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Mic for violin

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Mic for violin

Postby crigenjazz » Wed Mar 18, 2020 12:41 pm

Hi there.

I am a professional violinist and would like to purchase a studio mic for recording my violin.
I have heard good things about a Russian ribbon mic called the RM-BIV1 (hand made Russian mic) which has good reviews.
Does anyone know if I should get a passive or an active version of this mic?
I have a Focusrite Saffire PRO 24 DSP (see link below) with Phantom Power (48v).
Also does anyone have experience using it or can offer a comparable?

Many thanks,

Chris

https://www.soundonsound.com/reviews/fo ... pro-24-dsp
http://www.bashaudio.ru/rmbiv1.eng.html#rmbiv1.eng
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Re: Mic for violin

Postby Sam Inglis » Wed Mar 18, 2020 12:55 pm

A ribbon mic is often a good choice for violin, but that somewhat depends on the recording environment. Ribbon mics pick up sound equally from the front and the back, so you would need to be able to position it such that the rear side is not pointing at something unhelpful. For example, if your recording space has a low ceiling, a ribbon mic positioned above the violin will pick up a lot of reflected sound from the ceiling, which often does not sound good. (You don't necessarily have to put the mic above the violin, though!)

I have no experience of the RM-BIV, I'm afraid.
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Re: Mic for violin

Postby Hugh Robjohns » Wed Mar 18, 2020 1:37 pm

I agree with Sam, a nice ribbon is usually a good choice with a violin -- provided the recording room's acoustics are good (or can be made good) too. In your situation I'd probably go for an active ribbon.

I don't know that Russian model either, but there are lots of other good contenders depending on budget from Rode, sE, Sontronics, Royer, AEA and many more... :shocked:
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Re: Mic for violin

Postby ore_terra » Wed Mar 18, 2020 5:03 pm

what about a cardioid ribbon like beyer M160?
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Re: Mic for violin

Postby MOF » Wed Mar 18, 2020 5:41 pm

I’ve literally just bought a Golden Age Project R1 Mk2 for £166, I’ve had a quick go singing with it and it sounds good.

https://www.gear4music.com/Recording-an ... n-Mic/290V
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Re: Mic for violin

Postby Bob Bickerton » Wed Mar 18, 2020 8:12 pm

As has been said, ribbon microphones can work well on violin, provided you have a good sounding room to work in. You’re basically looking for a microphone with a smooth or attenuated high frequency response, which many ribbon mics possess.

Many condenser microphones have an enhanced high frequency response which can sound good on vocals, but can bring out unfortunate elements of bowed string instruments. An exception would be the cardioid Neumann TLM193 (or it’s more expensive multi-pattern sibling the TLM170).

Bob
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Re: Mic for violin

Postby Sam Spoons » Wed Mar 18, 2020 8:15 pm

MOF wrote:I’ve literally just bought a Golden Age Project R1 Mk2 for £166, I’ve had a quick go singing with it and it sounds good.

https://www.gear4music.com/Recording-an ... n-Mic/290V

Aparently it has a fig 98 pickup pattern and a 500mm long ribbon :crazy:

Joking aside I'm quite tempted, good spot MOF :thumbup:
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Re: Mic for violin

Postby DanDan » Wed Mar 18, 2020 10:41 pm

Beyer made cardioid ribbons. The M160 can be pretty good on Violin, but you need a high gain preamp, you may need 65dB or more. GML. Ribbons are also good on Pipes, and other instruments which have some nasty noises built in. Bombards!
The M260 is a much cheaper, and IMO better mic. I use these all the time for those difficult instruments where one want to enhance the note and the tone, while suppressing the itchy and scratchy stuff. Hard to find, but here's a UK specialist.....http://xaudia.com
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Re: Mic for violin

Postby blinddrew » Wed Mar 18, 2020 10:57 pm

DanDan wrote:Hard to find, but here's a UK specialist.....http://xaudia.com
If you're after a ribbon it's always worth seeing what Stew has got available. :thumbup:

Disclaimer, I've known Stew for years but I'm not linked to his business in any way.
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Re: Mic for violin

Postby MOF » Wed Mar 18, 2020 11:08 pm

Aparently it has a fig 98 pickup pattern and a 500mm long ribbon :crazy:

Joking aside I'm quite tempted, good spot MOF :thumbup:

I hadn’t spotted that. :)
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Re: Mic for violin

Postby Sam Spoons » Wed Mar 18, 2020 11:20 pm

If it really did have those characteristics it'd be a fearsome beast :bouncy:
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Re: Mic for violin

Postby Sam Inglis » Wed Mar 18, 2020 11:20 pm

DanDan wrote:The M260 is a much cheaper, and IMO better mic.

I'm glad I'm not the only one who thinks that! I like the M160 a lot on guitar amps, but on most other things I prefer the 260. And it's cheaper.
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Re: Mic for violin

Postby zenguitar » Thu Mar 19, 2020 1:21 am

Sam Inglis wrote:
DanDan wrote:The M260 is a much cheaper, and IMO better mic.

I'm glad I'm not the only one who thinks that! I like the M160 a lot on guitar amps, but on most other things I prefer the 260. And it's cheaper.

That's music to my ears. In the very early 90's I was working as local crew with little income and an 'open' benefits claim (in the weeks I earned enough I received no Income Support, but my claim remained open rather than being closed - common practice then for those on low, variable, incomes).

In the local market a stall had a few items selling for a friend and one of those was a nice looking M260 for £30. I only had £30 in my bank account but thought my brother might want it. So I gave him a call and offered to buy it for him if he could pay me the £30 in a couple of days, My brother wanted it, so I went to the bank, drew the cash, and bought the mic.

It turned out that it was being sold for a guy who developed a new interest, went out and bought the very best gear, but never actually did anything. He bought the mic to go with his cine-camera that was also unused. In the case was the factory frequency response graph dated December 1968 and a sales receipt dated January 1969.

Sadly, my brother passed away unexpectedly 3 years ago. And when I was clearing his house I found the M260 still in it's case and still not used. A quick examination revealed that it had a Tuchel connector instead of an XLR, and instead of mentioning it to me over the years (so I could have come here to ask for advice) he had just put it to one side.

So now I am the proud owner of a never used Beyer M260 dated December 1969. And the only issue is that the glue holding the case together is failing. Once I've finished a few outstanding jobs I will make some MDF formers, dismantle the case, clean off the old glue, and then reassemble it with suitable new glue. Then I will ask Hugh nicely to identify the correct connector so I can knock up a short adaptor lead and spare and finally put a lovely ribbon mic to good use.

But I still fancy an M160 as well ;)

Andy :beamup:
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Re: Mic for violin

Postby Hugh Robjohns » Thu Mar 19, 2020 1:59 am

The Tuchel connectors are still available if you want to roll your own, or there are people offering adapter cables on the web... Eg:

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/DIN-KLEIN-TUCHEL-TO-XLR-ADAPTER-Sennheiser-MKH405T-406-416T-MD421-Beyer-M160-M88-/233126110967
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Re: Mic for violin

Postby zenguitar » Thu Mar 19, 2020 2:11 am

Thanks Hugh. I thought there would be something like that, but I was thinking about using a longer, slightly thinner, connecting cable to prevent vibrations getting to the Mic. Or am I over-thinking this?

Andy :beamup:
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