundboard/instrument. My initial setup is usually spaced around 20cm and angled ~40º away from each other, about half-way between the soundboard and the lid but as if they are right-up against a curtain hanging from the lid. Move lower-down/closer to the sound-board for more growling pianos generally.
I miked the piano in mono last time, maybe I'll try a stereo config this time. Anyway, I'll replace my cheap upright with a Yamaha U3 before commiting on a pair of Sony C48.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexK View Post
I've never had any success putting mics inside the piano, but horses for courses - everyone has a different way of doing it. My 'standard approach' with the C48s sometimes goes right out-of the window within the first 10 seconds of hearing the instrument/player! For a different tone for example, tube 47s are the complete polar-opposite to C48s. Every instrument is so different - even model Ds can vary quite a bit from one instrument to another, there really is no 'one approach suits all', but there can be a 'one approach is usually a step in the right direction' with this kind of music.
I tried "inside the piano" and hated the overall tone. Totally unnatural to my ears. Maybe it was due to the mic and positioning, I don't know.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexK View Post
Trumpets can be anything from an 87 through to KM84s, M149, even an M201 right near the edge of the bell! The biggest challenge with trumpets is as you say, the player moving around. It's annoying with saxes, it's even more irritating with trumpet players as they are generally even more directional in their sound. Trumpets, like saxes, are such a varied bunch, it's just a case of trying a few things out.
I don't know what to do with the trumpet tomorrow since the trumpet player didn't like the tone I got last time. Maybe a TOA pencil or a dynamic (421 or SM7).

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexK View Post
Try just rolling-off some top end? There's not much useful information above 2k in a bass once it's in the mix, almost everything above that is just clicking.
I'll try that.


Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexK View Post
As above, but also try an ORTF pair just above the drummer's head. I've used this in tandem with my 'undearheads' and had great results.
No phase problems when mixing the ORTF pair and the "underheads" ? Would the underheads already work on their own without the ORTF pair ? I'd rather have a simpler, easier to mix drum mic config.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexK View Post
Well I'd worry about the cymbal transients working their way into the other mics. Sounds like it's getting into the trumpet mic especially. Maybe call off the compression and do it manually with a fader ride? Hearing that ride twice is really annoying me.
That's what made me think of a dynamic mic, in order to avoid spill as much as possible.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexK View Post
A lot of Rudy Van Gelder's recordings still sound pretty fresh and modern to my ears, maybe not the 50s stuff, but fast-forward to the late 60s and some of those records still set a benchmark IMO!

Honest and truthful tends to be the name of the game with Jazz. Any particular colouring tends to be pretty subtle in my experience. It's the subtle things which really draw the listener away.

Let us know how it goes!
Thanks a lot for following my adventures in jazz-land and providing heaps of useful advices ! I listened a lot to some 60s-Van-Gelder-recorded Joe Henderson albums in the last few days to tune my ears to the sound... Hope it will somehow permeate LOL
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24th March 2013
Old 24th March 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Luminous View Post
I already thought about the DPA 4099. It's €400 though (where I live). I plan to get one if things get more serious. For now it's just rehearsals so I wanted to test if I could make do with what I have.
The only issue with the 4099 is it's super-cardioid pattern. Great mic, and really great for uprights when spill is a real issue (I really have been meaning to buy one), but if spill isn't so much of an issue (which it very rarely is in a studio context), the IMK 4061 is a LOT better - omnidirectional (so superb low-end sound) and just generally a beautifully natural mic. I usually find myself rolling off a little top-end, although I'd be happy to use it 'un-EQd' in most circumstances. I've never found a good bass player that I haven't been able to get a great sound with it!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Luminous View Post
I'll try my pair of Gefell M200 instead of the TOAs, they are definitely brighter, which I didn't like in isolation when I tested them. Maybe it will work better in the mix.
Go for it! Remember you want to be capturing small, detailed articulations from the drums. The drummer in a jazz group certainly doesn't serve the same role he does in a rock group.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Luminous View Post
I'll try that config tomorrow with the Gefell and see how it goes. It's kind of "inside the kit" overhead technique ? No bass drum mic needed in that config ? Normally I always use 2 overheads, one snare and one BD mic. It has worked well for me for rock music in the past.
Here's a picture:



Here are the 'underheads' in solo, mixed 50% width:

CM3-underhead.mp3 <-13.5mb 320kbps 48 KHz LAME MP3

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Luminous View Post
I miked the piano in mono last time, maybe I'll try a stereo config this time. Anyway, I'll replace my cheap upright with a Yamaha U3 before commiting on a pair of Sony C48.
I'm not saying you need C48s - they're my go-to mic for piano. A good 414 will do as well! I'm not a fan of the 451 (except in some very select circumstances).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Luminous View Post
I don't know what to do with the trumpet tomorrow since the trumpet player didn't like the tone I got last time. Maybe a TOA pencil or a dynamic (421 or SM7).
Do you have an M201 to try out?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Luminous View Post
No phase problems when mixing the ORTF pair and the "underheads" ? Would the underheads already work on their own without the ORTF pair ? I'd rather have a simpler, easier to mix drum mic config.
Well yes there can be. Do you have any phase rotators? Little Labs make one - it's very useful. People go on about the phase shift/smearing of transients introduced, but it's really practically non-existant when compared to the phase shift from your speakers. Very useful for phase-aligning drums.

Sadly time-aligning is simply not possible on this level in the analog domain unless you want to sync-together two tape machines slightly apart by passing SMPTE through a digital delay line. You can still get the phase of the body of the drums right by either using a rotating phase adjuster, or trying to keep the drums all tuned to a key where the wavelength of the drum 'body' is roughly half-wavelength distance from the underheads to the overheads, then flip the polarity of one or the other (probably the overheads).

If you use mics with decent low-end capture, then bass drum miking is not strictly necessary, although I almost always do end up adding a bass drum mic for a bit of punch - a proper 414 works well, although RE20s can also be great for a slightly more thumpy sound.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Luminous View Post
That's what made me think of a dynamic mic, in order to avoid spill as much as possible.
Try an M201! The off-axis sound is so-so, but it may well still be superior because of it's hypercardioid pattern.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Luminous View Post
Thanks a lot for following my adventures in jazz-land and providing heaps of useful advices ! I listened a lot to some 60s-Van-Gelder-recorded Joe Henderson albums in the last few days to tune my ears to the sound... Hope it will somehow permeate LOL
Ah well listening is great and everything, but you'll find your own sound and way of doing things after a while. Having (really) great monitoring is key IMO!
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24th March 2013
Old 24th March 2013
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I have not seen cymbals with holes, which one is it?
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25th March 2013
Old 25th March 2013
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It's an HHX O-Zone.
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26th March 2013
Old 26th March 2013
  #20
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So the session went well yesterday and the band was pretty happy with the sound I got when they heard the flat mix just after playing. This time I used two Gefell M200 as overheads. I didn't try the underheads config as I didn't have the time to test it before and I never try something new without full proofing first by myself.

The drummer brought some mics : an old AKG D12 and a pair of Langevin CR-3A. I used the D12 on the bass drum and one CR-3A for the piano. It worked very well, especially the piano.

I separated the drumset and double bass with a plexi foldable screen and it helped a bit also.

I'll try to post a new mix as soon as it's done.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexK View Post
The only issue with the 4099 is it's super-cardioid pattern. Great mic, and really great for uprights when spill is a real issue (I really have been meaning to buy one), but if spill isn't so much of an issue (which it very rarely is in a studio context), the IMK 4061 is a LOT better - omnidirectional (so superb low-end sound) and just generally a beautifully natural mic. I usually find myself rolling off a little top-end, although I'd be happy to use it 'un-EQd' in most circumstances. I've never found a good bass player that I haven't been able to get a great sound with it!
No spill problem when all the guys play together with an omni on the double bass ? Yesterday they wanted to play even closer form each other with the double bass right next to the drumset...

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexK View Post
Here's a picture:



Here are the 'underheads' in solo, mixed 50% width:

CM3-underhead.mp3 <-13.5mb 320kbps 48 KHz LAME MP3
Thanks a lot for the pic and sample. I'll definitely try that config asap.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexK View Post
I'm not saying you need C48s - they're my go-to mic for piano. A good 414 will do as well! I'm not a fan of the 451 (except in some very select circumstances).
I do not have even one large diaphragm condenser at the moment and I realized yesterday that I really do need one when I heard the piano tone through the Langevin.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexK View Post
Do you have an M201 to try out?
Nope but it's pretty cheap used so I guess it goes on my list !

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexK View Post
Well yes there can be. Do you have any phase rotators? Little Labs make one - it's very useful. People go on about the phase shift/smearing of transients introduced, but it's really practically non-existant when compared to the phase shift from your speakers. Very useful for phase-aligning drums.

Sadly time-aligning is simply not possible on this level in the analog domain unless you want to sync-together two tape machines slightly apart by passing SMPTE through a digital delay line. You can still get the phase of the body of the drums right by either using a rotating phase adjuster, or trying to keep the drums all tuned to a key where the wavelength of the drum 'body' is roughly half-wavelength distance from the underheads to the overheads, then flip the polarity of one or the other (probably the overheads).

If you use mics with decent low-end capture, then bass drum miking is not strictly necessary, although I almost always do end up adding a bass drum mic for a bit of punch - a proper 414 works well, although RE20s can also be great for a slightly more thumpy sound.



Try an M201! The off-axis sound is so-so, but it may well still be superior because of it's hypercardioid pattern.




Ah well listening is great and everything, but you'll find your own sound and way of doing things after a while. Having (really) great monitoring is key IMO!
I could try the time-aligning tricks with SMPTE/delay line since I have several machines that do have SMPTE capability. Never thought of doing that. Thanks for all those infos you kindly posted.
#21
26th March 2013
Old 26th March 2013
  #21
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Yay! You got SMPTE? That's what you need! Align those tracks!

I really want to hear the new recordings!
#22
12th May 2013
Old 12th May 2013
  #22
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Maybe a bit late to the game, but I would set the trumpet a bit louder, its a bit distant sounding (which is partly the reverb but also the overall volume).

Don't be afraid to ride the faders a small bit to pull instruments up front if they have their solo spot.

Maybe use a smaller darker mono reverb on the trumpet (dark plate) and perhaps even use a small delay. Listen for example to the sound of the trumpet on John Coltrane's Blue Train or some of the stuff from Miles Davis (for example In a Silent way for more dark/moody trumpet sound or Kind of blue for more intimate upfront).

I would maybe pan the piano a little bit less "wide" and have it more to the right side if the trumpet is already in the left side (though it was a good choice to put the trumpet on the left instead of the right, it would be more in the way of the piano if you pulled it right as the range would overlap).
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#23
13th May 2013
Old 13th May 2013
  #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by santibanks View Post
Maybe a bit late to the game, but I would set the trumpet a bit louder, its a bit distant sounding (which is partly the reverb but also the overall volume).

Don't be afraid to ride the faders a small bit to pull instruments up front if they have their solo spot.

Maybe use a smaller darker mono reverb on the trumpet (dark plate) and perhaps even use a small delay. Listen for example to the sound of the trumpet on John Coltrane's Blue Train or some of the stuff from Miles Davis (for example In a Silent way for more dark/moody trumpet sound or Kind of blue for more intimate upfront).

I would maybe pan the piano a little bit less "wide" and have it more to the right side if the trumpet is already in the left side (though it was a good choice to put the trumpet on the left instead of the right, it would be more in the way of the piano if you pulled it right as the range would overlap).
It's never too late ! I do ride the faders during the mix. the piano is mono and panned a bit left, maybe it's the reverb that gave the wide impression. I panned the instruments the way they were in the room except for the double-bass that was on the right side of the drummer but I centered it in the mix anyway. Here's a quick mix of a new tune from the last session. I tried to give it a more "classic" style, in the way of Lee Morgan's Sidewinder. Feel free to comment !

https://soundcloud.com/jack-luminous/emile-saint-saens-21-04-2013/s-e1AGq
#24
13th May 2013
Old 13th May 2013
  #24
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I like that recording, it has a nice vibe to it!
Maybe put a little more reverb on the drums as an ambience to them (something dark/woody). I like a bit more verby drums, especially during the drumsolo takes (you know, the loud snare hit triggering the verb).

Bass could be a little bit louder, not so much for bottom end but more for the articulation of the playing. Maybe carve a bit with EQ to make it better defined.
I like the trumpet and piano sounds. The trumpet sounds a bit too wide for my taste during the solo, maybe narrow it down so that it becomes a bit better defined in the stereo field.

Otherwise, very nice!
#25
15th May 2013
Old 15th May 2013
  #25
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Listen to some jazz recordings. Notice that the ride and high hat carry allot of the swing. They should sound clear. The ride should have a nice ping and mellow ring and the hight hat crystal clear but neither should be too loud. The kick not as heavy as rock {should be a smaller drum} and the snare can be a little softer. Overall the drum sound should be very focused so the complex rhythms don't get lost.
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#26
15th May 2013
Old 15th May 2013
  #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by santibanks View Post
I like that recording, it has a nice vibe to it!
Maybe put a little more reverb on the drums as an ambience to them (something dark/woody). I like a bit more verby drums, especially during the drumsolo takes (you know, the loud snare hit triggering the verb).

Bass could be a little bit louder, not so much for bottom end but more for the articulation of the playing. Maybe carve a bit with EQ to make it better defined.
I like the trumpet and piano sounds. The trumpet sounds a bit too wide for my taste during the solo, maybe narrow it down so that it becomes a bit better defined in the stereo field.

Otherwise, very nice!
Thanks ! I did back off the verb compared to the last recording and now there is not enough LOL. I need to find the right spot.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bullseye View Post
Listen to some jazz recordings. Notice that the ride and high hat carry allot of the swing. They should sound clear. The ride should have a nice ping and mellow ring and the hight hat crystal clear but neither should be too loud. The kick not as heavy as rock {should be a smaller drum} and the snare can be a little softer. Overall the drum sound should be very focused so the complex rhythms don't get lost.
Thanks ! I do listen to a lot of jazz !

You find the bassdrum too heavy ? The drumkit used in the recording is my own kit. It's a 65 roundbadge Gretsch with a 18'' bass drum. It should sound great for jazz. Maybe I should set it up differently or use different skin.

As for the cymbals, They are the drummer's own set. Old Zildjian etc. I find they sound great in person so maybe I should mic them differently. I got hold of a pair of large diaphragm Langevin CM3A that I want to try as overheads.
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