The No.1 Website for Pro Audio
 All  This Thread  Reviews  Gear Database  Gear for sale     Latest  Trending
Does anybody use digital mics ("Neumann Solution D")?
Old 16th July 2011
  #61
DAMN hit me in the heart Plush! My naivety about endorsements shall be my undoing for sure.

Still, that Pizzarelli record sounds pretty nice..... Even the vocals
Old 16th July 2011
  #62
Harmless Wacko
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by John Willett View Post
I record digital and it doesn't sound "digital" - it just sounds like music.

But - great - if you want colour you choose the tools that give you the colour you want.

An AES42 mic. is just another paint-brush.
John.

Are you claiming that your digital recordings sound exactly like source?

Like... Indistinguishable?

Because I have NEVER heard a recording... IN MY LIFE... of ANYTHING that sounds like EXACTLY like source.

I deeply suspect, judging from the progress of the last century or so in the undertaking, that I'm not gonna live to see that day.

Anyhoo.

Unless I've missed something important(and I may have... treat this as a pure question), don't the aforementioned "digital microphones" simply jam a miniaturized version of the EXACT SAME recording technologies currently available in other, albeit larger, forms into the microphone body itself?

IF SO: I would state the following for the record.

Miniaturization is something which, in my experience, has a long history of sacrificing MANY things in audio chains to achieve objectives much more commonly rooted in convenience and manufacturing cost than sonic considerations. Hardly a hard and fast "rule", and certainly something with can be debated pro and con till the cows come home but:

Forget sonics.

Let's, for arguments sake, just consider them subjectively boring at this early juncture in the craft.

Oh no.

Durability in busy studio recording conditions would be first on my list.

"You dropped my Neumann M47 off the shock mount from head height onto a hardwood floor?"

Sucks for me.

"You dropped my Neumann M47, my expensive preamp and my esoteric A/D converter off the shock mount from head height onto a hardwood floor?"

REALLY SUCKS FOR ME.

Right.

Orchestras, indeed.

Me?

No such luck.

I record an endless procession of loose cannons, rampaging across slippery decks in the black of night, with gale force winds off Cape Hope... metaphorically speaking.

Although thinking about it now... I've suffered a little collateral damage to microphones from clumsy string players over the years.

Funny story.

A particular female cellist on a 18pc. scoring date here, tried to sue me back in the late 90's after being struck in the back of the head with the large counterweight on a Atlas boom stand. The stand that a french horn player smashed his instruments CASE into the business end of, denting the hell out the U67 it held, damaging the structural integrity of the head assembly on the mic, and consequently causing the stand to swing around and clobber the woman.

A few weeks later, her lawyer sent me a letter claiming medical expenses and pain and suffering etc. Something they thought I might wanna "pay out of pocket" and "avoid the messy legal stuff".

As far as we could tell, she got a small lump on the back of her noggin', played the whole session(on a video surveillance camera set up for totally unrelated reasons) with no apparent problems, was seen on said video laughing and BS-ing with other players on the session long after the incident.

Did 4 hrs. Got paid, and split in no particular hurry.

We sent a copy of bits of the video to my lawyer, her lawyer, and my insurance company.

Never heard back from anybody but the insurance adjuster, who was falling down laughing on the phone, and thanked me for unwittingly providing fodder for what was apparently one of the funnier claims he'd seen in a bit.

Ahh me.

Memory lame. HOHOHO.

Sorry for the derail, John.

I guess I simply hadta attempt to tell a funny story as I wait patiently for the current technology to even REMOTELY catch up with ANY source audio.

At least to these admittedly tired old ears.

Best regards,

SM.
Old 16th July 2011
  #63
Gear Maniac
 
Wave theory's Avatar
 

I did a session using KM-184D's and 133D's as the mains. I'm neurotic about preamps, converters and proper clocking. So needless to say I was a little nervous about how the mics would sound.

Just a couple minutes into the session I was completely blown away by how clean the mics sounded.

I'm always looking for the cleanest front ends. I don't want color for color sake. If I'm doing a classical or jazz vocal, all I want is the singer. The Neumann D's gave me what I needed.

Now that said, I hope that prices on the mics and interfaces drop. It's still a bit clumsy on location to bring analog and digital mics together via madi from the stage to the control room and clock everything properly. (I'm sure someone will argue that point.)
Old 16th July 2011
  #64
Gear Guru
 
John Willett's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Slipperman View Post
John.

Are you claiming that your digital recordings sound exactly like source?

Like... Indistinguishable?

Because I have NEVER heard a recording... IN MY LIFE... of ANYTHING that sounds like EXACTLY like source.
Of course not - nothing is EXACTLY the same.

But it is removing a lot of the losses and distortions of the analogue chain and getting closer.




Quote:
Originally Posted by Slipperman View Post
Unless I've missed something important(and I may have... treat this as a pure question), don't the aforementioned "digital microphones" simply jam a miniaturized version of the EXACT SAME recording technologies currently available in other, albeit larger, forms into the microphone body itself?
No - Neumann developed a patented 28-bit converter specially for their digital mics.

Before you condemn - read up and learn about AES42 and, if at all possible, give it a try and experience it for yourself.

As I said; in the beginning I did not think too much of digital mics until I researched and tried it.
Old 16th July 2011
  #65
Gear Guru
 
John Willett's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wave theory View Post
I did a session using KM-184D's and 133D's as the mains. I'm neurotic about preamps, converters and proper clocking. So needless to say I was a little nervous about how the mics would sound.

Just a couple minutes into the session I was completely blown away by how clean the mics sounded.

I'm always looking for the cleanest front ends. I don't want color for color sake. If I'm doing a classical or jazz vocal, all I want is the singer. The Neumann D's gave me what I needed.
This is my attitude and what I found myself.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Wave theory View Post
Now that said, I hope that prices on the mics and interfaces drop. It's still a bit clumsy on location to bring analog and digital mics together via madi from the stage to the control room and clock everything properly. (I'm sure someone will argue that point.)
The Neumann mics. are not much different.

In the UK the KM-A is £375 and the KM-D is £550 and the capsules are the same for both. So it's only £175 more for the digital version.

Yes, I agree about the interfaces - it will be good when AES42 inputs to equipment become standard.

After all - it's not difficult - in the basic form it's just adding 10V phantom to an AES3 input (though ou will need an SRC to clock if you use several AES42 mics. in this method).
Old 16th July 2011
  #66
Lives for gear
 
Plush's Avatar
The discussion herewith is valuable for sure. For me there is a little tug-of-war going on in my head. I am curious about how I would use and interface these digital mics in to my set-up and I am skeptical that they will offer me the same expensive sound that I currently give my clients.

I will stand by for more news and products in digital mics and interfaces.

For me the problem is that I do not require an all in one "solution" to problems I do not have. I have no noise, no distortion (that I don't choose), no interference, no losses.

How do I know this?

I know this because when I walk from the control room in to the hall, the sound sounds the same as what I am hearing on the monitor speakers.

Also there is a tendency in the classical music recording world for engineers to want to feel like they are working at an "advanced level." I have heard supposed gurus tell others that if they are not working with such and such equipment or techniques that they are not cutting edge. Each of these mopes has fallen by the wayside as far as professional and commercial visibility and is concerned.

No, those airs of elitism are merely provincial views based on recording fashion and "product of the moment."

So I would not seek to be regarded as working cutting edge technology by using digital microphones.

The fun part for me is that instead of relying on a one-stop, pre-made, pre "qualified" and pre-chosen digital mic sound "solution," I get to show off my skill on the recording floor. I am paid well for these skills.

The extra value a skilled engineer brings is to be a specialist. To have the acumen and discerning ear to have already sorted through the hundreds of options available and created a "source-to-recorder" system chosen by oneself. This includes knowing what to believe and what weight to assign to the statements made from manufacturers, salespeople, west coast promo-men and even other engineers.

One thereby demonstrates expertise by combining, hooking up and having on offer specific signal chain elements that one has chosen and interfaced in specific ways.

In my view currently, these choices are bound to deliver a much superior result than can be had in an inexpensive mic package.

Last edited by Plush; 16th July 2011 at 01:35 PM.. Reason: hopefully more clarity
Old 17th July 2011
  #67
Gear Nut
 
sharpeleven's Avatar
the studio I work at has got 8 (eight) of the D01's. Very critical at first, I was often forced to use'em for lack of other options - and - I grew to love'em!

I'm continuously amazed by their versatility. They are so different than any mic I had previously worked with (my first 'digital' mic). They sound VERY transparent, making many of the other condensers (large or small diaphragm) sound harsh and distorted in comparison.

Their absolute lack of mojo makes it very confusing to work with them at first. Seems like they always just truthfully translate the signal - nothing more, nothing less... It's definitely not the mic close mic Horns or Vocals. The lack of distortion makes the sound too clean/clear and it's not the sound/excitement we are used to and expect to hear from close micing let's say a vocalist.

The D01's are rather forgiving in terms of placement and room sound (a blessing for that particular studio).

I find they work best from a bit of a distance. Haven't had much success close to a source, other than the occasional bass drum or maybe upright. Anything that needs needs to be tidied up.

They sound really great as room/zonal mics as well as grand piano just outside the bow and can bring clarity to kick drum etc, if that's what's needed.

The absence of noise opens up interesting new possibilities. For example it's possible to set it up in one corner of the live room and record a person whispering from across the room at a 30 ft distance. Most any mic/preamp combo would be too hissy.
Old 26th July 2011
  #68
Gear Maniac
 
Wave theory's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by John Willett View Post
...Yes, I agree about the interfaces - it will be good when AES42 inputs to equipment become standard.

After all - it's not difficult - in the basic form it's just adding 10V phantom to an AES3 input (though ou will need an SRC to clock if you use several AES42 mics. in this method).
I'm really not a fan of SRC's. Asynchronous SRC's can turn jitter into noise and distortion.
Old 26th July 2011
  #69
Gear Maniac
 
Wave theory's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Plush View Post
Also there is a tendency in the classical music recording world for engineers to want to feel like they are working at an "advanced level." I have heard supposed gurus tell others that if they are not working with such and such equipment or techniques that they are not cutting edge. Each of these mopes has fallen by the wayside as far as professional and commercial visibility and is concerned.

No, those airs of elitism are merely provincial views based on recording fashion and "product of the moment."

So I would not seek to be regarded as working cutting edge technology by using digital microphones.

The fun part for me is that instead of relying on a one-stop, pre-made, pre "qualified" and pre-chosen digital mic sound "solution," I get to show off my skill on the recording floor. I am paid well for these skills.
Say what you will. I plugged in the mics, listened, and they sounded very clean. I liked the sound. I also like a very good tube 47 or 149, but for much different application.

Getting good results using a digital mic, in the proper application will not revoke your golden ear certificate.
Old 26th July 2011
  #70
Gear Guru
 
John Willett's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wave theory View Post
I'm really not a fan of SRC's. Asynchronous SRC's can turn jitter into noise and distortion.
I agree, that's why all my AES42 mics are mode-2, clocked by the system and don't need a SRC.
Old 11th August 2011
  #71
Lives for gear
 
Yannick's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by John Willett View Post
Yes, I agree about the interfaces - it will be good when AES42 inputs to equipment become standard.

After all - it's not difficult - in the basic form it's just adding 10V phantom to an AES3 input (though ou will need an SRC to clock if you use several AES42 mics. in this method).
Can somebody explain then why an 8ch interface that only provides control and 10V costs 4000 euro ?

Also, I read you are using the mics in mode-2, but I cannot find a manufacturer that will give their jitter specs. At the very least, when I do a 24ch orchestral session, I know that my 8 most important channels are converted on an internal clock.

Or is this really different from AES3 ?
Old 11th August 2011
  #72
Gear Guru
 
John Willett's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Yannick View Post
Can somebody explain then why an 8ch interface that only provides control and 10V costs 4000 euro ?
You will have to ask Neumann or RME.

The full interface includes software and Mode-2 clocking and is not AES42 in it's simplest form.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Yannick View Post
Also, I read you are using the mics in mode-2, but I cannot find a manufacturer that will give their jitter specs. At the very least, when I do a 24ch orchestral session, I know that my 8 most important channels are converted on an internal clock.

Or is this really different from AES3 ?
No, it's not that different from AES3 as the basic audio stream is AES3.

You will have to ask Neumann, Schoeps, Sennheiser what their Jitter specs are if they don't quote them.

Mode-2 is clocked along the mic. cable and works differently from normal word clock (though the interfaces can take a standard word clock input).

Have you read my papers and other articles, or are you only going by this thread?
Old 11th August 2011
  #73
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Yannick View Post
Can somebody explain then why an 8ch interface that only provides control and 10V costs 4000 euro ?
It just proves one of neumanns claims
that digital mics make expensive pre amps redundand wrong.

4000 Euros buys you 8 channels of excellent
Millennia HV-3D preamps, which not only are high end
but will sound better every time you upgrade your AD converter.
Old 11th August 2011
  #74
Gear Guru
 
John Willett's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shaman View Post
It just proves one of neumanns claims
that digital mics make expensive pre amps redundand wrong.
Er - no - you only need the interface if your equipment doesn't have it already.

You can plug a digital mic. directly into an SD 788T or an AETA 4MinX and several mixers have or will have AES42 inputs.



Posted via the Gearslutz iPhone app
Old 11th August 2011
  #75
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
You can plug a digital mic. directly into an SD 788T or an AETA 4MinX and several mixers have or will have AES42 inputs.
But then the 788 will have to resample all the inputs to align clocking, no?
Old 12th August 2011
  #76
Gear Guru
 
John Willett's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by David Spearritt View Post
But then the 788 will have to resample all the inputs to align clocking, no?
Yes
Old 27th June 2014
  #77
Lives for gear
 
Bruce Watson's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by David Spearritt View Post
But then the 788 will have to resample all the inputs to align clocking, no?
Yes, I know this thread was last active three years ago, but I think this last answer needs a bit more of an explanation. So...

Yes, the 788 will need to resample, but only because the 788 is AES42 mode 1. If it were AES42 mode 2, and talking to mode 2 mics, then no resampling would be needed as all the mode 2 mics would come in on aligned clocking. At least that's my understanding of how AES42 mode 2 works.
Old 28th June 2014
  #78
Gear Guru
 
John Willett's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bruce Watson View Post
Yes, I know this thread was last active three years ago, but I think this last answer needs a bit more of an explanation. So...

Yes, the 788 will need to resample, but only because the 788 is AES42 mode 1. If it were AES42 mode 2, and talking to mode 2 mics, then no resampling would be needed as all the mode 2 mics would come in on aligned clocking. At least that's my understanding of how AES42 mode 2 works.
AES42 mode-2 works by a clocking signal sent from the controller.

This needs dedicated software built into the recorder (or interface).

As far as I know, all portable recorders so far only work mode-1.


Posted from my iPhone
Post Reply

Welcome to the Gearslutz Pro Audio Community!

Registration benefits include:
  • The ability to reply to and create new discussions
  • Access to members-only giveaways & competitions
  • Interact with VIP industry experts in our guest Q&As
  • Access to members-only sub forum discussions
  • Access to members-only Chat Room
  • Get INSTANT ACCESS to the world's best private pro audio Classifieds for only USD $20/year
  • Promote your eBay auctions and Reverb.com listings for free
  • Remove this message!
You need an account to post a reply. Create a username and password below and an account will be created and your post entered.


 
 
Slide to join now Processing…
Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Forum Jump
Forum Jump