Lav mics for live-concert recording? at
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Old January 29th, 2007, 10:24 AM   #1
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Lav mics for live-concert recording?

I've heard that many people are using those Giant Squib lav mics for live recording. Do lav mics actually perform well for that sort of loud environment?

I have an ECM-77B on order and I'm just curious how well it would work for live-concert recording. Decent?

I'm using a Rode NT3 right now to record to one channel and I'm very impressed. But I wouldn't mind have another mic recording to the other channel since it's not being used. Or maybe I should just get a Y-adapter and record the NT3 to both channels.

What do you guys think?
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Old January 29th, 2007, 11:03 AM   #2
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Well, it definately depends on what you are wanting to record? Are you wanting a lot of crowd? Or a lot of music? A lot of a particular instrument or singer? or a good mix of it all?

If you are just wanting crowd, I would use 2 lavs hanging over the corwd in a n X/Y configuaration to get a great stereo effect.

You could get a Shure beta57a and put in front of a main speaker to get the overall band sound.

If you have access, pull a feed off of the sound board and see if they will let you plug in two lavs for stereo crowd. run two XLRs to your camera and you are set. That way you have band and crowd.
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Old January 29th, 2007, 12:10 PM   #3
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I find at the shows I go to the music is so loud that it drowns out the crowd anyway. I guess if I could minimize the chatter recorded from the audience it would be better, but it's not really an issue for the type of loud venues bands usually play at.

I don't want to isolate certain musicians/instruments, I just want a mix of it all really. Basically, I'd like to get the kind of great quality recording from my NT3 gives but with a different sonic quality that would mix well together in post.
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Old January 29th, 2007, 06:03 PM   #4
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There's very little similarity between recording a live concert performance and recording an individual sound with an isolated microphone.

As you've learned you can get a pretty nice sounding recording of an isolated sound (individual insturment or soloist) with a single mic.

Moving to a live venue where you have - among other things...

A spacial relationship between various insturments.

A sound reinforcement mix done for the crowd, NOT for the recording.

Possible "noise" sources mixed in with whatever you're recording including stuff like from overhead airplanes, hollering fans, and/or the cel phone conversation of the drunk girl next to your microphone...'

A "hall" profile that can range from dead to airplane hanger echo-like and that changes depending on where you set up in the soundfield.

And on, and on, and on...

Let's just say that "live" recording is hugely different than recording something with a mic in a studio or at home.

If there was one microphone, or even one microphone type that did this well, EVERYONE would use it.

There isn't. Because sound recording is WAY too complex. That's why there are literally THOUSANDS of microphones manufactured. All slightly different in their utility, acoustic profile, and suitability for particular recording tasks.

By all means, experiment with your '77. You won't hurt it because it can easily handle really high sound pressure levels. But it's just a single mic. Record the show in one place, and then move 10 feet in another direction and things are going to sound different, because the sound hitting that spot WILL be different. Different reflections, different delays, different crowd profile, different, different, different.

And remember, sound is like paint. You whatever mix of sounds you capture on one mic - in one place - at one time, is a mixture of everything arriving at the mic at that moment, WITHOUT the spacial clues your ears provide working in concert with your brain. So when you get back to listen to your recording, it's gonna sound MASSIVELY different than it did to your ears, no matter HOW you recorded it.

This is the nature of live sound.

You've started learning about it. Keep going. There's a lot to learn, but it's a wonderful journey.

Good luck.
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Old January 30th, 2007, 05:49 AM   #5
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the dpa 4061 could handle quoit allot of db spl and bring you very transparent sound ,
the 77 , not exactly my cup of tea for anything then the hard news for deaf people :-)
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Old January 30th, 2007, 05:28 PM   #6
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Hey, i dont know if this violates some rule or not, but if you are interested in live music recording and squids and such, you might be better served with a visit to

Basically its a whole website dedicated to people talking about the gear and techniques of recording live concerts, covertly and not.

If you already know about it, my apologies. I find it to be an interesting site, more about open dialog and exploration about audio than most audio-for-video discussions. (which usually are 98% people wanting to hear that a $100 mic will save the world and 1% pros waiting for the opportunity to say something smug. hehe.)
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Old January 31st, 2007, 08:38 AM   #7
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I wasn't aware of that site, so thank you!

You raise a good point, and I will see what the experts there have to say also.
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