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Old May 14th, 2006, 07:55 PM   #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seth Bloombaum
...


Many NLEs will allow you to duplicate the s channel and invert the phase, which is all you need to decode m-s in an NLE. There is a freeware vst plugin as well, from voxengo.com/freevst. Waves is great stuff too...

...
Yep - just mentioned the Waves plugin because it has some really interesting tools included for expanding or contracting the spread and rotating the centre line
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Old May 14th, 2006, 08:29 PM   #32
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Originally Posted by David Lach
...how do you guys set any kind of stereo setup in a crowded bar for a live band with a dance floor around or in front of the stage meaning there is just no way of putting the mics on some stands close enough to the stage? Would you be clamping them to the ceiling close to the stage area in some way and running the wires alongside some pipe that might be hanging there?...
Well, this is a sticky issue, yes. Because there's really only one best place for the mics, and those darn clubs tend to think that's a good place for a dance floor.

My gigs tend to be different, small concerts (not clubs), no amplification, so, if I'm going to get a good recording it'll be because the room sounds good and the players had good acoustic balance. Made to order for stereo techniques.

David - rig and fly. Consider an upside-down mic stand or c-stand ny-tied to those ceiling pipes, get your local theatrical lighting supplier to make you some safety cables too. Use the really heavy nylon ties. Then, lower the mics to perhaps 10-12' off the floor, use lighter ny-ties or bongo cords to rig your long mic cables.

There's really no substitute for getting a stereo rig in the right place. Club sound is kind of variable, of course. Many house mixes are mono, but don't cover all instruments, depending on direct sound from amps on stage or some direct sound from drums.

But if you walk away with the stereo as heard in the room, the board mix, and maybe if the board mix was mono a direct out of the lead vocal channel on the last channel of your R4, plus some spot sound from your camcorder mic I think you're in pretty good shape. Really, you can't do better unless you haul a 24-track and take a split of each mic.
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Old May 14th, 2006, 10:19 PM   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seth Bloombaum
David - rig and fly. Consider an upside-down mic stand or c-stand ny-tied to those ceiling pipes, get your local theatrical lighting supplier to make you some safety cables too. Use the really heavy nylon ties. Then, lower the mics to perhaps 10-12' off the floor, use lighter ny-ties or bongo cords to rig your long mic cables.
Is there such a thing as an upside-down mix stand, with proper anchoring hardware, or is this a type of jerry-rigging of a normal stand? I would like to go as light as possible because those club ceilings don't always have the proper mounting hardware to suspend a heavy C type of stand on there (at least not where the mics should go). I've even worked in places where the ceiling had nothing to suspend anything on, especially running cables (Duck tape will only go so far).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Seth Bloombaum
There's really no substitute for getting a stereo rig in the right place. Club sound is kind of variable, of course. Many house mixes are mono, but don't cover all instruments, depending on direct sound from amps on stage or some direct sound from drums.
Yeah I learned that the hard way during my very first gig. No drums or bass in the final mix. Luckily the room was small and full of people so the cam's stereo mic picked up a relatively good clean enough sound to compensate.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Seth Bloombaum
But if you walk away with the stereo as heard in the room, the board mix, and maybe if the board mix was mono a direct out of the lead vocal channel on the last channel of your R4, plus some spot sound from your camcorder mic I think you're in pretty good shape. Really, you can't do better unless you haul a 24-track and take a split of each mic.
For me it usually depends on the client. If I'm recording a singer with his band, everything outside of the voice is secondary, so I make sure to have a clean channel of vocal only. Then a mono mix of the instruments on top of the stereo recording would be all I need. If it's a band without vocals, I usually try to get a mono mix of the drums and an other feed for the bass as I find those 2 instruments to be the toughest to get a clean full sound on with stereo micing (then again I never did my stereo micing the "right" way, always either camera mounted or too far back, meaning way too much reverberation).

That being said now after going through so much iffy accoustics and recording conditions, I tell all my clients up front that I offer only a basic stereo audio recording of the show/performance and the overall quality will be almost entirely dependent on the recording options and conditions at the location. If they insist on getting pristine sound no matter what, I tell them I will have to hire a dedicated soundman as well as rent some serious multitrack gear to then mix individual instruments in post, but considering the significant extra costs this adds to the final amount, they rarely ask for it (doesn't keep them from nit-picking at the end though).
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Old May 15th, 2006, 04:14 AM   #34
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I gotta ask, if the client is the band and they want a demo recorded, why are you trying to do it when they're performing in front of an audience in a gig that hasn't been arranged specifically for shooting a video and whose audience isn't there with the understanding that they're there to be the studio audience for a video production? I understand wanting the shots of the audience spontaneously interacting with the band and certainly get them at a regular performance if you like, but record the actual music and get the closeups of the band performers etc without an audience or where the audience is there knowing it's a shoot and you can start and stop in mid song, close off the dance floor for camera work, etc, and in general focus on the job of making a video and not entertaining a live audience.
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Old May 15th, 2006, 08:32 AM   #35
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M/s

I've been using a Sanken CMS-10 and an MKH-418 MS mic. I haven't found any matrix plug-ins that work with FCP or Soundtrack Pro so I generally de-matrix in an SD 744. If I want to change the imaging in post, I re-matrix in Bias Peak. One of the truly cool things about MS is that it's reversable. You can record in MS, convert to LR stereo, and then later convert back to MS.

Another cool trick with MS is to use two mics for single point surround sound recording. This is described pretty thoroughly in a Schoeps white paper. It goes like this. Use one MS mic pointing forward and another pointing backward (upside down to keep the L sides and R sides together). Optionally you can use one more hypercardioid in front for center imaging and then "zoom out" your front MS mic for wider stereo coverage.
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Old May 15th, 2006, 08:45 AM   #36
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Southworth
I've been using a Sanken CMS-10 and an MKH-418 MS mic. I haven't found any matrix plug-ins that work with FCP or Soundtrack Pro so I generally de-matrix in an SD 744. If I want to change the imaging in post, I re-matrix in Bias Peak. One of the truly cool things about MS is that it's reversable. You can record in MS, convert to LR stereo, and then later convert back to MS.
WAVES has 4-5 plugs that dematrix M/S if you would prefer it in FCP or Soundtrack Pro.
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Old May 15th, 2006, 01:10 PM   #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve House
I gotta ask, if the client is the band and they want a demo recorded, why are you trying to do it when they're performing in front of an audience in a gig that hasn't been arranged specifically for shooting a video and whose audience isn't there with the understanding that they're there to be the studio audience for a video production? I understand wanting the shots of the audience spontaneously interacting with the band and certainly get them at a regular performance if you like, but record the actual music and get the closeups of the band performers etc without an audience or where the audience is there knowing it's a shoot and you can start and stop in mid song, close off the dance floor for camera work, etc, and in general focus on the job of making a video and not entertaining a live audience.
Well it's a good question Steve but usually the band/singer/artist/manager calls me to cover a live event, not just to make a video of them/their client. They tell me they have a concert/show/performance coming up and want to shoot it, sometimes to put on their web sites, sometimes for booking other shows and/or contracts of all kinds.

And truth be told, they usually don't have a lot of money to invest in this, at least here in the Montreal market, especially if it's the band itself that hires me and pays out of their own pockets, so they often need the profit they'll be making on the night with ticket sales to pay for my services.

I can understand the mentality, I've been there before when I was younger as a musicien in a band, where you want professional looking footage for demo purposes yet you're not ready to pay out of your own pocket the $800 or so it will cost for a fully edited 2 camera cover of a 2 hour show (that's about my going rate at this point in time).

I've one time asked your question indirectly to a client after seeing the room the show was going to be in and then let him know the room configuration, with a full crowd, was simply horrible for camera placement, and maybe it'd be bether to find a different place or shoot something without as many people, but he didn't care all that much, he absolutely wanted the live performance with the crowd interaction and the video was secondary. In fact, in those situations, the video is pretty much always secondary. The mentality is "we'll do a show so might as well film it to get some footage out of it for promotional purposes".

Now that I've gained sufficient experience (second year as a pro) I'm slowly raising my prices/changing my price packages to voluntarily price myself out of the bottom market that has no money, is not doing it professionally and isn't ready to pay the cost for a quality shoot. And maybe if I feel the client is serious and means business, and the conditions are right, I might be proposing to do a closed set shooting (especially the ones that come to me with music video intentions on top of covering a live event).

But don't underestimate the importance of a crowd in a show of this sort, it raises the performance level of the band while being a key element (crowd interaction) that allows to either book a future gig or get a label interested in them, or so was I told anyway.
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Old May 15th, 2006, 03:04 PM   #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seth Bloombaum
Generally, two mics in shock mounts, whether cardoids or m-s array are a little bit of a hassle to set....
Although several companies, Rycote among them, make M-S shock mounts that handle two mics in a single mount, and the setup becomes easy. A dedicated stereo mic is nice if you do primarily that type of recording, although I prefer the flexibility of two modular mics than can be used (with different capsules, of course) in a variety of fashions other than just stereo recording.
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Old May 15th, 2006, 03:49 PM   #39
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Originally Posted by David Lach
Well it's a good question Steve but usually the band/singer/artist/manager calls me to cover a live event, not just to make a video of them/their client.
...

But don't underestimate the importance of a crowd in a show of this sort, it raises the performance level of the band while being a key element (crowd interaction) that allows to either book a future gig or get a label interested in them, or so was I told anyway.
I can understand both points. But the conditions required to make a solid demo recording of the music are even more stringent than those required to get good visuals. You can use a couple of shoulder mounted cameras and work in and around the audience and experieced shooters with get good images. But a solid stereo recording of the music, something that will sell the band's sound to potential clients, is going to require very careful attention to the recording conditions in regard to things like mic placement etc or the sound is going to sound like a garage band instead of a group of professional musicians. It needs more care and attention that you might be able to achieve working around the audience during a regular club date.
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Old May 15th, 2006, 03:54 PM   #40
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Originally Posted by Ralph Keyser
Although several companies, Rycote among them, make M-S shock mounts that handle two mics in a single mount, and the setup becomes easy. A dedicated stereo mic is nice if you do primarily that type of recording, although I prefer the flexibility of two modular mics than can be used (with different capsules, of course) in a variety of fashions other than just stereo recording.
I've been thinking along those lines myself, thinking about the flexibility one would have to cover a variety of situations with a kit made up of, say, 2 or 3 AKG Blueline power/preamp modules and a capsule collection of a pair each of the omni and cardioid capsules plus a hypercardioid and a figure-8 capsule.
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Old May 15th, 2006, 04:46 PM   #41
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Originally Posted by Steve House
I can understand both points. But the conditions required to make a solid demo recording of the music are even more stringent than those required to get good visuals. You can use a couple of shoulder mounted cameras and work in and around the audience and experieced shooters with get good images. But a solid stereo recording of the music, something that will sell the band's sound to potential clients, is going to require very careful attention to the recording conditions in regard to things like mic placement etc or the sound is going to sound like a garage band instead of a group of professional musicians. It needs more care and attention that you might be able to achieve working around the audience during a regular club date.
Yeah I know what you mean about the sound recording conditions but at the same time what my clients hire me for first and foremost is the video aspect. They expect to get great footage out of it, but they're never thinking they'll end up with a studio quality sound to go along, and the reason why that is is I always make it very clear from the get go that we are not working with studio like conditions therefore the sound quality will be highly dependant on the room accoustics and options.

I always offer an extra audio package where I'll bring in a dedicated soundman, if not crew, and mic and record every single instrument independently to then mix it in post exactly the way they want, but so far they never chose to go for it, mainly because the visuals is what they're after. They're not selling they're sound with my product, they're selling their image. If they want to sell their sound, they should (and usually do) go and record a demo album in a studio with proper realisation.

Of course I'd love to eventually provide a full high-end audio-video package, but I'm not ready yet for that to be honest, as I'm still learning the job even after one year of operation and possess only rudimentary audio knowledge (which I'm trying hard to develop by speaking with people like you on these boards). So in the meantime I'll concentrate on getting great footage with anything from acceptable to good audio to go along, always pushing for it to get better of course.
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Old May 16th, 2006, 04:35 AM   #42
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Yeah I know what you mean about the sound recording conditions but at the same time what my clients hire me for first and foremost is the video aspect. ....
Guess I'm dating myself then firmly as a geezer then <grin> - I'm old fashioned enough the think a band is hired primarily based oin their musical ability and not so much on their appearance. Were I a band leader or their manager, I'd first and foremost want a demo video to showcase the music and have the look and field of broadcast concert footage. Shows what I know about the contemporary music scene ROFL.
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Old May 16th, 2006, 12:42 PM   #43
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Originally Posted by Steve House
Guess I'm dating myself then firmly as a geezer then <grin> - I'm old fashioned enough the think a band is hired primarily based oin their musical ability and not so much on their appearance. Were I a band leader or their manager, I'd first and foremost want a demo video to showcase the music and have the look and field of broadcast concert footage. Shows what I know about the contemporary music scene ROFL.
Well maybe we're just dealing with different types of clients. I'm sure there are some out there that will want a video made with the music coming first and footage 2nd, but I haven't had a chance to work with those. Even worse, maybe my almost exclusive video background and limited audio knowledge has kept me from getting hired by those that will value the sound first and foremost. It's just that speaking from what I've seen so far, clients that priorize sound make a studio demo. The ones that are already somewhat established make a music video to go along, and the ones still trying to make a name for themselves shoot a live video to show first their presence on stage, crowd interaction, dynamic, etc. and then how good their sound is. It's kind of silly when you think of it but that's the way it's been so far for me. And I still feel like I'm keeping the doors open for those clients that both have monetary means and a real concern for audio by offering an extra sound package.

BTW, still looking for those mics, I've been told that small diaphragm mics have a hard time getting a rich sound up to the very low frequencies but keep a very clean sound in the higher notes (which based on experience I would say seems true), while large diaphragms (with which I have no experience) are much better at getting a rich full sounding sound in the lower frequencies but from a distance can make the sound muddy and not so bright. So based on that, I was wondering then, shouldn't a mid-side audio setup with a large diaphragm figure 8 mic and a small diaphragm cardoid give me a richer, fuller sound when decoded back to stereo? If that was the case, I think I'd narrow down my potential selections to either a couple C4 and a C3, or a couple NT5 and an NT2. Or would an ORTF setup maybe with 2 medium 3/4" diaphragms like the XML's be a good compromise for getting rich sound in both ends of the spectrum? I must say I always had trouble getting rich basses with small diaphragms so I was wondering if that might be a good workaround.
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Old May 16th, 2006, 04:19 PM   #44
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I've heard of using a pair of selectable pattern large diaphram mics like the Rode NT2-A or large diaphram mics from AT, AKG, Neuman etc like that - in a vertical line with the the capsule ends almost touching each other and both set to cardioid for X-Y or one set to cardioid and the other to figure-8 for M/S. Would be insteresting to hear an A/B comparison of large diaphram and small diaphrams used on the same piece. I tend to think of large diaphrams as basically vocal mics and small diaphrams as instrument mics. Mic's aren't like speakers and their diameter doesn't influence the frequency response the same way a speaker's does. Small diaphrams have a smaller mass to accelerate and so can follow sharp transients and attacks like drum hits or piano better.
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Old May 16th, 2006, 04:47 PM   #45
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Would be insteresting to hear an A/B comparison of large diaphram and small diaphrams used on the same piece.
So would I.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve House
I tend to think of large diaphrams as basically vocal mics and small diaphrams as instrument mics. Mic's aren't like speakers and their diameter doesn't influence the frequency response the same way a speaker's does. Small diaphrams have a smaller mass to accelerate and so can follow sharp transients and attacks like drum hits or piano better.
So you think there is nothing to gain in the lower frequencies detail and depth by using a large diaphragm mic? Because that's pretty much the only thing that concerns me, getting good deep bass out of the mics I'll be buying for my stereo setup. I don't want thin sounding mics.

I would also be interested in knowing if using a LD mic as figure 8 and SD mic as the cardioid in an M/S config might be a good way of getting the "best" of both worlds while negating the worst or at the very least, if it's a viable solution when you want to do an M/S config and only have small diaph cardoids and a large diaph figure 8 mic (which in my case could also serve for voice-over purposes).
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