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Author Topic: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?  (Read 21291 times)

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Offline NOLAfishwater

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Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« on: November 10, 2007, 10:58:45 AM »
My friend wants me to go over to his house and record him playing his baby grand piano. I read a couple of articles for engineers but they don't offer much info for stero recording. I am thinking about using my pair of AKG 414XLS. Anyone care to give me some insight or if you have pics that you can post that would be awesome. Thank you in advance for your help.

Offline rokpunk

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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #1 on: November 10, 2007, 11:31:15 AM »
put your 414's in omni, space the mics about 4" over the strings, put the piano on it's short stick, throw a sound blanket over top all of it, and give it a try. you might try moving the low end mic back a bit further than the high notes mic. whenever possible, omnis should be used on pianos. cards tend to give the recording too much seperation between highs and lows.
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Offline NOLAfishwater

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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #2 on: November 10, 2007, 11:32:50 AM »
I have read the DPA literature but was wondering what other people have tried. Thanks for the recommendations. I will try a few different ways and will report back.

Offline bhtoque

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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #3 on: November 10, 2007, 01:26:29 PM »
put your 414's in omni, space the mics about 4" over the strings, put the piano on it's short stick, throw a sound blanket over top all of it, and give it a try. you might try moving the low end mic back a bit further than the high notes mic. whenever possible, omnis should be used on pianos. cards tend to give the recording too much seperation between highs and lows.

I was just discussing this with the foh guy for the bad plus. He was using a pair of 414's set card, but basically as you described. 4-5 inches over strings, one for low end back from keys. Said he favors opening the piano up, but had it on the short stick for the shows I saw.

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Offline BayTaynt3d

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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #4 on: November 10, 2007, 02:26:42 PM »
Depends on how ambient or how up front you want the sound. You can stick the mics inside real close, but you can also get an awesome recording by backing away a bit and running XY or DIN, etc. Use your ears for placement, and walk around listening while sticking a finger in one ear. Also, raising the pair up a bit can be worthwhile. There's a million different ways to mic a piano. Close in is a bit more pop, back a bit is a bit more classical. If you have four channels, you can do both and mix to preference in post.
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Offline rokpunk

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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #5 on: November 10, 2007, 04:27:15 PM »
best way to mic a piano, bar none - http://www.earthworksaudio.com/77.html
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Offline John Willett

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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #6 on: November 10, 2007, 05:29:26 PM »
Piano recording is my speciality - this is what I do..........

If it's a grand you really need omnis - and that's real pressure microphone omnis, not an omni made up from back-to-back cardioids as used in a switchable mic.

The distance and position will vary from piano to piano, room to room and music to music, so don't get tied down to a specific set-up.

I tend to prefer 20cm spaced omnis at around shoulder height at a distance from the piano.  The distance will depend on the acoustics, the piano and the music.

Get the pianist to play and listen with your ears until you find the place where it sounds best to you - then stick the mics where your ears were - 9 times out of 10 this will be the best position.

My preferred mics are the Sennheiser MKH 20s, though my current project is being recorded with Neumann KM-D omnis (I have both 183 and 131 heads) and my new project in the spring will be with the new MKH 8020.



The picture shows the first recording session with both the MKH 20s and the KM 183-Ds - the CD will be with the KM 183-D.  The KM-D are vertical because the 183 is a diffuse field mic. and the recording is in the nearfield - vertical means they have a flat response at 90°.

I hope this helps.


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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #7 on: November 11, 2007, 12:35:56 AM »
My buddy Mike Morgan suggested this to me, and it was stunning..Ive used it ever since...

mics at the same height as the piano lid, angled down on the lid in such a way that they are in the exact plane/space as the lid..essentially removing the lid from the equation.(mike is in the DPA university section)

Omnis of course(Josephson c617 with Gefell Mk221 or DPA 4006s are my choice)


Offline Charlie Miller

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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #8 on: November 11, 2007, 12:39:08 AM »
One time, just for fun, I mic'd the piano from underneath using a pair of Schoeps MK4's. Came out quite nice.
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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #9 on: November 11, 2007, 02:55:53 AM »
One time, just for fun, I mic'd the piano from underneath using a pair of Schoeps MK4's. Came out quite nice.

Recently went to an acoustic MMW show and they had one underneath and one inside.
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Offline F.O.Bean

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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #10 on: November 11, 2007, 04:39:08 AM »
interesting techniques, thanks guys!

now the question, should I trade my 483's for 414 XLS's ??? could be useful if I ever got this kind of opportunity....
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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #11 on: November 11, 2007, 05:46:19 AM »
Obviously there are many ways to mic a piano, with each providing a 'piano sound' that sometimes sounds good, but actually getting the 'sound of the piano' as you heard takes more specific mic method and placement.

My 'favorite' mic method for piano is using HRTF baffled omni stereo-surround method.  Recordings done in this manner in many recordings with photos/equipment notes found on page: www.sonicstudios.com/mp3_2slp.htm

Several discussion threads on piano recording methods found in the FAQ section at: www.sonicstudios.com/page16.html 

It's a very long page with many piano recording mic method discussions that should be of interest if you love the true sound of the piano instrument and not just going for another 'piano sound' type of recording.
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Offline John Willett

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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #12 on: November 11, 2007, 02:48:22 PM »
As has been said, there are many ways to mic. up a piano.

My method (described above) assumes a piano recital with solo piano in an acoustic space and the resulting recording is pretty well as the audience would hear it.

Some of the other methods mentioned are more suitable for recording in a studio situation where the piano is being used with other instruments.

And, yes, I have miked up underneath the piano with a pair of Neumann GFM 132 boundary mics. - came out superb, but I would not use this method for a recital recording of solo piano.

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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #13 on: November 11, 2007, 03:32:18 PM »
Ah Guy, you are the king of Self Marketing. It was only a matter of time..what a coincidence that that page you pointed to isnt really a "forum", but more quotes (mainly from you) glorifying your products, and hand selecting quotes in which others Laud them. It would be ok if it were here and there, but forcing it down everyone's throats gets a bit annoying.

Mr. Willett, which ones above would work better for studio work?


Obviously there are many ways to mic a piano, with each providing a 'piano sound' that sometimes sounds good, but actually getting the 'sound of the piano' as you heard takes more specific mic method and placement.

My 'favorite' mic method for piano is using HRTF baffled omni stereo-surround method.  Recordings done in this manner in many recordings with photos/equipment notes found on page: www.sonicstudios.com/mp3_2slp.htm

Several discussion threads on piano recording methods found in the FAQ section at: www.sonicstudios.com/page16.html 

It's a very long page with many piano recording mic method discussions that should be of interest if you love the true sound of the piano instrument and not just going for another 'piano sound' type of recording.
« Last Edit: November 11, 2007, 03:37:10 PM by Teddy »

Offline boojum

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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #14 on: November 11, 2007, 04:34:30 PM »
My friend wants me to go over to his house and record him playing his baby grand piano. I read a couple of articles for engineers but they don't offer much info for stero recording. I am thinking about using my pair of AKG 414XLS. Anyone care to give me some insight or if you have pics that you can post that would be awesome. Thank you in advance for your help.

You might want to read Michael William's article, too, on mic spacing in reference to the broadness of the soundfield.  He is referenced on this board.  If you cannot find his work, "Stereo Zoom" PM me and I will send it to you.  It is a good, simple cookbook approach.

Cheers
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Offline John Willett

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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #15 on: November 11, 2007, 04:58:17 PM »
Mr. Willett, which ones above would work better for studio work?

It depends on the studio, it depends on the piano and it depends on the music.

There are probably as many ways to mic. a piano as there are recording engineers.

You choose the technique and distance to match the the piano, music and venue.  Some need more close miking than others.

If you are recording several instruments at the same time you also need to get the balance right.

Underneath can work in many situations.  Boundary mics on the floor can work well, as can boundary mics on the lid.  Normal SDCs pointed at the lid and about 1mm away can work pretty well at imitating a boundary mic..

But it's really a matter of using your ears to hear what sounds best in the space - move around, closer and further away, and use what you hear to find the best place to put the mics.

There is no hard and fast rule and everyone has a different theory.

I hope this helps.

Offline rokpunk

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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #16 on: November 11, 2007, 08:21:19 PM »
Considering this recording is taking place in NOLAfishwaters friends house and not a studio, I wouldn't count on the space being the most acousticlly desirable room to record in....which is why I suggested close mic'ing, with some isolation coming form a sound blanket, and no room mics. But, that's just me and how I would first approach the recording. YMMV.
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Offline F.O.Bean

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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #17 on: November 11, 2007, 09:33:48 PM »
Considering this recording is taking place in NOLAfishwaters friends house and not a studio, I wouldn't count on the space being the most acousticlly desirable room to record in....which is why I suggested close mic'ing, with some isolation coming form a sound blanket, and no room mics. But, that's just me and how I would first approach the recording. YMMV.

Also, since it is a friends house, that should suggest that NOLA also has a few times to get it *right* for his friend........meaning that I doubt he has to get it professionally right within the first 5 mins he is at his friends house. I would chill there for 3-4 hrs at the least and try a bunch of diff options and bring along a GREAT pair of monitoring cans and you all should be happy in the end! Just listen closely on the cans and see what sounds best in the space available.........
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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #18 on: November 11, 2007, 10:19:10 PM »
+T's for all of you. I will be trying all of the suggested techniques and will report back later this week. Planning on rolling over there on Wed. night. Don't know what the room is set up like b/c he just moved into his new place. Either way we will probably be knocking back a few drinks and taking our time.

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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #19 on: November 11, 2007, 10:46:26 PM »
+T's for all of you. I will be trying all of the suggested techniques and will report back later this week. Planning on rolling over there on Wed. night. Don't know what the room is set up like b/c he just moved into his new place. Either way we will probably be knocking back a few drinks and taking our time.

+T. That sounds like the best approach. and as long as both of you are happy, thats all that matters :)
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Offline John Willett

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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #20 on: November 12, 2007, 06:49:03 AM »
Since it's in a friend's house, it should be in a room that will make it sound OK.

I recorded a double-CD of Chopin Nocturnes a few years ago on a piano in a family home.

Listen carefully with your ears as the best place may not be what you expect.  In my case I used a 20cm pair of MKH 20s about 2 to 3 metres from the piano behind and a little to the right of the pianist.

We got this by listening and making a few short test recordings before deciding on the final position.

In retrospect, the room was a little too small for the 9' Steinway Concert Grand and a very small bit of reverb would have been ideal to open up the walls - but at the time good natural reverb units did not exist and I preferred to have it a little dry than sounding artificial.

I hope thsi helps.

Offline Brian

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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #21 on: November 12, 2007, 09:04:21 AM »
a lot of good suggestions here from john, rokpunk, and others, but here's something that i don't think was mentioned yet.

make sure the piano is tuned before recording (unless of course you are going for that "out-of-tune" feel ;) )

nothing like taking all that time to get the perfect setup only to find out the piano is out of tune.

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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #22 on: November 12, 2007, 01:44:11 PM »
Considering this recording is taking place in NOLAfishwaters friends house and not a studio, I wouldn't count on the space being the most acousticlly desirable room to record in....which is why I suggested close mic'ing, with some isolation coming form a sound blanket, and no room mics. But, that's just me and how I would first approach the recording. YMMV.

Also, since it is a friends house, that should suggest that NOLA also has a few times to get it *right* for his friend........meaning that I doubt he has to get it professionally right within the first 5 mins he is at his friends house. I would chill there for 3-4 hrs at the least and try a bunch of diff options and bring along a GREAT pair of monitoring cans and you all should be happy in the end! Just listen closely on the cans and see what sounds best in the space available.........

Bean makes a great point....and without one emote!!!!

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Offline Tim

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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #23 on: November 12, 2007, 01:55:11 PM »
:lol:
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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #24 on: November 13, 2007, 01:10:05 AM »
fockers ;D

there, are yinz happy now 8)
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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #25 on: November 13, 2007, 07:21:05 AM »
..... make sure the piano is tuned before recording

Absolutely - When I record we always have a piano technician on site who checks the piano over. and tweaks if necessary, during each break.

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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #26 on: November 13, 2007, 08:09:55 AM »
I did a show with Ramsey Lewis a few months back. I have never seen a pianist lay into a piano tuner as hard as Ramsey did. The tuner spent over two hours tuning, then Ramsey sat down, hit a couple of keys, and made the guy retune it, this time without his fancy computer piano tuning program. Ramsey had the best ear of any musician I have ever worked with. He and I walked the room together and tuned the PA together. I have to admit, it sounded better after he helped me tune the room. After he was happy with the room and PA sound, I hardly touched a fader the rest of the night. Good jazz players mix themselves with dynamics. His paino was mic'ed with a pair of Schoeps CMC6/MK4's.
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Offline Tim

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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #27 on: November 13, 2007, 10:12:12 AM »
That's a cool story. Ramsey is a legend
I’ve had a few weird experiences and a few close brushes with total weirdness of one sort or another, but nothing that’s really freaked me out or made me feel too awful about it. - Jerry Garcia

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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #28 on: November 13, 2007, 04:37:45 PM »
A piano tuner friend of 20 years specializes in a custom 'classical' tuning not inside those tuning computers.  However he did find one of those that allowed him to program his brand of tuning into it a few years ago that helps get the instrument quickly 'in the ball park' with finish tuning done by ear.

While quite different from today's modern tuning, his classical tuning seems to work with most modern pieces including jazz.  Some musicians now demand this type of tuning as it makes playing more pleasurable and correct for what they feel represents the music more faithfully, a few musicians hate this tuning, so matter of personal 'learned' tastes. 

Very few piano tuners really know how to tune in one of many 'classical' ways correctly, and Ramsey might also have preferred a more 'classical' tuning for being far more musical, at least when one learns how to listen for the benefits. 

All the selections in the 'Paul Bailey collection' are ONLY done with piano carefully 'tuned' in custom non-modern manner at www.sonicstudios.com/mp3_2slp.htm#bailey

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Offline MusicTech

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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #29 on: November 24, 2007, 06:58:49 PM »
Hi.  I realize this is a bit out of date, but thought I would add it to the "archive."

I'm taking the Recording Arts program at Los Medanos College, and one of the instructors/engineers/producers (with several Grammys under his belt) showed us this arrangement a few weeks ago.  In addition to the mics in the photos, two mics were flown about 20' high toward the rear of the studio, one along each wall, pointed at the wall, to pick up ambient sound.  Made for interesting mix possibilities.

He also handed out the diagram in the second attachment to illustrate the micing for Herbie Hancock's album, "The Piano".  The mic underneath the piano would be out of phase with the others.

« Last Edit: November 24, 2007, 11:59:11 PM by MusicTech »

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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #30 on: November 24, 2007, 10:22:06 PM »
Not to say that it's unheard of, but I wonder why this Grammy award winning teachers chose to mic the piano with a pair of dynamics instead of condensers.
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Offline MusicTech

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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #31 on: November 24, 2007, 11:56:34 PM »
Not to say that it's unheard of, but I wonder why this Grammy award winning teachers chose to mic the piano with a pair of dynamics instead of condensers.

I believe the demonstration was to reflect mic placement more than mic selection.  Given this is a "first class" in the program, I have noticed that the instructor is cautious about having the Neumanns and the AKG condensors handled by beginners.

Offline MusicTech

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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #32 on: November 25, 2007, 12:07:50 AM »
I couldn't read the handwritten pic, as its too large, so I shrank it up (had to keep moving all over to try to read it)..

It seems, to me, that the picture of the mic'ing of the piano is in direct contradiction to the comments in the handwritten jpg?


Thanks for reducing the picture, I also changed the original post.

What I gathered from the photo and the handout was that being right on top of the strings, but away from the hammers, with directional mics, and quite far away from the lid of the piano was worthy of trying, particulary for solo piano where there are not other instruments for the lid to gather reflections.  I have been listening to Herbie Hancock's solo album this afternoon, using the "cardiods above the strings" with a third mic below the soundboard, and it sounds quite nice.

But then, I am just a beginner....

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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #33 on: November 25, 2007, 02:35:44 AM »
awesome description and pics, +T. Thanks alot musictech!
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Offline Brian

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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #34 on: November 25, 2007, 11:00:11 AM »
Not to say that it's unheard of, but I wonder why this Grammy award winning teachers chose to mic the piano with a pair of dynamics instead of condensers.

have you ever done a recording session or reinforced a stage with all 57's and 58's?  it's weird, but not necessarily bad.

when i was in school we gathered all the 57's together for a recording session of a "garage trash" band. somebody came up with the idea cause they thought the sound of the 57 on everything would compliment the music. There were 17 total tracks....all 57's(even the room microphones).  it was crazy, but we came away with listenable recordings and the band loved it. 57 > vintage neve pre sounds pretty good ;D

/hijack

musictech - thanks for posting your thoughts.
« Last Edit: November 27, 2007, 10:19:07 AM by Brian »

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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #35 on: December 01, 2007, 09:10:33 AM »
best way to mic a piano, bar none - http://www.earthworksaudio.com/77.html
+T and thanks for the recommendation, rokpunk!  The technical director at a local performing arts center where I occasionally do stage crew work was looking for a way to mic a 9 foot grand piano.  Sent him your link and he's going to buy one--look forward to hearing it in action.  Thanks again!

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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #36 on: December 01, 2007, 10:38:51 AM »
best way to mic a piano, bar none - http://www.earthworksaudio.com/77.html
+T and thanks for the recommendation, rokpunk!  The technical director at a local performing arts center where I occasionally do stage crew work was looking for a way to mic a 9 foot grand piano.  Sent him your link and he's going to buy one--look forward to hearing it in action.  Thanks again!

I'm a big fan of Eric Blackmore's Earthworks omni mics as he starts with the same capsule as I also modify for use with DSM HRTF stereo-surround array recording.  With such modifications, Earthworks omni products are very neutral and will faithfully record sound in any particular positioning.

The best thing that sells this 'piano mic' is being an easy to use product that takes the guesswork out of piano mic placement for getting a consistent piano sound, but this is not the sound of the piano as is heard by anyone near this instrument.

As a result, it's another piano effects recording said to get a good recorded 'piano sound' from this instrument.

Interestingly, there is NO recorded samples posted on the his site available for anyone to hear this mic's recording quality.  Anyone wonder why only words are used to sell audio recording products like this with no sample recordings to actually hear? 

I think from experience with hearing such mic positioning inside pianos that the concept and the pages of piano mic discussion actually sound far better than most recordings made in this manner?

I have a saying: "If you talk too much about audio without actually listening to recordings made by different types of gear, you'll eventually go deaf!"

That's why I always post piano recordings for people to hear the results of an HRTF mic array at: www.sonicstudios.com/mp3_2slp.htm

Maybe a few of you haven't gone completely deaf to where only reading about audio is only option for thinking something is certain to sound good?
« Last Edit: December 01, 2007, 11:44:56 AM by guysonic »
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Offline rokpunk

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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #37 on: December 01, 2007, 11:51:04 AM »
Interestingly, there is NO recorded samples posted on the his site available for anyone to hear this mic's recording quality.  Anyone wonder why only words are used to sell audio recording products like this with no sample recordings to actually hear? 

I think from experience with hearing such mic positioning inside pianos that the concept and the pages of piano mic discussion actually sound far better the most recordings made in this manner?


At AES in NYC Earthworks had a full headphone monitoring setup, complete with A/B comps between their Piano Mic System and other more familiar mics (Schoeps, B&K, Neumann, AKG's, etc....sorry, no Sonic Studio mics were used in this test). They played back a CD and the results were astonishing. The Earthworks system was, to my ears, soniclly superior to all the other mic setups. Obviously I didn't see how this CD was recorded, but I trust that Earthworks did a fair, legit compairison.  I honestly don't give a rats ass about mic'ing concepts and theories....I only care about the results and what my ears hear. The Earthworks setup is amazing....and if I mic'ed more grand pianos and had a spare $5K, I'd buy a set in a heartbeat.

As for Moke's comment on the DPA magnet setup, I have seen and used this setup before and had nice results. However, I used cardioid capsules the one time I used these DPA's, not omni's. I think with omni's, I might have liked it even more.  For omni's, the Earthworks system had AMAZING rejection. The recorded samples I heard were from a session with a live group...not just a solo piano. I swear I heard no bleed at all from the drums or any other instrument in the room. I was honestly blown away at how nice this system sounded....and how easy the setup and useage is.

Guysonic...I think if you email Earthworks and ask them for a copy of the Piano Mic compairison CD, they will send it to you. I'm not 100% on that, but the folks I spoke with at AES were super helpful....I bet they would hook you up if you asked.
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again, your showing your cluelessness.


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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #38 on: December 01, 2007, 11:45:27 PM »
The spacing isnt as wide, but Id imagine that Subcards/NOS would also work well according to the pics you guys have posted. Pointed down on the strings like that earthwork's mic system with Subcards/NOS would seem like it would also do the trick!

I wish I got some chances to mic a piano like that just for reference and experience, but alas, I dont know anyone who really plays the piano unfortunately :(
Schoeps MK4's & MK41's ->
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Offline WiFiJeff

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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #39 on: December 02, 2007, 03:52:01 AM »
Interestingly, there is NO recorded samples posted on the his site available for anyone to hear this mic's recording quality.  Anyone wonder why only words are used to sell audio recording products like this with no sample recordings to actually hear? 

I think from experience with hearing such mic positioning inside pianos that the concept and the pages of piano mic discussion actually sound far better the most recordings made in this manner?


At AES in NYC Earthworks had a full headphone monitoring setup, complete with A/B comps between their Piano Mic System and other more familiar mics (Schoeps, B&K, Neumann, AKG's, etc....sorry, no Sonic Studio mics were used in this test). They played back a CD and the results were astonishing. The Earthworks system was, to my ears, soniclly superior to all the other mic setups. Obviously I didn't see how this CD was recorded, but I trust that Earthworks did a fair, legit compairison.  I honestly don't give a rats ass about mic'ing concepts and theories....I only care about the results and what my ears hear. The Earthworks setup is amazing....and if I mic'ed more grand pianos and had a spare $5K, I'd buy a set in a heartbeat.


I listened to the AES setup too, but came away with very different impressions.  I have to agree with Guysonic here, the sound was to my ears totally artificial and "wrong," at least for a classical piano sound.  Now you may like that particular sound, but it's certainly not what I aim for.

Jeff

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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #40 on: December 02, 2007, 07:10:04 PM »
I listened to the AES setup too, but came away with very different impressions.  I have to agree with Guysonic here, the sound was to my ears totally artificial and "wrong," at least for a classical piano sound.  Now you may like that particular sound, but it's certainly not what I aim for.


guysonic has never heard them. interesting to hear your opinion of the mics, though.
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again, your showing your cluelessness.


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Re: Microphone techniques for baby grand piano?
« Reply #41 on: March 03, 2008, 06:30:02 PM »
bump...

I've got to record a piano in our auditorium next week for a student who will be applying to music school, competetions... etc.   The aud will be empty... the piano will be in the pit.   I'll be using my R4.  I've got 2 at4050's at my disposal, along with a pair of beyerdynamic mc930's..  I'm currently considering a lot of the techniques posted here (Thanks guys.. +T)  Does anyone have any new recommendations for my specific setup?  Thanks in advance!

 

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