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  #1  
Old 08-07-2011, 09:05 PM
lhrocker lhrocker is offline
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Default Drum mic packages - yay or nay

I'd like to start recording drums for my demos. I currently have a SM-58, AKG-3700 and a AKG C-3000 plus some other low end karoake mics. I was thinking of getting one of the lower priced multi-mic packages such as audix, cad, etc...

I was looking to stay under $400 for the set, and was wondering if anyone has used them and are they any good? Or, would I be better off getting a few more used 57/58's?
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  #2  
Old 08-12-2011, 02:06 AM
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Default Re: Drum mic packages - yay or nay

I bought a 3-pack of Sennheiser e604s for my toms, using the standard Shure SM57 on my snare, a Sennheiser e602 on bass drum, and Shure PG81s for overheads.

Cool thing about the packs is they come with a nice case that perfectly fits your mics.

Con is you're stuck with what's in the pack. I like my mix of Shure and Sennheiser mics, they get a sound I like. If you like the Audix sound, go for it. If you like the SM57 sound, go for it.

I did have one of the CAD sets, it was ok, but I quickly outgrew it in terms of sound quality. The Audix are a bit higher quality, but I think you'll get the best by buying individual mics and piecing together your setup.

To me, mics and cymbals are very similar. My ears likes my cymbals and mics, your ear probably doesn't.
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  #3  
Old 08-12-2011, 05:37 PM
lhrocker lhrocker is offline
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Default Re: Drum mic packages - yay or nay

I picked up the Samson 7Kit package as it was on sale and I had 60 days to return it if I don't like it. I did a quick test and so far, I really like the overheads. I will do an in depth test over the weekend to see if it stays or goes.

Pete
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  #4  
Old 08-12-2011, 05:39 PM
Redfern Redfern is offline
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Default Re: Drum mic packages - yay or nay

Ide like to know how that 7 piece package works out too. If its any good, i may get it myself! Let us know :)
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  #5  
Old 08-12-2011, 05:47 PM
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Default Re: Drum mic packages - yay or nay

If you like really transparent mics with great off axis rejection, these are the ones for you. I use EV PL mic's extensively, & for the money, they're difficult to beat IMO. You can buy them much cheaper in the US than you can here. http://www.dv247.com/news/EV%20Drum%...0Series/132171
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  #6  
Old 08-18-2011, 07:50 PM
lhrocker lhrocker is offline
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Default Re: Drum mic packages - yay or nay

I returned the the mics today. After trying them out for a couple of days, I found the snare mic to be muddy and the kick was even worse. I did like the toms and the overheads, but to lose the 2 main parts of the kit, the mic kit was no longer worth it to me. I returned to Sam Ash and lucked out in getting a full refund. In speaking to the salesperson, they have a 15% restocking fee on all pro-audio.

Time to move forward.
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  #7  
Old 09-02-2011, 08:25 PM
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Default Re: Drum mic packages - yay or nay

Quote:
Originally Posted by lhrocker View Post
I returned the the mics today. After trying them out for a couple of days, I found the snare mic to be muddy and the kick was even worse. I did like the toms and the overheads, but to lose the 2 main parts of the kit, the mic kit was no longer worth it to me. I returned to Sam Ash and lucked out in getting a full refund. In speaking to the salesperson, they have a 15% restocking fee on all pro-audio.

Time to move forward.

Well, here is my setup after alot of trial and error...

I use Behringer XM8500, on Snares and Toms and even Kick Drums. (yes kick drums. Alot of albums have recorded kick drums with a SM57 or SM58 (Blood Sugar Sex Magik - Red Hot Chili Peppers for example)

I believe they are superior for micing drums than the SM57 / SM58 after a simple modification you can do yourself. They are bassicaly exact copy's BEFORE the mod.

They sound clearer and "Hi Fi" across the freq. spectrum and capture the lows GREAT. They can be EQ'd very easily and sound very full. They make toms sound HUGE!

Then, for overheads I use 2 Large Diaphragm Condensers... Modded MXL V63m (that only cost me about $140 each INCLUDING the modifications I had done on them And Shockmount). I put them against any $1000 mic out there (after the mods).

They capture the room great; they still get that very Clean cymbal shimmer, while still sounding warmer than Small Diaphragm Condensers.

If you have two GOOD overheads, you can get away with just a Mic on the Snare and Kick. I use this method ALOT, and couldn't be happier.

Countless Amazing recordings have been recorded this way...
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  #8  
Old 09-03-2011, 01:26 AM
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Default Re: Drum mic packages - yay or nay

I'm just wondering what type of modification can you do to a $150 condenser microphone to make it sound like a $1000 microphone? What does it do to the frequency response curve, signal to noise ratio, top signal pressure level or open microphone voltage? Who was your technician? I have a few condensers that might be sonically cleaned-up by your tech.

Dennis
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  #9  
Old 09-03-2011, 01:42 AM
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Default Re: Drum mic packages - yay or nay

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Originally Posted by audiotech View Post
I'm just wondering what type of modification can you do to a $150 condenser microphone to make it sound like a $1000 microphone? What does it do to the frequency response curve, signal to noise ratio, top signal pressure level or open microphone voltage?

It's actually a $68 mic...

http://www.svideo.com/mxlv63m.html?c...cts&kw=mxlv63m


But if you understand the anatomy of a mic, specifically a condenser mic, there is ALOT you can do to modify them that will drastically improve the sound.

With these mods, the mic functions at its optimum.


Quote:
Originally Posted by audiotech View Post
What does it do to the frequency response curve, signal to noise ratio, top signal pressure level or open microphone voltage?

That’s assuming that all of those attributes you stated are faulty to begin with. Have you ever tried a Stock V63m before? Its a fine mic to begin with, but is not a "Great" mic.

It actually already has a great capsule to begin with, doesn't really need to be changed. However, if you understand the circuitry of the mic, there is a few things that could definitely be improved.


I don’t know if you are familiar with Guitar Effect Pedals. However, the same principles apply. You see, a $29 Guitar Center Special distortion pedal that sounds like crap doesn't HAVE to sound like crap.

If you understand the schematic, and can see what changes need to be made done, With a few components change, few transistors here, couple high quality capacitors there, and Voila, you have a pedal that can keep up with a boutique $200 Box.

However, I do not do the Mic Modifications myself...yet. I have someone do it.

Peace
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  #10  
Old 09-03-2011, 01:49 AM
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Default Re: Drum mic packages - yay or nay

Cobamator, you're teaching Audiotech to suck eggs there. He knows this stuff.

What actual modifications have been done to your microphones?
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  #11  
Old 09-03-2011, 01:52 AM
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Default Re: Drum mic packages - yay or nay

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Originally Posted by audiotech View Post
What does it do to the frequency response curve, signal to noise ratio, top signal pressure level...

Not to nit pick, but is this how you just a good condenser (signal pressure level)?

A cheap MXL 990 ($60 mic) has a Sound Pressure Level of 137 dB.

The Holy Grail of mics, Neumann U87 ($3,200) has a Sound Pressure Level of only 127 dB and thats WITH the -10db switch engaged!
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Old 09-03-2011, 01:54 AM
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Default Re: Drum mic packages - yay or nay

No, it's not how you judge a mic - but a modification could be installing a permanent pad or changing the capsule to one that can handle a higher SPL.

You still haven't said what these modifications are.

the U87 isn't the Holy Grail either. There is no such thing. And good U87 clones are very common today; even NOS clones.
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  #13  
Old 09-03-2011, 01:59 AM
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Default Re: Drum mic packages - yay or nay

Quote:
Originally Posted by mediocrefunkybeat View Post
Cobamator, you're teaching Audiotech to suck eggs there. He knows this stuff.
Did I ever imply he didn’t? He asked me a simple question and I respectfully responded.

Alot of people like to change the capsules on these MXL mics. However, the V63m can be made better by simply changing out parts on the circuit board and the like. It is transformerless.

However, please don't take my word for it, please do a google search on these mods and see the feedback.


Quote:
Originally Posted by mediocrefunkybeat View Post
The U87 isn't the Holy Grail either. There is no such thing. And good U87 clones are very common today; even NOS clones.
I am simply using a Great, $3000+ mic as an EXAMPLE about SPL's...I'm not particularly concerned about the politically correct Title of Condenser mics.
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Old 09-03-2011, 02:24 AM
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Default Re: Drum mic packages - yay or nay

It's got nothing to do with 'Political Correctness'.

I simply asked you what these touted 'mods' were because you've had them done. You've been posting about your modifications all day but you haven't actually said what they are. That's quite an important bit of information missing for anybody that might be considering purchasing them and any upgrades you have had done to them.
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  #15  
Old 09-03-2011, 02:28 AM
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Default Re: Drum mic packages - yay or nay

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Originally Posted by audiotech View Post
What does it do to the frequency response curve?
This is the MOST important part of the mod.

I say, YES, the modded mic definitely sounds clearer, Smoother, and not as harsh in the hi-end, and it defiantly has a different structure in the mids and bass. And it just gets every nuance of the whole frequency spectrum. Smoothly. You are correct; it DOES change the Frequency response.

The difference IS night and Day.


Quote:
Originally Posted by audiotech View Post
signal to noise ratio?
The Higher S/N ratio the better, as you know. However, even a Cheap Stock MXL 440 ($70) for example, has the same S/N ratio (80db) as some of the Most Expensive mics out there.

Most of These Cheap MXL do not have to be tampered in this department, as their specs are up there with the big dogs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by audiotech View Post
top signal pressure level?
See my Other post.



Quote:
Originally Posted by audiotech View Post
open microphone voltage?
I am not familiar with "Open" microphone voltage. Sorry.
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  #16  
Old 09-03-2011, 02:29 AM
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Default Re: Drum mic packages - yay or nay

...and these modifications are?
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  #17  
Old 09-03-2011, 02:30 AM
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Default Re: Drum mic packages - yay or nay

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Originally Posted by mediocrefunkybeat View Post
It's got nothing to do with 'Political Correctness'.

I simply asked you what these touted 'mods' were because you've had them done. You've been posting about your modifications all day but you haven't actually said what they are. That's quite an important bit of information missing for anybody that might be considering purchasing them and any upgrades you have had done to them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cobamnator View Post
Alot of people like to change the capsules on these MXL mics. However, the V63m can be made better by simply changing out parts on the circuit board and the like. It is transformerless.

That’s what’s been done...all the components on the board. NO capsule replacement. (However, GREAT results can be had with a Capsule upgrade, I am not opposed to that)

I do not know the individual values of each capacitor and transistor and FET that has been modded, or what power supply grounding technique has been used however. That’s what I hire someone to do.
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Old 09-03-2011, 02:43 AM
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Default Re: Drum mic packages - yay or nay

I'm not asking for specifics, I'm asking for generalisations. If I asked somebody what they were doing to my microphone, I'd expect to hear that they're changing the values of a couple of resistors, perhaps upgrading any internal wires and changing the profile of the windshield. I wouldn't get the work done unless I knew what they were doing.

So I'm not asking for specific values, just generally what he does. Now you've admitted that you're not sure, that's fine.
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Old 09-03-2011, 02:51 AM
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Default Re: Drum mic packages - yay or nay

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Originally Posted by mediocrefunkybeat View Post
I'm not asking for specifics, I'm asking for generalisations. If I asked somebody what they were doing to my microphone, I'd expect to hear that they're changing the values of a couple of resistors, perhaps upgrading any internal wires and changing the profile of the windshield. I wouldn't get the work done unless I knew what they were doing.

So I'm not asking for specific values, just generally what he does. Now you've admitted that you're not sure, that's fine.
Good point, I totally see where your coming from. And if you didn't know any feedback about the modder, I could see the apprehension...I get that.

However, the mic is wired with super hi quality Mogami Wire (stock) and the Grille is very nice...I wouldn't want to tamper with it.

However, at this point, Because the difference IS Night and Day (that is, before and after the mod), the Specific Values of all the parts he replaced on the circuit board is not my main concern, and your right, "I've admitted that I'm not sure" what those Specific Values are. This Mic is Beautiful, and that’s what matters at the end of the day right? :)

Peace Brother.

P.S. Sorry for Hijacking the thread!
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Old 09-03-2011, 02:56 AM
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Default Re: Drum mic packages - yay or nay

Too bad you missed MusiciansFriend Stupid deal of the Day yesterday. They had a great deal for less than half price
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  #21  
Old 09-03-2011, 07:33 AM
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Default Re: Drum mic packages - yay or nay

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Originally Posted by cobamnator View Post

I am not familiar with "Open" microphone voltage. Sorry.
The open circuit voltage is measured when the microphone is unterminated so it has no relation to the input impedance of the following stage and measured from a known 1 KHz source and signal level. The higher the level coming out of the microphone, the less amplification the signal will need into the following stage allowing for a better signal to noise. It can also be synonymous with the microphone's sensitivity specifications using that same known 1KHz source of audio pressure and is usually stated in mV/Pa. Just as you mentioned Neumann U 87 aI. It's output voltage before hitting a .5% distortion figure is anywhere between 20 and 28 millivolts/Pa, depending on it's chosen polar pattern. When sensitivity specifications are stated, it's measured into a specified load impedance, usually 1K ohms.

You are correct about the very low SPL rating of the 87. I use mine only as room mics when micing drum kits.

You are also correct about me using to incorrect word of signal instead of sound when referring to SPL. But that's what happens when being paged for supper. It won't happen again, lol.

Dennis
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Old 09-03-2011, 10:20 PM
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Default Re: Drum mic packages - yay or nay

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Originally Posted by audiotech View Post
You are correct about the very low SPL rating of the 87. I use mine only as room mics when micing drum kits.

You are also correct about me using to incorrect word of signal instead of sound when referring to SPL. But that's what happens when being paged for supper. It won't happen again, lol.

Dennis
First off, I would like to say I didn't mean to come across as trying to be a stickler for your terminology. To be honest, I didn't even realize your "incorrect word" until you mentioned it. No need to apologize.



Quote:
Originally Posted by audiotech View Post
The higher the level coming out of the microphone, the less amplification the signal will need into the following stage allowing for a better signal to noise.
Is this not Signal to Noise Ratio?


However, I am still confused as to what you just described is different from S/N ratio and Sensitivity rating?

But most mics have the rated sensitivity in terms of its "open" circuit output voltage.

Another point to consider is the output voltage from a mic is proportional to the sound pressure level.

So in other words, would you not agree that "Open Circuit Voltage" is the output the microphone will have with a stated sound pressure level input?

If so, I am still confused how this is different from the basic sensitivity ratings.

Thatís why mics have their sensitivity ratings listed, which is basically their "Open Circuit Voltage" correct?
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Old 09-04-2011, 07:45 AM
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Default Re: Drum mic packages - yay or nay

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First off, I would like to say I didn't mean to come across as trying to be a stickler for your terminology. To be honest, I didn't even realize your "incorrect word" until you mentioned it. No need to apologize.





Is this not Signal to Noise Ratio?


However, I am still confused as to what you just described is different from S/N ratio and Sensitivity rating?

But most mics have the rated sensitivity in terms of its "open" circuit output voltage.

Another point to consider is the output voltage from a mic is proportional to the sound pressure level.

So in other words, would you not agree that "Open Circuit Voltage" is the output the microphone will have with a stated sound pressure level input?

If so, I am still confused how this is different from the basic sensitivity ratings.

Thatís why mics have their sensitivity ratings listed, which is basically their "Open Circuit Voltage" correct?
Signal to noise ratio is just that, a ratio of the maximum output level of the microphone to where the sine wave just starts to flatten out (.5 Db of distortion) compared to the inherent circuit noise level inside of the microphone with no outside signal present. As I mentioned before "open circuit voltage" figures will definitely be different when measured between terminated and unterminated. The unterminated figure is the open voltage measurements. RCA Radio Corporation used open circuit voltage measurements for the most part because most of their broadcast microphones had different taps for 50, 150 and 250 ohms. When coupled to matching input impedance's, the actual sensitivity in the microphone would stay approximately the same, but for instance, connecting a 150 ohm microphone to a 250 ohm impedance, the output of the microphone would drop a little over 2 decibels. The opposite also holds true. By operating a microphone with a higher impedance such as 250 ohms into a 150 ohm input, the voltage gain would be just over 2 decibels. Not all microphones, even in the strictest maintained broadcast or recording establishments, are ever operated into the exact same impedance as what the microphone is rated. Using open circuit voltage specifications took this variable out of the equation.

I could get into another very valuable, but lesser known term "resistance loading" and how it affects the low frequency response of the microphone, but that's for another day.

Dennis
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  #24  
Old 09-06-2011, 02:05 AM
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Default Re: Drum mic packages - yay or nay

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Originally Posted by audiotech View Post
Signal to noise ratio is just that, a ratio of the maximum output level of the microphone to where the sine wave just starts to flatten out (.5 Db of distortion) compared to the inherent circuit noise level inside of the microphone with no outside signal present.
I see.

But what would be the use of this rating (no outside signal present) when NO microphone will be used in that situation (i.e. Mics will be used when they are terminated, so whatís the point of a unterminated rating?)?

Also, since these mics are tested with a 1KHz source, couldn't that in itself be a great variable? In other words, Could not the Mics frequency response come into play? What if one mic just so happens to have a 1K-ish Spike, and a other mic has somewhat of a scoop on that range?

This is very interesting, Audio Technica says...

"Audio-Technica typically rates a microphone's sensitivity in terms of its open circuit output voltage. Stated in dB-relative-to-1-volt, or in actual millivolts (mV), this is the output the microphone will deliver with a stated sound pressure level (SPL) input."

http://www.audio-technica.com/cms/si...c5c52432bc79b/


It makes it sound like the Open Circuit Voltage is HOW they rate the Sensitivity.


Because most mic companies will list the Sensitivity in the specs but Not the Open Circuit Voltage.
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Old 09-06-2011, 02:12 AM
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The signal-to-noise ratio standardisation at 1KHz is just that. A standardisation. What you'll often find is that older microphone models have significantly lower signal-to-noise scores than modern mics (as in, they're worse). This is particularly true with valve mics like the U47. Quite often it's actually irrelevant in day-to-day use provided the input source is at a high enough level. So the general advice is that if you're using a mic with a relatively poor signal-to-noise ratio, you place it closer to the source or in 'louder' situations than you would ordinarily.

That's really all it comes down to. How quiet a source can you get away with recording and how 'hot' do you have to run the signal. Twenty years ago - on tape - you would've run the tape much hotter than is typically run into a digital system; so signal-to-noise ratio was less crucial. Now it matters a little more.
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Old 09-06-2011, 05:15 AM
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I see.

But what would be the use of this rating (no outside signal present) when NO microphone will be used in that situation (i.e. Mics will be used when they are terminated, so whatís the point of a unterminated rating?)?
Because if there was an outside signal present, it would mask the inherent self noise of the microphone and an accurate measurement of the signal to noise couldn't be calculated. If you ever recorded the spoken word, from the simplest V/O for a radio or television commercial to an audio book, you'd appreciate what a quiet microphone can do for the production. Most of the time slight compression will be used and if the microphone's signal to noise figures are not optimal, the compression will cause the microphone's self noise between the words to increase or to "breathe".

Dennis
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Old 09-06-2011, 05:53 PM
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Default Re: Drum mic packages - yay or nay

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Because if there was an outside signal present, it would mask the inherent self noise of the microphone and an accurate measurement of the signal to noise couldn't be calculated. If you ever recorded the spoken word, from the simplest V/O for a radio or television commercial to an audio book, you'd appreciate what a quiet microphone can do for the production. Most of the time slight compression will be used and if the microphone's signal to noise figures are not optimal, the compression will cause the microphone's self noise between the words to increase or to "breathe".

Dennis
Yes, but did you get a chance to read the part about Audio technica? ....

"This is very interesting, Audio Technica says...

"Audio-Technica typically rates a microphone's sensitivity in terms of its open circuit output voltage. Stated in dB-relative-to-1-volt, or in actual millivolts (mV), this is the output the microphone will deliver with a stated sound pressure level (SPL) input."

http://www.audio-technica.com/cms/si...c5c52432bc79b/


It makes it sound like the Open Circuit Voltage is HOW they rate the Sensitivity.


Because most mic companies will list the Sensitivity in the specs but Not the Open Circuit Voltage. "


I am assuming this is a good technique to rate the sensitivity since Audio Technica does it correct?
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Old 09-07-2011, 12:02 AM
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Yes, but did you get a chance to read the part about Audio technica? ....

"This is very interesting, Audio Technica says...

"Audio-Technica typically rates a microphone's sensitivity in terms of its open circuit output voltage. Stated in dB-relative-to-1-volt, or in actual millivolts (mV), this is the output the microphone will deliver with a stated sound pressure level (SPL) input."

http://www.audio-technica.com/cms/si...c5c52432bc79b/


It makes it sound like the Open Circuit Voltage is HOW they rate the Sensitivity.


Because most mic companies will list the Sensitivity in the specs but Not the Open Circuit Voltage. "


I am assuming this is a good technique to rate the sensitivity since Audio Technica does it correct?
No I didn't read anything from Audio Technica's website, just not enough hours in the day. How does what they say differ from what I already stated concerning "open circuit voltage"?

BTW, you never said who did your microphone conversion. I would very much like to contact this individual.

Dennis
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