Thanks, Steve

I didn't realise the vulnerability of condenser mics until I had a terrible 
time in Jammu. Nearly all the recordings (male "singers" who shouted at the 
tops of their lungs) yielded vilely distorted recordings.

My good friend Nishi Nakra in Delhi -- to my way of thinking, the best 
loudspeaker designer in India, thought it was the "capsules bottoming." But 
when I discussed the problem with Klaus Heyne, the microphone maestro, he 
opined that it was the FETs that caused the problem. So I paid his not 
inconsiderable fee to have the mics (KM84s)  Klaused.

I use three basic setups in the field: Mid-Side, with a KM84 and a 
Sennheiser MKH30 configured in a Rycote windscreen, for street recording, 
and also small combos indoors; a pair of crossed KM84s to record Tibetan 
rituals, with the mics set up at the shrine end of the temple; and a spaced 
pair of RE50s--I've made amazing good recordings with the latter, in fact, 
they're the only mics I use in Bali, where I also insist on recording 
outdoors. The current crop of DAWs (I use Samplitude) make it a snap to turn 
Mid-Side originals into regular stereo.

Salutations, David L

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Steven Smolian" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: April 18, 2006 4:44 PM
Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] portable sound recording devices

> If this is the David Lewiston who made the Explorer Series for Nonesuch, 
> etc., he has more experience than all of us combined in recording folk 
> instruments and groups under all kinds of circumstances.  I've admired his 
> skillful work from the git-go.
> Steve Smolian
> ----- Original Message ----- 
> From: "Richard L. Hess" <[log in to unmask]>
> To: <[log in to unmask]>
> Sent: Tuesday, April 18, 2006 10:07 PM
> Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] portable sound recording devices
>> At 09:34 PM 4/18/2006, David Lewiston wrote:
>>>When recording such a loud instrument, the mic should not be too close to 
>>>it. For pipes & shawms I prefer not to place the mics closer than 20 
>>>feet. Because such loud instruments are intended to be heard out of 
>>>doors, that's where I record them.
>>>If a condenser mic mic is too close to such a loud instrument, it may 
>>>well overload  diaphragm and/or the FET. I've run into this sort of 
>>>For such an application I would leave the Neumann condensers in the 
>>>carrying bag, choosing instead a dynamic omni such as the EV RE 50, which 
>>>is very well behaved.
>> I don't disagree with the advice but the mic preamp may be what is 
>> overloaded, not the mic itself.
>> Do bagpipes really get up to 120 dB SPL where you would mic them? The 
>> Audio Technica AT-822 that I suggested as a good buy will generate 1% THD 
>> at 1 kHz at 125 dB SPL.
>> At that point, the mic will be putting out over half a volt AC.
>> If indeed the bagpipe is putting out in excess of 120 dB SPL, then the 
>> musician needs to seriously worry about hearing protection.
>> Cheers,
>> Richard
>> Tape Restoration Seminar:    MAY 9-12, 2006; details at Web site.
>> Richard L. Hess                   email: [log in to unmask]
>> Aurora, Ontario, Canada       (905) 713 6733     1-877-TAPE-FIX
>> Detailed contact information:
>> -- 
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