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Hugh RobjohnsAdministrator
SOS Technical Editor


Joined: 25/07/03
Posts: 22440
Loc: Worcestershire
Re: Recording choir and organ tricky position new [Re: Tom Ballinger]
      #985707 - 04/05/12 10:41 AM
Quote Tom Ballinger:

ok so it was even more rushed than i thought it would be because they had allot to rehearse so i just had to hit record and hope for a good full run through of a song.




Location recording ad hoc events usually is more rushed than ideal. It's a natural part of the challenge that encourages an efficient minimalist approach focusing on what you really need to achieve a useable result, rather than what would be nice to have. You really do have to make sure you get it right there and then, and not hope you an fix it in the mix. A learning experience, but that's what you were there for.

Quote:

Lots of paper sounds as they had no music stands and didn't know the words. People kept talking at the end not letting the reverb tail finish so iv had to cut it short.




These kinds of things can completely ruin otherwise great recordings, as you've discovered. It can happen when recording live concerts with the LSO and symphony chrous just as easily as an amateur choir in a village church. The solution is about taking active control over your recording, rather than being entirely passive.

It's well worth taking a couple of minutes to talk to the choir and choirmaster just before you are going to record, and really emphasise the importance of staying quiet or ten seconds (or whatever is necessary) at the end, and of turning pages as quietly as possible. Usually, if you make them aware of the issues and how they will spoil the recording, and you ask nicely, they will so what you ask.

Quote:

In the end i went for the soundfield as an M/S with two flanking Omnis and an ORFT (SE2s) well back past the critical distance. Sounds rather distant compared to other choral/organ recording iv heard but for the purpose of university i think it came out alright.




I found the organ sounded quite acceptable with a nice acoustic and perspective, but the choir is, as you say, too distant and low level, with inprecise diction. The main mic needed to be closer. However, this would also have revealed the inadequacies and poor internal balance of the choir... I've heard worse being broadcast before now, and you've clearly analysed the strengths and weaknesses yourself already, which is a good thing. Knowing where you went wrong is essential for doing it better next time, and if you already knew how to do it perfectly you wouldn't need to be on the course!

As far as the abrupt end is concerned, again, sometimes you are forced into having to do something like this. As EW says, the neatest way of coming up with a presentable product is to try to match the reverb character with an artificial reverb, and add that to the end.

hugh

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Guy Johnson



Joined: 02/05/03
Posts: 4488
Loc: North Pembrokeshire
Re: Recording choir and organ tricky position new [Re: Tom Ballinger]
      #986019 - 06/05/12 02:30 PM
Got my monitoring back now. I agree the organ is good, but too wide.

I find the choir paradoxically too far back and too wide. Possibly the choir is too near the organ, and the mic too near the choir, or too wide in the mix?

I would much rather be 'honest' and have the talking at the end. Though as Hugh said a good reverb tail faded up at the end would be nice.

As for rustles etc, just a but can be done with automated EQ.

But generally a pretty good recording, and we don't know all the pressures and limitations you had on the day!

I've taken some liberties with the track ...
EQ to bring out the choir, and to cut some organ high bass, plus the aforementioned rustles.
Then added the end reverb, though with some running all the way through to widen my narrowed soundstage and to help blend the end reverb tail. I nearly added huge applause, but just managed not to! Here's the link

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Tom Ballinger



Joined: 15/04/12
Posts: 17
Loc: Wales
Re: Recording choir and organ tricky position new [Re: Tom Ballinger]
      #986149 - 07/05/12 03:33 PM
Hi again!

Ok so i've had another mess about and i've narrowed it up a bit and slapped some reverb on the end (thank you so much for this advice sounds 100000% better) so the end is not so abrupt.

Guy Johnson. I also did a little EQing, to try and bring out the choir a bit more, its not much of a difference but a bit of an improvement i think.

Exalted Wombat. I think the clicking noise is a result of the page turning, i can't think of what else it may be. My teacher hasn't listend to it yet the submissions date isn't until the 14th may.

I've uploaded the new track with fixed bits if you're interested.

http://soundcloud.com/tommy-guns/choir-organ-st-giles-take-2

Thank you so much for the help

Tom.


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Exalted Wombat



Joined: 06/02/10
Posts: 5988
Re: Recording choir and organ tricky position [Re: Tom Ballinger]
      #986155 - 07/05/12 04:20 PM
What sort of preparation did your teacher give for this project? Were you warned of possible pitfalls?

How were you monitoring the recording?


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Tom Ballinger



Joined: 15/04/12
Posts: 17
Loc: Wales
Re: Recording choir and organ tricky position new [Re: Exalted Wombat]
      #986159 - 07/05/12 05:07 PM
BRIEF:
You will demonstrate a clear understanding of the technologies and techniques required to record high quality audio on location. The locations you chose for the recording must not be controlled spaces (i.e. the studio). The aim of the recording is to recreate an acoustic space and to demonstrate an appreciation of the strengths and weaknesses of the techniques employed.

I think the real aim of this is to demonstrate that we understand the processes and techniques of location recording and are capable of doing so to a high standard. Iv also submitted a research report outlining why i chose the techniques and microphones used.

I was monitoring on headphones (DT770s if it makes any difference)

Cheers,

Tom.


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Exalted Wombat



Joined: 06/02/10
Posts: 5988
Re: Recording choir and organ tricky position new [Re: Tom Ballinger]
      #986173 - 07/05/12 06:20 PM
Quote Tom Ballinger:

BRIEF:
You will demonstrate a clear understanding of the technologies and techniques required to record high quality audio on location. The locations you chose for the recording must not be controlled spaces (i.e. the studio). The aim of the recording is to recreate an acoustic space and to demonstrate an appreciation of the strengths and weaknesses of the techniques employed.

I think the real aim of this is to demonstrate that we understand the processes and techniques of location recording and are capable of doing so to a high standard. Iv also submitted a research report outlining why i chose the techniques and microphones used.

I was monitoring on headphones (DT770s if it makes any difference)





Leaving out that that it was maybe too late to do anything about it, did you hear the balance problem and the page noise while recording? Or did it come as a surprise when you started mixing?

If you were given another chance, what would you do differently?

(I'm asking questions that your teachers OUGHT to be putting to you.)


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