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Author Topic: Off-center setup/config for specific room  (Read 2520 times)

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Online heathen

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Off-center setup/config for specific room
« on: January 16, 2018, 11:06:14 AM »
I'm looking for ideas about how to best set up in a specific room where the recording location is off-center, and close to a wall (for Colorado folks, I'm referring to Cervante's Other Side).  A few assumptions to begin with: (1) ignore the possibility of getting a sbd feed, as I'm focusing on how to best set up an audience recording; (2) mic stand has to be set up at the sbd (see attached sketch of the room), and most likely in front of the sbd; (3) using a stereo pair of mics (something directional like card or hyper); and (4) using a stereo bar that allows the distance, and angle, between the mics to be adjusted (coincident and near coincident configs are fair game).

How would you set up and configure the mics under this circumstance?

(With regard to assumption #3, I would be curious if some oddball config involving more mics or different patterns would be useful here.)
« Last Edit: January 17, 2018, 09:34:47 AM by heathen »
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Offline Moke

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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #1 on: January 16, 2018, 11:13:35 AM »
do they mix mono, and do the mixing to that single stack side (sending same signal to opposite side)?
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #2 on: January 16, 2018, 11:19:44 AM »

I would go with AB cards pointed straight at the stage left (right if facing the stage) PA speakers.

Alternately I would space cards around 25cm and point the right mic dead ahead at the stage left speaker and the other at the middle of the stage - so sort of a narrow angle DIN arrangement turned a little towards the middle of the room.
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #3 on: January 16, 2018, 11:21:20 AM »
Is there a spot to hang mics from the center of the ceiling?  Cafe Du Nord in SF has a similar setup and I was able to stand on a bar stool and clamp to a beam/rail in the center and run cables to the side.
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #4 on: January 16, 2018, 11:37:52 AM »
do they mix mono, and do the mixing to that single stack side (sending same signal to opposite side)?

I don't know the answer to that.

Quote from: rigpimp
Is there a spot to hang mics from the center of the ceiling?

Not that I know of.
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #5 on: January 16, 2018, 12:17:55 PM »
do they mix mono, and do the mixing to that single stack side (sending same signal to opposite side)?

I don't know the answer to that.

Quote from: rigpimp
Is there a spot to hang mics from the center of the ceiling?

Not that I know of.

Ceiling beam - lighting truss - electrical conduit - I've used all of those at some point over the years. Just have to figure out a way to get your mic cables suspended. I've used gaff tape and zip ties...
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #6 on: January 16, 2018, 01:06:11 PM »
That's a good idea but at least for purposes of this discussion let's assume it's not feasible.  (And it may not be feasible at all, though I'm not certain.)
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #7 on: January 16, 2018, 02:10:55 PM »
I'd settle for a "stack tape." Imagine that your direct sound will come exclusively from the Stage Left PA speaker.

I'd use cards or hypers x/y, or, if you can, m/s.
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #8 on: January 16, 2018, 03:26:59 PM »
Heathen, how big club is it? What do you expect to to be in sbd feed?

(With regard to assumption #3, I would be curious if some oddball config involving more mics or different patterns would be useful here.)

Try the Oddball, it is fun. Probably it is the best to setup in the acoustic center of the room. But i think, if you are not too close to the walls and you point mics to the acoustic center, it will be good. Gut will advise you better. I think he recommended supercards for small clubs. Look in his last version of his OMT document. Gut posted great examples of OMT, he was recording from side of the room too -
http://taperssection.com/index.php?topic=184876.msg2251498#msg2251498
photos - http://taperssection.com/index.php?topic=184876.msg2251751#msg2251751

I'd use cards or hypers x/y, or, if you can, m/s.

Noah, why do you prefer x/y config for cards and hypers? Is it because you want to manipulate the stereo image in post? Small spacing (din or whatever) for cards or hypers should add nice feeling to the sbd feed too.

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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #9 on: January 16, 2018, 03:31:11 PM »
Heathen, how big club is it? What do you expect to to be in sbd feed?

Here are some pictures and details of the place: http://www.westword.com/location/cervantes-other-side-5164940

As to your question about the sbd feed, do you mean what will be through the PA speakers versus ambient sound coming from the stage?
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Offline Gutbucket

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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #10 on: January 16, 2018, 03:36:22 PM »
This is a stack tape + stage sound + ambient room sound situation.   < Those are the three primary acoustic parts which are going to affect the recording, and I suggest thinking about how to go about capturing those elements in proper balance with each other first of all.  Secondary to that, consider ways of getting a playback image which doesn't sound lopsided.

Working backwards let's start with the image-balance secondary aspect thing, which is easy to manage yet counter-intuitive - some mic setups will accommodate a lopsided image-balance better than others, but regardless this general recommendation always stands: Point the entire array at the apparent acoustic center of the sound as heard from the recording position.  Don't trust what you're eyes tell you with this!  Stand where you will put the mics, close your eyes, try and forget where you are, and turn your head to find the best balance while a band is playing.  Then open your eyes and turn the top part of your stand or clamp-rig or whatever to rotate the entire mic setup until it points in the same direction.  In this situation you'll probably end up with it pointing more or less straight ahead at the right PA speaker.  But it could be slightly to the left of the right PA if the bands onstage sound is loud compared to the level of the PA, or could even be slightly right towards the wall if the wall is very reflective.  Don't overthink this part and try to compensate for being off-center by pointing your rig towards center stage or the left PA speaker way over on the far side or whatever.  That will only make the off-center image balance situation worse and sound more unbalanced on the resulting recording.  Just aim the whole setup in whatever direction sounds most balanced.

More on the first part when I can..

[kuba e posted while I was typing- yes, I used my outdoor 6 channel OMT spaced omni setup indoors two evenings the weekend before last in almost this exact situation (mirror imaged actually, I was on the far-left side) and was astounded how well it worked, as that was not designed with either small rooms nor far-off center recording positions in mind.  I've been thinking alot about why it worked so nicely given those constraints since, and I'm going to revise my "small room OMT variant" recommendations somewhat.  But yeah, photos of that are in the new Oddball Mic Technique Thread part 2.  More on all this later..]
« Last Edit: January 16, 2018, 03:49:33 PM by Gutbucket »
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #11 on: January 16, 2018, 04:03:55 PM »
do they mix mono, and do the mixing to that single stack side (sending same signal to opposite side)?

I don't know the answer to that.

Quote from: rigpimp
Is there a spot to hang mics from the center of the ceiling?

Not that I know of.

The other day, I sent you a link to a recording dated 1988-01-02.
It was done in a room exactly like your drawing. That recording is AB omni right stack tape, fwiw. It was mastered to casssette back in that day, so listen with that thought.
« Last Edit: January 16, 2018, 04:05:27 PM by Moke »
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #12 on: January 16, 2018, 04:46:00 PM »
Heathen, how big club is it? What do you expect to to be in sbd feed?
As to your question about the sbd feed, do you mean what will be through the PA speakers versus ambient sound coming from the stage?

Yes, exactly. You can try record onstage or stage lip mics plus sbd feed. In the onstage mics, you will catch instruments that are loud and the sound engineer does not amplify them in PA. And vice versa in sbd feed you have instruments that are quieter and need to amplify. It can be nice recording, onstage recording completes sbd feed. And sound engineer can bring your signal of onstage mics through a snake to sbd. Then everything is in one place.

I've seen pictures on google. It's a narrower room. Here should advise someone more experienced. Theoretically, I love audience recording, so I would try it without sbd feed and place the microphones closer to the stage where the best sound is. Practically, I prefer to be out of the crowd, so I would do audience (by sbd) or stage lip plus sbd feed.

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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #13 on: January 16, 2018, 04:53:24 PM »
I'd use cards or hypers x/y, or, if you can, m/s.
Noah, why do you prefer x/y config for cards and hypers? Is it because you want to manipulate the stereo image in post? Small spacing (din or whatever) for cards or hypers should add nice feeling to the sbd feed too.

Coincident techniques tend to have a strong mono-phonic center image which can help when off-center if you are not pointing at the "apparent acoustic center" as suggested above.  Also some tapers feel that coincident configs help in less than ideal rooms for other reasons.

If the PA dominates from this location sort of like a stack tape, some space between mics can help create more of a sense of stereo spaciousness and reduce the tendency of a SBD/stack-tape to sound overly dry/flat/monophonic.
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #14 on: January 16, 2018, 05:37:56 PM »
I suspect the OMT stuff works well in these situations because it's sort of leveraging a different way of making stereo - the spaced omnis create the ambient stereo bed which isn't influenced as negatively by being far off-center as a standard directional near-spaced setup, and the center mic(s) fill-out the center of the playback image.  In that way it sort of synthesises a balanced stereo image on psycho-acoustic terms even if that's not exactly a faithful representation of the imaging heard from that location live, as required for "purist" two-channel taping mic arrangements to really shine.  The proximity to that on-axis PA directly in front of your setup location then becomes an advantage, like a SBD patch, while the off-center position becomes less of a problem image-wise.

In some ways it would be ideal to have a second mirror-image recording position near the bar on the other side of the room.  That would make for a "wide-omnis hanging from the ceiling in front of the PA" type setup which can work really well- close enough to the PA speakers to get clear SBD-like sound (which is certainly mixed mostly mono if not fully mono and would play back as a solid center-image even with that over-wide omni spread), close enough to the stage to pickup on-stage sound and whatever is not represented in the SBD, and high enough to get just enough but not too much room, audience and bar noise.  That arrangement has worked very well for some permanent small-club installations other members at TS have setup.

But you're more or less constrained to only half of that arrangement.  In that way I suspect your position should be pretty good for proximity and direct/reverberant/audience sound balance, but you'll need to think more about getting a well-balanced image and good spatiality.
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #15 on: January 16, 2018, 05:46:46 PM »
If this isn't a single recording event, but rather a place you plan to record somewhat regularly, I'd start by trying a few standard 2-channel setups in that position to see if one of them works to your satisfaction.  That will also help in figuring which direction to head from there if are all lacking.  Try a coincident setup, your generally prefered near-spaced setup, and spaced omnis if you can do that.  Use the "point the whole array at the auditory center  technique" for each of them, listen and compare.
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #16 on: January 16, 2018, 06:43:45 PM »
And to represent the scientific wild ass guess technique,....
https://archive.org/details/DaveAlvin2004-01-10_pasadena

Wide room, with wide PA. Stage is hard right to the front of room.  There was a PA on a stick at the hard right of stage, and another like 35' to the left (out of aural range). 
I wanted to capture some PA, but not all PA, as that would have made everything incredibly off balance.
So, I opted for this mashup of angles, like 45º on left mic, and right mic like 5º to the left as well. I think I explained it in the link.

And to add to that bit of mania, the producer did not want my presence up front with a mic stand. So, I ran a mic stand on this indoor arbor structure, that was over first row, and parallel to the stage. I strapped my mic stand on top of that arbor structure, and extended outwards towards the stage center.

clusterfuck?
it actually worked.
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #17 on: January 16, 2018, 08:15:55 PM »

I would go with AB cards pointed straight at the stage left (right if facing the stage) PA speakers.

Alternately I would space cards around 25cm and point the right mic dead ahead at the stage left speaker and the other at the middle of the stage - so sort of a narrow angle DIN arrangement turned a little towards the middle of the room.
As an initial cut (and without getting all OMT), I'd go with one of these approaches. Probably the latter but with hypers instead of cards.

In this photo, I'd guess your taping position would likely be where there appears to be a video camera (red arrow). In front of the mix position (guy in grey t-shirt above everybody manning the board).

« Last Edit: January 16, 2018, 08:17:36 PM by jefflester »
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #18 on: January 16, 2018, 10:01:01 PM »
In this photo, I'd guess your taping position would likely be where there appears to be a video camera (red arrow). In front of the mix position (guy in grey t-shirt above everybody manning the board).
That's exactly right.
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #19 on: January 17, 2018, 09:11:58 AM »
https://archive.org/details/stevekimockandfriends2017-12-16.ecm19b.flac

Here is my recording from the other side last month. Mics at din in front of soundboard directly in line with stage left PA.

What show are you planning on recording?

Here is a stage plot drawing of how I was set up this night:

https://ia800100.us.archive.org/30/items/stevekimockandfriends2017-12-16.ecm19b.flac/stevekimockandfriends2017-12-16.ecm19b.pic03.jpg
« Last Edit: January 17, 2018, 09:24:43 AM by Cheesecadet »
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #20 on: January 17, 2018, 09:27:31 AM »
Thanks Cheese...that doesn't sound off-center like I would have expected!  Did you have the gain set to the same level for both channels?

I'm planning on doing Jazz is Phish this weekend.  (Hopefully a board patch will be available, but this is something I've been wondering about for a bit so I figured I'd start the thread anyway.)
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #21 on: January 17, 2018, 09:59:52 AM »
Nice drawing!

Stereo image sounds well balanced Left/Right.
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #22 on: January 17, 2018, 01:00:23 PM »
You don't have a choice, the SDB is the only safe place to setup and I think the venue will ask you to move if your out in the middle.  My best tapes there have been setup by the SBD, pulling two channels stage mics and 2 channels sbd. 
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #23 on: January 17, 2018, 01:06:27 PM »
My best tapes there have been setup by the SBD, pulling two channels stage mics and 2 channels sbd.
Did you use two different recorders for the on-stage mics and the sbd feed?
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #24 on: January 17, 2018, 01:12:40 PM »
Nope, R4 or Dr680
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #25 on: January 17, 2018, 01:23:56 PM »
So did they let you hook your on-stage mics up to the lines that run from the stage to the sbd?
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #26 on: January 17, 2018, 01:28:06 PM »
No need and never asked, you run your own cables along the wall to the stage.  I took a set of 50' xlrs.
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #27 on: January 17, 2018, 01:35:06 PM »
Without wading through everyone else's responses another consideration, which I often request if I show up early enough, is to set mics up on stage and occupy a couple of empty house snake channels.  No need to schlep cables about since they are already run and it allows you to safely set up in the SBD cage and perhaps even politely ask for a board feed for a matrix.   :guitarist:

I have done this a couple of times but did this for the Pimps of Joytime years back.  I just set up the mics where I saw fit (OMT) and mixed it with the SBD later. 

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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #28 on: January 17, 2018, 01:46:28 PM »
Nice one!
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #29 on: January 18, 2018, 08:54:34 AM »
When I'm in similar off center positions taping off a stereo (or 2 stack array) I use A/B and choose between cards and hypers based on distance. With both mics mounted parallel on the bar, 6" or so apart, I aim them at the center of the stage. By doing this both mics will get the same basic signal from primarily the closest stack. But, because of the slight time delay between the mics, there is just enough of a difference between channels to give a limited illusion of stereo, not ideal but better than just pointing directly at one stack, IMO.
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #30 on: January 18, 2018, 11:21:43 AM »
When I'm in similar off center positions taping off a stereo (or 2 stack array) I use A/B and choose between cards and hypers based on distance. With both mics mounted parallel on the bar, 6" or so apart, I aim them at the center of the stage. By doing this both mics will get the same basic signal from primarily the closest stack. But, because of the slight time delay between the mics, there is just enough of a difference between channels to give a limited illusion of stereo, not ideal but better than just pointing directly at one stack, IMO.

Are you keeping the bar itself parallel to the edge of the stage, or rotating the whole thing to aim at the center of the stage?
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #31 on: January 18, 2018, 01:04:56 PM »
The linked example using standard mic setups from that room and similar situations elsewhere sound good, so that's the obvious and simple path to take for this specific situation and a good starting point.

But furthering the more general discussion of far off-center location..

When I'm in similar off center positions taping off a stereo (or 2 stack array) I use A/B and choose between cards and hypers based on distance. With both mics mounted parallel on the bar, 6" or so apart, I aim them at the center of the stage. By doing this both mics will get the same basic signal from primarily the closest stack. But, because of the slight time delay between the mics, there is just enough of a difference between channels to give a limited illusion of stereo, not ideal but better than just pointing directly at one stack, IMO.

Are you keeping the bar itself parallel to the edge of the stage, or rotating the whole thing to aim at the center of the stage?

A parallel spaced microphone arrangement is a good approach, using time-of-arrival rather than signal level for stereo difference when the directional balance at the recording position is askew.   

Combining a few of these ideas so they work together, here's an approach I'd like to hear-

>Use an AB spaced parallel microphone arrangement.
>Orient the AB array axis with respect to the apparent acoustic center (mic-bar perpendicular to a line pointing at that apparent acoustic center - the point it with closed eyes thing).
>Use very directional mics like hypers or figure-8's and point them at the PA on the opposite side (cardioids and probably supercards will not have enough off-axis sensitivity difference across their forward hemisphere for the near-side/far-side balancing part of this to work).

You then have a sort of AB parallelogram microphone arrangement.  The mics remain parallel to each other, but are no longer perpendicular to the mic bar.  The idea is that we are no longer using signal level difference based on angle difference between mics for stereo image (AB), but are using the microphone's pattern sensitivity to reduce the level of pickup from the near-side PA relative to the on-stage sound and far-side PA.   That can only work if the two mics are oriented parallel to each other and directional enough that the level differences arriving from different angles across the stage are somewhat reduced by the near-side PA being off-axis to both mics and the far-side PA being on axis to both mics.  It's a special PAS condition, pointing at the opposite side.

>We get stereo interest and sense of space from the AB spacing.
>The image remains centered because the energy in each channel is about the same (the pointing the whole array at the apparent acoustic center thing).
>We get a more balanced pickup of sources in the room by reducing pickup sensitivity for the close sources which are more off-axis, and increasing pickup sensitivity towards the far-side sources which are on-axis, based on the parallel arrangement of directional mics.
>We get some corrective image balance by effectively having sound from the far side arriving at the left mic prior to its arrival at the right mic, while the sound from the close-side arrives simultaneously at both mics.  The left mic is slightly forward of the other mic when viewed from the far side.  (This is a Michael Williams MultiMicrophoneArrayDesign MMAD principle)

Here's a plan-view sketch, looking down from above-

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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #32 on: January 18, 2018, 01:05:14 PM »
^
Drawing is not to scale.  The PA speakers are the red squares, the walls are the red lines.  AB microphone arrangement shown with the mics parallel and facing the far-side PA.  Left PA sound arrival vectors are green.  Right PA arrival vectors are blue.  Right sidewall PA reflection vector is pink.

Notice that the far-side PA is on-axis to both mics and the near-side PA is off-axis to both mics, if the mics are directional enough, that serves to "even out pickup across the stage" somewhat. I'm using figure-8s on the mic bar to maximize the sensitivity difference between on-axis and off-axis across their front hemisphere as much as possible (because figure-8 with sideways facing nulls has the tightest forward lobe of any 1st order microphone pattern, a cardioid isn't going to have enough off-axis rejection until you get around to the back-side, and even a supercard may not provide enough sensitivity difference across the front, given the difference in angle to the two PAs which we're trying to leverage to our advantage).

Might be able to further the off-center balancing nature of the array by pointing the mics even further outside of the left PA speaker, which pushes the near PA arrival angle closer to the side-nulls of the 8s.  Probably want to keep the figure-8 sideways facing null pointing behind the sidewall reflection point from the near-PA, and that limits how far outside of the left PA you can point the mics.  Regardless of how the mics themselves are pointed to take advantage of their directivity, or what polar pattern is used, the mics are parallel to each other and the mic bar is always perpendicular to the apparent acoustic center.

I suggested something similar using parallel figure-8s many years ago in another off-center thread.  Hypers or supercards might work too and are the obvious thing to try as more tapers have a pair of them.  Fun to think about.
« Last Edit: January 18, 2018, 01:08:46 PM by Gutbucket »
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #33 on: January 18, 2018, 01:54:37 PM »
I would definitely try something like that this weekend, as there will be other people taping, but I don't have a pair of hypers or figure 8s.
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #34 on: January 18, 2018, 02:04:25 PM »
Might be able to further the off-center balancing nature of the array by pointing the mics even further outside of the left PA speaker, which pushes the near PA arrival angle closer to the side-nulls of the 8s.  Probably want to keep the figure-8 sideways facing null pointing behind the sidewall reflection point from the near-PA, and that limits how far outside of the left PA you can point the mics.  Regardless of how the mics themselves are pointed to take advantage of their directivity, or what polar pattern is used, the mics are parallel to each other and the mic bar is always perpendicular to the apparent acoustic center.

I suggested something similar using parallel figure-8s many years ago in another off-center thread.  Hypers or supercards might work too and are the obvious thing to try as more tapers have a pair of them.  Fun to think about.
I second this idea and present some anecdotal support for the acoustic hypothesis: We used to tape at a venue in Dallas, Club daDa the main room at the time was similar to this. Bar on one side, SBD on the other side, stage at one end of the short side of a rectangle. We/I ran Beyer Hyper cards (M201-c) in XY (typically 90) with them aimed straight forward no tilt toward the stage as the room was pretty narrow anyway, from about two feet in front of the soundboard (~8 feet from rear wall) and 2-3 feet from the side wall. Many of those recordings are excellent or at least worth listening all these years later. Some experienced listeners have told me the recordings seem "monophonic" which is what would result typically from that pattern in that location. So, aiming as you suggest might have brought out some space or depth.
« Last Edit: January 18, 2018, 09:04:45 PM by rocksuitcase »
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #35 on: January 18, 2018, 05:35:12 PM »
I think so.  What I describe above (angling across the stage at the far side) only works with spaced parallel mics, as any angle between mics causes the off-center source balancing part of the arrangement to fail as the loud PA on the nearside will immediately dominate the mic angled more towards it.  It's the spacing that makes it stereoized.  Your way-off-center, close-to-the-wall X/Y setup leveraged the point at the apparent acoustic center thing, with the mic angles symmetrical to the apparent acoustic center, probably taking advantage of the reflection off the sidewall in the mic angled toward that side.
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #36 on: January 18, 2018, 05:37:49 PM »
I would definitely try something like that this weekend, as there will be other people taping, but I don't have a pair of hypers or figure 8s.

Go ahead and give it a try with cardioids if you want to give it a go and aren't worried about taking the risk.  Cardioids might not help as much with increasing the level of pickup of the far-side verses the near-side in the same way as a 8's or hypers, but the image should remain balanced and the angled-but-parallel arrangement should still be beneficial.  If you do, please report on how it works out.  If nothing else it may prove me a total fool!
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #37 on: January 18, 2018, 06:01:36 PM »
I'm all for experimenting, so let me make sure I'm understanding what you're suggesting.  The scale of the attached image is obviously distorted, but is this the general idea you're referring to?
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #38 on: January 18, 2018, 07:31:30 PM »
Basically yes. I had to click on the image to see the 90 degree indication of the mic-bar to the acoustic center, as it looked like the mic bar was turned more so as to be perpendicular to center stage.  It will probably be closer to perpendicular to the right PA or just inside of it, but again- trust your ears in determining that acoustic center orientation, not your eyes.  And orient the mics so they are parallel to each other.  You don't want the left one toe'd in more than the right or the image of the louder Right PA will shift towards that side, or the other way around.  Keep the angle the same on both mics.  Point the right one at the left stack, and the left one will then point just outside the left stack.  Keeping them parallel also helps reduce the variables which will make it easier to analyze how well this works afterwards.
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #39 on: January 21, 2018, 10:39:38 AM »
Reporting back with some results...

For the opening band I did Gutbucket's suggested setup.  We were set up at the sbd, basically straight ahead of the stage left PA.  My mic bar ended up being roughly parallel to the stage, and I aimed my mics at the stage right PA.  They were roughly parallel to each other, about 20 cm apart.  Here is a clip from the opener with that setup: https://drive.google.com/open?id=1bxVLjnm76kdEbzpCyzwKyp5IBPqISvS0

Because there were three of us recording, I decided to experiment even further and changed things up for the main act.  I angled the mic bar so that the right mic was probably at least 4 inches further back than the left mic.  I then aimed the right mic directly at the stage left PA, and aimed the left mic directly at the stage right PA.  Again the mics were about 20 cm apart.  See the attached photo (in case it isn't obvious, my mics are on the bottom).  Here is a clip with that setup: https://drive.google.com/open?id=199FyrOAf99ard43TeToo-2twoslDEJHB

At the show I didn't make any attempt to balance the levels of the channels.  They were linked so they have equal gain.  I also didn't mess with the individual channel levels in post.  The only post done on the above clips was to amplify both channels equally and convert to 16/44.1 flac.

I'd love to hear others' thoughts about how these two setups sound!
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #40 on: January 21, 2018, 12:17:38 PM »
I like the first sample (Opus 132) better. Just comparing the organ in both tracks- it has a better balance. I've taped from that location at The Other Side a few times- I always end up with too much audience chatter in the left channel. Your technique seemed to help with that problem too. Learning a lot from this thread.
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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #41 on: January 21, 2018, 04:47:49 PM »
Both recordings sounded nice, great work.  Listening on headphones: I also liked the opener (first) sample better.  Stereo image seemed a little narrower than the second sample, but I thought it was well-balanced (drums seemed slightly R, bass slightly L, with guitars and keys balanced across).  Second sample did seem to have a wider stereo image to me but it felt weighted slightly to the L if that makes any sense... Thanks for sharing, interested to hear what others have to say.

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Re: Off-center setup/config for specific room
« Reply #42 on: January 22, 2018, 12:14:32 PM »
Same mic spacing for both sets?

Setup for the first set seems to have worked to balance the off center position for both the band on stage and the audience sounds, yet the resulting recording is overly monophonic for my taste. If using this technique from the same position again, I'd suggest either spacing the mics further apart while keeping them parallel to each other (the simpler answer with regards to technique, though maybe more difficult in practice), or introducing a slight angle between them (trickier to balance, but perhaps easier to arrange).  Good test, thanks for trying it out.

Second set has more stereo interest and is a bit brighter sounding as well, which may be due to a different PA balance rather than the mic setup.  Good test of this technique as well.  This is the Michael Williams technique of positioning one mic forward of the other to use time-of-arrival to help offset level differences to offset the Stereo Recording Angle.  For those following along this is the setup pictured above. Note how the bottom-most rig on the tree has one mic forward of the other- that's the microphone pointing across the stage towards the opposite side PA. 
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