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Rode NT-SF1 and Soundfield SPS200 Condenser Microphones
Old 1 week ago
  #31
Quote:
Originally Posted by S.Blanchardon View Post
Hello Gentlemen !

I have the privilege to be the owner of both a Soundfield SPS200 since around 10 years and now of a Rode NT-SF1.

After a 4 months trip abroad, my SPS200 just came back as well as new with 4 new capsules and calibration from Rode factory in Australia.

The Rode NT-SF1 is my second one after some troubles I had with the first one (they call this "youth problems") He was over-sensitive (to humidity) and had one quite a noisy capsule. Ah ! Younglings...

Anyway, now is time for the confrontation, the old champion versus the challenger so stay tuned for the next turn of events !

Referee for this bout will be in the person of the honorable Sonosax SX-R4+ accompanied to it's fellow AD8+, a quite distinguished pair from Switzerland planning to record the fight in 24bits/96Khz, but it's also possible to oblige them to 32/192 if you ask nicely.

Stephane.
A friend here in Auckland also uses his SPS200 with a SX-R4+

grantfinlay.com
Old 1 week ago
  #32
Gear Head
 

IronFilm -
If you don't mind - I was wondering if you might ask your friend whether he happens to use the optional Ambeo input module on his SX-R4+ for his SPS200... I asked Sonosax but never received an answer about whether its wired the same / would also work with the SP200 / Rode NT-SF1 cables.
Suppose it would but... Thx
Old 1 week ago
  #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RVAamb View Post
has anyone had problems with digital errors in tracks from an SPS200? I purchased one new last summer and found digital spikes in each track (random intervals every few minutes). I was using a Mix Pre 6. I tried again indoors with Allen and Heath board to DAW, same problem. I sent the mic back to Rode, they sent me a new one and finding the same issue! Thanks for any input
No, I don't experience these errors. In order to function in a stable way, the SPS200 needs phantom power on all 4 capsules, but that is probably provided for?
BTW, you do know that phase of the SPS200 must be inversed?
Old 1 week ago
  #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IronFilm View Post
A friend here in Auckland also uses his SPS200 with a SX-R4+

grantfinlay.com
I would strongly advise to track pure A format. If the conversion to B format isn't optimized for the mic in question it will deliver sub-optimal results.
The best way to find out if this applies to your situation is to sonically compare both methods, of course.
Old 1 week ago
  #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucas_G View Post
No, I don't experience these errors. In order to function in a stable way, the SPS200 needs phantom power on all 4 capsules, but that is probably provided for?
BTW, you do know that phase of the SPS200 must be inversed?
I do have phantom on all channels - and have used it through Sound Devices and separately through mixing board. I didn't know about inverting phase. ... Just found your explanation in another thread. Many thanks for the reply
Old 4 days ago
  #36
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orange's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by RVAamb View Post
I do have phantom on all channels - and have used it through Sound Devices and separately through mixing board. I didn't know about inverting phase. ... Just found your explanation in another thread. Many thanks for the reply
I've a ntfs1 on backorder so watching this thread with interest - my first foray into ambisonics

I'm not totally sure on why the phase on the SPS200 needs inverting - I read that old thread through:

soundfield mic for stereo application

what part is out of phase ?

Old 3 days ago
  #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by orange View Post
I've a ntfs1 on backorder so watching this thread with interest - my first foray into ambisonics

I'm not totally sure on why the phase on the SPS200 needs inverting - I read that old thread through:

soundfield mic for stereo application

what part is out of phase ?

Hopefully can be answered by Lucas_G as I'm not totally sure either. In my case, I'm combining Soundfield recording with accelerometer (scientific version of contact microphones) insect recordings made separately. I'm not sure if the phase issue would only apply if combining Soundfield recordings with other mic recordings of the same time and space? I flipped the phase and didn't hear any audible difference, at least for the source and context of what I'm doing
Old 2 days ago
  #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by orange View Post
I've a ntfs1 on backorder so watching this thread with interest - my first foray into ambisonics

I'm not totally sure on why the phase on the SPS200 needs inverting - I read that old thread through:

soundfield mic for stereo application

what part is out of phase ?

All 4 capsules of the SPS200 have inverted phase. If you use the SPS200 without any other mic mixed to it, then it is a little less important to invert phase back in post, but I would still do it, because even then it sounds a little bit weird. If you mix other mics (that do not invert phase) with the SPS200, then it is VITAL to invert phase on the SPS200, otherwise you may get terrible frequency response and other problems due the two opposite phases that are being mixed together.
As you can read in the old thread, it has been overlooked by Soundfield when designing the mic. They could have cured it by changing the cabling or add it in their plugins. However, they are not interested in sound quality or QC, so, despite their promises, they do nothing about it.... really sad!
Old 2 days ago
  #39
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rubbish! you seem to have a flawed concept of what phase is/does.

if the outputs were reversed in polarity (which i doubt), this would be only a minor issue if you'd put another mic very close to the sps200 (you could still use a polarity flip on the preamp of this mic, so no big deal); it's no concern at all when using the soundfield as the main mic and a couple of spot mics as one usually does...
Old 2 days ago
  #40
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orange's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucas_G View Post
If you mix other mics (that do not invert phase) with the SPS200, then it is VITAL to invert phase on the SPS200, otherwise you may get terrible frequency response and other problems due the two opposite phases that are being mixed together.

thanks for the explanation - it seems to me you always have the potential for phase problems when you have multiple mics recording the same source. Mics at a different place in space will receive the pressure wave at a slightly different time - this means that the phase difference will be highly dependent on frequency.

If flipping the phase on one (or many) mics helps, then
Old 2 days ago
  #41
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Quote:
Originally Posted by orange View Post
thanks for the explanation - it seems to me you always have the potential for phase problems when you have multiple mics recording the same source. Mics at a different place in space will receive the pressure wave at a slightly different time - this means that the phase difference will be highly dependent on frequency.

If flipping the phase on one (or many) mics helps, then
Yes, that might sometimes be the case when blending in spot mics for instance. However, normally you want to start with a normal (not inverted) phases mic, so it is vital to correct the SPS200 somewhere in your recording chain.

If the oter mics are on the main array, or have approximately the same distance to the source, then you end up with a total disaster when not inverting the phase. It is really so bad that you CANNOT mix the SPS200 with other mics.

BTW, I rarely flip phase on my spotmics. If they are really used as spots (20dB or more under your main array) then they function much better when nog flipped 180 degrees, even when not time-aligned.
Old 2 days ago
  #42
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orange's Avatar
 

my understanding of the "standard" is that a positive pressure on the diaphragm = positive voltage on pin 2. So if they sps200 doesn't do this then strictly speaking it's out of phase with 99% of mics out there.

wonder why they did that ? maybe the original soundfield processing would flip the phase. Either way, it's worth knowing . If I ever get hold of my ntsf1 I'll see if it exhibits the same behaviour
Old 2 days ago
  #43
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Quote:
Originally Posted by orange View Post
my understanding of the "standard" is that a positive pressure on the diaphragm = positive voltage on pin 2. So if they sps200 doesn't do this then strictly speaking it's out of phase with 99% of mics out there.

wonder why they did that ? maybe the original soundfield processing would flip the phase. Either way, it's worth knowing . If I ever get hold of my ntsf1 I'll see if it exhibits the same behaviour

It was al explained in that old SPS200 thread. The developer didn't want to add yet an extra opamp stage to flip phase, which is a very valid approach. The rest of the designteam didn't do their homework. They could have easily changed the soldering to the pins... Soundfield didn't care about sound quality. Hopefully that will change now that they are part of Rode.
Old 2 days ago
  #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deedeeyeah View Post
rubbish! you seem to have a flawed concept of what phase is/does.

if the outputs were reversed in polarity (which i doubt), this would be only a minor issue if you'd put another mic very close to the sps200 (you could still use a polarity flip on the preamp of this mic, so no big deal); it's no concern at all when using the soundfield as the main mic and a couple of spot mics as one usually does...
Dear Deedeeyaeh,

I believe that if you would have read the relevant information, you wouldn't post a flawed reaction like that...

Or was my Basel joke still bothering you?

Best wishes,

Lucas
Old 2 days ago
  #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucas_G View Post
Dear Deedeeyaeh,

I believe that if you would have read the relevant information, you wouldn't post a flawed reaction like that...

Or was my Basel joke still bothering you?

Best wishes,

Lucas
dunno/remember to what joke you are referring - i'm referring to my experience with using the sps200 on about 200 occasions so far and take aim at some of your quotes which imo are pretty far off: polarity is not the same as phase and there aren't any issues regarding sound/eq with inversed polarity, not when used on its own or in combination with any other mic - to repeat the same 'issue' over and over doesn't make the argumemt any better...
Old 2 days ago
  #46
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deedeeyeah View Post
dunno what joke you are referring - i'm referring to my experience with using the sps200 on about 200 occasions so far and some of your quotes which are off: polarity is not the same as phase and there aren't any issues regarding sound/eq with inversed polarity.

i get to measure speaker system on an almost daily basis and hence take my measurement rig to location recordings as well: guess i can tell a bit about phase...

Then my word of warning seems to have come a little late for you... It could have dramatically improved a large portion of those 200 recordings you made. If you doubt how important the inversed polarity (and with same distance to the source) inversed phase, I could post a small sound bite demonstrating the extreme importance of this...

I don't like it the way it is, but don't shoot the messenger!

Last edited by Lucas_G; 1 day ago at 07:20 PM..
Old 2 days ago
  #47
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orange's Avatar
 

hi Lucas

not trying to fan any flames (and both of you know there is an "ignore" option for users if you aren't able to do it manually!)

I'd be very interested in the small sound bite - assuming you mean with the sps200 alone or maybe you mean along with other microphones.
Old 1 day ago
  #48
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucas_G View Post
Then my word of warning seems to have come a little late for you... It could have dramatically improved a large portion of those 200 recordings you made. If you doubt how important the inversed polarity (and with same distance to the source) inversed phase, I could post a small sound bite demonstrating the extreme importance of this...

I don't like it the way it is, but don't shoot the messager!
i get to measure and to correct the frequency response of speakers systems on an almost daily basis and hence have a pretty clear idea on the importance of phase correlation, be it between speakers or mics, on the way in or out - i'm sorry to hear if you're having an issue (to which there is a simple cure) with a mic but to tell someone s/he's having a problem using it imo is pretty arrogant as you cannot have the slightest idea on what gear other folks (in this case me) use to monitor their signals (including phase correlation)* - besides, i know when to use a polarity flip and when and how to use allpass filters to correct issues related to phase...




* b&k/smaart, dk meter and rme digicheck to analyze, yamha dme and lake dlp/lm processors plus a soldering iron to correct
Old 1 day ago
  #49
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jimjazzdad's Avatar
I don't own a SPS200 and probably never will; I don't have a horse in this race. But in this day and age it seems to me that every mic should generate a "Pin 2 + output" when a positive pressure is applied to the nominally positive side of the mic's diaphragm (I realize there are multiple diaphragms and outputs on a Soundfield mic). If this is not the case with the SPS200, hopefully Rode will correct or has already corrected this. No need to go back to the dark ages of the 60s & 70s, when you never knew if pin 2 or pin 3 of an XLR was going to be positive. We also carried 9V dry cells in our pockets to check speaker polarity. Progressing to 2019, now we assume things are built and labelled correctly. Until we find they're not.
Old 1 day ago
  #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jimjazzdad View Post
I don't own a SPS200 and probably never will; I don't have a horse in this race. But in this day and age it seems to me that every mic should generate a "Pin 2 + output" when a positive pressure is applied to the nominally positive side of the mic's diaphragm (I realize there are multiple diaphragms and outputs on a Soundfield mic). If this is not the case with the SPS200, hopefully Rode will correct or has already corrected this. No need to go back to the dark ages of the 60s & 70s, when you never knew if pin 2 or pin 3 of an XLR was going to be positive. We also carried 9V dry cells in our pockets to check speaker polarity. Progressing to 2019, now we assume things are built and labelled correctly. Until we find they're not.
Quite right. I am glad I found out. Otherwise I would have had ruined quite a few recordings...
Old 1 day ago
  #51
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I’ve bought the new rode soundfield. Will be waiting for me when I get into the lab later. Will compare to my st350
Old 1 day ago
  #52
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Quote:
Originally Posted by orange View Post
hi Lucas

not trying to fan any flames (and both of you know there is an "ignore" option for users if you aren't able to do it manually!)

I'd be very interested in the small sound bite - assuming you mean with the sps200 alone or maybe you mean along with other microphones.
Hi Orange, no problem. I will try to post examples next week.
Old 1 day ago
  #53
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orange's Avatar
 

Thanks Lucas - appreciated.

it would be really helpful if you gave a quick note on the differences in setups when you post them. As I say, still haven't got my mic yet but any info is good
Old 1 day ago
  #54
Any one compared Tetra vs. Native B format?
Ambisonic Studio | Native B-Format Recording
Old 1 day ago
  #55
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Here it is

Dropbox - rode soundfield.jpeg
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