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Author Topic: Recording the audience  (Read 4411 times)

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Offline Gutbucket

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Re: Recording the audience
« Reply #15 on: July 20, 2023, 05:39:59 PM »
Thanks for that, big respect to Biff Dawes.

Sounds like he's using audience sound loops similarly to a laugh track, the history of which is rather interesting itself.

"Early uses of the laugh track are quaint by today's standards: 'The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet' used only one laugh throughout its half-hour running time, and 'The Abbott and Costello Show' used an uproarious laugh track which ran continuously.."

Here's what may have been the apex of the analog laugh track era in the 80's. Check out this guy's portable laugh machine using trays of cassettes and laughs cue'd by numeric keyboard- https://youtu.be/c3A5YPjjwhY

These techniques have their place of course.  For us its easiest to just record it live along with the music, and I dig the "performed in front of a live studio audience" real life reactions of a truly engaged audience at a good concert, but that's out of our control.  You get what you get and its not always great or useful, but arranging things so as to be able to diminish it as effectively as possible when its bad and bring it up as much as you want when its sublime is pretty cool.
musical volition > vibrations > voltages > numeric values > voltages > vibrations> virtual teleportation time-machine experience
Better recording made easy - >>Improved PAS table<< | Made excellent- >>click here to download the Oddball Microphone Technique illustrated PDF booklet<< (note: This is a 1st draft, now several years old and in need of revision!  Stay tuned)

Offline Gutbucket

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Re: Recording the audience
« Reply #16 on: July 20, 2023, 05:43:39 PM »
I wonder what techniques sound guys use to record studio audience reactions fro TV shows?  No need to minimize loud PA bleed in that case, yet they probably want to minimize pickup of the actors and stage sounds as much as possible.
musical volition > vibrations > voltages > numeric values > voltages > vibrations> virtual teleportation time-machine experience
Better recording made easy - >>Improved PAS table<< | Made excellent- >>click here to download the Oddball Microphone Technique illustrated PDF booklet<< (note: This is a 1st draft, now several years old and in need of revision!  Stay tuned)

Offline bluegrass_brad

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Re: Recording the audience
« Reply #17 on: July 21, 2023, 01:32:09 PM »
Ducking, along with compression, is used quite often for mixing ambient audience mics in live settings like concert/performance etc. We would multi-track everything and always have aud mics onstage and often at FOH. The onstage mics were often ducked during mixing. Side-chained off of tracks sent to a mix bus, or just a 2 track stereo SBD feed if that is all there was. When signal is going through that bus, the ducker lowers or turns off the aud mic tracks. When signal in that bus lessens or stops, then the ducker brings up the volume of the aud mics. You can control the threshold, attack, decay etc on a ducker. Basically reverse compression.

Once you get your settings (particularly attack) it works pretty well just letting it go. You would have to change these for each show though. When reviewing the mix, if you can hear it pump you can always go back and easily fix it. An example of pumping would be something like the commentators in a college basketball game. When the crowd gets really loud you can hear that pump when the commentators break in and the crowd noise abruptly lowers, as they will have the attack and decay times really fast. In a recording situation you can make those more gradual, particularly decay, so it sounds more natural.

One thing to add is that in our situation, we were not looking for adding ambience from those aud facing mics during the performance. They were just there to capture reaction and ambience between songs.
« Last Edit: July 21, 2023, 01:34:02 PM by bluegrass_brad »
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Offline Gutbucket

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Re: Recording the audience
« Reply #18 on: July 21, 2023, 04:17:40 PM »
Thanks Brad. Your mention of ducking is further encouragement for me to try it by side-chaining the compression applied to the audience/ambiance mics to the level of the forward facing mics.  I used to just manually adjust its level between songs and as things got louder (essentially ranging between three general levels - highest between songs, lowest during the loudest parts and somewhere in between for the less loud music sections) but setting it up to work automatically, even with straight compression, not ducked/side chained, makes for less work and works well as long as its set carefully.

Somewhat OT but perhaps interesting, is that if/when I route the audience/ambiance channels to side/rear speakers for surround playback, I end up using a lot more level from these channels than in a 2-channel mix, and find I have to be more careful with compression/level-automation because changes in level and and any pumping effects are no longer masked as much and become more easily audible and distracting.
musical volition > vibrations > voltages > numeric values > voltages > vibrations> virtual teleportation time-machine experience
Better recording made easy - >>Improved PAS table<< | Made excellent- >>click here to download the Oddball Microphone Technique illustrated PDF booklet<< (note: This is a 1st draft, now several years old and in need of revision!  Stay tuned)

 

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