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Nuisance neighbour evidence..Need some recording advice

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Re: Nuisance neighbour evidence..Need some recording advice

Postby Dynamic Mike » Mon Jun 25, 2018 12:38 am

Having suffered this I've every sympathy. In my case it was a mad woman next door who took in abused dogs from a rescue centre. She may have been well intentioned but she was clueless & we suffered years of 12 hour bark-a-thons. I'm not sure which was worse, the barking, or waiting for it to start. It's tantamount to mental torture. Having exhausted all reasonable avenues I eventually resorted to recording it & playing it back on a loop through a guitar amp when we were out. She moved.
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Re: Nuisance neighbour evidence..Need some recording advice

Postby ef37a » Mon Jun 25, 2018 6:01 am

Tried the cheapo BM-800 on the floor, worked but would you not know it? Not a single large vehicle came by over the weekend!

The mic did however pickup telly and speech at around neg 40 and bumping about gave peaks to -20dBFS or so. I am therefore pretty sure all you need is this 20quid mic, a laptop and Audacity (although I used Samplitude) .
It should be relatively easy to 'calibrate' the mic against a C weighted noise meter.

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Re: Nuisance neighbour evidence..Need some recording advice

Postby job » Mon Jun 25, 2018 9:38 am

Dynamic Mike wrote:Having exhausted all reasonable avenues I eventually resorted to recording it & playing it back on a loop through a guitar amp when we were out. She moved.

:lol: I actually really like that approach. Not in a spiteful way but i do think people who make a lot of noise don't think the noise is an issue if they're the one making it, so letting them hear the noise when they're not making it is an excellent idea :thumbup:
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Re: Nuisance neighbour evidence..Need some recording advice

Postby ore_terra » Mon Jun 25, 2018 10:06 am

job wrote:
Dynamic Mike wrote:Having exhausted all reasonable avenues I eventually resorted to recording it & playing it back on a loop through a guitar amp when we were out. She moved.

:lol: I actually really like that approach. Not in a spiteful way but i do think people who make a lot of noise don't think the noise is an issue if they're the one making it, so letting them hear the noise when they're not making it is an excellent idea :thumbup:
we used similar technique with noisy partying neighbors when we used to live in Ireland, but in my case I opted for Mussolinni and Hitler's speeches from youtube looping through an amp pointing at their master bedroom wall :lol: :lol:
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Re: Nuisance neighbour evidence..Need some recording advice

Postby The Bunk » Mon Jun 25, 2018 12:25 pm

Interesting....
I'll admit I haven't read all four pages of this post, but I'm actually on the other end of this sort of a problem where I work; a medium-sized health club with a spinning studio, in a quiet area. We've had a neighbour (just the one of a possible hundreds) complain about the noise from our spin studio when he's sitting in his back garden some 50 metres away. The studio is not especially well sound-proofed so the noise probably gets out either through the roof or the extraction vents.

The music in the class is not what I'd call deafening and well within risk-assessed levels. And the noise where he is - I go to the back of his garden - is far from loud, but if you sit and listen, and when the birds stop singing and the wind stops blowing and cars stop driving by, you can sometimes just about hear the thud-thud of the kick drum...but you have to listen for it. If you didn't know it was there you almost certainly wouldn't notice it. Personally I don't regard it as intrusive in any way. He has in the past said "it was REALLY loud / we had to go back indoors" which I find almost impossible to fathom.

He's threatened going to the council but wants to resolve this issue without having to do so, and from that point of view he's been reasonable. We've communicated with him, met him here for a chat, had a noise survey carried out etc etc. We're now getting a volume limiter. But it's pretty much got to the stage of us saying " we've done all we can...go to the council and let's see what they say"....
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Re: Nuisance neighbour evidence..Need some recording advice

Postby Sam Spoons » Mon Jun 25, 2018 1:55 pm

I've had an EHO tell that music being audible at the nearest boundary of 'sensitive' properties was unacceptable, you had to strain to hear it and the motorway a couple of miles away was louder. The management of the venue (a large permanent marquee wedding venue) had been somewhat uncooperative in the past though. Eventually planning was refused and they dismantled the marquee and moved it to another venue out of the area.
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Re: Nuisance neighbour evidence..Need some recording advice

Postby James Perrett » Mon Jun 25, 2018 2:03 pm

The Bunk wrote:... but if you sit and listen, and when the birds stop singing and the wind stops blowing and cars stop driving by, you can sometimes just about hear the thud-thud of the kick drum...but you have to listen for it.

Its probably like a glitch in a recording - you can listen to it for ages without noticing but once you do notice it becomes really annoying. Bass is the most difficult part of the spectrum to soundproof and there's a possibility that the sound is being transmitted through the structure of the building and through the ground rather than through the air. If you have control of the sound system I'd suggest trying a high pass filter and decoupling the speakers from the rest of the building.

One other thing to remember is that, if it goes to the council and you want to sell your house at a later date you will have to mention the noise dispute on the property information form that the buyer will receive. It is always best to resolve these things informally.
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Re: Nuisance neighbour evidence..Need some recording advice

Postby The Bunk » Mon Jun 25, 2018 2:44 pm

James Perrett wrote:
The Bunk wrote:... but if you sit and listen, and when the birds stop singing and the wind stops blowing and cars stop driving by, you can sometimes just about hear the thud-thud of the kick drum...but you have to listen for it.

Its probably like a glitch in a recording - you can listen to it for ages without noticing but once you do notice it becomes really annoying. Bass is the most difficult part of the spectrum to soundproof and there's a possibility that the sound is being transmitted through the structure of the building and through the ground rather than through the air. If you have control of the sound system I'd suggest trying a high pass filter and decoupling the speakers from the rest of the building.

One other thing to remember is that, if it goes to the council and you want to sell your house at a later date you will have to mention the noise dispute on the property information form that the buyer will receive. It is always best to resolve these things informally.

Thanks James; I'm with you on all of that. I'm pretty certain this issue is now just in his (or, as we suspect, his wife's) head.
I have adjusted the sound system and taken the bass right down (and the top end as well so it doesn't sound too "tinny"); and we've now disconnected two of the four speakers, two of which were under extract vents.
Totally agree about trying to resolve it informally; apart from anything else you just don't know what you're going to get with the council - they could just as a matter of principle take the resident's (voter's) side as opposed to the business side. But I hadn't reckoned on the point about having to declare the "dispute" on the information form. He's been threatening the council route for a while but hasn't taken it that far yet...and we'd really rather he didn't as I've said but maybe he's just not prepared to take the chance??
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Re: Nuisance neighbour evidence..Need some recording advice

Postby James Perrett » Mon Jun 25, 2018 11:52 pm

Just one other thought - it may be nothing to do with music now. Could it be all the participants stepping in time to the music be causing the vibration they're hearing. Our first studio was next to a gym and our biggest noise problem was with the people who decided to drop a heavy weight on the floor in the middle of the perfect take. :headbang: :headbang:
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Re: Nuisance neighbour evidence..Need some recording advice

Postby Dynamic Mike » Tue Jun 26, 2018 1:53 am

ore_terra wrote:
job wrote:
Dynamic Mike wrote:Having exhausted all reasonable avenues I eventually resorted to recording it & playing it back on a loop through a guitar amp when we were out. She moved.

:lol: I actually really like that approach. Not in a spiteful way but i do think people who make a lot of noise don't think the noise is an issue if they're the one making it, so letting them hear the noise when they're not making it is an excellent idea :thumbup:
we used similar technique with noisy partying neighbors when we used to live in Ireland, but in my case I opted for Mussolinni and Hitler's speeches from youtube looping through an amp pointing at their master bedroom wall :lol: :lol:

I'm guessing you felt that using Ian Paisley would have been a step too far??? :lol:

I wouldn't recommend using this method as the first line of attack, especially with music as there's a danger of just escalating the problem into a volume war. However, so far as I'm aware there's no volume control on a dog so I felt I was fairly safe. The other benefit was that my 'dogs' set her dogs off which possibly made her realise we weren't making it up.
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Re: Nuisance neighbour evidence..Need some recording advice

Postby Hugh Robjohns » Tue Jun 26, 2018 10:05 am

James Perrett wrote:Its probably like a glitch in a recording - you can listen to it for ages without noticing but once you do notice it becomes really annoying.

Music has rhythm and the brain latches on to that very quickly, so it becomes very noticeable and distracting even when the actual sound level is close to the ambient noise floor.

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Re: Nuisance neighbour evidence..Need some recording advice

Postby The Bunk » Tue Jun 26, 2018 10:50 am

James Perrett wrote:Just one other thought - it may be nothing to do with music now. Could it be all the participants stepping in time to the music be causing the vibration they're hearing. Our first studio was next to a gym and our biggest noise problem was with the people who decided to drop a heavy weight on the floor in the middle of the perfect take. :headbang: :headbang:

Yep, we thought that too but have ruled it out.
Trouble is this issue is now stressing me out because his main concern is on a Sunday morning so I'm now spending my Sundays fretting over whether I'll go into work on Monday to face another complaint. And this is a classic 20/80 case...20% of your customers give you 80% of your problems! The amount of time I've spent on this is completely disproportionate to the size of the problem.
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Re: Nuisance neighbour evidence..Need some recording advice

Postby Hankus » Tue Jan 07, 2020 3:04 pm

Hello All,
There are many companies out there thet you can get a (Class 1) sound level meter to record this with. Campbells associates , or ANV or Bruel and Kjear etc. but you will need to note down the serial numbers of the sound level meter and microphone for the evidence along with the calibration certificate. Also another thing to remember, the smaller the microphone the less low freq it will pick up. So 1/2" or bigger is better. Bruel & Kjear do a 1" microphone that can fit their sound level meters and it is amazing!
If you have about £50 to play with, i recommend the hire route.
If you want to purchase something then a sound level meter will not show you all the frequencies unless you pay a few thousand. The cheap sound level meters average every freq it picks up to give you the LAeq dB level (if you are lucky) so it is best to hire something good.
Good luck.
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Re: Nuisance neighbour evidence..Need some recording advice

Postby Hugh Robjohns » Tue Jan 07, 2020 6:52 pm

Hankus wrote:Also another thing to remember, the smaller the microphone the less low freq it will pick up.

Sorry... this is a popular claim, but it is a complete myth.

The low-end response is not affected in any way by the size of the diaphragm; large or small are equally capable.

A capsule's low-frequency extension is only affected by the capsule's operating principle (pressure or velocity (pressure gradient) operation), and any electronics involved inthe signal path.

However, the size of the diaphragm does affect the high-end response, with smaller capsules having a more extended HF response than large capsules, essentially because of increasing self-cancellation of off-axis high-frequency signals, where the diaphragm size becomes a relevant proportion of their wavelength.

Where large capsules do bring benefits, however, is in the signal-noise performance; large diaphragms have a significantly lower self-noise than smaller diaphragms.

H
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