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Copying a 'classic' mic dynamic chart by EQing a cheap mic... thoughts?
Old 11th September 2019
  #121
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s wave's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian M. Boykin View Post
I’m familiar with it. How about inductors? I have some inductor graphic EQ’s that add a silkiness to the upper registers. Say 8k and up.
Are you still making microphones? .... would like to hear about them if you are...
Old 11th September 2019
  #122
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Brian M. Boykin's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by s wave View Post
Are you still making microphones? .... would like to hear about them if you are...
I’ve built three so far. I’m starting on a fourth. Two have the mic parts schoeps circuit as the foundation. One was EQ’d flat with an AAM(Advanced Audio Microphones) k47 capsule. We use that one a lot for vocals. Another is the same schoeps circuit but with some high frequency roll off and an AAM k67 capsule. Turned out nice but the k47 seems to keep winning out. The third is the KM84 circuit with an AAM c12 capsule. I haven’t played with that one much. Can’t really say much about it except it has some color compared to the other two. The one I’m starting on is morphing an Avantone CV12 into an Elam 251 clone. It’s getting the micparts circuit and an AAM c12 capsule. I may upgrade the capsule to a Tim Cambell or Beesneez depending on how it turns out. All of these are going through Jim Williams modded Symetrix sx202’s. So the preamp isn’t adding or taking away from the mics. Oh, I forgot that I did the schoeps circuit for some SDC’s but haven’t upgraded the capsules. I made them for drum overheads but I put up some NOS Panther Ribbons for OH’s and all my cymbal and hihat issues went away. I’be been running a modded MXL R144 on snare top. I just bought a Golden Age Project R1 Active mkiii to try. I like the active ribbons. You don’t have to think about impedance matching. Just run them through existing preamps and call it a day. They can, however, be noisy from what I’ve read but I haven’t had a problem using them on drums.
Old 11th September 2019
  #123
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s wave's Avatar
NOS Panther Ribbons for OH’s and all my cymbal and hihat issues went away This is nice. - I found that recording at HIGH sampling rates'depth really works well (with cheaper equipment) - for cymbals (all those highs) something in the inaudible range affects the audible range or something.

Ribbons are underused I think. You have been busy man. Oh, have you made any custom mic frames/containers out of other materials? (would love to get a lathe)
Old 4 weeks ago
  #124
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian M. Boykin View Post
I’m familiar with it. How about inductors? I have some inductor graphic EQ’s that add a silkiness to the upper registers. Say 8k and up.


Inductors add distortion from hysteresis... probably some IMD as well. Hadn't really noticed the IMD myself.



-tINY

Old 4 weeks ago
  #125
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Branislav's Avatar
 

Did that some years ago, a friend tried to EQ his AT2020 to match my U47. Came kinda close, but it really depended on which part of the song he tried to match, as if you try to match the loud part, the soft part of the song is not at the same, level on both microphones, it actually is louder on U47, meaning that U47 does some compression to the sound and you can't change compression with EQ, can you?
Old 4 weeks ago
  #126
Here for the gear
 

The purpose of eqs was thought of by many 'old school ' techs to be compensation for unequal frequency response. Look at the response of a mic with a pink noise generator, or the chart if available and correct it. This is particularly efficient with ribbon microphones, the frequency response on most of them, even the classic 44s being awful, but the physical principle of the mic is so warm. This warmth will not disappear with correction and can truly make any half decent ribbon sound much better, even amazing. The old Altec passive graphic eqs will beat a pultec at this because you have enough frequencies to work with and they sound great. I do not use eq's as an enhancer, considering that mic placement, instrument and mic selection, adjusting electric guitars at the source or on the amp is the way to go for me. A great pre amp and good mic placement will always deliver the goods
Old 4 weeks ago
  #127
Gear Head
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by minervx View Post
Assume you were to get two random unsolved rubix cubes each in different orderings. There would be a desired result (the best possible outcome; i.e. all sides solid and solved). One Rubix cube might be closer to the solution than another but one may require more changes to reach that solution, but we wouldn't say that either of those Rubix cubes would result in a different solution.

How much does paying $1000 for a mic preferred frequency response matter if even the best possible mic is still going to get EQ'd?
minervx...your last sentence says it all. I recall some politician talking about "it's difficult to put lipstick on a turd" or "it's hard to polish a turd".... EQ essentially becomes a matter of preference. but EQ can be heard, and too much EQ is objectionable (like the smell of a turd)...

I don't do much vocal recording (virtually all of my recording is classical), but I start with a SM58, EV RE-20, EV666, Sennheiser MD421, etc. on a vocalist and go from there. Many radio stations use the RE20 on air and those mics can take a beating from daily use. Over the years, artists like the proximity effect with a condenser mic (i.e. U47, U 67, etc.). I also like the idea of using a clone of of one of those high end mics on a vocalist with compression or EQ as necessary. Chinese made mic capsules are nowhere the quality of a Neumann or Schoeps capsule, but for vocals they will work, and EQ will take care of the +/-10 dB bump found with those capsules...Always use a screen or other protective means with a condenser mic...the membranes are electrically charged and attract dust, etc.

Anyone who owns high end mics know how much it costs to have capsules replaced or other work done on them. Capsule cleaning in my opinion doesn't work for long. Once airborne artifacts, or especially humidity in the breath settles on a capsule membrane for long, the gold sputtering is attacked and that capsule eventually will become noisy (insulation breakdown or contamination) and require replacement (or reskinning)...

Those who understand the circuit theory and math of filters (aka EQ) of the Butterworth, Tchebysheff, or other kinds know that any use of a reactive component (i.e. capacitor or inductor) includes a time delay component which may "color" the sound... (However, a classic Pultec EQ sounds good when applied sparingly...)
Old 4 weeks ago
  #128
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s wave's Avatar
"enough frequencies to work with" this a a mouthful... and so important in most recordings.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #129
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rmburrow View Post
minervx...your last sentence says it all. I recall some politician talking about "it's difficult to put lipstick on a turd" or "it's hard to polish a turd".... EQ essentially becomes a matter of preference. but EQ can be heard, and too much EQ is objectionable (like the smell of a turd)...

I don't do much vocal recording (virtually all of my recording is classical), but I start with a SM58, EV RE-20, EV666, Sennheiser MD421, etc. on a vocalist and go from there. Many radio stations use the RE20 on air and those mics can take a beating from daily use. Over the years, artists like the proximity effect with a condenser mic (i.e. U47, U 67, etc.). I also like the idea of using a clone of of one of those high end mics on a vocalist with compression or EQ as necessary. Chinese made mic capsules are nowhere the quality of a Neumann or Schoeps capsule, but for vocals they will work, and EQ will take care of the +/-10 dB bump found with those capsules...Always use a screen or other protective means with a condenser mic...the membranes are electrically charged and attract dust, etc.

Anyone who owns high end mics know how much it costs to have capsules replaced or other work done on them. Capsule cleaning in my opinion doesn't work for long. Once airborne artifacts, or especially humidity in the breath settles on a capsule membrane for long, the gold sputtering is attacked and that capsule eventually will become noisy (insulation breakdown or contamination) and require replacement (or reskinning)...

Those who understand the circuit theory and math of filters (aka EQ) of the Butterworth, Tchebysheff, or other kinds know that any use of a reactive component (i.e. capacitor or inductor) includes a time delay component which may "color" the sound... (However, a classic Pultec EQ sounds good when applied sparingly...)
Agree with almost everything in your post, except...

A select few of the Chinese capsules ARE competitive, with the premium American/Japanese/European capsules now.
For example, the Chinese capsules used in the T-Funk microphones.
I particularly like their TF51/TF47/CU-29 (Copperhead).

I've even got a flukey (good) AKG P120, that sounds like a $400+ LDC.
Would give the AT4040 & 4033 a run, for their money!
Chris
Old 4 weeks ago
  #130
Gear Nut
 

Mic "Arrays" As EQ Alternative

@ s wave (and others) An interesting experiment can be had by taking two very different microphone types, and combining them in an "array". I tried this with a series of female vocalists for sources, and made an array of an AKG C-1000, and a cheapo large ribbon dynamic (early Nady).

By adjusting the capsules as close as possible to each other, equidistant to the source (behind a pop filter to protect the ribbon) and then adjusting the distance of the C-1000 alone for "best" presence peak, I got a sound that all the vocalists favored over a decent (Neuman U-89i) single diaphragm mic. Once set, the channel to channel balance allowed a sort of EQ AND dynamic response to be adjusted for the summed outputs. It seems cheesy, but it was an effective use of less expensive mic types.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #131
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s wave's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by brainditch View Post
@ s wave (and others) An interesting experiment can be had by taking two very different microphone types, and combining them in an "array". I tried this with a series of female vocalists for sources, and made an array of an AKG C-1000, and a cheapo large ribbon dynamic (early Nady).

By adjusting the capsules as close as possible to each other, equidistant to the source (behind a pop filter to protect the ribbon) and then adjusting the distance of the C-1000 alone for "best" presence peak, I got a sound that all the vocalists favored over a decent (Neuman U-89i) single diaphragm mic. Once set, the channel to channel balance allowed a sort of EQ AND dynamic response to be adjusted for the summed outputs. It seems cheesy, but it was an effective use of less expensive mic types.
This sounds promising. I can see how it can work... you meant the original AKG C-1000 (not the C-1000S) they S should work also?. seems like. I am AKG fan anyway. Zeroing in the best peak presence makes sense too. Kind of like 2 wheel drive vs inferior 4 wheel drive... will look into it (thanks for your time and experience)
Old 4 weeks ago
  #132
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In a great sounding room, my money would on the U89i-especially in omni.
Chris
Old 4 weeks ago
  #133
Gear Nut
 

Yes, the C-1000s would work also. In fact, after the success of the mentioned sessions, I've also tried the array with a Shure SM-81, with similar success. The key thing here is that both of the condenser types used were a "back-electret" style, often noted for being a bit harsh on the top compared to normal SDC's or LDC's. Yes, there might have been a bit more noise than using a different single-diaphragm mic, or even a different dual-diaphragm LDC, but the sluggishness of the Ribbon complemented the sizzle of the BEC's well, and gave it a smooth transient dynamics authority over a wide frequency range. The U-89i has its place, no doubt, and I can scarcely fault it for authority in the midrange, even in omni (which was an interesting thing, because you see a ribbon mic has similarities to a figure-8, therefore the combination of a figure-8 for the lows and low mids, yet a cardioid for the top was favored here) but my results were heard by a few, and determined in a double-blind way to win the day.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #134
Gear Nut
 

Just a quick correction, the U89i is I believe a dual diaphragm mic (but a coincident pair?), otherwise it wouldn't have the ability to produce figure-8 or omni patterns.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #135
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s wave's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by brainditch View Post
Yes, the C-1000s would work also. In fact, after the success of the mentioned sessions, I've also tried the array with a Shure SM-81, with similar success. The key thing here is that both of the condenser types used were a "back-electret" style, often noted for being a bit harsh on the top compared to normal SDC's or LDC's. Yes, there might have been a bit more noise than using a different single-diaphragm mic, or even a different dual-diaphragm LDC, but the sluggishness of the Ribbon complemented the sizzle of the BEC's well, and gave it a smooth transient dynamics authority over a wide frequency range. The U-89i has its place, no doubt, and I can scarcely fault it for authority in the midrange, even in omni (which was an interesting thing, because you see a ribbon mic has similarities to a figure-8, therefore the combination of a figure-8 for the lows and low mids, yet a cardioid for the top was favored here) but my results were heard by a few, and determined in a double-blind way to win the day.
You know the funniest thing about sound (especially 2 sounds) - is what they do to each other. Sometimes they bring out the worst of the original sound or half and half or the rare wow. (almost like a simple synth) on slight change and magic starts happening. I often imagined what a top new LDC would sound like on state of the art 50;s tape. And what the best 30's Ribbon would sound like on a modern state of the the art DAW. We have moved to the far right of the 'bright' side of the equipment - but deep velvet can really compliment.contrast it... thanks so much for your post I am sure others will appreciate it too.

I have spent a year with a cheap cheap 60's unbalanced mic - and yes it is not going anywhere... now that I found a few sweet spots. I have spent a year with lower end sensitive dynamic - and that is not going any where either... Using them together produces somethings I could never dream of. It is so enlightening to spend quantity time with one piece of equipment. You end up extracting the sweet spots and the juice out of the rind... great experience going forward.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #136
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The U89i is a dual capsule, originally intended by Neumann to replace the U87ai. Rather underrated in comparison to the U87ai.
And a relative bargain, at around $1800 used. A world class mic IMHO.
Chris
Old 4 weeks ago
  #137
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s wave's Avatar
I have heard from many posts that the u89 is a locker mainstay for female vocals and some higher frequency recordings. Since they are a touch on the flat side but clear? - I wonder how they would handle cymbals?
Old 4 weeks ago
  #138
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I've only had the opportunity to try/sing through the U89i, a couple of times. IMHO as long as you're happy with the sound you're getting in the room-You'll be happy with the U89i.

For example, the best vocal mic I've ever tried to help "get"... The classic Stephen Stills-ish 60's/70's vocal tone vibe (ala Buffalo Springfield/CSN&Y) is a stock Oktava 319.
I bought it used for $120 total. Would I want it on every song-no. But somehow it accentuates my natural "rasp" (in certain keys) in the right ways.

Kinda like using the right golf club, for the specific shot. So a U89i would stay in the cabinet, on that sort of song on me.
Chris
Old 4 weeks ago
  #139
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s wave's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by chessparov2.0 View Post
I've only had the opportunity to try/sing through the U89i, a couple of times. IMHO as long as you're happy with the sound you're getting in the room-You'll be happy with the U89i.

For example, the best vocal mic I've ever tried to help "get"... The classic Stephen Stills-ish 60's/70's vocal tone vibe (ala Buffalo Springfield/CSN&Y) is a stock Oktava 319.
I bought it used for $120 total. Would I want it on every song-no. But somehow it accentuates my natural "rasp" (in certain keys) in the right ways.

Kinda like using the right golf club, for the specific shot. So a U89i would stay in the cabinet, on that sort of song on me.
Chris
Buffalo Springfield has some awesome recordings on vocals and guitar and more... Russian Oktava 319 (maybe it was a 219?) can deliver the Spriingfield/Stills ish sound? - thanks for the heads up.

Last edited by s wave; 4 weeks ago at 07:28 AM.. Reason: add info and change wording
Old 4 weeks ago
  #140
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Sorry S Wave... I just meant the 319 on me! I know the U67 was used on Stephen vocals, during CSN (&Y)'s studio recordings.
Chris
Old 4 weeks ago
  #141
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the 219 - from Sound on Sound: "Rumour has it that the large diaphragm capsule used is based on an old Neumann design and, having done direct comparisons with my Microtech UM70 (a rather more elegant ex-Eastern bloc mic also purporting to use a Neumann capsule design), I can say that the two mics sounded so similar that in a blind test with vocals, I couldn’t tell one from the other."

WOW these are powerful words in comparing a $100 mic to a $1,000++ mic. hmmm best kept secret? can this be true... was microtech aligned with geffel yes... then this could make sense...
Old 4 weeks ago
  #142
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My limited understanding is that today, we would call the Oktava's "inspired" by the Neumann designs. Also my impression is that the 219/319's are an excellent value and sounding microphone. IMHO up there (or at least close to), the Warm microphones, in sound quality. (WA-47 is my fave out of their line BTW)

Also as you know, any musical source captured by a microphone, is similar to a chemical reaction... In that what sounds great on a given vocalist (like the SM57 and the great Paul Rodgers), may not work out so well on someone else. So it is kind of amazing the U87/U47/U67 work as well as they do on so many sources.
Chris
Old 3 weeks ago
  #143
Gear Guru
The MO on Oktava mics was that Russia pretty much had a stand alone industry and did lots of orchestral recording. Oktavas were a staple and if you didn't have a Neumann available, could use as a low cost alternative. Figure that there weren't a lot of in-between mics back then. Quality was always iffy and they are pretty primitive when you look inside.

I think they because of the capsule, sound great. I loaded up on mine because a friend saw the GC blowout and said, go get those! List was $400- for the 319 and $1K for the 2500, and they were discounting 80%...... Joly had a love for these and got my 2500 modded. Paid more for the mod than the mic!......

They still are really inexpensive and I think valid in today's market.....
Old 3 weeks ago
  #144
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s wave's Avatar
After WWII the Neumann Gefel technology must of had many traveling paths. THe one to the orient and Shanghai... and the one to Russia (there might be more) There is a bit of a difference of having an 'inspired by' mic opposed to a a decent small factory actually having the blueprints. There has not been a definitive expose yet - but it is fun hunting down the tidbits today... What was that resonator plate really doing in the 219s? Must have of had something going there.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #145
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The 219 looks to be a decent mic and looking at the guts very easy to upgrade the components, however, all the mics I see used have ASM written on them. The vintage models are in the $450 range. I won’t touch the mk-012’s because of the ASM debacle, what’s the scoop on the 219 ASM’s. The capsule is my biggest concern. I mean, without the capsule being genuine, it seems pointless to proceed with a 219.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #146
Gear Guru
Quote:
Originally Posted by s wave View Post
After WWII the Neumann Gefel technology must of had many traveling paths. THe one to the orient and Shanghai... and the one to Russia (there might be more) There is a bit of a difference of having an 'inspired by' mic opposed to a a decent small factory actually having the blueprints. There has not been a definitive expose yet - but it is fun hunting down the tidbits today... What was that resonator plate really doing in the 219s? Must have of had something going there.
Part of the problem with Chinese mics was they mismatched capsules and circuits.....

I took the resonator out of my 319 and cut out a layer of mesh. The resonator is supposedly for high frequencies. Probably also protects the membrane with spitty singers!......
Old 3 weeks ago
  #147
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Hi Brian. There are no known counterfeits of the 219. The mid-run 219's & 319's (ASM/McKay) varied the most in consistency. Ironically, my 219 & 319 are from this mid period...

And both are exceptional sounding!
My 219 is U47ish, similar to the Warm WA-47.
Odd but true on my voice.
I may eventually do the "Dorsey" mod on my 219, to clean it it up a tiny bit.
Won't be touching the stock 319 though.
Great character mic "as is".

When my work settles down fairly soon, I can do a 219 vocal recording FWIW.
Chris

P.S. BTW there were only a small percentage of the 319's, that were Chinese fakes.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #148
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s wave's Avatar
I was reading up on the Microtech 930 and the 930ts - The TS has a transformer... and the TS is usually considered a better? vocal mic for its smooth/air. Why is this - is it from inside the transformer when the signal (jumps) into/through an electromagnetic field and then back to a signal? thx
Old 3 weeks ago
  #149
Gear Nut
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ebeowulf17 View Post
Spectral balance is only part of what makes some mics better than others (or at the very least different than others.) Transient response, distortion, how smooth or peaky their response is, etc. Even if/when it's possible to EQ a reasonable tonal match, you'll still have those other differences.

As someone else pointed out, off-axis response is another key factor that you can't fix with EQ (or any other way!) Many of the best mics are chosen in large part for their off-axis response.

Having said all that, there's no harm in experimenting. A few years ago I switched back and forth between XY cardioids and an all-in-one MS stereo mic for main pair duties. At one point I tried your idea and found that I could make each rig sound pretty similar to the other with the right EQ... but none of those mics were super-high-end, and they all had similar off-axis response, so they were fairly good candidates for such matching.

On the other hand, I've since purchased a much nicer MS pair, and there's no amount of EQ that can make either of my old rigs match the new one. I can certainly sculpt them to be closer if I want, but the other factors are still all missing.
....Wait, mics have variable slew rate? Based on dynamic vs. condenser vs. ribbon, or is it more than that? What factors are directly involved in this?
Old 3 weeks ago
  #150
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dlane View Post
....Wait, mics have variable slew rate? Based on dynamic vs. condenser vs. ribbon, or is it more than that? What factors are directly involved in this?
I am not well versed on (variable) slew rates ib an audio chain. But I believe it is similar (in theory) to F-stops and T-stops in camera and film lenses where there is how much light (energy/light) get to the lens: Fstop; and how much (energy/light gets to the film) There is what it is 'designed to do' and what is 'theoretical' and what is 'actual', There must be many things that affect the energy going in and through a mic. Of course a lens can be adjusted with no ill effects - where as there is a lot of relative effects in a microphone. I imagine that there is fluctuation of signals in a mic - it is generally designed against variations? I read a little post on a guy who was trying to develop a 'variable slew rate' for aesthetics and distortions - it would be real nice to hear about what the experts say on this...
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