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Flute Chamber Concert - 3 Mic setups Condenser Microphones
Old 2 weeks ago
Gear Maniac

Thread Starter
Flute Chamber Concert - 3 Mic setups

I recorded a rehearsal for a community flute chamber concert.

This location is wetter than most locations in which I record. I put up 3 different mic setups (all on the same stand).

I am attaching excerpts from 3 pieces, to provide a sample of the textures and colors that are part of this concert:

First piece is two piccolos & piano.
Second piece is flute, alto sax, and piano.
Third piece is 4 flutes (3 C, 1 alto), using extended techniques.

Each of the three excerpts is presented three times: once with each mic configuration. The three configurations are always identified the same. That is, "A" means the same thing all three times. Same with "B", and "C".

I solicit comments, particularly with respect to two questions:
1) Which mic configuration do you prefer, and is it the same for all three pieces?
2) Does it sound to you like I was too far away, too close, or about right.

Of course, I will provide specifics on mic configuration, soon.

Thank you for any comments.


P.S. I apologize for the inconsistent levels in this experiment.

P.P.S. Also, this is the raw data. No adjustments/processing.
Attached Files

PicPno-micA.mp3 (4.25 MB, 561 views)

PicPno-micB.mp3 (4.25 MB, 568 views)

PicPno-micC.mp3 (4.25 MB, 553 views)

FltSaxPno-micA.mp3 (4.55 MB, 555 views)

FltSaxPno-micB.mp3 (4.55 MB, 534 views)

FltSaxPno-micC.mp3 (4.55 MB, 557 views)

Flts-extended-micA.mp3 (3.03 MB, 530 views)

Flts-extended-micB.mp3 (3.03 MB, 532 views)

Flts-extended-micC.mp3 (3.03 MB, 533 views)

Last edited by dgpretzel; 2 weeks ago at 09:07 AM.. Reason: Add P.P.S.
Old 2 weeks ago
Here for the gear
I listened on cans and ipad to the tracks and cannot tell you my favorite setup.
For me on all tracks there is too much of suboptimal room sound. I'd go nearer to source use cardioids (mk4) and process later.

As I am flutist I am really interested in oevres. Could you please tell me the name and composer of the 2nd piece fl sx and piano also the third tune for picc flutes and altoflute.

Thanks for posting

Old 2 weeks ago
Here for the gear
Hi again,
After second audition.
I prefer the version three - I think this is AB with omnis - but unfortunately the room is not the best.

Old 2 weeks ago
Lives for gear
jnorman's Avatar
Dgp - I clearly prefer mic A in each of the pieces. I’m guessing it is an ORTF configuration, since I can hear the location of each instrument, which is what I like in chamber music. Mic B may be M/S, and mic C is probably AB omnis. Mic B seems very central focused, and mic C is your typical diffuse spaced mic sound. I did not hate the room, it sounded okay to me (I’ve recorded in WAY worse places...). From the sound of the stereo spread in mic A, I’m not sure you could get much closer, but I think Erich is right to advocate getting closer if you can - in my experience, it is a rare space that can give you a perfect ambience and reverb by itself. I always prefer placing the mics in the near field unless it is a great place and there is no audience.
Old 1 week ago
Gear Maniac

Thread Starter
Thank you for your comments, Erich and jnorman.

The actual concert took place over the weekend. I recorded it, and I was able to get closer. I include similar excerpts as before, but about a foot closer, and 3 ft lower.

Do you think this is an improvement?

You are both correct regarding mic configuration "C". It is a pair of spaced omnis (DPA 4060) at 45cm.

Erich, the flute, sax, and piano piece is "Trio for flute, saxophone, and piano", Mvt #2 , by Russell Peterson (b. 1969). The third piece (I mischaracterized it a bit-- it is two C flutes, pic, and alto flute) is "Tamar" by Nicole Chamberlain (b. 1977).

It was a very interesting concert. There also were a couple pieces with bass flute.

I will provide more details on the other two mic configurations, after I see if there are any further comments regarding the new samples.

Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

Attached Files

2-PicPno-MicA.mp3 (4.31 MB, 321 views)

2-PicPno-MicB.mp3 (4.31 MB, 308 views)

2-PicPno-MicC.mp3 (4.31 MB, 309 views)

2-FltSaxPno-MicA.mp3 (4.54 MB, 305 views)

2-FltSaxPno-MicB.mp3 (4.54 MB, 290 views)

2-FltSaxPno-MicC.mp3 (4.54 MB, 291 views)

2-Flts-extended-MicA.mp3 (3.00 MB, 280 views)

2-Flts-extended-MicB.mp3 (3.00 MB, 276 views)

2-Flts-extended-MicC.mp3 (3.00 MB, 272 views)

Old 1 week ago
Gear Maniac

Thread Starter
The envelope, please...

"A" is a pair of ribbons in Blumlein configuration. (Shiny Box 46U).

"B" is ORTF (Shure KSM141, in card mode).

I do like the imaging in "A". But there is a spot where I prefer the sound of the omnis. Specifically, the opening piano chord in the Flute, Sax, and Piano piece.

Thank you for your helpful comments.

Old 1 week ago
Gear Maniac

Thread Starter
Can't seem to help myself...

I mentioned that I do think I like the Mic "A" configuration (Blumlein), but not everywhere. For example the opening piano chords of the Flute, Sax, & Piano piece. The low notes from the grand piano sound better to me with the omnis.

Here is another spot that I think is advantageously presented by the omnis. This excerpt is new (not presented in any earlier post). It uses extended flute technique (I'm not sure if there is some other technical musical/flute term to use). The sharp "whooshes" (starting around 26 seconds) are captured better, I think, by the omnis (Mic "C").

Maybe the ORTF with the KSM141's is a reasonable compromise.

See what you think.

BTW, Please disregard the metadata (erroneous).

Attached Files

Blueberry-MicA.mp3 (4.05 MB, 172 views)

Blueberry-MicB.mp3 (4.05 MB, 163 views)

Blueberry-MicC.mp3 (4.05 MB, 156 views)

Last edited by dgpretzel; 1 week ago at 08:04 AM.. Reason: fix time
Old 1 week ago
Gear Addict

In every case I prefer the more relaxed timbre and open soundstage of the omnis, but I just really dislike the extra muddy room sound they allow in. There is already too much of it, unfortunately, even in your directional mics and even with the closer position. The piano especially is far too distant.
I think the ideal would be to get even closer still with the omnis.

Last edited by dasbin; 1 week ago at 10:29 PM..
Old 5 days ago
Here for the gear
Hi dgp
Thanks for titles.

New recording is better now.
Ribbons are darker sounding and better for flutes closed.

Room is not bad, but for CD I'd try to find a better room or experiment more with closer distance.
Or ribbons with gobo behind.

Last edited by etiefenthaler; 5 days ago at 10:36 AM.. Reason: Due to smilies not all text was taken
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