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Vocal recording and mic proximity effect Condenser Microphones
Old 3rd September 2014
  #1
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Frankie01's Avatar
Vocal recording and mic proximity effect

Hi all,

old high end mics like the U47 have no "low cut" switch like the U87. So most of the time we adjust lowend in vocal recordings within the chain or afterwards using good eq. (The U87's low cut switch is described to be a special filter made to correct the mic's proximity effect at a distance of 30cm/12inch in cardioid mode)

I just wanted to know if anybody can comment on this special proximity "low cut" of the U87 for vocals. Do you use it for vocals ?

regards
Old 3rd September 2014
  #2
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jmikeperkins's Avatar
The tube U47 had no low cut because it was not designed to be used up close but the U67, U77 and U87 were designed for that and had the low cut. In depends on the vocalist, but I rarely use the low cut on the U87 when recording vocals because it's a pretty drastic cut and I normally don't need that much of a reduction. If I need a low cut, I will either use the low cut on my mic pre (which has 3 frequency options) or patch in an outboard eq and use that to cut the lows. Most of the time I don't use any low cut, because if the singer has decent technique, the proximity effect can be your friend adding warmth etc.
Old 3rd September 2014
  #3
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hasbeen's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by jmikeperkins View Post
The tube U47 had no low cut because it was not designed to be used up close
I was not aware of this. Makes sense though.

However, the beauty of the U47 is in the sounds that one can record experimenting with doing just that. Lovely.

Paul McCartney is a great example of one who loves to get right up on that thing. He almost eats it for a snack in that "Kisses on the Bottom" documentary.


BTW, I never use the cut on my U87 either. It sounds too good like it is!
Old 4th September 2014
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hasbeen View Post
I was not aware of this. Makes sense though.

However, the beauty of the U47 is in the sounds that one can record experimenting with doing just that. Lovely.

Paul McCartney is a great example of one who loves to get right up on that thing. He almost eats it for a snack in that "Kisses on the Bottom" documentary.


BTW, I never use the cut on my U87 either. It sounds too good like it is!
Getting right up on a mic (and I mean right up on it), can actually defeat the proximity effect.
Old 4th September 2014
  #5
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vernier's Avatar
I don't eq those mics.
Old 4th September 2014
  #6
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Brent Hahn's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Alrod View Post
Getting right up on a mic (and I mean right up on it), can actually defeat the proximity effect.
Really? What mic(s) have you found this to be true with?
Old 4th September 2014
  #7
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hasbeen's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alrod View Post
Getting right up on a mic (and I mean right up on it), can actually defeat the proximity effect.
WhatChewTalkinBout Willis?
Old 4th September 2014
  #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brent Hahn View Post
Really? What mic(s) have you found this to be true with?
You're right, I should have been more specific. Any omni mic. Also, stage mics like a Heil P35 which have modern capsule designs.
Old 5th September 2014
  #9
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Brent Hahn's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Alrod View Post
You're right, I should have been more specific. Any omni mic.
There's a pretty good reason for that. And I'm not sure you have to get right up on it.
Old 5th September 2014
  #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brent Hahn View Post
There's a pretty good reason for that. And I'm not sure you have to get right up on it.
It may have been how Paul McCartney was able to get right up on a U47 (as mentioned in an earlier post), without it getting boomy.
Old 5th September 2014
  #11
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Brent Hahn's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Alrod View Post
It may have been how Paul McCartney was able to get right up on a U47 (as mentioned in an earlier post), without it getting boomy.
"It" being what? That the U47 was set on omni?
Old 5th September 2014
  #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brent Hahn View Post
"It" being what? That the U47 was set on omni?
Yes.
Old 5th September 2014
  #13
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hasbeen's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alrod View Post
It may have been how Paul McCartney was able to get right up on a U47 (as mentioned in an earlier post), without it getting boomy.
Good point, and could be. But from my listening observation it seems that it is not in omni (there was also a band in the room) and he is using his expert technique to manipulate the proximity. The boom can be beautiful.
Old 6th September 2014
  #14
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Conversely could have been the industrial strength LSD25 he was imbibing - or possibly the old pencil taped to the mic trick
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