Miking the Notorious Acoustic Piano

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Bane
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Re: Miking the Notorious Acoustic Piano

Post by Bane » Thu Feb 09, 2012 8:17 pm

Here is the take with the condenser mic in the back with effects. It sounds more natural to me, but if you think Split's stereo combination will sound better, type now, and I will get another mic cable as fast as I can.

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Last edited by Bane on Sat Feb 11, 2012 12:09 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Miking the Notorious Acoustic Piano

Post by Split » Thu Feb 09, 2012 8:26 pm

You should have two mic cables anyway :lol:
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Re: Miking the Notorious Acoustic Piano

Post by Bane » Fri Feb 10, 2012 3:17 pm

Hosa 25 ft. cable ordered! Now I don't have to put the CI on the floor when micing behind the piano. :shock: Too bad it will be about a week to a week and a half before it gets here. :cry:

BTW, I will be able to play to a metronome when I actually start recording. I didn't start taking lessons yesterday! :P Also, Mr. Payne, which mic are you refering to when you say the "close mic" that needs delay? They're both pretty close. :?
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Re: Miking the Notorious Acoustic Piano

Post by Laurence Payne » Fri Feb 10, 2012 4:23 pm

Bane wrote:Hosa 25 ft. cable ordered! Now I don't have to put the CI on the floor when micing behind the piano. :shock: Too bad it will be about a week to a week and a half before it gets here. :cry:

BTW, I will be able to play to a metronome when I actually start recording. I didn't start taking lessons yesterday! :P Also, Mr. Payne, which mic are you refering to when you say the "close mic" that needs delay? They're both pretty close. :?
Sound travels in air at a speed that covers aprox. 1 ft in 1 ms. Therefore if you record the same thing with two microphones, at different distances, the one n ft furthter away will get the sound n ms later. If the sound is essentialy a point source this might cause unwanted phase effects and can be worth compensating for. But a piano is anything but a point source, and the mic distances involved are comparable to the physical size of the piano. So the mathematics go out the window!

Nevertheless, when you record the same thing through two mics, whatever the distances, it can be interesting to see what happens when you reverse the phase of one mic, or slip its recorded track backwards or forwards a few ms.

After playing around in this area, you may end up agreeing with me that a single mic is preferable, certainly a lot more predictable :-)

The other thing to try is using your two mics as a stereo pair, in the various configurations - coincident (at various angles), near-spaced, far-spaced... With two such different mics you won't get a purist stereo image. But you may get something interesting.

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Re: Miking the Notorious Acoustic Piano

Post by Bane » Sat Feb 11, 2012 12:33 am

First of all, you probably noticed I disabled all the links. I recently had a Soundcloud account change, so you can use my sig if you still want to see those, I will leave them public for a few more days.

Looks like this topic may drop to the back page while I wait on my cable to arrive. :evil: I may end up digging this one up if I have any problems. I actually got alot of good info out of this topic; I originally suspected that I would end up with an ambient arrangement somewhere around 6-7 ft from the piano, but the room I'm recording in doesn't seem to be good for that without some special treatment. I'm blown away by the loud, clean sound coming from behind the piano. I can't wait to see how stereo miking will enhance or totally mess up my sound. You guys surpassed what I hoped for this topic to achieve, and reached 3 pages (though the piano is such a monster to mic you could write a book series about the best techniques)! I think this leads me in the right direction.

Thanks for all the help,
Bane
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Re: Miking the Notorious Acoustic Piano

Post by Strophoid » Sat Feb 11, 2012 12:40 am

Do let us hear a part of the final recording if you can :)
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Re: Miking the Notorious Acoustic Piano

Post by Bane » Sat Feb 11, 2012 2:09 am

I will; there will be 14 of them. I'm hoping that the entire project (mastering, cover art, etc.) will be finished between April to June. Yes, a long time span, but I really don't know what to expect, this being the first time I've done a project on this scale (even though it's far inferior to what most of y'all do). Thanks again for all the help!
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Woodcrest Studio

Re: Miking the Notorious Acoustic Piano

Post by Woodcrest Studio » Sat Feb 11, 2012 6:10 am

Bane wrote:First of all, you probably noticed I disabled all the links. I recently had a Soundcloud account change, so you can use my sig if you still want to see those, I will leave them public for a few more days.

Looks like this topic may drop to the back page while I wait on my cable to arrive. :evil: I may end up digging this one up if I have any problems. I actually got alot of good info out of this topic; I originally suspected that I would end up with an ambient arrangement somewhere around 6-7 ft from the piano, but the room I'm recording in doesn't seem to be good for that without some special treatment. I'm blown away by the loud, clean sound coming from behind the piano. I can't wait to see how stereo miking will enhance or totally mess up my sound. You guys surpassed what I hoped for this topic to achieve, and reached 3 pages (though the piano is such a monster to mic you could write a book series about the best techniques)! I think this leads me in the right direction.

Thanks for all the help,
Bane
Doing stereo (panned) recording with 2 completely different mics in a sparce arrangement will unbalance the stereo field. If you are planning on 14 songs, the novelty this imposes may become old.

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Re: Miking the Notorious Acoustic Piano

Post by Split » Sat Feb 11, 2012 10:41 am

Woodcrest Studio wrote:
Bane wrote:First of all, you probably noticed I disabled all the links. I recently had a Soundcloud account change, so you can use my sig if you still want to see those, I will leave them public for a few more days.

Looks like this topic may drop to the back page while I wait on my cable to arrive. :evil: I may end up digging this one up if I have any problems. I actually got alot of good info out of this topic; I originally suspected that I would end up with an ambient arrangement somewhere around 6-7 ft from the piano, but the room I'm recording in doesn't seem to be good for that without some special treatment. I'm blown away by the loud, clean sound coming from behind the piano. I can't wait to see how stereo miking will enhance or totally mess up my sound. You guys surpassed what I hoped for this topic to achieve, and reached 3 pages (though the piano is such a monster to mic you could write a book series about the best techniques)! I think this leads me in the right direction.

Thanks for all the help,
Bane
Doing stereo (panned) recording with 2 completely different mics in a sparce arrangement will unbalance the stereo field. If you are planning on 14 songs, the novelty this imposes may become old.
The Idea was to blend a bit of room mic into the signal for added realism, not to pan it off to one side, but to have it "behind" the main signal.
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Re: Miking the Notorious Acoustic Piano

Post by Woodcrest Studio » Sat Feb 11, 2012 3:19 pm

Ahhh ok. Totally cool. You can do a lot of processing to that room mic to turn it stereo. I guess I should have read the whole thread :) was away all week taking care of my pop and didn't keep up with the thread.

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Re: Miking the Notorious Acoustic Piano

Post by Laurence Payne » Sat Feb 11, 2012 3:43 pm

Woodcrest Studio wrote:Ahhh ok. Totally cool. You can do a lot of processing to that room mic to turn it stereo.
Not really. You can mess with it in various ways (most of which will become thoroughly annoying after a time:-). But you won't get a stereo image out of it.

Two dissimilar mics out in the room won't give an accurate stereo image, but they'll deliver some elements of it.

But with this piano, in this room, a thoroughly non-purist mic stuck down the back seems to give the best result. The sonic contributions of the room (and possibly of the whole piano case) don't seem to be adding anything desirable to what's coming straight off the sound-board.

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Re: Miking the Notorious Acoustic Piano

Post by Woodcrest Studio » Sat Feb 11, 2012 5:50 pm

Laurence,

I'm talking about taking the mono room Mic and converting it to stereo either simply by inserting a mono to stereo plugin on to m/s processing and other things to create spatial depth. The role of the room microphone doesn't have to be apparent is what I'm getting at.

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Re: Miking the Notorious Acoustic Piano

Post by Laurence Payne » Sat Feb 11, 2012 6:13 pm

Woodcrest Studio wrote:Laurence,

I'm talking about taking the mono room Mic and converting it to stereo either simply by inserting a mono to stereo plugin on to m/s processing and other things to create spatial depth. The role of the room microphone doesn't have to be apparent is what I'm getting at.
Still won't make it stereo, no matter what name someone hooks onto a plugin!

I know I'm being purist. But actual "stereo" is something rather wonderful that a lot of small-room multi-track studio people have either never heard or forgotton about!

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Re: Miking the Notorious Acoustic Piano

Post by Bane » Sat Feb 11, 2012 6:46 pm

I think we all agree that the M to S plugin is hardly a good replacement for true stereo miking which picks up more sound from the intended source. Although, you can attempt to make mono to feel stereo by this plugin or a duplicate mono track with panning left and right.
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Re: Miking the Notorious Acoustic Piano

Post by Woodcrest Studio » Sat Feb 11, 2012 7:21 pm

You can't be a purist with 2 microphones. You have to work with what you have. That is the basis of most of my comments. So I suppose Bane's entire album will be mono! :mrgreen:

Hopefully you follow why I said that.

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Re: Miking the Notorious Acoustic Piano

Post by Laurence Payne » Sat Feb 11, 2012 8:22 pm

Woodcrest Studio wrote:You can't be a purist with 2 microphones. You have to work with what you have. That is the basis of most of my comments. So I suppose Bane's entire album will be mono! :mrgreen:

Hopefully you follow why I said that.
It will be pan-potted mono, yes. More interesting than single-speaker mono, arguably. But it's hard to see how he could achieve a stereo image of the piano and the space it occupies.

Anyway, with that instrument, in that room, he probably wouldn't want one :-) We can achieve a lot when recording in less than ideal spaces. But what we lose is the option of capturing a true spatial image of the room.

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Re: Miking the Notorious Acoustic Piano

Post by Bane » Sat Feb 11, 2012 10:48 pm

Woodcrest Studio wrote:So I suppose Bane's entire album will be mono!

Hopefully you follow why I said that.
I don't quite get that. I'm hardly a purist; as Laurence wrote we won't want to do that, because we will show how terrible my recording room's acoustics really are. When I get the cable I will be able to record in stereo, so why would my album be in mono? Will this be a good stereo image with the positions my mics are in? I couldn't guess, so we'll just have to find out.

Also, I'm taking my Soundcloud tests private for now. If you want to see them again, get me your Soundcloud account (except for Strophoid who will already be allowed). I was going to wait a few days, but I just found out that my aunt had been snooping around there; she played the songs to the poor man at Verizon Wireless who was unfortunate enough to be on the phone with her at the time! :mrgreen: I have a feeling that that won't be all the damage done if I keep them public. :shock:
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Re: Miking the Notorious Acoustic Piano

Post by Laurence Payne » Sat Feb 11, 2012 11:23 pm

Bane wrote:Also, I'm taking my Soundcloud tests private for now. If you want to see them again, get me your Soundcloud account
Pity. I guess I'm out then. I don't have a Soundcloud account, and don't really want to sign up with anything that isn't essential for my work.

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Re: Miking the Notorious Acoustic Piano

Post by Bane » Sat Feb 11, 2012 11:44 pm

Any tests I do in the future will be public; only these I have just completed are now private. When I get a new mic cable, I'll be sure to post the links here, and keep them public for as long as possible. I will be able to be a little more laid back in the future, once my account activity dies down. After all, I just sent the account link to ALL of my friends. :|
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My tunes on: Soundcloud

Woodcrest Studio

Re: Miking the Notorious Acoustic Piano

Post by Woodcrest Studio » Sun Feb 12, 2012 4:29 am

Bane wrote:
Woodcrest Studio wrote:So I suppose Bane's entire album will be mono!

Hopefully you follow why I said that.
I don't quite get that. I'm hardly a purist; as Laurence wrote we won't want to do that, because we will show how terrible my recording room's acoustics really are. When I get the cable I will be able to record in stereo, so why would my album be in mono? Will this be a good stereo image with the positions my mics are in? I couldn't guess, so we'll just have to find out.

Also, I'm taking my Soundcloud tests private for now. If you want to see them again, get me your Soundcloud account (except for Strophoid who will already be allowed). I was going to wait a few days, but I just found out that my aunt had been snooping around there; she played the songs to the poor man at Verizon Wireless who was unfortunate enough to be on the phone with her at the time! :mrgreen: I have a feeling that that won't be all the damage done if I keep them public. :shock:

The mono album was a joke. You don't have two of the same microphones, right? Usually, stereo recording uses 2 of the same mics, especially in a purist sense. Don't worry, your album wolnt be mono because you are inserting reverbs that will make it stereo.

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Re: Miking the Notorious Acoustic Piano

Post by Laurence Payne » Sun Feb 12, 2012 11:24 am

Woodcrest Studio wrote:The mono album was a joke. You don't have two of the same microphones, right? Usually, stereo recording uses 2 of the same mics, especially in a purist sense. Don't worry, your album wolnt be mono because you are inserting reverbs that will make it stereo.
I think you'd better define "stereo" !

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Re: Miking the Notorious Acoustic Piano

Post by Split » Sun Feb 12, 2012 11:41 am

True Stereo?

Or

Pseudo Stereo?

It depends, the word Stereo in this context just means differing signals from left and right speakers. (Pseudo Stereo)

We mostly know what Tom means.
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Re: Miking the Notorious Acoustic Piano

Post by Strophoid » Sun Feb 12, 2012 12:19 pm

Semantics :?
Just let the guy record with the setup we suggested, wether it should be called mono or stereo is hardly relevant if it sounds good.

I'll give the new recordings a listen, I did wonder why I suddenly had 8 emails in my inbox :D

edit: Just listened to all of them a couple of times. The processed track sounds pretty good. Can the stereo enhancer go wider than this? On one had I like the stereo field, but it sounds a bit chorus'y to me, like it also detuned the signal slightly. On all of the other recordings, the bass is relatively low. Did you simply boost it with EQ or is this another recording?

Anyway, my personal opinion would be to place the condensor behind the piano bass side, as I said before I feel that gives the most even frequency representation of your playing. I would use the dynamic ambient signal in favor of the one behind your head. The condensor should give a clear image of your playing already, and the ambient mic nicely adds some natural reverb to this signal. You probably don't have to mix it in very loud either.
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Re: Miking the Notorious Acoustic Piano

Post by Bane » Sun Feb 12, 2012 2:15 pm

These are the effects I included. Rather simple EQ at this point, a little bit of reverb, and then quite a bit of stereo enhancer.
The Effects on the Processed One.jpg
(191.74 KiB) Not downloaded yet
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Re: Miking the Notorious Acoustic Piano

Post by Bane » Sat Feb 18, 2012 3:07 am

Okay, I finally received my microphone cable and got around to performing a few tests. A little rough still as far as volume, but it won't clip or anything like the last ones and I tried to keep everything pretty loud. These are public.

1) [disabled]

2) [disabled]

3) [disabled]

4) [disabled-thanks!]

All of this is unprocessed. After some advice from you guys, I will be able to determine where to go from here. All of these are centered, so after we find which ones we like the best, we'll see if we want to position more toward the bass or treble. Oh yeah, don't forget to keep your metronomes off!! :roll: Your feedback is appreciated. :)
Last edited by Bane on Sat Mar 03, 2012 6:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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