The No.1 Website for Pro Audio
 Search This Thread  Search This Forum  Search Reviews  Search Gear Database  Search Gear for sale  Search Gearslutz Go Advanced
Ethan Winer on... Condenser Microphones
Old 10th September 2008
  #241
Lives for gear
 
badboymusic's Avatar
 

Some are able to hear things that others don't (voices excluded) and when you tell them they are not really hearing it, it's no surprise that you are going to irritate them. We are not all created equal in the hearing department.

I lean towards the science aspect, but cannot deny what I hear.

It's also a scientific fact that there is a universe, but I can not give you the exact dimensions.
Old 10th September 2008
  #242
Gear Addict
 
IzzyRock's Avatar
Whats up with dogging Ethan?? This guy has helped most of you guys with treatment questions (including me), so give him a break. He spends valuable time of his day answering and contruting here
Old 10th September 2008
  #243
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ethan Winer View Post
. He had nothing of substance, just insults. These guys should work for the RNC.


--Ethan


That might be hard - I think they already work for the DNC...



-tINY

Old 10th September 2008
  #244
Gear Guru
 
Ethan Winer's Avatar
 

Lightbulb

Quote:
Originally Posted by 2xBassist View Post
By day I'm a school string teacher, and one of my students sent me this you tube clip:
Thanks, but there's a much higher quality version here:

A Cello Rondo

Quote:
I haven't read EVERY post yet ... frequency response is only one dimension... transient response can be just as significant
Yes, we've discussed many of the other things that can affect what is recorded and heard.

Quote:
Also.. is it possible that frequency response can vary at different SPL's on a mic?
I'd expect a microphone to have the same response at all levels short of clipping.

--Ethan
Old 10th September 2008
  #245
Lives for gear
 
JohnRoberts's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by TurboJets View Post
To me it sounds like a grainy frequency modulation with almost a phase thing happening behind it.

Used to drive me crazy on sustain sections of acoustic guitar tracks or when I was listening to the fade of a singing bowl or some other quiet program-source I had recorded.
I'm not sure that is the best terminology, but the symptom of a noise modulated by signal fits. If the error in the clock uncertainty is not a simple random electrical noise but some interference with other digital clocks (or whatever) there may indeed be non random sounds in that noise floor being modulated.

This sounds like it could be more than simple jitter but whatever the mechanism does appear to be evidence of an inferior A/D or codec. Note: The noise error related to clock jitter can only occur at two places. At the very front end where the A/D conversion occurs and at the output when that digital word is converted back to analog. The clock edge timing for all intermediate stages is far less critical as long a data integrity is maintained. The jitter noise occurs in both. For random jitter they just combine incoherently but if that jitter is not random and contains some coherent energy, that coherent noise term could sum and difference at the final D/A. ...or not.

This noise should be modest but not all convertors are created equal. This should be apparent in a THD+N spec, not S/N.

JR
Old 10th September 2008
  #246
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ethan Winer View Post


Yes, I agree that people pay a lot of money for things that I consider not valuable. Especially things like subtle tube and transformer distortion, which are easy to achieve in other inexpensive ways. But the purveyors of audio magic want people to believe, and a lot of people consciously choose to believe because it's easier than actually understanding the science.

You'll notice that, generally speaking, the people who actually design gear for a living and are successful at it, and who truly understand how gear works, do not believe in stuff like speaker wires or power conditioners or ultra high sample rates make a difference in sound quality. Think about that because it's very important!


Remember, though, success in the audio world as it exists requires some hype. And, success usually means making a profit....

Politics become important when you compete for shelf space with "oxogen-free directional" cables, which come in a fancy package. That company spent lots of money marketing to luddites and provides a good margin to the shopkeeper.



-tINY

Old 10th September 2008
  #247
Lives for gear
 
malaclypse's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2xBassist View Post
Since this IS an Ethan Winer thread...

By day I'm a school string teacher, and one of my students sent me this you tube clip:

YouTube - Amazing Video of a Song Composed Entirely of 37 Cello Parts

and I just made the connection :-) Fun stuff. My students love it!
by the beard of Zeus! that was pretty darn cool.thumbsup i've always wanted to do the same kind of thing, only with trombones instead of strings!
Old 10th September 2008
  #248
Lives for gear
 
TurboJets's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ethan Winer View Post
What does FM have to do with this? How have you created grainy FM that you're using as a basis for knowing what grainy FM sounds like? WTF does grainy mean anyway? Further, jitter FM occurs in the GigaHertz range!

And what does "phase thing" sound like? I often see this when people diss an EQ because they say they can hear its phase shift. But phase shift in the usual amounts you'd get from an EQ is not audible. What they're really hearing is comb filtering brought out by the EQ. Comb filtering is the basis of "phaser" effects, and people wrongly think that's the sound of phase shift. But what they're hearing is the skewed frequency response, not phase shift. So yet again, understanding how audio really works is the key to identifying what you're hearing.

--Ethan
Jeez Ethan, why are you getting so mad at me when I'm just trying to explain what I'm hearing? Crap, that's frustrating. It sounds like you think I'm an absolute idiot and in reading between the lines that's what I come away with. No wonder people attack you over this stuff. Your arrogance really sucks, man.

First you assert I ducked LivingSound's questions, so I point out that I actually did answer his question, then I answer yet a more clarifying question from JohnRoberts and you don't like That answer. So you blow up and lose it.

Sidebands that occur around jitter are absolutely perceived as FM (at least that's how some perceive it). Other's argue against that description and always will I suppose. And that anomalie absolutely is NOT restricted to the GHhz range my friend, it can occur in the 1KHz range, as well as the low end, but usually IME I hear it in the mids to upper mids. The perception of the effect of Phase is also another anomalie people hear in audible jitter and that's been written about as well. My sources of reference seem to differ from yours. Perhaps we're both cherry-picking? I don't know.

You asked (in an obviously condescending tone) "WTF does grainy mean anyway?" Again, you don't like my adjectives? Again, you act like I'm a blithering idiot? I really don't care. "Grainy" means "grainy". Look it up in the dictionary. Deal with it.

I'm glad I'm working on a writing project today so I have time to respond to this because it just clarifies for me (and maybe some other's) how you jibe, jeer, and scoff at people in some of these threads. And how that doesn't achieve anything but spawn frustration on their part which eventually leads to threads like this.
Old 10th September 2008
  #249
Lives for gear
 
malaclypse's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnRoberts View Post
Yes, there are a number of different mechanisms that can cause nonlinearity preferentially at higher frequencies or lower.

A slew or speed related nonlinearity will be worse at high slew rates which are a product of high frequency and amplitude. There is also a common falling open loop gain with frequency in negative feedback circuits that contributes to higher distortion at higher frequency.

Alternately a nonlinearity caused by say a component heating and changing some characteristic because of that heat, will be worse at low frequency. An example of this is fuses in series with a loudspeaker. At higher frequency the effect is insignificant due to fuse thermal time-constant.

There are also amplitude related mechanisms, the most obvious is clipping, but there are voltage coefficients in things like capacitors that can express as distortion below clipping. Edit: in addition to distortion made worse at high amplitude, mechanisms like crossover distortion or class B distortion in amplifiers is (relatively) worse at low amplitude, since the error is roughly constant but a smaller part of a larger waveform [/edit]

THD+N is a kitchen sink measurement that measures all nonlinearity (plus noise). The test stimulus matters. A simple sinewave is arguably not music, but music is made from sinewaves so properly executed you can learn a great deal about how a circuit behaves from testing with them.

JR
thanks john. interesting stuff. i asked because i had this mixing idea of duplicating a track, and filtering out everything but a certain frequency that i want to boost, then applying some distortion and possibly some compression; then subtly(!), tucking that in under the original track as an effect, as an alternative to 'effecty' EQ. haven't had a chance to try it yet, but i will soon. i just wondered if certain mics or preamps/outboard/plugs did this kinda thing already in their own way.
Old 10th September 2008
  #250
Gear Guru
 
Ethan Winer's Avatar
 

Lightbulb

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sounds Great View Post
How about proximity effect? It varies dramatically with microphone design.
You didn't ask about proximity effect! You asked about SPL level. heh

--Ethan
Old 10th September 2008
  #251
Lives for gear
 

I don't think he's criticising what you are hearing, but your evidence for your conclusion.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TurboJets View Post
Jeez Ethan, why are you getting so mad at me when I'm just trying to explain what I'm hearing?

I've done tests to determine the effects of clocking (jitter) by changing the clock. A better clock translates in a more pricise sound (better impulse reproduction), increased perceived bass and high end extension and a less strained, artificial sound (what you might call FM).
Old 10th September 2008
  #252
Lives for gear
 

Ultra high sample rates (like 200X) sound better for processing. This works on EQ plugins (much more pleasant high end) and dynamics (more natural, punchy sound of fast transients, attacks).
Old 10th September 2008
  #253
Lives for gear
 
TurboJets's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnRoberts View Post
but if that jitter is not random and contains some coherent energy, that coherent noise term could sum and difference at the final D/A. ...or not.

This noise should be modest but not all convertors are created equal. This should be apparent in a THD+N spec, not S/N.

JR
Yes

and...

Yes, I agree it should be apparent in a THD+N spec rather than S/N because it's an effect you hear as a variety of "distortion".
Old 10th September 2008
  #254
Gear Guru
 
Ethan Winer's Avatar
 

Lightbulb

Quote:
Originally Posted by TurboJets View Post
Yes, I agree it [jitter] should be apparent in a THD+N spec rather than S/N because it's an effect you hear as a variety of "distortion".
Exactly. So then all we have to do is measure the sum of THD+N and we can determine if it's audible. If the sum is 100 dB below the music, which it should be, then it's not audible no matter how many people claim to be able to hear it. This is the crux of the matter. When tested blind, all of a sudden nobody can pick out which clock has high jitter, or whether dither was used or not, and so forth.

Now, if the THD+N measured only 60 dB below the music, or even 80 dB down, then I'd say the "jitter believers" have a case. But even cheap sound cards have less jitter than that. Hence my skepticism.

--Ethan
Old 10th September 2008
  #255
Gear Guru
 
Ethan Winer's Avatar
 

Lightbulb

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sounds Great View Post
And this effect varies by volume, not just distance.
Proximity effect varies by volume? I don't think so. But if you have any evidence to the contrary I'm glad to be educated.

--Ethan
Old 10th September 2008
  #256
Gear Guru
 
Ethan Winer's Avatar
 

Lightbulb

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sounds Great View Post
I've heard it. A very loud voice can cause this effect at a greater distance than a softer voice, do you agree?
No, I don't agree. Lots of things "sound" different at different volume levels due to Fletcher-Munson and other factors.

BTW, neither Wikipedia nor Shure's library say anything about level affecting proximity effect:

Proximity effect (audio - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)

Find an Answer

So tutt back atcha, and your apology is accepted. heh

BTW, above you said you've heard it. This shows yet again how frail our hearing perception really is, and why measurements always trump perception.

--Ethan
Old 10th September 2008
  #257
Gear Head
Quote:
Originally Posted by virtualsamana View Post
I think people get threatened when the scientific approach threatens their belief system. In the case of gear, people can spend thousands of dollars chasing the dragon for better sound. Try telling an audiophile that his seven thousand dollars cables are no better than the ones you can buy at Wallmart. I guarantee he will not let his beliefs go so easily.
Thank you for this. To me it hits the nail on the head. People need to validate their high-cost gear purchases and are offended if someone suggests they might have succeeded on some cheaper level. I read this over and over and over again. People need to be reassured that they didn't waste their hard-earned money.
Old 10th September 2008
  #258
Lives for gear
 
TurboJets's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ethan Winer View Post
When tested blind, all of a sudden nobody can pick out which clock has high jitter, or whether dither was used or not, and so forth.

Now, if the THD+N measured only 60 dB below the music, or even 80 dB down, then I'd say the "jitter believers" have a case. But even cheap sound cards have less jitter than that. Hence my skepticism.

--Ethan
Rarely was I looking at the waveform on the screen when I audibly noticed jitter so you can take that (or leave it) as a blind test I guess. Besides, since upgrading my converters (hello?) my monitoring is as smooth as butter. ("smooth as butter?! WTF does that mean?!) LOL - just kidding.

And you can have your skepticism (and keep it) for all I care. That's your business. I've never been of mind to "prove" anything to anyone.

That's all I care to say on the matter and won't post anything further on the matter so you can turn your attentions toward the other posters.

I'll join Tony off to the side now as someone watching periodically with a bag of popcorn close by.
Old 10th September 2008
  #259
Lives for gear
 
JohnRoberts's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sounds Great View Post
I've heard it. A very loud voice can cause this effect at a greater distance than a softer voice, do you agree?

So it follows, that at the same distance, the volume level of the voice will determine the amount of the effect. No?
Human voice and many musical instruments grow more complex with increasing volume. An obvious example is flute. When played pianissimo it is almost a pure tone, while blowing harder introduces more overtones. Blowing harder across out vocal chords also creates a richer sound.

Proximity effect in microphones AFAIK is purely a distance-path length issue, as it changes the phase relationship between the front and back diaphragm signal.

JR
Old 10th September 2008
  #260
Lives for gear
 

From what I can see on theese figures, a louder signal (higher amplitude) would not affect the relationship, only frequency. Lower frequency will get a boost while higher frequecies will be uneffected fig 1, and thats also the sound of proximity effect.
Old 10th September 2008
  #261
Gear Guru
 
Ethan Winer's Avatar
 

Lightbulb

Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnRoberts View Post
Human voice and many musical instruments grow more complex with increasing volume.
That too, though in that case the change happens at the source. A trumpet blown softly has softer overtones than when blown loudly. But in this context I'm sure what Sounds Great heard is valid and easily explained. When you sing louder - even if the timbre remains the same - lows will appear louder due to Fletcher-Munson as I already mentioned.

Quote:
Proximity effect in microphones AFAIK is purely a distance-path length issue
Exactly, and microphone proximity effect is a linear phenomenon. Indeed, if something changes with volume that means there's a nonlinearity in the system.

--Ethan
Old 10th September 2008
  #262
Gear Nut
 
myrtlebacker's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sounds Great View Post
Simple physics, my friend. Look at the graphs:

...

Would a louder sound source not increase the size of the wave and change the equation?

Hilarious. It may be simple physics, but you sure don't understand it.


Louder makes the waves go higher (different amplitude), but the waves are still the same amount apart (same frequency). As the equation correlates frequency with pressure difference (see Figure 5), the amplitude is of no interest.
Old 10th September 2008
  #263
Lives for gear
 
JohnRoberts's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sounds Great View Post
Simple physics, my friend. Look at the graphs:






Would a louder sound source not increase the size of the wave and change the equation?
Um no...

Sound in air is not a pretty sine wave but a 3 dimensional pattern of compressions and rarefactions. The frequency or wavelength of the sound (and the speed of sound in air) affects the distance between these regions of compression and rarefaction but louder sounds just have more or less air molecules (pressure) in these patterns.

Apparently the physics is a little too simple.

from the same website your borrowed the pretty charts.
Quote:

A typical distance from the front to the rear of the microphone might be 8.5 mm. Thus, the sound wave that hits the back of the diaphragm has to travel an additional 8.5 mm, and hence, is delayed from the front wave. Figures 2-4 shows that if we have the same 8.5 mm distance at different frequencies (green lines), the change in pressure would also be different. At low frequencies (figure 2), the difference in pressure (red line) between the front and rear is smaller than at mid (figure 3) or high (figure 4) frequencies.

Those pictures you are showing are normalized to be the same amplitude at different frequencies. The "green" lines show a fixed distance along the horizontal axis representing a constant time difference between front and back waveforms. The length of the red lines show how much more of a difference that fixed time offset is at higher frequencies than low. This mechanism is independant of amplitude.

For any who misread WIKI (it that must be right ?) they say...
Quote:
In addition to the angular dependence described above, the response of a directional microphone depends on the amplitude, frequency and distance of the source. These latter two dependencies are used to explain the proximity effect.
THE LATTER TWO... Frequency and distance... This may be a little confusing to some as the wiki page has hot links on the first two (amplitude and frequency), perhaps causing a visual disconnect with the words.

JR
Old 10th September 2008
  #264
Lives for gear
 
JohnRoberts's Avatar
 

I'm starting to write angry answers so I need to stop...

I wrote my "Audio Mythology" column in a recording magazine almost 30 years ago and it seems the same lack of understanding persists today as back then.

I fear this is a failure in our broader educational institutions as half the world is expecting the new super-collider started up today in Europe to create some world ending event like a black hole...

Good night Chet.... no mas.

JR
Old 11th September 2008
  #265
Lives for gear
 
CaptainHook's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ethan Winer View Post
Earlier today I saw CaptainHook throw more stones at me over at the Womb. He had nothing of substance, just insults
Throw more stones? Since when have questions been considered stones?
I've laid it out for you simply and the only time i haven't been polite is when
i copied/paraphrased your own answers back at you. You were the first
to get rude in this discussion.

There's been plenty of substance here, but when i ask YOU for some,
it gets ignored.

As for the womb, Bob had taken care of the 'substance' when he pointed
out that the design you were arguing was copied by someone on youtube
from your friend, was actually based on a published design by the BBC
from the 60's. I noticed you didn't post after that.

My post in that thread was not directed at you, but in reply to someone else
that said everyone on the internet calls you a good guy. I posted that i
disagreed with that as it was a huge generalization that was contrary to
my experience.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ethan Winer View Post
In the next day or two I may gather up and list all the nay-sayers who never responded to direct questions.
And will you respond to my direct questions also?
Where is your scientific proof of your claims?
If you can prove your claims, i'm genuinely interested.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ethan Winer View Post
Thanks Frank. Yes, this is exactly the problem. Some people get totally pissed off at folks like me who promote a scientific approach.
It's a bit hypocritical to promote a scientific approach only to then
make claims that you won't support with any scientific evidence.
Fuzz guitar through a cheap convertor. Convertor accumulation
across multiple tracks.
This is what i've questioned and asked for your proof on.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ethan Winer View Post
Thus you see posts like that with only insults and no substance.
I see little to no substance in your posts where you're playing
the victim either. Like the above one. Okay for you, but not for others?

I see a pattern going on here.
And accusing others of having no substance in their posts is
insulting. Your passive aggressive tactics do not go unnoticed
by me.
Old 11th September 2008
  #266
Lives for gear
 
CaptainHook's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by flying_squirrel View Post
People need to validate their high-cost gear purchases and are offended if someone suggests they might have succeeded on some cheaper level. I read this over and over and over again. People need to be reassured that they didn't waste their hard-earned money.
You don't think the idea that cheaper gear doesn't matter appeals to a
MUCH larger market? People want to be reassured they don't need
to spend their hard-earned money.

Pretty easy to spin any way you want huh?

I just want some proof. I keep asking but..
Old 11th September 2008
  #267
Gear Maniac
 

Dear Captain Hook.
I read your argument.
To me it seems you are asking Ethan to prove nothing.
He says there is no significant difference between digital converters when recording
fuzz (distorted guitars)
Mathematically the difference between 35.5% and 35.6% is insignificant.
the 35% distortion coming from a guitar amp and the .1% difference between different converters.
In the real world i also hear no difference between a high end converter and a MOTU converter when recording rock guitar cabinets.
So there it is, mathematically and musically with great ears !
The burden is on you to prove what you claim exists.
You cant ask Ehan to prove something that he claims doesn't exist.
Did you know grammy award winning (for audio engineering) albums have been recorded using cheap Alesis converters ?
I'm sure you think your music sounds better than Steely Dan's.
But I wont ask you to prove that.
Old 11th September 2008
  #268
Gear Head
 
perversity's Avatar
 

It's funny that's Ethans got so many cheerleaders on this site. Ethan's put himself out on a limb many of times with his so-called "scientific" claims, now that limb is cracking. The thing that finally got me with him, was his claim that a Soundblaster Card works just as well as an Apogee converter. He even went so far as to post some BS test files, with the Soundblaster Card being noticeably louder, and lots of static in the Apogee track. As if to intentionally bias his own test. Then there's his claim that all amps sound the same. again, this is BS, plain as day. I've seen enough on this forum, along with his letters to the editors of various music mags to know that he's just a gearpimp , peddling his foam.
Old 11th September 2008
  #269
Lives for gear
 
badboymusic's Avatar
 

I feel Mr. Winer's behavior has been very hypocritical and disappointing. He seems to be ignoring questions he refuses (or cannot) answer while demanding proof in response to his own. Captain Hook has brought up some very valid points, how about answering them?
Old 11th September 2008
  #270
TYY
Gear Addict
 
TYY's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by badboymusic View Post
I feel Mr. Winer's behavior has been very hypocritical and disappointing. He seems to be ignoring questions he refuses (or can not) answer while demanding proof in response to his own. Captain Hook has brought up some very valid points, how about answering them?
X2.

While I am a scientist, and a huge skeptic when it comes to 90% of the things that humans experience, Ethan clearly oversimplifies things to the point of foolishness.

I respect his stand for objectivity, but although he seems aware of the limitations of science, he doesn't seem so aware of the limitations of his own knowledge of said science.
Post Reply

Welcome to the Gearslutz Pro Audio Community!

Registration benefits include:
  • The ability to reply to and create new discussions
  • Access to members-only giveaways & competitions
  • Interact with VIP industry experts in our guest Q&As
  • Access to members-only sub forum discussions
  • Access to members-only Chat Room
  • Get INSTANT ACCESS to the world's best private pro audio Classifieds for only USD $20/year
  • Promote your eBay auctions and Reverb.com listings for free
  • Remove this message!
You need an account to post a reply. Create a username and password below and an account will be created and your post entered.


 
 
Slide to join now Processing…
Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Similar Threads
Thread
Thread Starter / Forum
Replies
burke111 / The Good News Channel
4
dannygold / Bass traps, acoustic panels, foam etc
2

Forum Jump
Forum Jump