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Mic Polar Patterns - Part 1 | Podcast

Understanding which Microphone to use By David Mellor
Published March 2024
David Mellor - Audio Masterclass Course DirectorDavid Mellor - Audio Masterclass Course Director

In the first of this two-part series, David Mellor gives us an introduction to mic polar patterns, explaining the best type of microphone to use for various recording situations.

Show Notes


00:00 - Introduction
00:43 - Influenced By The EMI Emiguide Tapes
04:08 - What Is A Polar Pattern?
06:46 - Omnidirectional And Figure Of 8
08:43 - Cardioid, Hypercardioid And Super-Cardioid
11:14 - Pressure-Sensitive And Pressure Gradient
11:58 - Imperfections In Higher And Lower Frequencies
13:01 - The Decca Tree
14:06 - Abbey Road Demonstration
15:32 - 0 degree axis Figure Of 8
16:10 - 90 degree axis Figure Of 8
16:48 - 180 degree axis Figure Of 8
17:30 - 270 degree axis Figure Of 8 
19:01 - Multi-Pattern Microphones
19:58 - Best Usage
24:26 - Interference Tube, Parabolic Reflector
26:23 - Experimenting With Off-Axis

Classic Mic Polar Patterns

Classic Mic Polar PatternsClassic Mic Polar Patterns

Presenter: David Mellor - Biog

David Mellor got his start in pro audio through the Tonmeister course at Surrey University studying music, piano performance, acoustics, electronics, electro-acoustics and recording.

He went on to work at London's Royal Opera House, with responsibilities including sound design, front-of-house operation, stage monitoring and electronic design satisfying the likes of Luciano Pavarotti, Placido Domingo, Dame Kiri Te Kanawa and Karlheinz Stockhausen. David has also had over 600 works published in the field of production music, including the Chappell and Carlin music libraries (now combined into Universal Publishing Production Music). Notable uses of his music include the BBC's Horizon, Fahrenheit 911, and the Oprah Winfrey Show.

David has been actively involved in Audio Education since 1986, teaching students of City of Westminster College and Westminster University, and also returning to lecture at Surrey University. He also worked with John Cage on the International Dance Course at the University of Surrey. David now specialises in online audio education and has been Course Director of Audio Masterclass since 2001.

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