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Best LCD for Grand Piano? - 414s? - MC930s?
Old 17th May 2007
  #1
Gear Addict
 

Talking Best LCD for Grand Piano? - 414s? - MC930s?

Ok - I've been at this decision for months - I am lucky to own the grand piano of my dreams ( Nikolaus W. Schimmel CC213 ) Anyway - it sounds as good as it looks and recording it well is a huge priority - I have the pre-amps that's for sure - (Avalon 2022, Pacifica, and LaChapell 992EG) and Crane Song converters - but the mics - i'm still in debate.

A pair of 414s (instrument version) sound nice but a tad dark and muddy - I can't get two 414XLIIs to try - i'd love to but of course they hype the 2-10 K region.

Everyone raves about the MC930s - but are they in the same league? I'd have to buy without hearing them first.

Some say the VM1s rock - but then - a pair would be HUGE dollars.

I have a M149 (just 1- but that could be another option to get another)

Anyway - I'd hugely appreciate input - i'm getting a piar of Beyer M160s by the way - for sure - so i've got that round darker sound covered I think

Cheers
Old 17th May 2007
  #2
Gear Nut
 

I like Micro Tech Gefell UMT-70s. I think I have a clip of them on a 9 foot Schimmel from a couple of months ago. I'll see if I can find it and figure out how to post it.

Steve Lemke
Old 17th May 2007 | Show parent
  #3
Gear Maniac
 

High... I have posted a similar question a few months ago and still grappling for an answer....

I have a C5 and generally opt for Wunder pres with Crane song spider converters and use a matched pair of 414B-ULS's and struggle to maintain the openeness in the top end that the piano has. It just seems all to easy to end up with a slightly blanketed and perhaps more to the point not quite the 3 dimensional sound that I want.

In my case, I suspect the real answer is to get another Soundelux 251 but again the $$$ is scaring me a the moment and really, I would need 2 becuase I am commiting to track vocals and piano at the same time... much better integrated performance... but another channel of wunder and 2x251s is a scary prospect.

I'm sure you're right with regard to the VM1s also being a great option... this seems to be the right path...

If you are still in the hunt in a few weeks time, I will have done a shoot out of every mic I can get my hands on... and in particular the gefell range will be high on the starting list. One of my dealers clients conducted a similar exercise a few weeks ago and ended up with a swag of UMT-70s....

In the meantime, if you come up with the answer, let me know.
Old 17th May 2007
  #4
Gear Addict
 

Quick thing - forgot to mention I have 8 foot hard ceilings - luckily the floors are a nice hardwood - but obviously I want to minimize hard room reflections (but can't treat the root with foam as in the lower floor - the piano is in the living room)

Besides, believe it or not - the piano sounds great where it is - just don't want the mics to hype the room reflections.

Thanks again.
Old 17th May 2007 | Show parent
  #5
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tcause - sounds good - let's brainstorm together and share findings for sure. Believe it or not, I'm losing sleep over this (must be a true gear slut- haha)
Old 17th May 2007 | Show parent
  #6
Gear Maniac
 

The other standard answer is dpa 4006's .... I guess this puts the earthworks into play as well... I will ensure that I add these to the list for testing... has to be done.
Old 17th May 2007 | Show parent
  #7
Gear Addict
 

tcause - believe it or not - one of the nicest recording I made of the piano was for a tune where the piano was only called upon to play solid chords - I don't have a final copy - only the working copy with CHEESY synthetic drums and most of the final tracks are missing (flute, sax, violin, etc) - but listen to the piano - 4 mics - 2x 414s spaced under lid and 2x 184s outside edge of the piano

http://www.getreadytoplay.ca/Awaken_Me.mp3

I just like hgow finally it was somewhat 3 dimensional - though room to still improve.
Old 17th May 2007 | Show parent
  #8
Gear Addict
 

another sample - but this one has a weird distortion in the middle - not important as it was a rough instrumental mix for a client - this used 2 spaced 414 right close to the hammers - on either side of the piano at the front - so above them there was no lid - mixed with a 414XLII under lid at the middle of the longest bass string.

http://www.getreadytoplay.ca/Piano_Sample.wav

Again though the sound feels restricted - contained - and somewhat uninspiring - though, as I hope some will agree, the tone of the piano is butter!
Old 17th May 2007 | Show parent
  #9
Gear Addict
 

TYPO ON THREAD TITLE - meant of course LDC - not LCD TVs
Old 17th May 2007 | Show parent
  #10
Gear Maniac
 

I am in Puerto Rico at the moment and don't have much of a listening environment, but from what I can tell... the mixed track with the 414s and 184s sounds musical... the dark piano contrasting with the bright percussion is great in context.

where I find I have a gap is when I essentially want solo piano and vocals... just a nice intimate performance from the players perspective... I am absolutely able to nail the vocal sound I want... but just don't get the dimension from the piano required to keep me happy yet.

anyway... thinking about it isn't going to help... I need to test mics!
Old 17th May 2007 | Show parent
  #11
Gear Addict
 

What about the Beyer MC930s? compared to say the 414s or any 251s - or VM1s or EW etc
Old 17th May 2007 | Show parent
  #12
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I'm embarassed to admit I've just discovered the 930s are small diaphragm - which means i'm now looking for comparisons between them and the 184s - but that's another thread I guess.

so back the the LDCs...
Old 17th May 2007 | Show parent
  #13
Lives for gear
 
Mike Jasper's Avatar
If I were still using mics on piano, I'd keep my C414s for sure.

But everything's been synth these days. Until I sell them, then a grand piano project will come up for sure.

Jasper
Old 17th May 2007
  #14
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Igotsoul4u's Avatar
Schoeps hands down.
Old 17th May 2007 | Show parent
  #15
member no 666
 
Fletcher's Avatar
I don't know what the MC930's are... but the Microtech Gefell M-930's are drop dead gorgeous for my piano... which is a 1946 5' "Hardman"... it's got the bite of a 5' but not so much like a Yamaha C-7... in many ways it is very similar sounding to a Steinway but can be a bit clearer than a Steinway.

Lovely overtone structure in the tone of the piano... and the MT Gefell M-930's get every one of them clear as a bell!!!
Old 17th May 2007 | Show parent
  #16
Jai guru deva om
 
warhead's Avatar
 

Recorded a mint Steinway B the other day with a bunch of BLUE's mics, that KIWI is killer on piano. Just the right lift, and a clear midrange meant a lot in discerning different tones in the middle.

War
Old 17th May 2007 | Show parent
  #17
Lives for gear
 

M930's are one of my "go to" mics for piano... I've used them on more pianos than I can count and they always sound fantastic. The UM70 mentioned earlier is a similar sound.

Depending on the sound you are looking for, there are plenty of other great mics out there. They range from ribbons (Royers can be fantastic, but a dead piano will not sound good with them), to omni condensers (I use DPA 4006 and Schoeps CMC 6/MK2 on my classical stuff depending on the instrument/room). Cardiods wont' give you the depth, but a good mic is still a good mic- the other go-to is my pair of Schoeps CMC6/MK4, my AKG 426 stereo mic (which is LD) and a number of others...

--Ben
Old 17th May 2007 | Show parent
  #18
C/G
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C/G's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by pianokeys View Post
Quick thing - forgot to mention I have 8 foot hard ceilings - luckily the floors are a nice hardwood - but obviously I want to minimize hard room reflections (but can't treat the root with foam as in the lower floor - the piano is in the living room)

Besides, believe it or not - the piano sounds great where it is - just don't want the mics to hype the room reflections.

Thanks again.
Try some hypercardioid mics like Beyer M160 ribbons. LDC's will pick up those refelctions in a small room more so than the M160's.

Just a thought.
Old 17th May 2007 | Show parent
  #19
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lord_bunny's Avatar
 

I actually enjoyed the 414b-uls on grand piano... backed a bit from the hammers. I did find that they needed a little boost at 12k, but only a few db... My piano is a rather dark Canadian Nordheimer (from 1927)... so i'm sure on a newer C5 or anthing of that caliber, the 414 would do nice. I'm a big fan of treble, bass mic'ing as well as a spaced pair of LDC's about 7' up and 5' out from the body of the piano (treble side obviously).

The other option is to do some spot treatment on that hard ceiling... or your asking from some pronounced room modes.
Old 17th May 2007 | Show parent
  #20
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aidyhall's Avatar
For recording my favourite 'pop' piano in London, the Fazioli in Metropolis Studio A, I've always loved the Schoeps CMC-5U's, with the cardioid capsule (MK4?). Beautiful detail, with a clear and extended top that is not hyped or 'spitty' in any way.

Of course, if you're doing classical stuff, the mic's and the distance from the piano will be very different.
Old 17th May 2007 | Show parent
  #21
Gear Addict
 

Great suggestions - thanks (I only wish I could hear many of these mics before purchasing up here in Canada) - maybe a trip to Buffalo would be in order - or anywhere in upper New York.

I'm confused about one thing- using small diaphgram condensers close to a piano? (such as the 930s) - Loss of depth no?
Old 17th May 2007 | Show parent
  #22
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paterno's Avatar
 

I've been having good luck with Violet Amethyst mics on piano. If the piano is on the bright side, try the Vintage version. If it is a touch dark, try the Standards...

Cheers,
john
Old 17th May 2007 | Show parent
  #23
Gear Nut
 

Shure 141's inside

We did a big piano mic shoot out at John Weston's Futura Studio in Boston. It's a fabulous room--an old Masonic Temple. John has a really fine well maintained New York Steinway D there. We tried all kinds of things but the concensus choice for jazz/pop was a pair of Shure KSM 141's in omni (they are switchable) inside the piano, one high, one low, and a pair of KSM 32's peeking over the edge. I guess the Steinway has enough color to work well with that neutral sounding 32. I have since bought a pair of 141's for myself and use them all the time for this application--indeed its the only thing I find that mic useful for. I have also used it the same way with C414b-uls outside. I have started playing around with a Royer SF 24 and its promising.

For classical work in good rooms either spaced Schoeps Mk 2's about 6' up and 5' out from the instrument or MK 21's in the same configuration if I need a little less of the room reverb. Bass response suffers a bit but its tolerable.

Bob Miller
Old 18th May 2007 | Show parent
  #24
Gear Addict
 

High and low?

Meaning above eachother - or the bass strings mic was higher and the treble string mic was lower?

Just wondering.
Old 18th May 2007 | Show parent
  #25
Gear Addict
 

Again - wouldn't using small diaghrams such as my 184s as close mics mean a sacrifice in the low end?
Old 18th May 2007 | Show parent
  #26
Gear Nut
 

Higher strings/lower strings

Sorry. I should have been more clear. One mic over the treble strings and one on the bass strings.

Bob Miller
Old 18th May 2007 | Show parent
  #27
Gear Addict
 
StefanColson's Avatar
 

I've had the best results with a spaced pair of Schoeps small-cap mics. 414s always give me a kind of glassy sheen on the piano that while sometimes is just the ticket, can be very hard to get rid of. When the Schoeps don't cut it (pretty much never, but when I need something a little beefier) I reach for a pair of E49s.
Old 18th May 2007 | Show parent
  #28
Gear Addict
 

Stephen - 414 instrument (silver) or voice (gold)

I'm still hoping someone can share their experience on the difference (I can't get 2 XLIIs)

Thanks

p.s. - no replies on the small diaghram question?
Old 18th May 2007 | Show parent
  #29
Lives for gear
 
paterno's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by pianokeys View Post
Again - wouldn't using small diaghrams such as my 184s as close mics mean a sacrifice in the low end?
No.
Old 18th May 2007 | Show parent
  #30
Gear Addict
 
Auslander's Avatar
 

I'd opt for either two nice 67s or if those weren't available I'd use a pair of AKG C451s.

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