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Old 25th February 2008
Lives for gear
d_fu's Avatar

Originally Posted by andy_simpson View Post
Still, the instruments are at least Indian and subject to the laws of physics which give them the basic material timbre, so the test is useful enough for my purposes.
[nitpick]Well, not really, IMHO... The sitar is ill-tuned and the playing/intonation is severely "besura" (out of tune). This particular Tabla is a tourist quality instrument and the actual sound production i.e. the strokes hardly make it sound the way a Tabla can and should sound. This will just not demonstrate the qualities of your microphones any better than if you were to strum an untuned $50 chinese guitar or press some random keys on any old upright piano (exaggerated, but you get the idea). It's meaningless from a purely technical point of view. If I record a good Sitar or Tabla with a dynamic Beyer M201, the result will simply sound a lot better (and so do many of the mono recordings on indian LPs from the sixties)... Do yourself a favour and don't publish these samples on your website for advertising purposes. Nothing against the players' efforts, and maybe they will improve in the future, but right now this is very amateurish technically and musically, and hardly fit to demonstrate a mic's quality. GIGO...

If I have an opportunity to work with indian musicians sometime this year (I might), I'd be glad to test your mics, if you were to let me have a pair for a week or two... heh

And I'm sorry to hear about your cat. I hope he will return in due course, as is often the way with cats.
Nope, not this time. I immediately knew something had happened, because his daily routine was quite regular. And it turns out he's been run over by a f***ing car, way outside his usual territory (a lovely big pasture to play in). Why would he have to try and cross a stupid main road on a Friday morning? At least now I know what happened... Buried him in the garden today.

I really refer to the basic operation of the instrument. I would have thought that a basic accordian offers more control of dynamics but I will look up the players you suggest.
The harmonium is hand-pumped and does allow to apply more or less air pressure, which directly translates into volume. While Ivo's basic point about the scale's inflexibility is right, it is quite amazing what can be done with this instrument - certainly not something you can learn in ten minutes (not counting the musical understanding required for appropriate accompaniment). It wasn't the british "Raj" (rule) that forced this instrument upon indian musicians, they chose to use it...

If you consistently feel the need to use extreme proximity to achieve this, perhaps you could consider different monitoring?
No, I'm sure that's not the problem. I just don't like the sound of overambience (esp. in small rooms) on Tabla, and I appreciate some of the subtle sounds the hand produces on the drum - as well as the resonance of certain strokes, which easily gets lost at greater mic distances (e.g. on the Water Lily recordings I've heard, also earlier Nimbus CDs - the inventors of the tin can Tabla sound..). The Tabla is not an instrument that was designed to acoustically fill large rooms.