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RealTraps Portable Vocal Booth in action
Old 16th December 2007
  #1
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James Lehmann's Avatar
 

RealTraps Portable Vocal Booth in action

Here's a rough'n'ready realworld test of the effectiveness of the RealTraps Portable Vocal Booth.

Testing equipment was as follows:

Brauner Phantom LE
Vovox Mic Cable
Metric Halo ULN-2 Pre-amp/A-D
Logic 7 DAW

The testing room is what you might call a 'normal' untreated room with average furnishings, although there are a couple of MondoTraps in the corners, unlikely to make a big difference to this close-miking.

In the background whirring away you can hear a PowerBook G4, 2 x LaCie Hard drives and my Kurzweil K2000 (which has a noisy internal drive). I also installed a loud IKEA clock somewhere behind the mic. Obviously I try to avoid recording under these conditions(!) but it seemed a good 'torture test' for the PVB, since it's the kind of equipment you might want to use in a less than ideal room anyway.

I chose the Brauner Phantom as it's super-sensitive to room noise and seems to have a slightly wider pick-up than my preferred Gefell M930.

The PVB was installed on the supplied bars on a standard K&M mic stand. I placed the 4 MicroTraps behind my head in very similar arrangement to what you see in the photo on the RealTraps site here.


(OK - that's an SM7B in the photo but the tests were still done with the Brauner!)

Don't ask me to compare the PVB to the SE Reflexion Filter - I've never used one so I've no idea of the subjective differences. If SE would care to send me one I will surely try it out and post results! For sure though the PVB looks a heck of a lot easier to set-up and can conveniently be placed on a table, which works well for some spoken-word applications.

Since I was running a test anyway, just for good measure I also show you the effectiveness of the Pauli Superscreen Pop Shield by removing it in the last file - it's not difficult to hear what that does!

All files are 24-bit/44.1k with no processing whatsoever.

No Treatment.wav

PVB Only.wav

PVB + MicroTraps.wav

PVB + MicroTraps (No Popshield).wav

I think we can safely say what we knew all along: the PVB isn't designed as an isolation booth but it sure as heck helps cut reflections and damps reverberation if you're looking for a nice dry vocal-booth-type sound in an open space. Add an array of MicroTraps behind the source and you're really good to go!

Of course I only tested the PVB on voice - spoken-word at that, and I wasn't in particularly good voice that day either! But I'm sure there are other applications where the PVB could prove effective.

As always, YMMV!
Old 22nd December 2007
  #2
Gear Nut
 

Nice comparison. I have felt that the PVB very much gives that radio voice commercial sound in an effective way. Sometimes it can be a bit much for vocals in a layered song but in the right application its superb.
Old 28th September 2008
  #3
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James Lehmann's Avatar
 

Links fixed!
Old 15th October 2009
  #4
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steveschizoid's Avatar
I am trying to figure out whether I need to upgrade my mic, or buy a PVB.

I have a Peluso 2247 LE and a P12, and a weird shaped small room with quite a few bass traps. Sometimes I get a great sound and sometimes it doesn't sound good at all. I think the room reacts particularly badly with with nasally singers - either the mic or the room or both are somehow emphasizing the upper mids, (or maybe cancelling out the low mids?) and it's ugly! Attached are a few examples where the suckometer is just going off the scale. the female vocal was recorded with the P12 and the other two travesties were the work of the LE47.

What perplexes me is that with some people I get a fine sound and with others, no matter where I put the mic, or which of the two I use, it just doesn't turn out well.

Help!
Attached Files

idrathergodeaf.mp3 (3.34 MB, 2079 views)

idrathergodeaf2.mp3 (352.1 KB, 1841 views)

yuck!!.mp3 (198.1 KB, 1792 views)

Old 15th October 2009
  #5
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SANDS's Avatar
 

Wow is that thing really 300.00?

How much better would this be over cutting some 703 2 or 4 inches thick and making a frame with a hinge?
Old 15th October 2009
  #6
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Ethan Winer's Avatar
 

Lightbulb

Quote:
Originally Posted by James Lehmann View Post
Here's a rough'n'ready realworld test of the effectiveness of the RealTraps Portable Vocal Booth.
Excellent, thanks very much James!

--Ethan
Old 15th October 2009
  #7
JWL
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JWL's Avatar
 

Hi Sands,

Yes it really is $300. The main reason is the build quality and the metalwork. The metal frames are the most expensive part of most of our products, including the PVB. It's designed to be durable, portable, and last a long time.
Old 16th October 2009
  #8
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badboymusic's Avatar
 

The SE Reflexion Filter I have sounds much nicer IMO. James, You should ask them to send you one to do a sound comparison.
Old 16th October 2009
  #9
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Ethan Winer's Avatar
 

Lightbulb

People can decide for themselves which device sounds nicer and less colored:

RealTraps - PVB Demo (Doug)
RealTraps - PVB Demo (Kelly)

--Ethan
Old 16th October 2009
  #10
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badboymusic's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ethan Winer View Post
As long as you're here to throw stones on behalf of sE

--Ethan
I have no affiliation with SE. Why are you making accusations that I am throwing stones on their behalf?
Am I not allowed to have an opinion? People offer their opinions on this site about products all the time.
Old 17th October 2009
  #11
Gear Maniac
 

No comparison, the Realtraps PVB blows away the SE RF.
Old 17th October 2009
  #12
Gear Maniac
 

On headphones,

I like the PVB only....even if isn't as damped. What I like is the even-ness of the sound. Sometimes I like tape hiss, just because the highs stay high, and don't dip in and out with noise suppression.

I'd be interested in a design where there are two parallel pieces either side of the
head, and a top piece, so essentially a tunnel, with an open end. That way there's no ceiling reflection, and the open end leaves less chance for bounce back. I don't know, just a theory. ( that I'm going to try ).
Old 17th October 2009
  #13
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Ethan Winer's Avatar
 

Lightbulb

Quote:
Originally Posted by badboymusic View Post
People offer their opinions on this site about products all the time.
Yes, but usually they have the intelligence and decency to comment only on products they've actually tried. heh

--Ethan
Old 18th October 2009
  #14
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badboymusic's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ethan Winer View Post
Yes, but usually they have the intelligence and decency to comment only on products they've actually tried. heh

--Ethan
So you insult my intelligence and claim to know what products I have tried.

Ethan Winer, since you are the owner of the company Real Traps. Are you not concerned in the slightest that your constant bullying of others will make people not want to purchase your products? At the very least I would think you would stop it, if for no other reason than how it could hurt your business.

You don't see anyone from the company SE insulting the people who preferred the PVB.
Old 25th October 2009
  #15
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AmongstTheLiving's Avatar
 

Come on kids. Let it go. Mine is better anyway. heh
Old 25th October 2009
  #16
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The Listener's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by badboymusic View Post
So you insult my intelligence and claim to know what products I have tried.

Ethan Winer, since you are the owner of the company Real Traps. Are you not concerned in the slightest that your constant bullying of others will make people not want to purchase your products? At the very least I would think you would stop it, if for no other reason than how it could hurt your business.

You don't see anyone from the company SE insulting the people who preferred the PVB.
Just because of Mr.Winers forum (re)presentation I became biased (meaning: I won't buy any) towards Real Traps products, too. But that doesn't have to mean anything for others and it doesn't represent the only reality. Just our opinions about his "wiseguy" attitude. It's just personal (a)e(s)th(et)ics.
Old 25th October 2009
  #17
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Ethan Winer's Avatar
 

Lightbulb

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Listener View Post
Just because of Mr.Winers forum (re)presentation I became biased
I understand that some people don't like what I have to say about the science of audio. But it's childish when people make a habit of chiming in about products they know nothing about just to bash me personally. If you disagree with me about audio gear, then let's discuss that. You might eventually change your mind.

--Ethan
Old 25th October 2009
  #18
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The Listener's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ethan Winer View Post
I understand that some people don't like what I have to say about the science of audio. But it's childish when people make a habit of chiming in about products they know nothing about just to bash me personally. If you disagree with me about audio gear, then let's discuss that. You might eventually change your mind.

--Ethan
I respect your input on many topics around here. Just this over-zealous "mythbusting" touches my nerves... I don't think there's only one side that might change (or at least slightly adjust) its mind.

This whole Se electronics thingy vs RT thingy is childish and seems like unfair sales tactics. Making Se electronics thingy look less useful than it is.

Just btw - I don't like any of those things, it's really a band-aid solution I prefer not to use. I prefer "imperfect" reflections over that kind of close absorbtion, but that's a subjective choice, of course. I'm sure both products are very useful to many people.

I became biased, because I got a feeling that you disregard the "magical" subtleties of this art and craft that many a great recordist, conductor, audio engineer, artist of any kind could go on and on about in colourful terms which you dismiss as irrelevant all too easy. I don't like the style and tone with which you try to dismantle those "myths". That's why I became biased against your output.
Old 26th October 2009
  #19
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Ethan Winer's Avatar
 

Lightbulb

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Listener View Post
I respect your input on many topics around here. Just this over-zealous "mythbusting" touches my nerves...
But claims by purveyors of expensive magic boxes don't bother you? heh

Quote:
Making Se electronics thingy look less useful than it is.
If you read this thread from the top you'll see I didn't start it, or say anything bad about the sE RF. The immature teenager started that by throwing stones at me. Please address your complaints about childishness to him. This thread is not the only place he has done that.

Quote:
Just btw - I don't like any of those things, it's really a band-aid solution I prefer not to use.
I agree. The best solution is to treat the entire room so it sounds clear and neutral. But some people can't do that, especially those with a small setup in a home. So for them, our PVB is an excellent solution. Have you ever tried our PVB, or are you just going by experience with the sE RF?

Quote:
I got a feeling that you disregard the "magical" subtleties of this art and craft that many a great recordist, conductor, audio engineer, artist of any kind could go on and on about in colourful terms which you dismiss as irrelevant all too easy. I don't like the style and tone with which you try to dismantle those "myths". That's why I became biased against your output.
I think you should read what I say more carefully. I have no problem with "colorful" words when used appropriately. If the subject is art, then let the colors flow! But when vendors of audio gear try to use that instead of science, or in direct defiance of science, that's when I object. Hey, we're all on the same side here! We all want to know The Truth (tm). I'm too old and too impatient to worry about offending some people. I call stuff as I see it in no uncertain terms. You don't have to like that, but it doesn't make me a bad person worthy of your scorn.

--Ethan
Old 26th October 2009
  #20
jyc
Gear Addict
 
jyc's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by steveschizoid View Post
I am trying to figure out whether I need to upgrade my mic, or buy a PVB.

I have a Peluso 2247 LE and a P12, and a weird shaped small room with quite a few bass traps. Sometimes I get a great sound and sometimes it doesn't sound good at all. I think the room reacts particularly badly with with nasally singers - either the mic or the room or both are somehow emphasizing the upper mids, (or maybe cancelling out the low mids?) and it's ugly! Attached are a few examples where the suckometer is just going off the scale. the female vocal was recorded with the P12 and the other two travesties were the work of the LE47.

What perplexes me is that with some people I get a fine sound and with others, no matter where I put the mic, or which of the two I use, it just doesn't turn out well.

Help!
Anyone? I'm interested.
Old 26th October 2009
  #21
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The Listener's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ethan Winer View Post
You don't have to like that, but it doesn't make me a bad person worthy of your scorn.

--Ethan
You're right.
Old 27th October 2009
  #22
Gear Maniac
 

@JYC

Quote:
What perplexes me is that with some people I get a fine sound and with others, no matter where I put the mic, or which of the two I use, it just doesn't turn out well.
So, then, it's not the room, it's the mic on nasally singers.

The Sennheisser e 835 worked well for a nasally friend of mine.
Also, I'd try an SM58. The Senn. is a copy of the 58. I know of
a famous singer who always ends up tracking with 58's.
Whatever works.
Old 29th October 2009
  #23
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badboymusic's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ethan Winer View Post
If you read this thread from the top you'll see I didn't start it, or say anything bad about the sE RF. The immature teenager started that by throwing stones at me. Please address your complaints about childishness to him.

--Ethan
If you are addressing that to me, could you please point out the part where I'm acting like an immature teenager in any previous posts in this thread?, or how stating that I prefer the SE product is throwing stones at you? I have not said anything inappropriate once in this thread or been insulting. You cannot say the same.
Old 29th October 2009
  #24
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badboymusic's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by SANDS View Post
Wow is that thing really 300.00?

How much better would this be over cutting some 703 2 or 4 inches thick and making a frame with a hinge?
This won't really do anything for the low frequencies like the 4 inch 703 will, if that is what you are looking for. This is really only going to stop higher frequencies, which are the easiest to stop. You could just buy a duvet/thick blanket/comforter and hang it and get about the same result. (serious, I'm not making a joke) Actually better, because it will cover a larger area. The same reasoning as demonstrated in the first PVD video Ethan provided. The PVD is larger than the SE RF, so it stops hand clap reflections better. (Notice the flat untreated drywall walls so close, those are very reflective) A large thick blanket/comforter will work even better for the same reasons.

But, you will need to get the low frequencies under control after you buy the comforter though and that's where the 703 comes in.

If you're looking for some low cost 703 options (they even have DIY kits) the least expensive quality acoustic products I've found, is a company called Ready Acoustics. "Very nice, respectful and knowledgeable folks" If you want to be treated right that's whom I would talk with and save a bunch of money in the process. Here is a link. DIY Bass Traps: Complete Do-It-Yourself Kits : Ready Acoustics!, Hear - Sound - Better

Look at a few of the people who use and endorse their products. Very impressive group.

Michael Wagener
Joe Barresi
Rail Jon Rogut
Jeff Juliano

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Glenn Kuras at GIK Acoustics. Acoustic Panels and Bass Traps. is also very nice and helpful, I bet he could fix you up.


.
Old 29th October 2009
  #25
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Ethan Winer's Avatar
 

Lightbulb

DIY is good too.
Old 29th October 2009
  #26
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steveschizoid's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by jyc View Post
Anyone? I'm interested.
I came to thew conclusion it was mostly the mics. Found a Brauner VM1 lite in the GS classifieds that sounds absolutely wonderful on everything so far. That being said, I have been trying to mimic the PVB with the materials at hand lately.

An interesting thing happened (subsequent to my purchase of the Brauner); Ben Sneesby dropped in to compare his modified LE47 to my stock LE47. (It's a long story) He's used one of his own hand-built capsules and a Cinemag transformer, and he's modified the power supply as well. If you listen to my two clips, the problem with the LE47 is pretty much laid bare. Ben is really cool, and really good at what he does evidently.

Ethan, I have lately been using a couple of GIK (244) traps sitting on chairs in a V shape behind the mic, and I am wrestling with a dilema - using 2 full size bass traps this way is rather unwieldy, but I could try to build a couple of stands, or I could just go with the PVB.

The room is trapped as well as I can mange given the space, dimensions, and the fact that drum sets need to fit in there.

2 factors - one, money is tight, and two, although badboymusic is obviously somewhat silly and inexperienced, he did bring up a valid question: will the PVB perform as well as a couple of large, 4 inch thick bass traps in this application? If so, why? Thank you for your time and input!
Attached Files

Ben LE47.wav (3.32 MB, 1808 views)

Ben modded LE47.wav (3.22 MB, 1408 views)

Old 29th October 2009
  #27
Gear Guru
 
Ethan Winer's Avatar
 

Lightbulb

Quote:
Originally Posted by steveschizoid View Post
I could try to build a couple of stands, or I could just go with the PVB.
I believe GIK sells stands for their traps, or you could rig up a microphone stand as shown here with our traps:

RealTraps - Microphone Stand Mounting

GIK doesn't have mounting bars like ours, but a trip to Home Depot should find you something that will work. So that would be my choice if I were you and already had those panels.

Quote:
will the PVB perform as well as a couple of large, 4 inch thick bass traps in this application?
Of course not. Our PVB is meant for voice frequencies, not for treating room corners. It works very well for what it does! But it has no magic properties. heh

--Ethan
Old 30th October 2009
  #28
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steveschizoid's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ethan Winer View Post
Of course not. Our PVB is meant for voice frequencies, not for treating room corners. It works very well for what it does! But it has no magic properties. heh

--Ethan
I wasn't intending to use it for a corner! So, for people who generally sing above 100 Hz, will the PVB work at least as well as a couple of big traps placed to make a "V" behind the microphone?

I have this horrible vision of someone brushing past one of the 244's and knocking it into my Brauner and it toppling to the floor.
Old 30th October 2009
  #29
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badboymusic's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ethan Winer View Post
Folks, this guy claims to be experienced enough to comment knowledgeably and expect his opinions to be taken seriously. But check out the music clips on his MySpace page:

badboymusic on MySpace

Yeah badboy, you're a real effin' pro all right.
That myspace page was recently created so someone could hear my Swart Amp and also let some people hear a product that is having an 80% off sale that ends in two days. I AM NOT a guitar player and it states this at the bottom of the page:

"Please keep in mind I am not a real guitar player. I play well enough to get guitar tones and then a real player lays down the parts. The samples on here are played by me and as such, will pretty much suck. But, it will give you an idea of the tones that I am getting."

There are three short guitar clips played by a self professed non guitar player. Yet you took the time to search for it in an attempt to insult me with it. Did you fail to read the part that I am not a guitar player? If your going to say Swart Amps sound bad, them's fightin' words.
Old 30th October 2009
  #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by steveschizoid View Post
although badboymusic is obviously somewhat silly and inexperienced, he did bring up a valid question: will the PVB perform as well as a couple of large, 4 inch thick bass traps in this application? If so, why? Thank you for your time and input!
I posted that the thick duvets will be as or more effective as the PVB for vocal frequencies. The 703 will be for treating the lower bass frequencies.

Ethan and I don't disagree on how important acoustic treatment is. We both agree it is one of the most important factors in recording and mixing. We do have a difference of style (that and I have nothing to sell).

Perhaps Ethan will give you his opinion on the differences between a thick duvet (with some air space behind it will give you the best results) and the PVB for Vocal Frequencies.
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