Omnidirectional Microphones?

Omnidirectional Microphones?

Does anyone here have any knowledge / experience of working with Omnidirectional Microphones?

At one of our weekly sessions, we usually have large, often quite noisy, crowds of students through the Autumn, Winter & Spring & of Tourists, Golfers & Bikers during the Summer months. As folks in the middle & at the back of the room usually can’t hear us, the owner has decided to Mic the Session, but naturally we are dead set against individual Mics. However, I reckon the answer may be to suspend an Omnidirectional Microphone from the ceiling, as this should, in the darkened Pub, be quite unobtrusive.

Has anyone here gone down this road & if so, can you recommend a good Mic that’d do the job?

Cheers,
Dick

Re: Omnidirectional Microphones?

An omni is a good call. I would go one further and recommend a boundry mic. It could attach to the ceiling and would be the least intrusive way of going. You might even forget that it’s there at all.

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I’m not a big fan of boundary mikes, they are difficult to set up to get decent quality, and I think if you mount one on the ceiling it will pick up a lot of background noise (and if you put it on the table you’ll be deafened every time someone puts their pint down).

Hanging an overhead mike is probably best. If the ceiling is high enough you would be better with an ordinary cardioid (SM57 or whatever) rather than an omni - it will pick up less room noise. Cardioids have a more or less even response within a cone of about +-45 degrees about the axis, so if you can get it high enough that all the musicians are within that cone, you’ll get all the music with the minimum of room noise and reflections.

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There are more expensive ones out there. The above mic can usually be found for a decent price, but a decent shop will usually let you give it a try. Another set up for side-addressed bi mics is to situate them between the group of musicians, as in a semi circle, and I have a friend who has used that kind of setup for recording as well as live for a dance…

I may be getting my model numbers confused. The ‘type’ I had in mind, put between the semi-circle, is known as ‘figure-of-8’, which is one of the options on some multi-pattern mics. The problem with multi-pattern is accidentally selecting the wrong pattern for the job, but they are great Swiss Army knife mics, if tending to be pricey…

Yes, the AT2020 was a pair. I’ll chase up some old friends and see what’s happening in the ‘modern’ world. ;-)

( I hope you caught those Persian hammered dulcimer players in a thread I started this last week, in part with you in mind… ;-) )

Don’t laugh, this might also help you get your mind around the problem, from another company that produces well traveled old war horses, and continues to make new advances too, Shure, which makes the mics I first ever used and grew to appreciate, dynamics, though I’m almost solely sold on condensers now ;-) ~

http://www.shurenotes.com/
http://www.shurenotes.com/how1/how1_choirmic.html

Knowledge will free you up to make an informed decision on your own… One of my favourite makes, which I can only dream about at the moment, are Neumanns, sigh! I also think well of AKGs, Sennheisers, and I’ve used others too with respect ~ Blues for example… What’s your budget?

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Interesting Dick. Our session can be a bit noisy too at times, but in our case if it’s excessive the bar staff will approach the people in question and ask them to quieten down. That seems like the right way for a publican to behave.

Can you hear yourselves playing? Do you think your session will improve as a result of being miked?

Posted .

Unidirectional Microphones!!!

Here’s one of the Shure mics recommended for similar situations, with a nice option of a cut-off filter:

Shure’s SM81
Polar Pattern: Cardioid (unidirectional)
http://www.shure.com/americas/products/microphones/sm/sm81-instrument-microphone

& more on the related issue ~

http://www.prosoundweb.com/

http://www.prosoundweb.com/article/winning_microphone_strategies_to_utilize_with_church_choirs/

http://www.prosoundweb.com/article/print/choir_microphone_techniques_optimizing_in_challenging_situations

Just in case you’ve a pipe organ in your band… It wouldn’t surprise me… ;-)

Why Condenser and why Unidirectional Microphones?

More on that subject, and from Audio Technica ~

http://www.audio-technica.com/cms/site/62073812c42084c8/index.html

Now, back to life!

Best of luck from a friend in the digital miasma, and let us know what happens. An email from you would not go amiss… ;-) I do miss the North, it’s lovely countryside and its people…

Unidirectional Microphones! ~ and achieving a fair balance

Have just been chatting over an espresso. Be sure to also consider instrument placement when you get things set up, which some might not take kindly too, though the reasonable won’t have a problem. You’ll need to makes sure your loudest instruments, such as hammered dulcimers and pianos or piano accordions, are furthest from the mics, with your quieter ones like mandolins and concertinas occupying the front of mic(s) positions. It’s about getting a decent balance.

Back to the chat and brew… ;-)

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Listen to Marvis. A mike dangling over your heads will change the whole dynamic of your session. You might end up performing for the mike. Y’know, sort of leaning up to it a bit or pointing your axe more upwards that you normally do. Playing a bit louder so as to get yourself picked up better. Crouching over your mando in the tunes you’re not so good at. Certainly, some people will feel vaguely self-conscious about the whole thing. And, unless you have a mike miracle-worker, your sound balance will change. It just won’t be natural. And watch the swearing and slagging off or the iffy comments about the missus at home. Forget the performance for people to hear. Just enjoy what you do and let the pub fret about who can hear and who can’t.

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I think skreech’s suggestion is about the best solution, if you really need sound reinforcement. I’ve done it before and it worked well enough. Be careful with speaker placement, though. I would not use an omni or any condenser mic. You would end up amplifying room noise almost as much as the music. SM-57 or 58 would be a good bet.

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I’d go for a spread pair of Omni’s. Most come with a pad in the 10 to 20db range and a bass roll off to tackle noisy students and thumping feet. No need to pick up the rustle of fag papers at the other end off the bar. A little thought about placement and it should work a treat, you could even broadcast the session live across the web ;~)

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My session setup might be interesting to add here. 2 of the 4 owners of my pub are musicians who play the Irish rock/top40 thing. So the have a small wooden floor riser as a stage that doubles as a place for a couple of dining tables. So I parked the session there because of that and the nice bay window by the street. On the wall they added a 1/4" feed to the house sound system. The house sound system consists of carefully placed small but powerful Cambridge Soundworks speakers for general background music throughout. After my first couple of sessions there I noted we weren’t loud enough at all due to the long rectangular shape of the place. We weren’t getting more than 1/4 of the way down the room. So I introduced a condenser mic and a little driver box with phantom power. I place the mic on the table with a short mic stand that stands about 10 inches high. Easy to break down when you leave.The pattern is cardioid. It picks up most people but mostly the session leaders end of the table. I can point it around a bit if someone is going to do a party piece which is rare. The sound is gently reinforced throughout the place with great results. Anywhere you go in the room it sounds like a natural acoustic session. The idea is not to mic everyone perfectly balanced (that doesn’t happen naturally anyways depending on where you sit) but to give a lift and distribute the sound throught. Very unobtrusive.

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Why a *pair* of omnis Solidmahog?

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The problem with omni mics is that they pick up everything, including crowd noise and any unpleasant echoes in the room. I would go for an sm57.

If you do buy a condenser mic though, I second ceolachan’s recommendation of Rode mics. They are really good quality. Plus, when my Rode mic was 18 months old and I accidentally smacked my mic with a guitar, broke it, tried to repair it and made it even worse, I sent it to Rode, confessed all, and they repaired it straight away, sent it back to me good as new, and didn’t charge me a penny.

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Ceolachan, I don’t know much about you, but from the posts of yours I read here in the mustard, I repeatedly get the feeling you must have both the extremely helpful nature & the ridiculous amount of time on your hands it would take to solve all the world’s problems….

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BTW, my mic is a CAD and has a large diagram. It goes for about $200. I didn’t want to go any higher than that since it gets a lot of action and could be dropped occasionally by the Guinness laden roadie (me) at the end of the night. Very happy with its performance. Omni directional could give me feedback so I went with the cardiod. Some times when I’m down the other end of the room it osunds like CD quality.

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Lots of interesting ideas & suggestions folks … thanks!

Funny saltcast, that sounds exactly like our place. Slightly raised stage area, large rectangular room, music only carrying a 1/4 of the way down the room, on busy nights.

To be honest, I’m not so keen on the idea of a Mic on the table in front of us. I’d far rather have it suspended from the ceiling above us, so that we can forget about it.

Which Cad Cardioid Condenser Microphone are you recommending … is it the Gxl2200, which I see are around £50 here?

If so, that’s a little cheaper than the Audio Technica’s AT2020 that Ceolachan was suggesting, which are more like £90 here.

Cheers,
Dick

Unidirectional Microphones!!!

And don’t fear condensers, they are more robust than some folks give them credit for. I’d take a condenser over a dynamic every time.

mulcreevy ~ I use all ten fingers to type. :-D If only that were enough to solve the world’s ills. But where audio and music is concerned there is passion, if not always well directed.

Ptarm ~The AT2020 was the choice of a friend, and is a lovely mic. I quit like Rode’s M3, but haven’t tried it as an overhead. It has been awhile since I did sound tech stuff, but it is probably akin to riding a bicycle. ;-) I have written a few friends seeking their expert opinions and recommendations.

Re: Omnidirectional Microphones?

CADs are decent mics. Don’t scrimp, it really does make a difference, in quality and robustness. Expect to spend more than £50, more like £75 to £120 for a good investmen, but much more could easily be spent… We had a pair of Neumanns that were amongst our favourites…

Think of a microphone with the same respect you would a musical instrument or a decent bow. Do you really want to play on one of those 15 quid Chinese sets - fiddle, bow, rosin and case for £15? YUCK! :-P Don’t scrimp on a decent bow, don’t scrimp on a decent mic either… The cheap ones really are that awful and problematic…

Stay away from the boundary/PZM mics, though we did use one for acoustic pianos with good effect, but never as a group mic.

More on mics ~ Rode’s M3:

http://www.soundonsound.com/sos/nov07/articles/rodem3.htm

And, aside from some already mentioned, such as Neumanns in general and our matched pair of KM 184s, and Blue’s, other favourites include ~

Audio-Technica’s ATM 350

And one I’ve been in love with for sometimes, which was one of my most prized ‘musical instruments’, and which I gave up to a good cause on Cape Breton Island, recording music there for Paul Cranford & Co. ~

AKG’s C 535 EB

Condensers ALL!!! ;-)

Another point ~

Saltcast’s is a large capsule mic, as is the AT2020, while the Rode M3 and the Neumann 184, for example, are small capsule. Most overheads tend to be the latter, and can be quite small and unobtrusive, as you will have found out if you followed the links given previously…

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We’ve used an AKG C 1000 S (cardioid condenser with a hypercardioid adapter) as an overhead for gigs and ceilis. I like how natural the sound is (through a Fishman Solo tower amp), and it’s easy enough to forget the mic is there. But my only experience of this is with a small, tight circle of musicians—4 or 5 of us nearly knee to knee. I doubt it would do well for a wider circle. (It makes a great solo mic, and a good value.)

Posted .

Re: Omnidirectional Microphones?

I love a good Neumann as much as anyone, but let’s not lose sight of the mission here. :)

I would absolutely avoid using a condenser (one I had paid for anyway) unless you are positive the punter running the sound knows what he is doing. One false move with the phantom power and your mic is toast. Simply not worth it in this senario.

I still say screw a boundry mic to the ceiling, run the cord along the wall and be done with it. You’ll never even know it’s there. We’re talking about a session in a pub, and not recording a live album in a theatre, right?

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Good point. We run our own sound when we use the AKG. All buttons, knobs, and switches are beyond reach of interlopers.

Posted .

Re: Omnidirectional Microphones?

Two Mustard punters, three opinions…

"One false move with the phantom power and your mic is toast."

Not really an issue if the mike is supposed to be phantom powered.

I would agree that a condenser would be better than a dynamic, and the C1000s would probably do the job.

Audio-Technica do have some good mikes too, but a Neumann is overkill.

A lot also depends on how the speakers are going to be arranged.


So that’s opinion number 30, and still counting.

Re: Omnidirectional Microphones?

"Not really an issue if the mike is supposed to be phantom powered."

Thanks for proving my point. Congrats, you just toasted the mic. :)

Unidirectional Microphones! ~ BUT ~ Beware the counterfeits

"unless you are positive the punter running the sound knows what he is doing." - Newborn elf

Agreed! I was assuming you’d be in control Ptarm, or someone with sense, and the gear would be ‘safe’, beyond the reach of meddlers, or as Will puts it - ‘interlopers’, or the inebriated…

Boundary mics ~ absolutely no agreement on this, at least not for a live situation, and if there’s a room upstairs ~ HELL!!! You are virtually turning the whole ceiling into a mic, and cheap boundaries are teh way most folk go, so you’ve an issue about quality too. This is ‘live’ sound…

AKG C 1000 S ~ as recommended by Will ~ a nice ‘Swiss Army’ mic, with lots of reviews you can chase up online, though we opted for the Rode M3 over the AKG C 1000 S. It’s a toss up.

And yes, we realize a Neumann would be overkill, but we’ve used them and in similar situations. The size of the mic and the capsule were the illustration. Cost is always an issue. There are mics comparable, and the ones actually recommended were in the range of reason. If you’d actually read carefully you’d see the price range recommended would not include Neumanns, unless you lucked out and found a used one.

As mentioned further, chase up those links, be informed so you can make an informed and reasonably objective decision.

Also important to know ~ there are a lot of very believable counterfeit mics out there ~ AKGs, Shures, Rodes, Neumanns, etc… Be careful. The Chinese are damned good at copying things. Buy from a reputable source, and they will likely let you ‘try before you buy’…

Don’t believe the fear about condensers. I wouldn’t have suggested anything without respect that you’d manage things well, as you seem to in general…

Best of luck ~ ‘c’

Phantom power is now generally an ‘as need’ feature, automatic, on most decent boards… If the mic needs it it draws it, if it doesn’t it doesn’t. A condenser just won’t work without it, so where’s the fear? It is useful to have a surge protector in the line any case, for the board and the rest of the kit.

Knowledge has the ability to dissolve fear… If you’ve some decent sound jockies in your local music shops just ask, and quite a lot of the large online shops, like GAK, will put you in touch with someone you can talk to direct, or chat with via email. Knowing you, there’s no shortage of moxie to chase up such contacts.

This sort of thing is always a kick, fun. Enjoy he acquisition, of knowledge and new kit. It’s not a difficult thing and done right it will soon be taken for granted and if you’re careful in your choices the outcome will be a decent sound throughout the venue, though the speakers are also a very important part of that chain, and how they are directed / aimed too… It’s all a balancing act, one I’ve no doubt you’re capable of juggling… ;-)

& while I’m always first to go to the locals, check also the European sources like Thomann, etc., and go to your local with the best price you can find. Most will meet or better it, at least that has been my experience, and you end up keeping your money circulating locally. That’s if they are willing to deal, and I’ve rarely found that not to be the case. But, we have both Manchester and Liverpool within our scope, so lots of competition and choice.

Thomann

http://www.thomann.de/gb/index.html

They have some nice features on their website, worth a look, and you can also chat with them too, and they’ve a business full of folk with the knowledge, having held discussions with them myself, and gotten really good responses, ones I could trust.

& good deals and good service too…

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"Thanks for proving my point. Congrats, you just toasted the mic."

Wrong. If the mike is supposed to be phantom powered (which a back electret like the C1000S is - though you can use a battery on that model), you cannae toast it. How would you manage that? It’s either auto, as Ceol says, or you can switch it on or off - globally or individually. So how do you fry a mike that’s supposed to receive that power (assuming you have the correct lead - which you woul have made sure was obtained with the mike)?

The only point that has been proved is that you know little about phantom power.

OUCH! ~ but does express what I was thinking and feeling… :-D

& I had a good laugh about that idea of screwing a boundary/pzm to the ceiling… :-D

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Well, at least I’m keeping you entertained! :)

Seriously, is that just an old wives tale about phantom power and condenser mics then? I’m certainly not the only one that believes that, I’ve been in at least a dozen studios where they take that very seriously.

If I’m wrong I’m wrong, and happy to be corrected. God know there are already enough idiots spouting ignorance on the ‘net…

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The main thing you have to watch with phantom powered equipment is that you don’t plug el cheapo unbalanced gizmos with el cheapo leads into the balanced inputs. As far as plugging decent condenser mikes with correct balanced leads into equipment designed to accommodate them is concerned, there’s nowt to be worried about.
I can see that some studio engineers might be worried about kids coming in with double whammy zoomkaboom boxes and wanting to plug them into professional gear.

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NE, as weejie says, phantom power won’t damage a condenser mike, powering condenser mikes is exactly what PP was designed for.

Any balanced mike or source (i.e. with an XLR or TRS connector) either needs PP, or won’t care whether it is there or not.

The problem comes with un-balanced mikes and sources (with a mono jack plug) - if you’ve been told not to plug your mike into a powered socket, it might be that your condenser mike is actually a cheap unbalanced electret, which shouldn’t go into a balanced mike input anyway (unless you like listening to mains hum) it should go into the line input of the desk, or to a mike input via a DI box.

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"idiots spouting ignorance on the ‘net" ~ then we’re in a growing club… :-D There’s not a person in the world who doesn’t carry a myth or two around with them… That’s why it is always good to get ‘other opinions’, and gain enough information yourself to make an informed decision…

What Weej & skree said! :-D

It really does pay to pay a little bit more, without breaking the bank, for you audio kit. Buy wisely, and don’t go screwing PZMs into ceilings…

P.S. Most of the pubs over here, on these isles, are multi-floored, have an upstairs, but I can also easily imagine the ventilation system and electrical wiring and other things adding interest to the mix of reception of an omni PZM in the ceiling… Actually, I am sorely tempted to experiment, except I value highly the kit I have. And yes, I still have a PZM on hand, though I haven’t used it for quite some time…

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I always prefer the sound of a decent condenser mic over any dynamic, but in a small venue a dynamic is less likely to feed back or pick up room noise. If a condenser works for you, that’s great, but as a generic recommendation for an overhead pub mic, I’d still go with the SM-57/58.

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My table mic is CAD Equitek E60. Looks classic and is very cool. The overhead thing to me looks more technical and distracting and would be a hassle removing each week. And with condenser mics you do not need to be closer than 1/2 meter or so. Sometimes if I sing a song I move in to about 1/4 meter.

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Also my little driver box with phantom just sits on the windowsill. IT is a Behringer Tube Ultragain MIC200 Microphone Preamp. Cheap but dependable. I think the tube warms up the mic a bit but not sure. It sounds good and I don’t have to worry about theft or damage. I bought a used one recently for $40 at a music store as a backup.

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Ceolachan, good point about multiple stories, honestly it never even crossed my mind. But honestly I have had good results with PZMs. I’ve recorded dozens of gigs of with them, they tuck out of the way and catch everything. I did sound for a play production with a couple and thought it worked out well. Even knew this one guy who had a couple mounted on plexiglas panels who would record straight to an old Studer reel to reel and his recordings sounded like you were there in the room. Anyway, there’s no end of options or opinions on the subject is there?

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The SM-57/5 doubles as a weapon in a pinch.

Many of the modern condensers don’t have quite the problem with feedback they had in the distant past…

Shure SM57 or 58 ~ they do take a lot of abuse and keep on working…

CAD Equitek E60

Reading up on the specs for your mic saltcast, it looks a gem…

It’s not easy to find over here, but seems to be available from somewhere between £120.00 to £150.00, if it can be found… It is much cheaper in North America.

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"…the distant past…"

Yeah, that’s where I come from.

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I paid a little under $200 a couple of years ago. I drag it out every wed night. Plunk it on the table and everyone is about a meter away or more in a semi circle. Gives you a nice sample of an acoustic session. Also has a filter setting switch on it. I go with the low roll-off for all the foot stomping players do. I’m sure there are other decent mics. This one was suggested to me by a real sound tech that I respect in Watertown, Ma. I had a cheapo Behringer condenser before worth about $100 but it broke down.

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I dropped into the bar this afternoon, to check out a few details.

The desk is a Peavey PV14.
There are two Peavey Speakers in the bar.

As you might see in the attached photos, they are on the left wall as you look at the photo, about half way down the bar, appx 6 mtrs from us, while the other is just above & to the left of the back door, appx 10 metres from us.

Speaker 1: http://i89.photobucket.com/albums/k210/Ptarmi/Causeway%20Sessions/SAM_1443.jpg

Speaker 2: http://i89.photobucket.com/albums/k210/Ptarmi/Causeway%20Sessions/SAM_1444.jpg

The bar is about 6 Metres wide.

The Stage / Session area is appx. 4 metres wide & 1& 1/2 metres deep.
The Ceiling is appx 8 feet from our feet.
N.B. Of course we sit to play.

Session area: http://i89.photobucket.com/albums/k210/Ptarmi/Causeway%20Sessions/SAM_1442.jpg

I hope this info. might help those giving advice here.

Cheers & thanks so far to one & all. :-D
Dick

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I would stay away from omni’s for session use. You pick up all the garbage background noice, guy farting in the third row and the drunk telling dirty jokes to his bored wife.

The advice for close field mikes like and SM57 and SM 58 is good.

If you need a broader field mike for a groupd of musicians, I would go with a good hypercaroid. Good place to start is the AudioTechnica AT37. Not terribly expensive. Couple hundred dollars.

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Its RIBBON mics you have to watch with phantom power. Dynamics are not affected, condensers need phantom to work. AT 2020 is a decent budget mic, got one myself.

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I assume the session area is just the seating area in the photo, it doesn’t extend to where the photographer is standing? If that is the case, then a cardioid hung just below the ceiling will give pretty much ideal coverage.

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Yes screech, just enough space for 6 stools / musicians.

Incidentally, the regular instruments, from L to R are, as you look at that photo: Bodhran, Harp/Concertina, Fiddle, Fiddle/Concertina, Harp/Fife, with, as you might expect, the Fiddles usually leading.

I’m wondering if one Mic, hung above the middle of us is the answer, or if I should encourage them to go for two?

Cheers,
Dick

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There’s a mike hanging from the ceiling in the pub where I play every week. I cant recall right now what type it is, but it is tiny and black in colour. In a low light situation you cant even see it. People play every week and don’t even know it’s there! If you go to the back of the bar, there are speakers dotted around the place do the music carries to all areas ( its a small bar). At no time is the music coming from the speakers louder than the actual session, so the tunes are just carried, not amplified.
The result is that the music is transmitted, some talking is picked up also, but in the normal buzz of a pub, you don’t notice this, unless you set yourself up at a speaker deliberately to listen to musicians conversations [in which case you have other issues which I have no point in going into here].
Ptarmi, I’ll make a point of checking out the mike tonight and revert to you.

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BTW there is also a speaker just outside the front door, so people entering can hear what’s happening inside. Actually sometimes loud applause rises from the rear of the premises which is a nice bonus!

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One mike should give pretty even coverage, two just adds complications. Hang the mike a few inches below the ceiling, (don’t mount it rigidly) somewhere close to the centre. You could test the setup by dangling it from that projector screen before you do anything permanent.

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The speaker placements might be more of a problem than the mike. Apart from the obvious feedback potential, the one at the far end of the bar which looks as though it is pointing straight at you - 10 metres away is enough to give a noticeable delay, and could cause you timing problems if it is too loud. If they are on swivel mounts get them turned away from yourselves

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Good point skreech. I’ll check that out & make sure they are swilled away from us.

Mind you, with the amount of noise we get, on some very busy nights, we’re not going to hear anything from them anyway! ;-)

Was already thinking that one mic would be the most sensible way to go.

Cheers,
Dick

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"Its RIBBON mics you have to watch with phantom power"

Old ribbon mikes, yes. Modern ones are designed with the knowledge that phantom may be present on the desk.

Anyway, if anyone suggests dangling a ribbon mike from the ceiling to reinforce the sound of a pub session, they deserve all they get.

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Dick,
I predict that no matter what you do, the punters will simply shout even louder to be heard over that **** traditional music which they pretended to come to listen to. There is a pub I know in Donegal which is miked and the noise levels are now almost intolerable. On the one occasion I visited "your" pub I noticed that those with a genuine interest in the music gravitated to within the listening area and the remainder didn’t care anyway. IMHO wasting money to install a mike.

Posted by .

Unidirectional Microphones ~ but definitely not ribbon mics :-D

Elf, PZMs are great for recording, but can be a pain when it comes to ‘live’ situations, are tricky to use.

Yes to skreech’s comments, good points… And go for one, your description isn’t a large group. You could consider a second at another time.

Looking forward to your report back Backer.

Ribbon mics in a pub, what a HOOT!

deeor makes a fair point, but the comments given by Backer are in part the key, to actually make it seem as if there’s no amplification at all, the music being background for chat, part of the seasoning but not necessarily the main course…

One has to resist the temptation to raise the volume and think of it just as deeor has described it, that you’d be raising the volume on everything. Subtlety is a virtue here, not to get carried away, and to pay that little bit extra to have as clean and natural a sound as you can.

We had a sound system we could have used to launch us into space, or to reduce the venue to rubble and dust ~ but we kept it low and as real and intimate as we could, whatever the venue. None of us in the group, or of the two of us here, are any more fond of volume than we are excessive and uncontrollable speed. We’ve been known to turn around and go elsewhere when presented with a venue or event, concert or dance, where the sound techs think that good music means LOUD. Recently at a dance headed up by well known English ceilidh folk, mics on their brass too, where they believed in VOLUME, we walked out and on the way gave our tickets away to a couple we met outside who were waiting to come in. We value our ears…

Your setup sounds ideal Ptarm, meaning the instrumentation and layout. I wish we were near, we’d be in for a drink, a chat, and to enjoy the music…

My guess is that Backer’s mic will turn out to be a small capsule condenser mic, something like what choirs use.

Re: Omnidirectional Microphones?

That’s exactly right ceolachan, a choir mike , barman didnt know the brand, but said it cost €280. More news tomorrow!

Re: Omnidirectional Microphones?

Deeor, the fact is, the bar owner has already decided that this new sound system is going in & in any case, it will be used by other acoustic musicians who play at this pub, not just us.

So, the way I see it, if it’s going to be fitted anyway, I might as well find out which Mic is going to suit our music best & help him choose the most effective one for the job.

Thanks C & Becker, I found this article on those Choir Mics:

http://www.shure.co.uk/support_download/educational_content/microphones-basics/choir

This PG81 Cardioid Condenser Instrument Microphone looks like it might just be the one for the job:

http://www.shure.co.uk/products/microphones/pg81

Thanks for all your help & effort.

I will, of course, keep you posted. ;-)

Cheers,
Dick

Re: Omnidirectional Microphones?

Nice one Becker. I love AKGs products and this is a sweet mic.

This is a good start Ptarm, go to the link just above, and then go to the right hand side and under ‘Related Pages’ click on the second one down ‘product comparison Hanging Microphones’ ~

Once there then choose click on ‘price range’ and from the drop down meny choose, for starters - ‘100 EUR to 140 EUR’ - then click on [ proceed ] ~ which will give you three to compare stats on. You don’t have to buy from Thomann, but this is a really nice feature of their website, and they will parlay with you if you’ve got a better price you want met.

Ptarm, sorry, but I’m not impressed with the stats for the Shure PG81.

It’s getting out of the range, at least for the ‘list’ price, but the Shure KSM137 is a much better mic for this, if you’re set on Shure mics.

http://www.shure.co.uk/products/microphones/sm137

I’m unfamiliar with Peavy’s mics, but I think they have them made ‘elsewhere’. I’m more prone to go with a company where microphones are their specialty. But to be fair I’ll chase up specs and at least can see how it reads.

I’m familiar with AKG kit and much prefer the HM 1000 over the Shure or the Peavey
http://www.akg.com/site/products/powerslave,id,320,pid,320,nodeid,2,_language,EN.html
WOW! YES! The STATS are great!!! I WANT ONE!!! :-)

Akg Hm 1000 ~ !!!

IT’S BRILLIANT!!! :-D

Duh!!! & DAMN! :-(

Uh oh! ~ I think it is outside the price range, as I was reading it ~ with capsule, and the HM1000 is just the hanging bit, it requires an additional capsule to make it the ideal mic I was reading about. And that means at least doubling the price given…

“sky bracket for D.A.M. capsules”

The capsules add a significant additional cost, and though ‘sweet’, and I love them, and I’ve used them but not with this setup, it makes it TOO much to recommend… Sorry Ptarm. I’m looking now for something in the range, and checking on the Peavy, as well as asking a friend or two for their more informed opinions… I’ll be back… ~ ‘c’

AKG’s AKG HM1000 + D.A.M. capsule ~ there is still hope

Discreet Acoustics Modular Series ~ the introduction:
http://www.akg.com/mediendatenbank2/psfile/datei/76/discreet_a4055c11160e1f.pdf

Products list:
http://www.akg.com/site//powerslave,id,2,nodeid,2,pcategory,18,_language,EN,country,EN.html

Screw-on Capsule Modules:

* AKG CK31
http://www.thomann.de/gb/akg_ck31_dam.htm
http://www.akg.com/site/products/powerslave,id,304,pid,304,nodeid,2,_language,EN.html

AKG CK32
http://www.thomann.de/gb/akg_ck32_dam_mikrofonkapsel.htm
http://www.akg.com/site/products/powerslave,id,305,pid,305,nodeid,2,_language,EN.html

* AKG CK33
http://www.thomann.de/gb/akg_ck33_dam.htm
http://www.akg.com/site/products/powerslave,id,305,pid,305,nodeid,2,_language,EN.html

Becker - do you know which capsule? I’m guessing the CK31…

AKG CK31 cardioid capsule - best price on a quick search

http://www.dv247.com/microphones/akg-ck-31-cardioid-capsule—33886
£42.06 (inc vat) / 51.78 (euros)

You can also chat with these folks, who can recommend other possible options, but this is the best read I’ve had for something kind of within the range, though the capsule cost raises it a bit. It’s good kit. I suspect the Sennheiser options would be more expensive…

You’ll see following their link that Thomann’s price is comparable…

Re: Omnidirectional Microphones?

"If you need a broader field mike for a groupd of musicians, I would go with a good hypercaroid."

Zippy, doesn’t hypercardioid mean a tighter field?

AKG HM1000 + AKG CK31 ~ from DV247

£161.35 (inc vat) / 198.63 (euros)

I’m willing to bet you could probably get it for at least £150?

Yes Bob, with other curiosities…

Unidirectional Overhead Microphones

No luck with Sennheiser, but here are two Audio-Technicas to consider ~

U853A
http://eu.audio-technica.com/en/products/product.asp?catID=2&subID=10&prodID=850

U853R
http://eu.audio-technica.com/en/products/product.asp?catID=2&subID=10&prodID=1359

DV247 carries the Peavey, so it might be an idea to find out what they think, and what customers have told them… They also carry the AKG and other overhead mics, including the ATs and Shures. At lesat the Frequency response given for the Peavey is fair, though no other data seems to be available. What about Audio Technica’s U853A or U853R? Worth being aware of, some choir specific mics cut off at around 15,000 - 16,000, within vocal range if not meeting all instrumental needs. I prefer a little better head on the highs, to 20kHz, for that sharp articulation that, for example the spike from the change of a bow’s direction. It’s important. Here’s all I could find on the Peavey ~

VCM 3 Choir Mic Specifications:

Frequency response: 50Hz-20kHz
Sensitivity: -45dB/Pa
Impedance: 250 ohms
Maximum SPL: 140dB

But nothing more…

That’s it for me Ptarm, and no doubt you’ll be glad of that. Best of luck. Let us know what you go for.

A friend in the digital quagmire ~ ‘c’

P.S. Have heard back from my friends, but no real difference. I guess I should have more trust in my own notions, at least sometimes. But I still believe in going for another opinion, or more if possible…

;-)

Oh yes, what I keep forgetting to say, when you place a mic near a flat solid surface you get reflection of the sound and consequently can get ‘phase/sound cancellation’. One effect can be a ‘distance’ added to the sound, which you don’t want. Suspending the mic in the air overhead, not near any reflective surface, like a tabletop, is the best option, or as is normal for stage work, using a stand or boom…

Unidirectional Microphones!

It only sunk in later that it was the pub making the purchase. I look forward to hearing back about results. I feel aprehensive if the pub has their hand on the controls though, rather than yourself. While I have faith in you, I fear the pub might shoot themselves in the foot.

I’ve a little experience with Sennheisers modular system, but not AKGs. I really enjoyed exploring that and really like what I’ve found out, so thanks, and for your patience with my exuberance… ;-)

Pleasant dreams…

Re: Omnidirectional Microphones?

Wow, just reading all that stuff has been enlightening. Ceolachan, apologies for not replying to your e-mail, by the time I saw it, the discussion had moved on another few notches, and beyond my limited knowledge. Ptarmigan, I suppose the pastime we have chosen is one where compromise is the norm, and we have to deal with whatever is cast our way, so I hope the Peavey works well, and doesn’t cause too many earaches!

Re: Omnidirectional Microphones?

C - I believe the desk will sit on the floor below our table, so yes we will have control of the knobs.
Hopefully then, we can avoid the usual trap of the dreaded see-saw effect from louder talking means more volume, means louder talking, means more volume etc. etc. etc.! :-P

Aye Becker, I reckon we do have to go with the flow sometimes.
Anyway, I’m lucky in that I have two other quiet wee sessions each week, in small, cosy pubs, so the fact that this one is taking on more of a gig type format doesn’t actually worry me too much.

Thanks for all the help & good wishes guys.
Cheers,
Dick

Sound Reinforcement Pub Session Sound Reinforcement Pub Session

If you manage it well, as I suspect you will, the actual session group won’t, ideally, hear any of this amplification - unless they leave the group and, recommended, go check out the results in the other areas of the pub…

(I’m going to drop a few tags that hopefully the almighty bots of search engines will find…)

I will be really curious to hear how the Peavey performs, and how things go, with fingers crossed and wishing you all the best, and the punters and pub too…

Pub Session Sound Reinforcement Pub Session Sound Reinforcement

Amongst the options of the more pricier mics are roll off filters and the like. I was glad to find some kind of specs on this little mic and that it included the acceptable frequency response of 50Hz to 20kHz. However, cheaper mics tend to be a bit more receptive of feedback, so as others have already mentioned, don’t just aim those speakers away from your corner, make sure you aim them wisely. Remember ‘reflection’, and think of a ricocheting bullet, or how a fire hose on full blast would redirect that flow when it hits a solid surface. You don’t want to shoot the band with a stray ricocheting bullet of sound. The moan of the system in agony will be obvious. :-D

(Now to see if the search engine features here will pick up the headers…

Pub Session Sound Reinforcement

Sound Reinforcement Pub Session

Sound Reinforcement Pub Session

Pub Session Sound Reinforcement

Session Microphone - Session Microphone - Session Microphone

It doesn’t yet work for ‘Home’ but does for ‘Discussions’…

I keep forgetting to add a few related links, to follow…

Microphones ~ a small fragment of my wish list

Mind you, not currently in the business of doing sound reinforcement, at least not in a major way, as for others, I was recently considering a matched pair of pencil condenser mics. Despite one friends recommendations of the Sontronics, I wasn’t sold, but what I did fall in love with (you already know I like Neumanns) were the Peluso Microphone Lab’s CEMC-6. They remain on that wish list with only a few other things, as my wants are not huge or many, and outside of major life issues, the rest are mostly about music or music related. Here’s the info on these lovely little mics ~

Peluso Microphone Lab CEMC-6 Solid State Pencil Microphone ~ & Stereo Kit
Detachable-Capsule Pencil Condenser Microphone
http://www.pelusomicrophonelab.com/

Another modular one, AKG again, but more pricey, is their SE 300 B Blue-Line Condenser Mic Module, starting at around £130, and the cardioid capsule at a similar price, so at the least £260 for the complete single mic.

AKG SE 300 B Blue-Line Condenser Mic Module (No Capsule)
£128 - £149.00
http://www.akg.com/site/products/powerslave,id,231,pid,231,nodeid,2,_language,EN.html
Available AKG Blue Line capsules: CK 91, CK 92, CK 93, CK 94, CK 98.
+ cardioid capsule ~ CK 91 ~ £131 -
http://www.akg.com/site/products/powerslave,id,232,pid,232,nodeid,,_language,EN.html

Enough day dreaming, but those were two I seriously considered, before this thread added a third, the AKG discussed earlier. Yes, there are others on my wish list as far as microphones, including Neumann’s vocal mic, which I did get to use and fell in love with…

Looking forward to hearing how the Peavey works, and hoping for the best…