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CM4 Is Here. Let's start a thread for it and let the CM3 go on
Old 12th June 2019
  #1
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boojum's Avatar
CM4 Is Here. Let's start a thread for it and let the CM3 go on

Don't have a CM4 but it will no doubt be another Line Audio big bang for a little buck and we can count on JP Gerard to handle the retail and service end of things.
Old 12th June 2019
  #2
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Good idea.
I ordered 4 to test last week...
Old 12th June 2019
  #3
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does anyone know what the difference is between the old and new mic?
Old 12th June 2019
  #4
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fred2bern's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by deedeeyeah View Post
does anyone know what the difference is between the old and new mic?
CM3 - really THAT good?
Old 12th June 2019
  #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fred2bern View Post
thx - i'd appreciate reading a little bit more detailed comparison (and measurements) though; hope this will become available once some more cm'4's will be sold/used...
Old 12th June 2019
  #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deedeeyeah View Post
thx - i'd appreciate reading a little bit more detailed comparison (and measurements) though; hope this will become available once some more cm'4's will be sold/used...
Full specs are on Line Audio's website. I also have both CM3 and CM4 on mine so it's easy to open the polar/freq. responses in adjacent windows if you're into that

I'll just add again that the CM4 is basically the CM3 re-invented because a critical part is not available anymore and Roger "simply" wanted to keep making the CM3 - but couldn't call the new mic "CM3" when the capsule is completely new. Happy accident, the CM4 capsule is more flexible so a bit more pattern control is possible. Hence for instance the slight "improvement" if you want to call it that, in 180° rejection.

We'll get samples soon I'm sure.

I A/B'ed a pair of the first CM4 pre prod batch with typical CM3's and you could go crazy trying to tell them apart unless you know which is which and what to listen for. Once you know what to listen for it becomes easier but in the context of a multiple mic setup? Difference are irrelevant. Yet I'm sure some will prefer one or the other as there ARE nuances... I hope that we'll avoid the old "the original model was better" but who knows. Vintage CM3's are now a reality I guess.......
Old 12th June 2019
  #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jpgerard View Post
Full specs are on Line Audio's website. I also have both CM3 and CM4 on mine so it's easy to open the polar/freq. responses in adjacent windows if you're into that

I'll just add again that the CM4 is basically the CM3 re-invented because a critical part is not available anymore and Roger "simply" wanted to keep making the CM3 - but couldn't call the new mic "CM3" when the capsule is completely new. Happy accident, the CM4 capsule is more flexible so a bit more pattern control is possible. Hence for instance the slight "improvement" if you want to call it that, in 180° rejection.

We'll get samples soon I'm sure.

I A/B'ed a pair of the first CM4 pre prod batch with typical CM3's and you could go crazy trying to tell them apart unless you know which is which and what to listen for. Once you know what to listen for it becomes easier but in the context of a multiple mic setup? Difference are irrelevant. Yet I'm sure some will prefer one or the other as there ARE nuances... I hope that we'll avoid the old "the original model was better" but who knows. Vintage CM3's are now a reality I guess.......
i'm less into comparing averaged/smoothed frequency plots (from any manufacturer) but rather into doing measurements myself - or reading from engineers as you who have already compared old and new versions: i'm delighted to hear that the difference in a multi-mic setup is irrelevant!
Old 12th June 2019
  #8
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I know, and that's the proper way

I'm certain that some of the more audiophile oriented GS members will be able to tell them apart with ease. As I said, if you know what to listen for, it's a fun game. But in the real world, I'd say that Roger's attempt at recreating the response of the CM3 with the CM4 met pretty good success. What's funny is that you could say that the difference between the CM3 and CM4 is typical of the tolerances you'd get from most manufacturers... but on the same mic.

It's going to be interesting to get users samples comparing both models but in the end actual CM4 recordings will be judged on their own, not versus recordings done with CM3's.

Roger has a handful of CM3's, I have a few, some dealers have a few here and there but if you guys have one and want a second to make a pair, don't delay. Mating a CM4 with a CM3 is do-able I guess, with a bit of level matching and a touch of EQ, but hardly ideal.
Old 17th June 2019
  #9
I have a pair of "vintage" CM3s - first $1000.00 US takes them!
Old 17th June 2019
  #10
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My CM3's are similarly vintage....but I'm unable to prove it.....Roger forgot to engrave serial numbers into the base. Major oversight by manufacturer... ! Too valuable for me to sell them anyways, regardless of whether they've gone up or down in value over the last decade that I've owned them.
Old 18th June 2019
  #11
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Ha... it's also possible that the earlier CM3 revs with less headroom and a narrower Phantom voltage window will gain mystical qualities... but back to reality, all CM3's are pretty much the same when it comes to "normal" performance under "normal" circumstances. Capsule ageing will of course occur but those are very stable devices, nothing like an old Neumann M7 for instance. They will lose a bit of sensitivity over decades, but so little it's usually irrelevant anyway.
Old 18th June 2019
  #12
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JP...I'm wondering if the electret principle would tend to make such mics more/equally or less susceptible to fizzing, crackling and sputtering in very adverse (ie humid, tropical or rapid hot > cold condensation) conditions ? Or is that more a condition of dust and moisture on the capsule allowing a conduction path....?

While the Sennheiser RF mics are renowned as being the most resistant to that sort of breakdown, I wonder how permanently-charged electret membranes like the CM3/CM4 fare against more conventional condensor mics ?

I know there are some very expensive and highly regarded mics which are also electrets (DPA ?) ...so it's not a construction style confined only to the cheaper end of the microphone world.
Old 18th June 2019
  #13
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Actually less, there's no DC rail potentially developing issues and the typically lower polarizing charge is less prone to causing problems. Electrets are also typically sealed or almost so: unless a directional pattern is designed then you still need pressure EQ ports but the openings are usually (again, generalizing) less of a potential problem. These days many condensers have open backplates with holes leading right into to heart of the capsule. Cost efficient for sure but an open door to contamination that cannot be fixed unless you can open the capsule and clean the insides (seldom the case). And yes, Electrets have evolved and as Roger proved so well, they can produce admirable results. CM3's have definitely been reliable little critters and I have customers who've used them in high humidity environments on purpose because they're by design more resistant than, say, an Oktava 012.
Old 26th June 2019
  #14
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Would love to hear user impressions as people start getting their hands on some CM4s.
Old 27th June 2019
  #15
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Thumbs up

Quote:
Originally Posted by deedeeyeah View Post
does anyone know what the difference is between the old and new mic?
Looking at the specs - the CM4 does look like a real cardioid mic. - the CM3 was more of a wide-cardioid.


.
Attached Thumbnails
CM4 Is Here.  Let's start a thread for it and let the CM3 go on-cm4plot.jpg  
Old 27th June 2019
  #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Willett View Post
Looking at the specs
-5 dB @ 90° like MK 22, named open cardioid by Schoeps. True cardioid is -6 dB @ 90°.
Old 28th June 2019
  #17
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voltronic's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by didier.brest View Post
-5 dB @ 90° like MK 22, named open cardioid by Schoeps. True cardioid is -6 dB @ 90°.
This looks spot-on. Comparing Line Audio and Schoeps polar plots, it appears that the following are very similar:

CM3 ~ MK 21
CM4 ~ MK 22
Old 4th July 2019
  #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sirjuxtable View Post
Would love to hear user impressions as people start getting their hands on some CM4s.
I just got my pair of CM4's.

I've never used the CM3, and I don't record music. I tested it against my MKH50 and MK41 and one other hyper on my voice into a Sound Devices preamp. Apples to oranges. The mics were unrealistically close to the source in my test.

That said, it sounded great to me. At times it was hard to discern which mic was which, apart from the MKH50. Now, off axis, at 2 feet away from the source, that will be a different set of results I imagine.
Old 6th July 2019
  #19
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Hi!
I received my CM4's from Belgium just in time for some orchestral and choral concert recordings. I did not contribute a lot on gearslutz, but this could be interesting for some. I made samples of of the opening of th pianoquartet opus 25 by Brahms, instrumentation for orchestra by Schönberg.

The pictures of the concert location are from a different concert, but will give an idea of the setting.

On the main stand in te center of the boom a pair of CM4 in NOS combined with a spaced pair of CM3 (L&R 230cm from the center of the boom). Height between 350 and 400 cm from the floor. Microphones aiming the line just behind the front desks 2nd violins and violas. There were more microphones involved in the recording, but I will leave them aside here. Unfortunately there was no time to also setup a pair of CM3 in NOS to compare with the CM4-pair.

Same fragment: 1) CM4 in NOS, 2) the spaced CM3 and 3) a mix of CM4/CM3. CM4 and CM3 both panned 100% L&R. Recorded in Joeco Blackbox BBR1MP. CM4 and CM3 mixed at the same level to hear how they blend.

Regards,
Peter.
Attached Thumbnails
CM4 Is Here.  Let's start a thread for it and let the CM3 go on-concertlocation.jpg   CM4 Is Here.  Let's start a thread for it and let the CM3 go on-standwithboom.jpg  
Attached Files

1_CM4_NOS.mp3 (3.81 MB, 6417 views)

2_CM3_spaced.mp3 (3.81 MB, 6344 views)

3_MIX_CM4_CM3.mp3 (3.81 MB, 6307 views)

Old 7th July 2019
  #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hendriks View Post
Hi!
I received my CM4's from Belgium just in time for some orchestral and choral concert recordings. I did not contribute a lot on gearslutz, but this could be interesting for some. I made samples of of the opening of th pianoquartet opus 25 by Brahms, instrumentation for orchestra by Schönberg.

The pictures of the concert location are from a different concert, but will give an idea of the setting.

On the main stand in te center of the boom a pair of CM4 in NOS combined with a spaced pair of CM3 (L&R 230cm from the center of the boom). Height between 350 and 400 cm from the floor. Microphones aiming the line just behind the front desks 2nd violins and violas. There were more microphones involved in the recording, but I will leave them aside here. Unfortunately there was no time to also setup a pair of CM3 in NOS to compare with the CM4-pair.

Same fragment: 1) CM4 in NOS, 2) the spaced CM3 and 3) a mix of CM4/CM3. CM4 and CM3 both panned 100% L&R. Recorded in Joeco Blackbox BBR1MP. CM4 and CM3 mixed at the same level to hear how they blend.

Regards,
Peter.
Sounds great.
Old 18th July 2019
  #21
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Thanks for sharing those excellent recordings hendriks.

I hesitate to make this comment but, is it just me or do the CM3 recordings sound better in this case? Could that just be NOS versus Spaced?
Old 18th July 2019
  #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blandest View Post
Thanks for sharing those excellent recordings hendriks.

I hesitate to make this comment but, is it just me or do the CM3 recordings sound better in this case? Could that just be NOS versus Spaced?
This is more of a comparison between NOS and Spaced, rather than the mics themselves.
Old 18th July 2019
  #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blandest View Post
Thanks for sharing those excellent recordings hendriks.

I hesitate to make this comment but, is it just me or do the CM3 recordings sound better in this case? Could that just be NOS versus Spaced?
If you look at the photo, the spaced pair are quite wide vs the NOS -- I think that would make a one-to-one comparison of the sound of the microphones themselves quite inaccurate.

Also, if you listen at the 1:00 mark, the accented passages sound crisper, punchier, more dramatic on the CM4/NOS pair (to my ears).

Listening only on earbuds at the moment, but the blend sounds best to me.
In any case, excellent recordings! Thanks
Old 27th July 2019
  #24
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I've just bought a pair of CM4s which will be set up for drum overhead duties. They are "slightly wide" cardioids (as opposed to CM3s which were "slightly narrow" subcardioids, somewhat). When setting them up, how should I go about it? Just think of them as cardioids? I was thinking that, to account for the slight width, maybe a 100° angle coincident pair, or a 90° angle near coincident pair (eg. 5-10cm apart) would do the job. I like to keep drum overheads as coincident as possible since they're going to be quite up in the mix and I want to keep them as monocompatible as possible.
Old 28th July 2019
  #25
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Experience on this forum with the CM3's has been that NOS is the best array. While the CM4's are new, I believe there has been discussion that the NOS would be appropriate for these, too.
Old 28th July 2019
  #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ampetrosillo View Post
I've just bought a pair of CM4s which will be set up for drum overhead duties. They are "slightly wide" cardioids (as opposed to CM3s which were "slightly narrow" subcardioids, somewhat). When setting them up, how should I go about it? Just think of them as cardioids? I was thinking that, to account for the slight width, maybe a 100° angle coincident pair, or a 90° angle near coincident pair (eg. 5-10cm apart) would do the job. I like to keep drum overheads as coincident as possible since they're going to be quite up in the mix and I want to keep them as monocompatible as possible.
You have it backwards: Sub Car means in between Card an Omni, so slightly wider than a Cardiod. The CM3 is Wide indeed. The CM4 is loser to a Cardioid but still a bit wider with a tad less 180° rejection than a pure Cardioid. In practice they're about the same, the difference between 1 dB here, 1 dB there. There never was a law written that says that you need to use X° of angle between the mics based on their polar pattern. You need to play with placement based on the source and the room until you get what you want. Mono comp is usually not a problem. Just keep in mind the 3:1 rule when working with a spaced pair.
Old 28th July 2019
  #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ampetrosillo View Post
I've just bought a pair of CM4s which will be set up for drum overhead duties. They are "slightly wide" cardioids (as opposed to CM3s which were "slightly narrow" subcardioids, somewhat). When setting them up, how should I go about it? Just think of them as cardioids? I was thinking that, to account for the slight width, maybe a 100° angle coincident pair, or a 90° angle near coincident pair (eg. 5-10cm apart) would do the job. I like to keep drum overheads as coincident as possible since they're going to be quite up in the mix and I want to keep them as monocompatible as possible.
Adjust the angle between the mics until they sound right...adjust the lineal distance from the snare centre surface to each mic until they measure right (ie equivalent)
They are more likely to give you a coherent picture of the kit that way, without phase (nulling) problems. Coincident is more likely to achieve this...perhaps at the cost of reduced spaciousness, which reverb or a spatial plug-in can restore to some degree
Old 28th July 2019
  #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jpgerard View Post
You have it backwards: Sub Car means in between Card an Omni, so slightly wider than a Cardiod.
That's what I meant!

Quote:
The CM3 is Wide indeed. The CM4 is loser to a Cardioid but still a bit wider with a tad less 180° rejection than a pure Cardioid. In practice they're about the same, the difference between 1 dB here, 1 dB there. There never was a law written that says that you need to use X° of angle between the mics based on their polar pattern. You need to play with placement based on the source and the room until you get what you want. Mono comp is usually not a problem. Just keep in mind the 3:1 rule when working with a spaced pair.
The point of microphone spacing is that you ensure spatial coverage within a certain angle, with good separation between left and right. And choice of coincident or spaced pairs and everything in between is a compromise between phase coherence (mono compatibility, "flatter" panorama) and phase difference (spaciousness, "deeper" panorama, usually not monocompatible). A subcardioid or hypocardioid (same thing) used in an XY configuration is close to pointless, as the two mics' pickup pattern overlaps so significantly that the result is basically a "slightly stereo" mono, with only the extreme left and right sounding (just slightly) to the left or right. It is also important to avoid picking up more reverberation than the actual sound source, unless your aim is exactly that. Obviously the choice of microphone techniques is not a blind application of a rule, but common configurations exist as a good starting point for consistent expected results, which can and should be bent by the sound engineer for artistic purposes, if required.

https://microphone-data.com/media/fi...520zoom-10.pdf
Old 28th July 2019
  #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ampetrosillo View Post
A subcardioid or hypocardioid (same thing) used in an XY configuration is close to pointless, as the two mics' pickup pattern overlaps so significantly that the result is basically a "slightly stereo" mono, with only the extreme left and right sounding (just slightly) to the left or right. It is also important to avoid picking up more reverberation than the actual sound source, unless your aim is exactly that.
At this point one could ask a few philosophical questions: How wide is a drum kit, exactly ? Should it occupy a wider arc than a grand piano, or a double bass or a marimba, for example. Do you subscribe to the 70's prog-rock ethos of the widely panned drum kit (including out of phase material) which extended across and beyond the full width of the stereo speaker box distance apart.

Or perhaps to the Kind of Blue 50's/60's Jazz kit, enclosed within a pair of goboes in the Columbia studios, occupying a very discreet central location in the stereo panorama ? Within the context of a drum kit being a member of a band's set of instruments, your "slightly stereo" mono could indeed be exactly the amount of space and width it's desirable for the kit to occupy ?

It's also possible to create depth by using a more distant (perhaps compressed) room mic as part of the drumkit's pickup. Or precise image placement and focus by close-miking every Tom, cymbal and snare within the entire kit.

I list these scenarios simply to illustrate that, depending on the style and methodology and space-occupancy you wish for your drumkit to exist within, an XY overhead (or out front) mic placement could indeed be an entirely valid and desirable way of ensuring the kit occupies the necessary width within the band's overall stereo recorded image...and thus hardly pointless.

I think you could call Ringo's drum image for most of the Beatles career 'mono' (or maybe fat mono)....and that was scarcely any detriment to the band's sonic impact and lasting significance...or record sales ? Ditto for Motown, Elvis, Rockabilly, Country.....and most of these employed only a single overhead (how much more mono than that can you get ?)

Last edited by studer58; 28th July 2019 at 03:38 PM..
Old 28th July 2019
  #30
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ampetrosillo: But we're discussing the CM3 and CM4, both "Wide Cardioids" or Sub or Hypo -Cardioids. I think there was some confusion re: Hyper somewhere. No biggie. We agree: Hypers should be kept for situations where isolation from the room prevails over good stereo imaging (unfortunately, it happens).
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