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Ouch! I need FOUR figure 8's
Old 29th July 2005
Ouch! I need FOUR figure 8's

I'm about to try using Hamasaki square technique to record extra surround ambience. [Summary: put four figure-8 mics in the reverberant field at the corners of a virtual 2 meter square (to decorrelate them). Aim the nulls at the stagefront to reject direct sound. Steer one mic to each speaker except the center channel.]

Trouble is, I don't have four identical figure 8 mics in my locker.

This is an experiment, so there's a limit to what I'm willing to spend. If I budget $2k, I could do any of the following:

1) Buy four Shure KSM33's.
2) Buy four Rode NT-2A's.
3) Buy two AKG 414-XLS and hope they sound a little bit like the 414EB-P48 pair I already have.
4) Give up on this idea and buy a lot of beer.

I've had reasonably good luck using my 414EB's as Side mics for M/S work, so I'm expecting decent results from 3). On the other hand, I've found a AT 4050 sounds pretty obnoxious in the same role. I've seen Tom Jung use KSM33's on a six-mic tree, but they were in omni or cardioid, not figure 8. I don't know a thing about the Rode option.

Anyone have ideas, or better yet actual experience?

David L. Rick
Seventh String Recording
Old 29th July 2005
Gear Addict
mdbeh's Avatar

I've never tried the technique, but for four figure-8 mics, how about some Beyer M130's? They're nice sounding mics, and not too expensive.
Old 29th July 2005
Lives for gear
Berolzheimer's Avatar


Since it's a one off experiment, why not rent some mics fo rthe gig- it's a lot cheaper and you can try some different combos, then if you want to do it more you'll know what to buy. It's probably worth trying some ribbon mics if you have pres that are a good mate for'em, or try the active royer.
Old 29th July 2005
Originally Posted by mdbeh
I've never tried the technique, but for four figure-8 mics, how about some Beyer M130's? They're nice sounding mics, and not too expensive.
I own a M160, so I'm familiar with the Beyer dual ribbon sound. But I don't think M130's are sensitive enough for an application that involves capturing strictly hall sound.
Old 29th July 2005
Lives for gear
themaidsroom's Avatar

i agree with rent!

rent 4 coles 4038's and see how that works - i always find its cheapest to buy
things once, and that might take more patience..............

if you're recording live strings, you want the best - or buy one coles and rent the others

good luck

- jack
Old 29th July 2005
Gear Addict
Beezoboy's Avatar

Buy 2 Royer SF'1s and rent two more. They are incrediblly natural sounding mics and pick up sounds at distances as if it were closer than it really is. I mean I have heard it on acoustic guitar from 4 feet away and it sound like it was right there.

Seriously, you'll have a couple awesome overheads and an awesome pair for a Blumelin setup too.

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