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U87ai - Help identify source of click in recording
Old 4 weeks ago
  #1
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U87ai - Help identify source of click in recording

Hello fellow slutz,

I bought a used U87ai mic from vintage king. Love the sound of that mic however for some reason at certain times there is a strange click on the recording. Happens at random places. I am attaching an audio file.

You can hear the click right after the word "Your" right before "Eyes"

Signal chain - U87ai - Heritage Audio 73jr 500 series preamp in an RND chasis. Going line level into Steinberg UR824.

Should I send it to Neumann to get the capsule cleaned? (I assumed since I bought it from VK they checked and serviced the mic) or is the source of the problem somewhere else?
Attached Files

CLICK IN VOCAL.wav (501.0 KB, 531 views)

Old 4 weeks ago
  #2
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chrischoir's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Guitarist9891 View Post
Hello fellow slutz,

I bought a used U87ai mic from vintage king. Love the sound of that mic however for some reason at certain times there is a strange click on the recording. Happens at random places. I am attaching an audio file.

You can hear the click right after the word "Your" right before "Eyes"

Signal chain - U87ai - Heritage Audio 73jr 500 series preamp in an RND chasis. Going line level into Steinberg UR824.

Should I send it to Neumann to get the capsule cleaned? (I assumed since I bought it from VK they checked and serviced the mic) or is the source of the problem somewhere else?
I don't hear anything
Old 4 weeks ago
  #3
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Nobody else hears anything? Am I crazy lol?
Old 4 weeks ago
  #4
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I hear it (and see it in RX's spectral view), but I'm pretty sure it's just mouth noise and nothing to worry about...
Old 4 weeks ago
  #5
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Yeah that sounds like a job for microscopic editing. lol
Old 4 weeks ago
  #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tokenangmoh View Post
I hear it (and see it in RX's spectral view), but I'm pretty sure it's just mouth noise and nothing to worry about...
I hear it even in the final mix. (Different song/same issue) So I had to dive into the older session and take a different vocal take that didn’t have it. ProTools pencil tool wasn’t much help. I don’t have Izotope RX. Would I be able to remove the click with Izotope RX? If so I gotta seriously take a look at the software.

Thanks!
Old 4 weeks ago
  #7
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Sounds like it's just the way you pronounce the words. What mic did you use prior to getting the 87?

When I compared the 87 to a few other mics years ago, the 87 seems a bit more details to some of those mics.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nukmusic View Post
Sounds like it's just the way you pronounce the words. What mic did you use prior to getting the 87?

When I compared the 87 to a few other mics years ago, the 87 seems a bit more details to some of those mics.

I hear it in the middle of a sustained note (so no consonant) in other takes. Could be some external factor like my bones cracking ))
I hope it’s not the mic

Mic I used before was an
Audio Technicia 4033cl
Old 4 weeks ago
  #9
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Yup, RX7 Standard's Mouth De-Click module will remove it. I took the liberty of doing so in the attached file (it's very easy). Adobe Audition would do it too, but I don't have that any more and can't remember how...
Attached Files

DE-CLICKED VOCAL.wav (492.0 KB, 294 views)

Old 4 weeks ago
  #10
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Spindrift's Avatar
 

I’ve tracked some great vocalists who “click” mid-note as the shape of their mouth and throat changes. Go figure. I was freaking out thinking it was my equipment too.

RX is a great investment for these things!
Old 4 weeks ago
  #11
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Listen to the mic in an empty room for a while, if it is silent it's the performer.
If it pops then it could be there is moisture on the capsule, keep a couple of bags of silica gel packed around it in it's case and it may solve the problem.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #12
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have you checked it's not a clocking issue with your converters? It will produce a similar click in random places and you can be fooled into thinking it's the mic/cable/performer etc. I'm not familiar with your interface but would highly recommend you look into how you are clocking/re-synching your clock before sending the mic away. Also, re the above (listening just to the mic in an empty room), we tried this when trying to troubleshoot the clicking when using our 87ai.... the sound files were perfect, no clicking, but each time we tried it with a singer, clicks were back in random spots. We had an Aurora 16 with an AES16e card. The converter was being clocked internally. We switched it to being clocked externally by the AES card and re-synched. All those weird little clicks went away. It was not the mic (which had been serviced by Gunter Wagner only a short while before in any event).
Old 4 weeks ago
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crosscutred View Post
If it pops then it could be there is moisture on the capsule, keep a couple of bags of silica gel packed around it in it's case and it may solve the problem.
It probably won't. Please read here why not: https://repforums.prosoundweb.com/in...c,37255.0.html
Old 4 weeks ago
  #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stevelindsay View Post
have you checked it's not a clocking issue with your converters? It will produce a similar click in random places and you can be fooled into thinking it's the mic/cable/performer etc. I'm not familiar with your interface but would highly recommend you look into how you are clocking/re-synching your clock before sending the mic away. Also, re the above (listening just to the mic in an empty room), we tried this when trying to troubleshoot the clicking when using our 87ai.... the sound files were perfect, no clicking, but each time we tried it with a singer, clicks were back in random spots. We had an Aurora 16 with an AES16e card. The converter was being clocked internally. We switched it to being clocked externally by the AES card and re-synched. All those weird little clicks went away. It was not the mic (which had been serviced by Gunter Wagner only a short while before in any event).

The last time I had a mystery click that was driving me crazy trying to track down, it was from the audio driver for an interface waking up from sleep mode and making it glitch. Reset the input in the DAW and all was well. Not a bad first thing to check quickly.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tokenangmoh View Post
Yup, RX7 Standard's Mouth De-Click module will remove it. I took the liberty of doing so in the attached file (it's very easy). Adobe Audition would do it too, but I don't have that any more and can't remember how...
Thanks! I tried it with my Izotope RX elements and it worked great. I used the De-Click module brought the sensitivity slider to 1.0 and it did the trick. Is that what you used?

I initially wanted to upgrade to Standard but if I already have the tools to fix my problem (Obviously RX Standard can do more) then there is no point to upgrade yet.

EDIT: Just checked the Izotope website, mouth De-Click is a different Algorithm than the regular De-Click. Plus the spectral repair looks great. I bet I could use that to minimize Breaths or finger squeaking on a acoustic guitar recording too. Looks very interesting. Now I got GAS
Attached Thumbnails
U87ai - Help identify source of click in recording-screen-shot-2020-01-23-4.48.16-pm.jpg  

Last edited by Guitarist9891; 4 weeks ago at 11:09 PM..
Old 4 weeks ago
  #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crosscutred View Post
Listen to the mic in an empty room for a while, if it is silent it's the performer.
If it pops then it could be there is moisture on the capsule, keep a couple of bags of silica gel packed around it in it's case and it may solve the problem.
I will definitely do that test. Thanks!
Old 4 weeks ago
  #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stevelindsay View Post
have you checked it's not a clocking issue with your converters? It will produce a similar click in random places and you can be fooled into thinking it's the mic/cable/performer etc. I'm not familiar with your interface but would highly recommend you look into how you are clocking/re-synching your clock before sending the mic away. Also, re the above (listening just to the mic in an empty room), we tried this when trying to troubleshoot the clicking when using our 87ai.... the sound files were perfect, no clicking, but each time we tried it with a singer, clicks were back in random spots. We had an Aurora 16 with an AES16e card. The converter was being clocked internally. We switched it to being clocked externally by the AES card and re-synched. All those weird little clicks went away. It was not the mic (which had been serviced by Gunter Wagner only a short while before in any event).
I am not familiar how I would resync clocking with my current setup. I used to have a MOTU 424 PCIe card with a Tascam DM24 mixer (about 10 years ago) and there I could choose between being clocked form the mixer or the PCI card. Here I believe my only choice is the clock within the Steinberg UR824. Is there a way I can check the clock on the UR824?
Old 4 weeks ago
  #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Guitarist9891 View Post
I used the De-Click module brought the sensitivity slider to 1.0 and it did the trick. Is that what you used?
I used the Mouth De-Click module, which I bias towards higher frequencies. I edit a lot of long-form narration, and find it more accurate than the non-mouth De-Click module when run as an automated process. But if you’re manually zeroing in on the click, one module can be made to do the job of the other. If I’d remembered that Elements contained De-Click, I would have suggested it instead...

If you’re working with short songs (as opposed to 9-hour novels), then Breath Reduction doesn’t do anything you can’t do by manually riding the fader. But yes, erasing finger squeaks - or sharp esses - in the spectral editor is a revelation.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tokenangmoh View Post

If you’re working with short songs (as opposed to 9-hour novels), then Breath Reduction doesn’t do anything you can’t do by manually riding the fader. But yes, erasing finger squeaks - or sharp esses - in the spectral editor is a revelation.
I meant breaths in an acoustic guitar or classical guitar recording that are on top of the guitar sound. Would RX Standard be able to remove those through spectral correction? If not remove than reduce the volume of the breaths. (without affecting the sound of the guitar) If it is breaths on a vocal recording than it's just simple volume automation - not a problem.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Guitarist9891 View Post
I am not familiar how I would resync clocking with my current setup. I used to have a MOTU 424 PCIe card with a Tascam DM24 mixer (about 10 years ago) and there I could choose between being clocked form the mixer or the PCI card. Here I believe my only choice is the clock within the Steinberg UR824. Is there a way I can check the clock on the UR824?
Are you Mac or win? If Mac you just go into the AudioMidi app and select the word clock input for the UR824 there. Try switching from the internal setting to ADAT and back and let it re-sync. If you are Win I think there is a driver that let's you go and change the word clock settings. Also, check the sample rates of your project and the interface are exactly the same.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Guitarist9891 View Post
I meant breaths in an acoustic guitar or classical guitar recording that are on top of the guitar sound. Would RX Standard be able to remove those through spectral correction? If not remove than reduce the volume of the breaths. (without affecting the sound of the guitar) If it is breaths on a vocal recording than it's just simple volume automation - not a problem.
Ah, I should have realised that, sorry. Obviously the Breath Control module is not meant for that use case. The spectral drawing tools would work to an extent, but unlike finger squeaks, breaths have a broad and non-peaky spectral range, which would make erasing them when they overlap with a guitar very tricky. Whenever I’ve tried something like this, I’ve usually found the cure worse than the disease in terms of artefacts. But perhaps others have managed it successfully?
Old 4 weeks ago
  #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stevelindsay View Post
Are you Mac or win? If Mac you just go into the AudioMidi app and select the word clock input for the UR824 there. Try switching from the internal setting to ADAT and back and let it re-sync. If you are Win I think there is a driver that let's you go and change the word clock settings. Also, check the sample rates of your project and the interface are exactly the same.
I am on Mac. Just changed the clock source from internal to adat and back to internal. Hopefully that will work. Sample rates are the same 44.1kHz.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tokenangmoh View Post
The spectral drawing tools would work to an extent, but unlike finger squeaks, breaths have a broad and non-peaky spectral range, which would make erasing them when they overlap with a guitar very tricky. Whenever I’ve tried something like this, I’ve usually found the cure worse than the disease in terms of artefacts. But perhaps others have managed it successfully?
Yeah me too. I usually hold my breath and track classical or steel string guitar in sections because of that. Its harder when I am recording a client - to get them to not breathe

Thanks a lot for the RX tip. I forgot I even had Izotope RX elements. I actually opened a song I did prior and got rid of some of these clicks using the RX DeClick tool.

Now that I know how to fix the problem I gotta find the source of the problem.

Last edited by Guitarist9891; 4 weeks ago at 09:35 AM..
Old 4 weeks ago
  #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Klaus View Post
It probably won't. Please read here why not: https://repforums.prosoundweb.com/in...c,37255.0.html
Thanks, good info.

This has worked for me, possibly the case was a bit damp and the silica gel was effective enough to dry that out? Reducing the damp conditions the mic was being stored in could have solved the problem.
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