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Author Topic: Spaced omni with center card festy sample  (Read 4177 times)

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Offline Gutbucket

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Re: Spaced omni with center card festy sample
« Reply #15 on: November 09, 2013, 01:22:59 PM »
Probably not (see follow up comment below).

The repercussions of doing so will depend on the configuration in which the cardioids arranged.

If you sum a truly coincident X/Y cardioid pair, you get a virtual single forward facing wide cardioid, with a polar pattern determined by the angle between mics, producing some variety of a sub-card.  That can work, although I'd almost always prefer simply using the X/Y pair as a stereo pair and mixing that with the omnis.  I'd play around with adjusting the X/Y width by panning the Left/Right X and Y channels between hard-panned and center, in combination with the hard left/right panned omnis, listening for what sounds best.

Summing a near spaced pair (ORTF, DIN, etc) would introduce phase cancellations and reinforcements which may or may not cause problems, and would not equate to a single forward facing subcardioid mic in the same way.  It may or may not work well.  You end up with more complex phase interactions between four mic locations instead of between three.  For that reason an X/Y pair in the center is a safer choice, and is partly why I suggest four microphones inhabiting 3-positions (center two coincident in one position) is often better idea than 4 mics that are all pretty close together.  Even if you aren't a fan of X/Y on it's own, it can work very well in combination with the omnis.

What I do- Because I'm only using one forward facing center mic and don't want the 'extra' 4th channel to go to waste, I've used it as a mono soundboard channel, or I put the other cardioid up there and point it backwards, with about 12" between the front and back center mics.  Since they are facing in opposite directions they don't have nearly as much potential for phase problems, and the rear facing mic is usually mixed in at a lower level, giving me control over mixing in some additional room ambience and crowd reaction which can be nice.  The other reason I do that is for surround playback, with the rear facing mic routed to the surround channels, the forward facing card or supercard routed to the center channel and the left/right omnis routed to the left and right speakers, with no mixing.  If using the DR-680 I'll bump that up to two rear facing mics for a total of 5 channels, which is better, but not hugely better.

[edit- ^ The above What I'd do still stands, but I really like coincident center pair in a 2-channel stereo mix along with an AB pair.  If constrained to recording 4 channels total, I'd recommend doing that first for most folks, rather than single front and rear-facing microphones.  If you have a single channel of SBD using up one channel of the four, that SBD feed can take the place of the center forward facing microphone (and do a better job of it) in which case I'd point the 3rd mic backward rather than forward]
« Last Edit: December 18, 2019, 02:35:53 PM by Gutbucket »
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Offline Gutbucket

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Re: Spaced omni with center card festy sample
« Reply #16 on: December 18, 2019, 02:21:58 PM »
^ I should have emphasized that if the center pair is coincident (X/Y in this case, but might be M/S) I'd definitely use that as a stereo pair in the mix and not sum the two to mono first.  When I answered here..

Doesn't matter as long as the two channels are simply identical copies, but curious why would it be 2-channel.  One mic routed to two channels on the recorder?

..I had thought yates might have only recorded 3 microphones total with the center one recorded to two tracks (dual mono).

And if desired, one can go further and tweak the stereo width of the center X/Y or M/S pair to achieve the best fit in the mix.

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Offline dyneq

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Re: Spaced omni with center card festy sample
« Reply #17 on: December 18, 2019, 02:31:35 PM »
Weird, I was just thinking about trying this technique this week! The samples are no longer available.

Gutbucket: The only cards I have are CA-14s that are termintated with a single 1/8" plug. If I place them right next to each other and record to mono, would that cause any issues? Do you point the card(s) right at the center of the stage, or some other target? Do you have a good example that you wouldn't mind sharing?

Offline Gutbucket

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Re: Spaced omni with center card festy sample
« Reply #18 on: December 18, 2019, 02:46:33 PM »
Do you have enough recording channels to record both CA-14 mics?  If so do that.  If in X/Y you can play with summing and not summing afterwards.. if only to hear what it does.  You'll probably want them in stereo in the actual mix.

If you can only record 3 channels and are somehow summing the CA-14s prior to the recorder as an attempt to produce a sub-cardioid pattern rather than a cardioid, there could be some phase cancellation in the sum due to imperfect coincidence (as well as potentially different phase linearity of the two mics depending on how well matched they are), and you may or may not detect any of that in the sum.  If you can record all 4 channels you are safely covered.
« Last Edit: December 18, 2019, 03:45:43 PM by Gutbucket »
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Offline dyneq

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Re: Spaced omni with center card festy sample
« Reply #19 on: December 18, 2019, 03:03:44 PM »
I don't have a 4-channel recorder, so I'd have to use 2 2-channel recorders (only my Tascam DR-22WL has a mono setting, also have both Sony PCM-M10 and PCM-A10). For the omnis, I have a pair of Sonic Studios DSM-6 and Radio Shlock 330-3028.

I would be less than open, so I was thinking of using the mono setting on the Tascam with the cards. Should I be concerned about the clocks not matching up when I go to sync them up?

Offline heathen

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Re: Spaced omni with center card festy sample
« Reply #20 on: December 18, 2019, 03:10:08 PM »
Is there such things as a mini TRS to mini TS adapter, that would leave you with the mono signal from the tip and discard the ring signal entirely?  Then you could use only the mic that's wired to the tip and not have to worry about summing both to mono.
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Offline Gutbucket

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Re: Spaced omni with center card festy sample
« Reply #21 on: December 18, 2019, 04:19:44 PM »
..I would be less than open, so I was thinking of using the mono setting on the Tascam with the cards. Should I be concerned about the clocks not matching up when I go to sync them up?
 
Yes.  Been there.  It doable but a hassle.. on both ends of the equation- making the recording and sync'ing them later during mixing.  I'd not want to have to go back to doing that as standard procedure, although I do so for a SBD feed recorded to a second recorder.

However, if that's what you have and you want to play around with this stuff don't let that stop you.  I made it work that way before I moved on to using recorders that could record more than 2 channels simultaneously.  If you need instruction on sync'ing sources recorded using seperate clocks (2 or more recorders that aren't linked) there are TS threads on how to do that.  Some methods for doing that are specific to the mixing software being used.

Quote
I don't have a 4-channel recorder, so I'd have to use 2 2-channel recorders (only my Tascam DR-22WL has a mono setting, also have both Sony PCM-M10 and PCM-A10). For the omnis, I have a pair of Sonic Studios DSM-6 and Radio Shlock 330-3028.

You will need to use two of your 2-channel stereo recorders to record more than a single pair of microphone channels.  So you might as well go ahead and record all four microphones, as two separate pairs to two separate recorders.  Why go to extra effort to record just a single mic of one pair to the second recorder (or to sum the pair to mono ahead of the recorder) and leave one available recording channel unused?  Sure, you could do what heathen mentions with an adapter, or wire something up to do the same, but why do that when you have both an available recording channel and the ability to sum those channels to mono (or not!) afterwards?
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Offline dyneq

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Re: Spaced omni with center card festy sample
« Reply #22 on: December 18, 2019, 04:33:48 PM »
I was afraid of that. I may try it with what I've got, but I am not looking for more hassles when it comes to post-processing (my least favorite aspect of taping).

In the past, I looked around for a passive, 3-channel mixer with 1/8" jacks like the Rolls MX41b. I can't imagine trying to get that + battery box + lots of cables working for me when running less than open. And, I'd have to nail the mix live vs. post-processing flexibility.

Do you have any samples of this technique that you'd be willing to share?

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Re: Spaced omni with center card festy sample
« Reply #23 on: December 18, 2019, 04:37:01 PM »
Sync'ing up the two recorders wouldn't be too tough.  Just start rolling both a bit before show time and clap your hands real loud in front of the mics, then do it again after the show is over.  Lining them up and stretching should be easy with those distinct start and end points.
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Offline Gutbucket

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Re: Spaced omni with center card festy sample
« Reply #24 on: December 18, 2019, 06:11:26 PM »
^ That's the way to do it.  It's just that lining them up and stretching are post processing tasks dyneq enjoys least (I relate and often don't actually get around to doing the post processing on my recordings).

The "less than open" recording end hassles are mostly about doubling the wiring, connections, batteries, SDcards, making sure both decks are set the same, operating correctly and that both are recording.

In the past, I looked around for a passive, 3-channel mixer with 1/8" jacks like the Rolls MX41b. I can't imagine trying to get that + battery box + lots of cables working for me when running less than open. And, I'd have to nail the mix live vs. post-processing flexibility.

Do you have any samples of this technique that you'd be willing to share?

Yeah, these days, other than dedicating one channel of a 4ch recorder to a SBD feed, 3-mic configs probably make the most sense for SoundDevices Mixpre3 users who only have 3 mic inputs.  Other than that it would be folks with 3 channel preamps or mixers feeding 2ch recorders, but there is too much variation to guess on a good mix without listening

You might keep an eye out for a used Tascam DR2d (unfortunately discontinued, with no direct replacement), which is PCM M-10 sized yet can record 4 channels of external input simultaneously via its seperate Mic and Line 1/8" TRS mini jack inputs.  Then you only need 2 battery boxes to power the mics, maybe even just one battery box if the PIP over the Mic input is sufficient.  That significantly cuts down on the recording end hassles, plus the two resulting stereo files are fully aligned and clock sync'd.  You still need to open them in an editor to mix them, adjusting level balance as appropriate between the two pairs at a bare minimum, but that's doesn't involve much more than editing a straight 2-channel recording, and hearing it come together as you adjust the balance between the two pairs is the fun part IMO.  Thats really the minimum amount of post processing you'd need to do with any 4 channel recording.. so if that's a deal-breaker, its probably best to stick with 2 mics > 2 channels. Plenty of ways to chase that dragon without ever moving beyond 2 channels.

I think there are 3-channel samples from other users posted in the OMT threads, but can't say how far back.   I don't have a sample of this easily available myself currently, but will look to see what I can dig up.

And in that vein, I've long been meaning to put together a few sample sets of my own OMT recordings so that tapers curious about OMT can hear the progression as additional channels are added and hopefully get a feel and better understanding of what OMT is all about and intended to achieve.  Samples would be provided fully level balanced and processed as they would be in the final mix, yet available as various combinations, illustrating the sonic progression as the additional channels are added. I'd also make them available as individual pairs so that folks can listen to them in isolation and in  various combinations without having to make any leveling and balance choices.. just pull them up and play them.  Maybe I'll make it a New Year's resolution.

As example, one song from an 8 channel OMT recording, made available for easy comparison as:
2ch- Spaced omni pair alone
3ch- Forward-facing center mic added (omnis + single center mic)
4ch- Side fig-8 added to that (omnis + coincident pair)
5 or 6ch- Addition of Rear-facing mic(s) (single or pair)
7 or 8ch- Addition of near-spaced supercards (side-facing or 45° forward angled)
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Offline dyneq

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Re: Spaced omni with center card festy sample
« Reply #25 on: December 18, 2019, 07:41:07 PM »
Thank you both for the suggestions and feedback.

I think I'll try it with what I've got and use the 3 clap method for syncing. If I was to use HRTF for the omnis vs. AB, do you think that would sound OK?

Gutbucket, your samples idea sounds like something I'd definitely be interested in.


Offline CorFit Chris

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Re: Spaced omni with center card festy sample
« Reply #26 on: January 05, 2020, 11:36:28 PM »
Gut, you ever try 2 spaced cards with center hyper or gun?  Most indoor venues I frequent are too boomy for omni’s.
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Offline Gutbucket

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Re: Spaced omni with center card festy sample
« Reply #27 on: January 06, 2020, 10:02:36 AM »
^ Sure.  Below are photos of two supercards angled ~90 degrees and spaced more widely than one would want from a single pair alone, plus a cardioid in the middle.  This room (Revolution Live, Ft Lauderdale, FL) is basically as you describe, and this arrangement works very well there.

This is actually four channels total. The L/R supercards are pointed +/- 45 degrees (maybe 10-15 degrees outside of the stacks). I turned the center cardioid into a Mid/Side pair with the addition of the Naiant X-8S fig-8 gaff taped to it. 
 
L/R = Microtech Gefell M-21 supercard 
Center Mid = Microtech Gefell M-94 cardioid 
Center Side = Naiant X-8S fig-8
> OCM R-44

The triangular "mic-bar" is actually a folding light-stand foot.  It comes with one leg drilled and tapped and I drilled and tapped the other two for use with 3-mics on-stage at floor level.  Here I flipped it upside down and fixed it atop a short telescopic bar fixed with a superclamp to the angled handrail.  That works well to extend the mics somewhat over the crowd in the pit.

I would run this as my regular setup there, but I now just use my pre-rigged OMT8 setup everywhere.   It is 8 channels instead of 4 but is actually smaller and lighter and easier to setup. The core of that setup is quite similar in that it uses a center supercard (in M/S with the same Naiant X-8S as seen here) between two similarly spaced, +/-45 degree angled supercards in a similar configuration as the photos above.  It also includes a pair of wider omnis and a pair of rear-facing supercards, and although I typically use some of all of those channels, the rear-facing pair and omnis don't contribute as much in this room.
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Offline Gutbucket

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Re: Spaced omni with center card festy sample
« Reply #28 on: January 06, 2020, 10:25:45 AM »
If I was to use HRTF for the omnis vs. AB, do you think that would sound OK?

HTRF-like omni spacing without any baffle (head) between the microphones would be too narrow for the center microphone to behave nicely in combination.  With the baffle in place the omnis become directional, so you can get away with less spacing between them and it might work okay.  The intent of the center microphone will be to provide increased forward directional clarity, but that's at the expense of stereo image when added to the already stereo-image-balanced HTRF omnis.  Increased spacing between the L/R pair makes room for the center channel, retaining stereo image width among other things.
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Re: Spaced omni with center card festy sample
« Reply #29 on: January 06, 2020, 05:40:11 PM »
To help with the sync, why not use a line cable, and output one of the stereo channels to the unused channel of the recorder handling the mono?
That way you don't really even need to clap, since you'll have an exact clone of that one channel as a reference, on both decks!
It makes intuitive sense to me to then process time squash/stretch on the single center channel, but there may be reasons to do it on the stereo pair instead, such as you prefer to squash rather than stretch (throw away data, rather than interpolating to create new data)
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