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Early Music Chamber concert recording report w/ clips Condenser Microphones
Old 16th October 2008
  #61
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I think I promised to put a picture up when I got one from the organiser (which was much delayed) -

Andy
Attached Thumbnails
Early Music Chamber concert recording report w/ clips-jaroslaw_small.jpg  
Old 17th October 2008
  #62
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Yawn......again......repeat.......yawn...all over again

Is there any reason to continue these threads?

Andy posts clips. Wants comments.

People give comments.

Any thing Andy attiributes as perjorative is put down to

1. poor playback equipment
2. listeners' hearing being conditioned by poor quality mic's-which are all other mic's than the ones that Andy produces


And the closer, of course, is "I guarantee this will pass a source comparison test" followed by everyone's remarks on the dubious methodology of such a comparison.

Yawn...........
Old 17th October 2008
  #63
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JEGG View Post
Is there any reason to continue these threads?

Andy posts clips. Wants comments.

People give comments.

Any thing Andy attiributes as perjorative is put down to

1. poor playback equipment
2. listeners' hearing being conditioned by poor quality mic's-which are all other mic's than the ones that Andy produces


And the closer, of course, is "I guarantee this will pass a source comparison test" followed by everyone's remarks on the dubious methodology of such a comparison.

Yawn...........
Firstly, I usually make a point of asking that when people give comments that they include details of their listening system & if possible listening level.

This information provides a very useful cross-reference, that you might be surprised to find does not track 'random subjective taste' dispersion.

In fact, this information shows almost totally predictable correlation with the known mechanical & psychoacoustic related variables of playback.

Secondly, it is high time that the taboo of direct comparison to the source is brought into the light of day - if you find this uncomfortable I am sorry.

Perhaps you are right that I should not try to use Gearslutz forum members as guinea-pigs, but this is done on a voluntary basis.

When I comment on the various reactions people have to these recordings I do so to try to explain the large diversity of perception.

There is no value to simply assigning all to the mystery of subjective taste - this would be a nonsense.

Finally, if you do not believe that these recordings have a chance of passing a blind-test with the source, you are welcome to visit one of my sessions in Poland and see for yourself.

Andy
Old 17th October 2008
  #64
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A closing thought -

If we forget my recordings and simply take the same perspective to analyse the diverse reactions to any recordings posted here we will see the same patterns emerge.

The large disparity in apparently subjective opinion is rarely just that, but much more often a simple product of the playback equipment, loudness & expectation bias.

The best way to understand the significance of these factors is in the direct comparison to the source.

Andy
Old 17th October 2008
  #65
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Anybody can criticize anything they want to. To make a sincere investigation of something is a whole different story.
Old 18th October 2008
  #66
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that pricing structure

I`d still like to know why these mics cost as much per pair as they do.
Also, do you have a trial/loaner programme where we can actually audition these, or alternatively a dealer somewhere?
Old 18th October 2008
  #67
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andy_simpson View Post
If we consider the mechanical system from microphone to speaker we can see that the mechanical performance at either end is critical to performance.
Andy, you refer to this time and again but it is really a very vauge term in this context. What do you mean with mechanical performance and what is the ideal?

Quote:
From what you describe I would assume that you are listening on a direct-radiator system, which is critically over-damped.
Critically damped usually means a system Q 0f 0.5 and overdamped less than Q=0.5.

Quote:
Mechanical damping such as ferro-fluid is often used to 'flatten' frequency response issues but comes at the cost of dynamics.
Ferrofluid is normally use to increase the dynamics of tweeters by reducing thermal compression, and it's effective at that I should mention.
It also lowers the Q of the fundamental resonance of the tweeter but what is interesting in the end is the transfer curve and summation with the LF driver.


Quote:
On the other hand, from what Daniel describes, I would assume that he is listening on a direct-radiator system which is critically under-damped.
Mechanical instability is often 'applied' in order to achieve greater perception of dynamics/detail or even frequency response.
I have never heard of that before. What do you mean with "applied mechanical instability"? And what is "greater perception of frequency response"?


Quote:
When we consider the microphone as a mechanical system we can make better sense of the application of the acoustic loading 'horn'.
I don't think any designer or engineers overlook the fact that a mic is a electro-mechanical transducer.

Quote:
In physical terms, all mechanical error is subject to the acoustic impedance at which the microphone operates. It is not necessary to complicate the question with the exact nature of the mechanical error in order to understand the concept.
It certainly is for me. Care to mention these mechanical errors, their magnitude and their influence on the output of the mic in terms of distortion, frequency response and noise (which is what performance of audiogear basically is judged by).

Quote:
For example, a microphone diaphragm operating within solid steel, at the very very high acoustic impedance of steel, would be almost incapable of error.

On the other hand, a microphone operating in a vacuum would be capable only of error.
Besides that no sound can exist in vacuum, wether the output would be 100% or not would depend on the nature of the diaphragm and type of microphone. What you say makes no sense to me at all.

Quote:
In this way, with raised acoustic impedance, the Model A achieves significantly reduced mechanical error, relative to conventional direct-radiator microphones.
What kinds of errors and how do that affect the output of the mic? How did you arrive at that conclusion?

Quote:
Given the way in which frequency response graphs are 'massaged', averaged, smoothed and then rendered at very low visual resolution, and given the further fact that the Model A is designed to be calibrated, there is little point presenting a frequency response graph. This would be an almost worthless graph, as I'm sure anybody would be quick to point out.
Well no one forces you to smooth your graphs. 1/48oct resolution will do fine. :-)

Quote:
Polar plots would be more useful perhaps to illustrate the rather unusual polar response where pickup is essentially flat 'on-pattern' and 'not at all' 'off-pattern' and also the transition to omni below the acoustically active range, but at this time I choose not to publish them for several proprietary-design reasons and don't feel that the end-user is at any great disadvantage in the absence.
On pattern and off pattern.. would that be the equivalent of the common accepted terms on axis and off axis?

What you write here is in conflict with what you wrote above.

Quote:
For example, where we see a speaker which is over-damped between 4k-5k, and an under-damped (resonant) microphone in the same area, the overall impression is likely to be of 'compensation' in spectral terms.
Overdamped.. do you mean an uneven frequency response with a lower level at 4-5k?

Quote:
In this case the resulting sound quality will be significantly unnatural from both the microphone resonance and the limited dynamics of the speaker, despite the apparently ideal frequency response of the system as a whole.
A speaker does not become limited in dynamics just becasue of a lower sensitivity in a particular range.

Also this goes totally against what you write about your own system where you EQ the mic-speaker system to achieve acceptable results.

Quote:
In my experience, the most critical factor in this test is simply the mechanical error performance of the microphone & speaker (which is dictated by acoustic impedance).
The acoustic has little influence on dynamic cone/dome type of drivers since they are mass controled or compliance controled. A distortion measurement tells you all about the errors. Also the dominant distortion mechanisms is non-linear Bl factor, VC inductance and compliance.

The story is a little different with electrostats and ribbons where the moving mass is low enough for the acoustic impedance to have a real effect.. but that's not the type of speakers you are mentioning in your texts.

Quote:
In other words, if we can present a reproduction with a low enough mechanical error, minor spectral differences will be perceived as nothing more than real sources with different spectral qualities.
Not true. A non linear system will always produce intermodulation distortion (non harmonic sum and difference tones) with no natural relation to the original sound.

Quote:
On the other hand, if we present a reproduction with perfectly matched frequency response but with greater mechanical error the end result is that the source does not sound real, regardless of the ideal frequency domain.
I don't get it. How can you present a reproduction with anything.. a reproduction has allready happened.. But yes, if you have arrived at the goal regarding tonality (frequency response and directivity in balance with the room) the end result may be poor if distortionlevels are to high.

I really think you should have more success in communicating with others if you used common accepted terminology.

Quote:
If you make even a cursory study of the design you will understand how there can be no colouration as a result of the 'horn' (not least in consideration of the planar propagation in question).
The soundwaves are not planar and I can not see how the horn would not introduce ripple on the frequency curve.

Quote:
Regarding the calibration post-equalisation, you will need to recognise the difference between the time-domain & frequency domain in order to understand this.

Minimum phase and Fourier analysis.. sounds familiar?


Quote:
As I have described above, I use the Mackie SRM450 for its mechanical performance, which is close enough to ideal.
How do you measure or come to that conclusion? Is this a gut feeling you have or are you doing scientific work on this?

Anyway, a speaker is judged by frequency response and distortion which all can be measured.


Quote:
While they have minor issues (noise-floor for example), they are high-output, portable, clean and robust.
Can't argue with that! :-)

Quote:
Regardless, these speakers are deceptively well designed and will drastically outperform ANY direct-radiators, especially with Model A recordings.
But they ARE direct radiators.. in the major part of the audible range. And I do not believe that those compression drivers can compete with other designs on all levels.

A 55Hz extension isn't very impressive and the BS on the Mackie site regarding those speakers makes me tired.

Quote:
What I have been trying to say is that if you don't like the calibration applied in my sample recordings you can simply calibrate the Model A to your taste/monitors - that is the freedom of improved mechanical performance.
All speakers and mics can be EQ:d.

Quote:
For example, if you visit the THX website you can find a list of certified theatre speakers, where without exception you will find horn-loaded (high-output) speakers.
Yes. Because theaters is not about hifi, it's about filling a large room with sound good enough to have poeple coming back for the next movie.

THX is not a quality marker.

Quote:
In this application there are other benefits aside from a general improvement in sound-quality, such as greatly reduced ear fatigue - which any dubbing/scoring stage engineer can tell you is a problem when using conventional microphones with these speakers.
Ear fatigue comes from distortion of various form and horn speaker use to excel at that. Conventinal mics are not to blame for this as they have low distortion and many different tonal shapes.


/Peter
Old 18th October 2008
  #68
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andy_simpson View Post
The calibration I mentioned involves mastering quality linear-phase software and depends on several factors including electrical: mic-amp/cable length/etc, acoustic: environmental factors/placement height/width/etc and subjective: equal loudness/personal taste/blind-test, etc.
Why would you want to use a linear-phase EQ correcting for minimum-phase deviation?



Quote:
Clearly, you still don't understand the concept - if you are really interested, please study wave propagation in the context of the horn, from both planar (incoming - microphone) & spherical (outgoing - speaker) perspective. There is significant difference here that is critical.
Speakers does not have spherical wave propagation by definition. And there will be time domain distortion/ripple in a horn laoded microphone. Mount your transducer on a big flat baffle and measure. Compare that to the response in your horns.


Quote:
Also, let us be clear about what we call 'colouration' - this is a vague term at best.

If, by colouration, we are talking about time-domain distortion (eg. resonance) - this cannot be corrected with equalisation.

An example of this would be diaphragm resonance or even reverb.
Talking about understanding the concept..

Andy, you need to read up on physics. Minimum-phase devices has a direct coupling between time domain and frequency domain. Keyword, Hilbert transform, mimimum phase, Fourier analysis.


Quote:
Or, if we are talking about frequency domain performance which is unrelated to time-domain distortion - this is the category into which falls the Model A - then this is entirely correctable with EQ, and in the case of linear-phase EQ it is corrected without penalty.
No no, frequency domain is directly affected by time domain.

Also you can NOT EQ a minimum phase with a linear phase because THAT will give you errors.

A bump in the frequency response of a loudspeaker driver will not only have a deviation from flat frequency response but also it will have phase distortion. Correct this frequency response with an analog minimum-phase EQ and time domain distortion will dissapear.


Quote:
This is fundamentally different to the microphone, which to all intents & purposes deals only with incoming planar propagating sound.
No. A soundwave from a small source at a meter or a couple is not planar.

Quote:
In other words, it is not possible to have reflection issues in the microphone because of the nature of the incoming sound waves - which can only be planar (the previously mentioned cursory study of the design will illustrate this).

Of course there will be reflection-like phenomena. Imagine a singer one meter in front of your horn, move the singer right to left so the incident angle is changed to your mic..

Sorry to say but you lack a lot of basic understanding and knowledge on these issues!


/Peter
Old 21st October 2008
  #69
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Audiop View Post
Why would you want to use a linear-phase EQ correcting for minimum-phase deviation?





Speakers does not have spherical wave propagation by definition. And there will be time domain distortion/ripple in a horn laoded microphone. Mount your transducer on a big flat baffle and measure. Compare that to the response in your horns.




Talking about understanding the concept..

Andy, you need to read up on physics. Minimum-phase devices has a direct coupling between time domain and frequency domain. Keyword, Hilbert transform, mimimum phase, Fourier analysis.




No no, frequency domain is directly affected by time domain.

Also you can NOT EQ a minimum phase with a linear phase because THAT will give you errors.

A bump in the frequency response of a loudspeaker driver will not only have a deviation from flat frequency response but also it will have phase distortion. Correct this frequency response with an analog minimum-phase EQ and time domain distortion will dissapear.




No. A soundwave from a small source at a meter or a couple is not planar.




Of course there will be reflection-like phenomena. Imagine a singer one meter in front of your horn, move the singer right to left so the incident angle is changed to your mic..

Sorry to say but you lack a lot of basic understanding and knowledge on these issues!


/Peter
Peter, while your enthusiasm is encouraging, there is at least 5 hours worth of work to explain where you have either misinterpreted what I have written or simply don't understand it.

You can most likely answer your own questions with a little further thought in any case.

Given that you're attitude suggests that you do not want to understand as much as argue, I will with respect decline to put any serious time into furthering this.

Andy
Old 10th January 2009
  #70
FAT
Gear Maniac
 

Mmm, sounds a bit honky too me - like my Schoeps through toilet rolls.

The accoustics that you describe in your first post are not revealed in this recording.

I think you need to deliver something much more substantial for the price-tag.
Old 10th January 2009
  #71
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I listened those two samples and also orchestral A and B WAVs.

Image is quite nice and the venue must be really good. The sound is clear in mid and upper frequences but seriously lacking in bass. I took the liberty of analyzing those 4 samples with Audition frequency analyzer, and compared them to my own chamber recordings done with Oktava MK-012 (not to speak of organ samples with Sennheiser 8020). In my chambre samples the below 100Hz range was about 18-24 higher on average than in your samples.

This is not surpricing when using a horn. It must be the same thing it is with horn loudspeakers; for low frequencies the cross section of the horn opening would have to be huge, several meters if not more for the lowest organ notes, or even cello and timpani.

Mic with horn does not work. No bass. Myriad other problems with midrange & treble. Not worth it, even if the idea might be tempting. Modern mics are sensetive enough without a horn, theoretical plus sides are more than negated by other problems, especially bass attennuation.

Samples sound like recordings from the fifties, but cleaner.

I would not buy your mics, I do not think I would have any use for them even for free.
--------

Instrumentarium: Sound Devices 722 -> ADAM S3A + Genelec 7071A
Old 10th January 2009
  #72
FAT
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by andy_simpson View Post
A closing thought -


The best way to understand the significance of these factors is in the direct comparison to the source.

Andy
To be honest, I think most engineers are looking for microphones that sound better than the source when reproduced.

Using the source as a benchmark seems kind of futile. Recording and reproducing recordings is an unnatural business, even on purist orchestral or jazz recordings, the source sound is bent all over the place to help it be reproduced universally.

For that price, I'd like a baby human ear grown in the lab, with a fancy bio-electrically driven output. You'd need to feed the ear as well I guess.
Old 14th January 2009
  #73
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On the website I found prices that I couldn't believe (Carpenters make good money in Poland :-) and no technical information whatsoever, no frequency chart, no technical parameters, no directional pattern radar plot, nothing.

Is this real, or an experiment by some marketing research institute about the education level (or lack thereof) in the audio industry?

the Model A is alone in its class.

That was the only believable statement I could find on this website...

Who is supposed to buy these microphones?

And "presented at the High End Gear conference", sure, the famous High-End Gear Conference...
Old 14th January 2009
  #74
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andy_simpson View Post
...

The best way to understand the significance of these factors is in the direct comparison to the source.

Andy
What is the source?
Did you use a big ladder during the concert, to hear at exactly the same point where your microphones are 'listening'?
Old 14th January 2009
  #75
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andy_simpson View Post
...
Or, if we are talking about frequency domain performance which is unrelated to time-domain distortion - this is the category into which falls the Model A - then this is entirely correctable with EQ, and in the case of linear-phase EQ it is corrected without penalty.
So you use a linear-phase EQ without a delay?
Old 15th January 2009
  #76
FAT
Gear Maniac
 

Forget it - as someone said earlier, this is some kind of gag.
Old 15th January 2009
  #77
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by FAT View Post
Forget it - as someone said earlier, this is some kind of gag.
The body of the mic looks very similar to a Neumann KMS...
Old 15th January 2009
  #78
Lives for gear
 

I don't think Andy is participating on GS anymore.

Also think that Andy mentioned something about dynamic and not condenser capsules in his creations.


/Peter
Old 15th January 2009
  #79
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Audiop View Post
Also think that Andy mentioned something about dynamic and not condenser capsules in his creations.
Now you say this, it also could be a SM 58 heh
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