Become a Site Supporter and Never see Ads again!

Author Topic: 1990s taper finally upgrading gear - a few questions about mics, power, stealth  (Read 5739 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline MakersMarc

  • (15)
  • Needs to get out more...
  • *****
  • Posts: 6252
  • Gender: Male
  • 😈
ymmv, but I will never again run mic in to a handheld deck, the stock preamps are just too weak. I've tried the preamps in the A10 and M10, in perfect locations, and been gravely disappointed every time, running 41/4v>nbobs>babynbox>deck. I really wanted to go small, and personally the nbox, while a marvelous piece of gear, isn't the sound I’m looking for. So for $200 each I had three Marantz 620s warm modded by Doug, and couldn't be happier. Night and day, a good 20-30% improvement to my ears. I think $200 for a top notch tiny ass preamp is well worth that, try finding an outboard equivalent, good luck-unless you stumble upon a Tinybox. Doug doesn't advertise it, but he does also mod m10s.

Now running line in, totally different story. I think pretty much every handheld, including A10, M10, Roland, Marantz 620 feature good to very good line input stages. My 620s happen to be line in modded as well, but it's not something I'd find necessary by itself.  For open taping I have caps>nbob>pfa>warm mod Marantz 661, if I even bother changing up, both setups sound really good imo.

my 2 cents which generally speaking doesn't mean shit. ;D
« Last Edit: August 18, 2021, 07:46:07 PM by MakersMarc »
😈 Mk4v/41v>nbob actives>Baby nbox>Oade warm mod Marantz 620.

Open: 4v/41v>nbobs>Nicky mod Naiant PFA>Oade warm mod 661.

Home: the Stereo Hospital budget refurb rig: Lappie>DragonFly Cobalt/Red with Jitterbug>Nikko NR520 amp>B&W V202 speakers.

Offline morst

  • Trade Unionist
  • (2)
  • Needs to get out more...
  • *****
  • Posts: 4741
Doug doesn't advertise it, but he does also mod m10s.


 :o :o :o

Offline MakersMarc

  • (15)
  • Needs to get out more...
  • *****
  • Posts: 6252
  • Gender: Male
  • 😈
Doug doesn't advertise it, but he does also mod m10s.


 :o :o :o


Doug sez the m10 mods sound a bit better to him, than the 620 mods, but something you’re not likely to hear absent a reference system.
😈 Mk4v/41v>nbob actives>Baby nbox>Oade warm mod Marantz 620.

Open: 4v/41v>nbobs>Nicky mod Naiant PFA>Oade warm mod 661.

Home: the Stereo Hospital budget refurb rig: Lappie>DragonFly Cobalt/Red with Jitterbug>Nikko NR520 amp>B&W V202 speakers.

Offline jb63

  • Site Supporter
  • (31)
  • Taperssection Member
  • *
  • Posts: 879
  • Gender: Male
  • if not now when?
ymmv, but I will never again run mic in to a handheld deck, the stock preamps are just too weak. I've tried the preamps in the A10 and M10, in perfect locations, and been gravely disappointed every time, running 41/4v>nbobs>babynbox>deck. I really wanted to go small, and personally the nbox, while a marvelous piece of gear, isn't the sound I’m looking for. So for $200 each I had three Marantz 620s warm modded by Doug, and couldn't be happier. Night and day, a good 20-30% improvement to my ears. I think $200 for a top notch tiny ass preamp is well worth that, try finding an outboard equivalent, good luck-unless you stumble upon a Tinybox.

I agree with all this, but wait-- are you saying that you use the Mic in as your preamp on your Modded PMD620 tapes?
« Last Edit: August 20, 2021, 12:28:24 PM by jb63 »
once again, lost in all the noise

Offline morst

  • Trade Unionist
  • (2)
  • Needs to get out more...
  • *****
  • Posts: 4741
Doug sez the m10 mods sound a bit better to him, than the 620 mods, but something you’re not likely to hear absent a reference system.
HominaHominaHomina...
That sounds like a playback challenge!?!
 :drool: :drool: :drool:


Hello, Operator, give me Thomasville please!?

Offline MakersMarc

  • (15)
  • Needs to get out more...
  • *****
  • Posts: 6252
  • Gender: Male
  • 😈
ymmv, but I will never again run mic in to a handheld deck, the stock preamps are just too weak. I've tried the preamps in the A10 and M10, in perfect locations, and been gravely disappointed every time, running 41/4v>nbobs>babynbox>deck. I really wanted to go small, and personally the nbox, while a marvelous piece of gear, isn't the sound I’m looking for. So for $200 each I had three Marantz 620s warm modded by Doug, and couldn't be happier. Night and day, a good 20-30% improvement to my ears. I think $200 for a top notch tiny ass preamp is well worth that, try finding an outboard equivalent, good luck-unless you stumble upon a Tinybox.

I agree with all this, but wait-- are you sayin ghat you use the Mic in as your preamp on your Modded PMD620 tapes?


yes, every time. the babynbox just powers the cap, my gain comes from the 620.
😈 Mk4v/41v>nbob actives>Baby nbox>Oade warm mod Marantz 620.

Open: 4v/41v>nbobs>Nicky mod Naiant PFA>Oade warm mod 661.

Home: the Stereo Hospital budget refurb rig: Lappie>DragonFly Cobalt/Red with Jitterbug>Nikko NR520 amp>B&W V202 speakers.

Offline chiefscribe

  • (0)
  • Taperssection Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 38
Pieces of a mostly used Schoeps rig are starting to be assembled finally so if all goes well soon I can actually practice recording with the good stuff.

Wish I could find an elementary lesson on the electrical signal dos & don'ts, esp. since I will be dealing with used gear that generally doesn't come with original documentation or instructions. 

Thus far I gather that
- unbalanced output cannot go into preamp with phantom power https://www.sounddevices.com/the-danger-of-applying-phantom-power-to-unbalanced-outputs/

and I assume that power all gear needs to be turned off before anything is connected or disconnected. 

But I am hoping to get up to speed on what else I need to know to use these things properly.

E.g. I have the DPA 4060 microphones and the DAD6001 microdot-to-XLR adapter that comes with them.  The mic specs on DPA's website say
Quote
With DAD6001-BC: P48 (Phantom Power). Will work from 12 V.
So this sounds like I could plug them into the Tascam DR-100mkiii phantom power, right?  Or is there some other reason that I would fry some circuit if I try this? 

How does one know when to use mic in vs. line in? 

I want to learn how to know which gear is compatible with which other gear but have not found any lessons geared for a complete newbie like me.  In the meantime I'm not going to plug anything into anything else until I know I can.  But I am eager to play with the new stuff so I hope I can learn the basics ASAP. 
« Last Edit: August 20, 2021, 09:10:01 PM by chiefscribe »

Offline yug du nord

  • ...til things never seen seem familiar…
  • (56)
  • Needs to get out more...
  • *****
  • Posts: 5379
  • made with natural flavor
^I believe that this:
“With DAD6001-BC: P48 (Phantom Power). Will work from 12 V”
(quote from DPA website regarding (including) 4060) means that with the DAD6001-BC adapter you can power via P48 (48V Phantom Power) but will also work to spec via P12 (12V Phantom Power).

So I think that with the DAD6001-BC adapter you can plug straight into the XLR mike inputs with P48 power (or P12) on those inputs on your Tascam deck and press record!
Congrats on the new rig!!

……I do not run mini DPA’s so I have zero first hand experience… but that’s how I read the specs of the 4060.
Maybe wait til someone else confirms or not.

Mike Input for internal preamps.
Line Input for line level (external preamp or soundboard feed),
Line Input could also be used for very loud sources where the signal from microphone does not need to be amplified by preamp.
« Last Edit: August 20, 2021, 10:55:06 PM by yug du nord »
.....got a blank space where my mind should be.....

Offline morst

  • Trade Unionist
  • (2)
  • Needs to get out more...
  • *****
  • Posts: 4741
Wish I could find an elementary lesson on the electrical signal dos & don'ts, esp. since I will be dealing with used gear that generally doesn't come with original documentation or instructions. 
Lots of user manuals online, and some on this very site!
Quote
Thus far I gather that
- unbalanced output cannot go into preamp with phantom power https://www.sounddevices.com/the-danger-of-applying-phantom-power-to-unbalanced-outputs/
The type of microphone which can utilize phantom power will have three conductors on its cable, usually as an XLR connector.
Unbalanced signals are carried via 2-conductor cables, so that will not provide a way to supply phantom power (voltage) to the mics.
In other words, if you have mics which require phantom power, you will not be running their outputs unbalanced.
If you get a board patch some time which is unbalanced, you could probably pass it through your pre-amp, as long as Phantom Power is switched off.
Though most board feeds won't need to be pre-amplified at all, as they should already be at "line level"


Quote
I assume that power all gear needs to be turned off before anything is connected or disconnected. 
It's a good idea.
Phantom power is the most finicky, and may cause crazy signal pops to connected gear.
Worst case might be if you have the deck set for phantom, and running in record mode, and someone is patched out, and THEN you plug the mics in while it's on!?
Once the mic capacitors charge up, and the circuit begins to send signal, you might get a hit of maximum level!
Such an abrupt loud sound could harm the hearing of someone monitoring with headphones!?

...
Quote
How does one know when to use mic in vs. line in? 
If line-in doesn't give you the signal level you expect from a pair of otherwise-unamplified mics (battery box with no pre-amp?), and the input level is turned up beyond approx 70-80%, try the mic inputs.
It's really a matter of gain (signal amplification) once you have the mics powered (whether via batteries or by phantom voltage supplied by a deck or preamp) 
Quote
I want to learn how to know which gear is compatible with which other gear but have not found any lessons geared for a complete newbie like me.
In the meantime I'm not going to plug anything into anything else until I know I can.  But I am eager to play with the new stuff so I hope I can learn the basics ASAP.
I'm happy to answer questions here or privately.

Offline chiefscribe

  • (0)
  • Taperssection Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 38
Thanks.

Quote
Lots of user manuals online, and some on this very site!

I have looked at some product manuals, but the kind of elementary level overview I am looking for I have not found yet.  Did everyone else on this board get advanced degrees in sound engineering or work as electricians or ?

Offline rocksuitcase

  • (3)
  • Needs to get out more...
  • *****
  • Posts: 7097
  • Gender: Male
    • RockSuitcase: stage photography
Thanks.
  Did everyone else on this board get advanced degrees in sound engineering or work as electricians or ?
I had to laugh at this chiefscribe. Since I do have an advanced degree in acoustics and have done my share of soundboard running, owning PA's etc. HOWEVER, I believe the majority of tapers learn this stuff by doing not schooling (best learning is doing in this field). What you are asking is actually sensible, "how do different pieces of gear match up, can I use this with that" etc.  However, the real world answers are the types morst is providing. The answer to your overarching thought is NO, there is no primer manual where these things are outlined and pursued in more detail. In fact, TS and other sites dedicated to recording (Gearslutz, tapeheads, etc) has extensive archives for finding about specific pieces of gear and others' experience with them. on TS, the articles are not well catalogued and can be a hike to search with the proper keywords, but it can be done.

I read your questions and feel you are doing OK with the learning curve so far. don't be afraid to plug things in and try it. most shit will not blow up due to mic vs line issues. the terminology is high sensitivity (generally uses PiP) vs low sensitivity (generally uses P48) mics. Some sites such as Sweetwater and prodigital offer user information about the gear they sell.
https://mynewmicrophone.com/microphone-sensitivity/
https://acousticnature.com/blog       This guy is a field recordist and has some non engineering type explanations

You are here in the right place to learn!
OTH- in an OTS at Phish SPAC 2019, I learned from some of the other guys that taperssection is often referred to as "Audio Engineering Society section"!   >:D
ymmv
« Last Edit: August 22, 2021, 01:47:26 PM by rocksuitcase »
music IS love

When you get confused, listen to the music play!

Mics:         AKG460|CK61|CK1|CK3|CK8|Beyer M 201E|DPA 4060 SK
Recorders:Marantz PMD661 OADE Concert mod; Tascam DR680 MKI

Offline vanark

  • TDS
  • (29)
  • Needs to get out more...
  • *****
  • Posts: 7842
  • If you ain't right, you better get right!
    • The Mudboy Grotto - North Mississippi Allstar fan site
Let me assure you that you can make great recordings without understanding the engineering behind the gear. Don't get too caught up in the technical issues. You need to get out there and press record in order to make any recording. Don't let the information overload get in the way of getting out there.
If you have a problem relating to the Live Music Archive (http://www.archive.org/details/etree) please send an e-mail to us admins at lma(AT)archive(DOT)org or post in the LMA thread here and we'll get on it.

Link to LMA Recordings

Link to Team Dirty South Recordings on the LMA

Mics: Microtech Gefell M21 (with Nbob actives) | Church Audio CA-11 (cards) (with CA UBB)
Pres: babynbox
Recorders: Tascam DR-60D | Tascam DR-40 | Sony PCM-A10 | Edirol R-4

Offline morst

  • Trade Unionist
  • (2)
  • Needs to get out more...
  • *****
  • Posts: 4741
I have looked at some product manuals, but the kind of elementary level overview I am looking for I have not found yet.  Did everyone else on this board get advanced degrees in sound engineering or work as electricians or ?
Go to archive.org and browse shows recorded with gear of interest and take a listen.
Keep notes on what your ears prefer!?


I don't have an advanced degree, but I have been a working professional sound mixer and my current (idle due to pandemic) occupation is a technical one in the A/V area, as a stagehand.
I like to explain things though, not the least because it helps me to understand them better if I can verbalize them...
I realize that this is some dense stuff.
Audio recording relies on the sciences of acoustics, physics, electronics, and even psychoacoustics. Lots of angles.
Thanks for bearing with me in the technical weeds, and remember, nobody is born knowing this stuff!!

Offline chiefscribe

  • (0)
  • Taperssection Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 38
I know what my ears prefer, but what I want to know is how to take care of the gear I'm getting properly and how to know which devices are compatible with which other ones.  If I see a list of specs for a certain cable, I understand the different connector types, i.e. that XLR is not the same as LEMO, but my eyes start glazing over when it gets into differently wired versions of XLR.  So if I needed an XLR cable to go between some capsules and a particular preamp or recorder, I can read the input specs on the preamp and recorder and purchase the correct item if that info is provided, but I would not know *why* that kind and not the other kind.  How does everyone else learn this?  I am not tech-averse and my reading comprehension is fine, but I haven't yet seen an introductory explanation of why one piece of gear is or isn't compatible with another.

For now, all I need to know is how to care for the gear I'm getting, and some practice getting set up for  >:D situations, but I wish I understood more about the electrical signal aspect of things.   

Offline morst

  • Trade Unionist
  • (2)
  • Needs to get out more...
  • *****
  • Posts: 4741
I know what my ears prefer, but what I want to know is how to take care of the gear I'm getting properly and how to know which devices are compatible with which other ones.  If I see a list of specs for a certain cable, I understand the different connector types, i.e. that XLR is not the same as LEMO, but my eyes start glazing over when it gets into differently wired versions of XLRSo if I needed an XLR cable to go between some capsules and a particular preamp or recorder, I can read the input specs on the preamp and recorder and purchase the correct item if that info is provided, but I would not know *why* that kind and not the other kind.  How does everyone else learn this? 

XLR cables are standardized.
Unfortunately, the wiring of the things that they plug into is not.
So the most common problem matching gear connected via XLR would be that some manufacturers choose to use Pin 3 as the "hot" pin and others have Pin 2 hot.
Pin 1 is ground in both schemes.
This blurb from a reputable midwestern USA audio dealer sheds light on the history of why there is mismatch.
https://www.sweetwater.com/insync/pin-2-pin-3-mismatches-what/

Quote
In the 1970’s and early 1980’s pin 3 hot gear was actually (slightly) more common, but the debate had shifted in favor of pin 2 by 1990 and now “almost” everyone makes equipment according to the pin 2 “standard.”

If you get it mismatched, the signal will be "polarity inverted" but not otherwise damaged. This can be fixed in post.
« Last Edit: August 23, 2021, 03:29:23 AM by morst »

 

RSS | Mobile
Page created in 0.079 seconds with 39 queries.
© 2002-2021 Taperssection.com
Powered by SMF