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Has anyone auditioned these mics? Condenser Microphones
Old 2 weeks ago
  #1
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Thomas W. Bethe's Avatar
 

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Has anyone auditioned these mics?

Royer R-10 Royer R-10 Matched Pair Ribbon Microphone | Sweetwater

I am thinking about going back to the basics with just a Blumlein setup (see Blumlein pair - Wikipedia) for the orchestral recordings I do. I would want to pair this with this new Sound Devices chip recorder. (Sound Devices MixPre-3 Audio Recorder/Mixer and USB MIXPRE-3 B&H) because it has GREAT preamps and lots of gain.

While we are on the subject has anyone seen a good holder for over/under figure 8 mics for use in concert recordings?

Thanks in advance for any and all comments or suggestions.
Old 2 weeks ago
  #2
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Hi Tom,

I love ribbon microphones and use some Royer (R-101) to spot horns in my setup.
As a main pair, I'm not sure if these microphones will give you the sound you want but maybe, everything is a matter of taste in our world!

My opinion (and it is just mine):
this:

is a bit the opposite of this:


If you go Schoeps:
Capsule microphonique MK*2H - Graphiques - SCHOEPS.de
or even more...
Capsule microphonique MK*2S - Graphiques - SCHOEPS.de

In my opinion the high lift after 5k for the Schoeps and with a start around 2K for the M150 gives an emphasis that sounds natural in a main pair for orchestral recording...

But once again, it is just my opinion!

By the way I would love to ear some samples done in the classical world with these microphones wich are finally... very cheap!

Salutations de Bern,

Fred.
Old 2 weeks ago
  #3
Gear Addict
According to Royer the 10's are ideal
for close micing. Their hi-frequency roll-off would not be ideal for distant/ main pair micing. If you can afford it I would highly recommend a pair of MKH30's.
Rolo certainly gets great results with them and I really like using them.
To see pictures of MKH30 in nose-to-nose Shapeways mount see my post
#147 https://www.gearslutz.com/board/remo...imaging-5.html
The link to purchase the Shapeways mount is :https://www.shapeways.com/product/26...ionId=63166967

Note Rolo uses a side-to-side mounting:
see his post #139 in above thread.

Last edited by Folkie; 2 weeks ago at 09:26 PM.. Reason: add link
Old 2 weeks ago
  #4
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Thomas W. Bethe's Avatar
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by fred2bern View Post
Hi Tom,

I love ribbon microphones and use some Royer (R-101) to spot horns in my setup.
As a main pair, I'm not sure if these microphones will give you the sound you want but maybe, everything is a matter of taste in our world!

My opinion (and it is just mine):
this:

is a bit the opposite of this:


If you go Schoeps:
Capsule microphonique MK*2H - Graphiques - SCHOEPS.de
or even more...
Capsule microphonique MK*2S - Graphiques - SCHOEPS.de

In my opinion the high lift after 5k for the Schoeps and with a start around 2K for the M150 gives an emphasis that sounds natural in a main pair for orchestral recording...

But once again, it is just my opinion!

By the way I would love to ear some samples done in the classical world with these microphones wich are finally... very cheap!

Salutations de Bern,

Fred.
Thanks for your time and trouble in providing the comparison. I really appreciate it.

Right now I have three main setups that I use. A Rode NT-4 for small on location video taping, a pair of AKG Blueline cardioid microphones in XY or ORTF and three matched AT4050s that I use in a Decca Tree setup. Lately I have been trying to find a microphone setup that is easy to setup (sometimes we are rushed in setup and tear down) that does not cost a king's ransom to buy and that sounds great for classical music. The Decca tree takes way to long to setup and the NT-4 is not quite "good enough"for major work so that leaves the AKG Blueline mics. They sound great but I have been questing after the "ribbon sound" for quite a while. A lot of the halls I record in are concrete shoe boxes that sound sterile and harsh. I am looking for something to "sweeten" up the sound. A pair of SCHOEPS are a bit out of my current price range but I am sure they sound GREAT! Any other suggestions? Thanks again!!!
Old 2 weeks ago
  #5
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Thomas W. Bethe's Avatar
 

Thread Starter
Quote:
Originally Posted by Folkie View Post
According to Royer the 10's are ideal
for close micing. Their hi-frequency roll-off would not be ideal for distant/ main pair micing. If you can afford it I would highly recommend a pair of MKH30's.
Rolo certainly gets great results with them and I really like using them.
To see pictures of MKH30 in nose-to-nose Shapeways mount see my post
#147 https://www.gearslutz.com/board/remo...imaging-5.html
The link to purchase the Shapeways mount is :https://www.shapeways.com/product/26...ionId=63166967

Note Rolo uses a side-to-side mounting:
see his post #139 in above thread.
I am sure the MKH30s sound great just out of the budget for the time being. See my answer above and THANKS for taking the time to reply.
Old 2 weeks ago
  #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomas W. Bethe View Post
...(the AKG Blueline mics). They sound great but I have been questing after the "ribbon sound" for quite a while. A lot of the halls I record in are concrete shoe boxes that sound sterile and harsh. I am looking for something to "sweeten" up the sound.
Dear Tom,

To me you have 2 different things to manage:
1/ The sterile and harsh sound of your concrete halls
2/ Your desire for a ribbon sound.

1/ Of course a ribbon microphone won't change the quality of your halls and, because they are fig 8, you'll get more hall in your main comparing the cardio NT4 or a 300+CK91 for example. If the reflections are not interesting, or really disturbing, maybe it is not the way to go.
A nice reverb (plugin)?

2/ I have to say that I never use ribbon microphones as a main pair.
With some chamber music producions I had the opportunity to try a Blumlein with 4038 or R-101 and found myself more comfortable with a SDC omni AB all the time. With orchestra I go Decca most of time in sessions and when it's live and no time to set I go with a SDC omni AB and a cardio Ortf on the same bar... BUT I understand your wish for a ribbon sound.

Of course this is just my opinion.
I'll follow your thread, I'm interested to listen to these new Royer...

Good luck!

Fred

Last edited by fred2bern; 2 weeks ago at 04:51 AM..
Old 2 weeks ago
  #7
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Tom - I fully understand your desire to try a Blumlein ribbon pair. I have found that ribbons solve a number of problems that I have with condenser mics, especially with woodwinds. Ribbons just have an inherent natural sound without any upper mid edge which can smooth out the whole feel of a recording. The Royer website has several very nice audio samples that illustrate their ability to capture acoustic music. The sf12 orchestra sample is particularly nice. You may also wish to revisit the comparative samples from the $30K mic test we did here on the remote forum not too long ago, which featured an sf12, an AEA R88, and the new Samar 373a stereo ribbon mic - when you carefully listen to the flute on those ribbons compared even to the Schoeps cmc62 and cmc64 pairs, you can easily hear that ribbon midrange smooth natural sound.

I am using an AEA N8 and Royer R121s here and love them, but I have not heard the new royers. I do think the new SD mixpre series (I have a mixpre6) will adequately drive passive ribbons, though I use Mogaines with mine. I would not hesitate to buy any Royer products - they are an outstanding company and I have enjoyed everything I have bought from them. You could consider also a clean used pair of the R101s which have a similar sound to the R121. The stereo bar sold by cascade mics is an affordable solution for Blumlein mounting.
Old 2 weeks ago
  #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fred2bern View Post
/ Of course a ribbon microphone won't change the quality of your halls and, because they are fig 8, you'll get more hall in your main comparing the cardio NT4 or a 300+CK91 for example.
I recall Tony Faulkner saying that he used his original 'phased array' (not the 4 mic variety, but the 8" spaced pair of fig8 mics, both facing forward) for precisely this reason...that they DID remove a nasty side wall reflection in a cathedral or church. The video I'll link it below...

Watch from 17 mins to 18 mins and from 30 mins to 32 mins here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8uCcFIyJJ-w

Whether you get 'more hall' due to the fig8's rear pickup pattern can be argued, but I just cite Tony's use of them in this fashion in the context of the powerful side-null pointed at the walls (and floor/ceiling) to remove those reflections.

Ribbons, when used as a main pair in an orchestral setting, might lose detail of the rear rows of instruments (woodwinds, horns) precisely because they tend to roll off in the area where the M50 and 150 had such a HF shelf lift, due to the acrylic sphere. You thus might feel drawn towards the need to spot mic, which defeats your stated 'simplicity' goal in post #1 ?
Old 2 weeks ago
  #9
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Studer - one of the other very nice things about ribbons is how well they take eq. Again, the Royer sf12 orchestra sample shows that in the rights hands and place, a single Blumlein pair of good ribbons can capture even a full orchestra with a full natural sound.
Old 2 weeks ago
  #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by studer58 View Post
I recall Tony Faulkner saying that he used his original 'phased array' (not the 4 mic variety, but the 8" spaced pair of fig8 mics, both facing forward) for precisely this reason...that they DID remove a nasty side wall reflection in a cathedral or church
Agree and you are right, ribbon use but not in a Blumlein setup.

In sessions I can imagine that it works, but in a live situation with audience, in a concrete hall (not in a big church), this setup would not be my first choice.
Old 2 weeks ago
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jnorman View Post
Studer - one of the other very nice things about ribbons is how well they take eq. Again, the Royer sf12 orchestra sample shows that in the rights hands and place, a single Blumlein pair of good ribbons can capture even a full orchestra with a full natural sound.
I'm sure you're right, and we need to be careful about casually using the generic term 'ribbons' because we're talking about perhaps 2 almost completely different species today.

On one hand you have the 50/60's era Coles and RCA devices, with fragility issues, low output, uneven response (and certainly no pair matching !) susceptibility to hum and care/maintenance issues.

Then from Royer/AEA onwards (mid90's ?) you have smaller less visually intrusive bodies, higher output, much better reliability. Hell, some of them even like the tingle of 48 volts ! I'd probably cite the Rode NTR as an example of how far the 'species has evolved'

They are well poised to take a significant (in fact most likely increasing) place in location recording, compared with condensor mics..which by comparison can now appear quite 'unevolved' over the same time period.

So, as a non-ribbon owner, the only reservation I'd have about them now would be their ability to "reach back" sufficiently into the orchestra to not require the use of spot mics...and it seems the current crop of high achievers has conquered that hurdle ?
Old 2 weeks ago
  #12
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Tom for a fast and easy setup, how about using 2 cardioid mic's set in EBS or Ortf and an Omni on the same stand. Roll off the Omni around 150 hz or so to get deep bass extension. Audio Technica mic's such as AT4022 cardioid and Omni AT4022 are reasonably priced, great sounding mic's for the money. Nice package with the SD MixPre 3. I use EBS with my Sennheiser MKH8040, great image and sense of space.
Old 2 weeks ago
  #13
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Thread Starter
Thanks for all the help and information. This is a GREAT forum with many wonderful people posting. Looking at a few other mics, the X-15 from Cascade (https://www.amazon.com/Cascade-Micro...s=cascade+x-15) and the Avantone Pro CK-40 (https://www.amazon.com/Avantone-Audi...one+CK-40)(yes I know it is a condenser mic*). <Early in my career I used the Neuman SM-69 and the AKG 422 for all my orchestral work.> Since a lot of my work lately is done solo I have been using the mic preamps on my TASCAM DR100 MKII so I don't want to carry in my A&H ZED14 mixer (https://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/ZED14) or my Focusrite Pre Amp ISA-2 (https://pro.focusrite.com/category/m...s/item/isa-two) so I guess that is why I am looking at the Sound Devices mixer recorder which has better preamps. Not sure what I want to do but I do need something that is easy to set up solo, sounds GREAT and is easy to transport. Thanks AGAIN for all the help and suggestions.

*Frequency response on Amazon is listed as 2 Hz to 2KHz. Hope that is a BIG misprint.
Old 2 weeks ago
  #14
RPC
Gear Maniac
 

For recital work I've used a pair of SAMAR VL-37 with a Mixpre-6 (or Metric Halo ULN-8). (Sample attached - this with the Mixpre-6 at 66dB gain.) As noted above, this on an orchestral recording may not give you enough "bite" in the brass, though you'd have a luscious string tone!
Attached Files

206-Navarra.m4a (5.83 MB, 1302 views)

Old 2 weeks ago
  #15
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Thomas W. Bethe's Avatar
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by RPC View Post
For recital work I've used a pair of SAMAR VL-37 with a Mixpre-6 (or Metric Halo ULN-8). (Sample attached - this with the Mixpre-6 at 66dB gain.) As noted above, this on an orchestral recording may not give you enough "bite" in the brass, though you'd have a luscious string tone!
Nice recording. Mics are well reviewed. The mics are way out of my price range at the present time. Thanks for sharing.
Old 2 weeks ago
  #16
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Thomas W. Bethe's Avatar
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by sd270 View Post
Tom for a fast and easy setup, how about using 2 cardioid mic's set in EBS or Ortf and an Omni on the same stand. Roll off the Omni around 150 hz or so to get deep bass extension. Audio Technica mic's such as AT4022 cardioid and Omni AT4022 are reasonably priced, great sounding mic's for the money. Nice package with the SD MixPre 3. I use EBS with my Sennheiser MKH8040, great image and sense of space.
That is about the setup I am normally using except with the AKG Bluelines or the AT4051's (version one) that I also have. I guess my best bet is to get the Sound Devices and see how it sounds. Maybe all my problems are the TASCAM DR100 MKII's preamps.

I am going to call Sweetwater this morning and ask about a demo.

When did acousticans give up on having good sounding halls in favor of having halls "look good"? Of all the concert halls I record in it is the older ones that, IMHO, sound the best. FWIW
Old 2 weeks ago
  #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomas W. Bethe View Post
Thanks for all the help and information. This is a GREAT forum with many wonderful people posting. Looking at a few other mics, the X-15 from Cascade (https://www.amazon.com/Cascade-Micro...s=cascade+x-15) and the Avantone Pro CK-40 (https://www.amazon.com/Avantone-Audi...one+CK-40)(yes I know it is a condenser mic*). <Early in my career I used the Neuman SM-69 and the AKG 422 for all my orchestral work.> Since a lot of my work lately is done solo I have been using the mic preamps on my TASCAM DR100 MKII so I don't want to carry in my A&H ZED14 mixer (https://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/ZED14) or my Focusrite Pre Amp ISA-2 (https://pro.focusrite.com/category/m...s/item/isa-two) so I guess that is why I am looking at the Sound Devices mixer recorder which has better preamps. Not sure what I want to do but I do need something that is easy to set up solo, sounds GREAT and is easy to transport. Thanks AGAIN for all the help and suggestions.

*Frequency response on Amazon is listed as 2 Hz to 2KHz. Hope that is a BIG misprint.
Dear Tom,

I would take care regarding the Aventone CK40. I had one at home and still don't know why I bought it... years ago. I was looking for a cheap version of my USM69 to put it in the suitcase... No way.
To my ears the sound is really not usuable for classical music. Really bright and hard. It is cheap and sounds cheap also.

Regards,

Fred.
Old 2 weeks ago
  #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fred2bern View Post
Dear Tom,

I would take care regarding the Aventone CK40. I had one at home and still don't know why I bought it... years ago. I was looking for a cheap version of my USM69 to put it in the suitcase... No way.
To my ears the sound is really not usuable for classical music. Really bright and hard. It is cheap and sounds cheap also.

Regards,

Fred.
I read a lot of review of the mic and almost all of them said bright and forward so probably a no go. Thanks for the feedback. I did order my Sound Devices recorder and hopefully with better mic pres I can use my AT4051s or AKG Bluelines and get a better sound. Thanks again!!!
Old 2 weeks ago
  #19
RPC
Gear Maniac
 

The R-10 has Royer's signature off-center ribbon placement. This means it's brighter on one side than the other, so it's not a "real" symmetric figure-8. In a Blumlein setup, this may not matter, but I wouldn't use it as the side mike in an M-S rig.
Old 2 weeks ago
  #20
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Larry Elliott's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomas W. Bethe View Post
I guess my best bet is to get the Sound Devices and see how it sounds. Maybe all my problems are the TASCAM DR100 MKII's preamps.

I am going to call Sweetwater this morning and ask about a demo.

When did acousticans give up on having good sounding halls in favor of having halls "look good"? Of all the concert halls I record in it is the older ones that, IMHO, sound the best. FWIW
Tom
I can recommend the SDMix6

As an acoustician, sadly your last paragraph is a reality.

Larry
Old 2 weeks ago
  #21
RPC
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How about the No Hype Audio LRM-2? You can even get a Blumlein mount.
Old 2 weeks ago
  #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomas W. Bethe View Post
When did acousticans give up on having good sounding halls in favor of having halls "look good"? Of all the concert halls I record in it is the older ones that, IMHO, sound the best. FWIW
When architects got the upper hand in the 1920-80s. The rise of the computer (and decent modelling software) brought the acoustical engineer into the picture IMHO in the 1990s.

In Raleigh, NC, we built a brand new 1700 seat concert hall (not multipurpose, you can not stage an opera or play there) that opened around 2000 (I forget exactly when). The acoustics are amazingly good in the new Meymandi Hall. Over the vast majority of the seats no less. Same acoustic engineers who revamped Chicago's Orchestra Hall. It's a completely different design than Chicago, but it has interesting similarities in sound, probably because of the priorities of the acoustical engineers.

Interestingly, the new hall replaced the old Memorial Hall (right beside it) that's a 1950s multi-purpose hall that's exactly the hall you're complaining about. I spent 20 dreadful years as a season subscriber in Memorial Hall and can say with reasonable authority that there are no good seats in Memorial, just some that aren't as bad as others. The comparison is that the best seats in Memorial are well worse than the worst seats in Meymandi Hall.

So... there's hope. Performance halls built in this century can be as good as the best halls in the world.
Old 2 weeks ago
  #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RPC View Post
How about the No Hype Audio LRM-2? You can even get a Blumlein mount.
Never heard of them. One problem with a lot of boutique audio companies is you send them the money and wait and wait and wait. A lot of the posts in the Moan Zone are about people sending insane amounts of money to a company and never getting the product. How are these people on delivering? Just wondering???
Old 2 weeks ago
  #24
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I have no reservations about J-P Gerard at No Hype- he sent me CM-3s and one of the first sets of OM-1s promptly and courteously. His is a first class operation.
Old 2 weeks ago
  #25
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I have bought mics from J-P Gerard twice. His customer service was prompt and excellent each time.

For ease of setup, a pair of DPA 4060 or 4061s into your Tascam Dr100mkiii would be great and easy to carry.

Not sure there's anything you can really do with a concrete block shoebox. Mid side recording comes to mind as another option to consider.
Old 2 weeks ago
  #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bruce Watson View Post
When architects got the upper hand in the 1920-80s. The rise of the computer (and decent modelling software) brought the acoustical engineer into the picture IMHO in the 1990s.

In Raleigh, NC, we built a brand new 1700 seat concert hall (not multipurpose, you can not stage an opera or play there) that opened around 2000 (I forget exactly when). The acoustics are amazingly good in the new Meymandi Hall. Over the vast majority of the seats no less. Same acoustic engineers who revamped Chicago's Orchestra Hall. It's a completely different design than Chicago, but it has interesting similarities in sound, probably because of the priorities of the acoustical engineers.

Interestingly, the new hall replaced the old Memorial Hall (right beside it) that's a 1950s multi-purpose hall that's exactly the hall you're complaining about. I spent 20 dreadful years as a season subscriber in Memorial Hall and can say with reasonable authority that there are no good seats in Memorial, just some that aren't as bad as others. The comparison is that the best seats in Memorial are well worse than the worst seats in Meymandi Hall.

So... there's hope. Performance halls built in this century can be as good as the best halls in the world.
When I worked for the local college I saw their concert halls undergoing some major acoustical treatments to make them sound better. IMHO all the enhancements did was make the halls sound different not better. The one hall on campus is a converted church with really good acoustics. It was built in 1908. When the new organ was installed they made a lot of changes in the acoustics. They tried to lengthen the reverb time, the tried to make the hall's roof more robust and put in acoustical panels in the back of the hall. It sounds "different" but the basic "sound" is still very good. There are two other halls, one a small concrete shoe box hall which sounds terrible and the other larger hall which has undergone a couple of major renovations. The larger hall was built in the early 1960s and the original acoustics were OK but not great. The college redid the complete hall once and changed some acoustics and put in new seating later. The hall still has a lot of problems. The halls were redone in some cases, to suit a particular person wants and needs and one of the biggest reasons was to make the organs in these halls sound great at the expense of other uses. This type of acoustical change to suit one use makes no sense since Severance Hall in Cleveland (built in 1931) was just redone acoustically and not only does the organ sound great the Cleveland orchestra also sounds great.

One problem today is that architects and acoustical designers seem to be at odds with each other instead of work collaboratively. Each wants their own vision and when they can't get together big mistakes happen. In the "good olde days" architects did not have acoustical designers and had to figure out things for themselves and in most cases, did a great job. Also, today too many acoustical designers rely, IMHO, to heavily on computers to do their planning and as we all know computers are GREAT when it comes to number crunching but no so great in designing concert halls. The venues I have worked in on a regular basis and that I am most happy with seem to be the venues that were conceived and built in the period from the 1900's to the 1950's. It is probably just me but these halls and churches just sound "right" for all type of music. The other problem today is that a lot of halls are installing electronic setups that are supposed to make the hall sound "better" but either don't do what they are supposed to do or make the hall sound "artificial"

FWIW
Old 2 weeks ago
  #27
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Originally Posted by 2manyrocks View Post
I have bought mics from J-P Gerard twice. His customer service was prompt and excellent each time.

For ease of setup, a pair of DPA 4060 or 4061s into your Tascam Dr100mkiii would be great and easy to carry.

Not sure there's anything you can really do with a concrete block shoebox. Mid side recording comes to mind as another option to consider.
Except that I do not want omni directional mics but that would be very simple to setup. Thanks!
Old 2 weeks ago
  #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RPC View Post
The R-10 has Royer's signature off-center ribbon placement. This means it's brighter on one side than the other, so it's not a "real" symmetric figure-8. In a Blumlein setup, this may not matter, but I wouldn't use it as the side mike in an M-S rig.
+1 to this^^^

The Rode NTR is voiced to be the same on the front and back, and I have found my pair to work well where either MS or Blumlien configs are needed.
Old 2 weeks ago
  #29
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As Bruce says, Meymandi Hall does sound good. I've worked in it and attended concerts there, I think you'd have to search for the bad spots.
Old 2 weeks ago
  #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomas W. Bethe View Post
...today too many acoustical designers rely, IMHO, too heavily on computers to do their planning and as we all know computers are GREAT when it comes to number crunching but no so great in designing concert halls.
We don't all know that. It's not the 1980s any more.

Interesting that your experience and mine are so different. Most churches in my area that were built in the early 1900s sound bad to "meh". Small, huge, wood, stone, doesn't seem to matter. Meh.

Then there's Meymandi Concert Hall, and it's considerably smaller and more versatile Fletcher Opera Theater (seats 600, built as part of the Meymandi project) both rate an "excellent" from me. The smaller hall is a bit dryer, but it's just as clean and clear with a very nice linear reverb decay (shorter in the smaller hall of course); both have a nice big warm sound. Yet, Meymandi and Fletcher are completely different designs. But both designed with the input from the same competent acoustical engineering team, so it's no surprise.

Both these excellent sounding halls were built with input from excellent software running on computers. The results "speak" for themselves. And these are hardly the only ones.

I suspect part of the difference we're seeing is between halls purpose built from the ground up, and renovations trying to save a poorly designed hall. Renovations of performance halls will almost always have problems; the "bones" have to be right because the dimensions and air volume have to be right, and often renovations occur because people are already dissatisfied with the acoustics. And the renovations can't cure the problems (which are structural), they can only mask the symptoms, but that's often all the budget can afford.
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