1. Register NOW and become part of this fantastic knowledge base forum! This message will go away once you have registered.

Royer R-101 Reviews

Discussion in 'Microphones' started by audiokid, Oct 25, 2010.

  1. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    Like many of us here, I'm all jacked up on ribbon mics and especially Royer for my personal taste. The new R 101 has been out for a while now. Has anyone had the opportunity to demo it? How do you like it?

    Let us know after the AES show in San Fransisco.
  2. TheJackAttack

    TheJackAttack Distinguished Member

    Will be using a pair this weekend to record the Beethoven ***tet (2hn,2vln,vla,vc) and the Chausson Piano Trio Op.3. I have not decided as to whether to use them M/S or Blumlein. Requests? I'll only get one shot since it's live not memorex.
  3. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    Royer R-101 M/S or Blumlein

    John, cool to ask and right on!

    My request would be Blumlein for those but I think you are far more experienced at this than the majority, including me. :redface:

    Hey, since you asked ya! ... for a reference to this thread and for me too, since I will be doing a few of these this spring using my Royers! If you could be so kind to explain the pro's/con's to M/S vs Blumlein, where you'll place the mics and any other reference to this, why you would choose one over the other... a great reference and opening for the R-101's!
  4. TheJackAttack

    TheJackAttack Distinguished Member

    I think one of the main advantages of M/S is the ability to adjust the width of the soundstage. Also, it tends to pick up the hall for more ambience. I use M/S quite a bit on large groups or a spread out small chamber group. Think of it as the tiniest of Decca trees if you will though the array won't be in the middle of the group necessarily.

    Blumlein works quite well if you have a smallish group or as the center portion of a larger mic array. It's quick, easy, and gets the job done. In a less than stellar hall, I will often go to this pattern as a way to mitigate things not of the performers.

    In the places I record here, I usually complement either of these fairly close up techniques with omni A-B back in the crowd. This can help me add a little diffusion or warmth into a mix that might be otherwise too "in your face" or where someone in the group sticks out too much.

    Cucco, Joe H, and others will definitely have input into pros and cons as they do far more work than I do.
  5. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    Thanks for sharing John! I'm used to performing in big rooms but not recording them. Its all new to me so I'm asking everything I can!

    The Royer R-101 are bidirectional mics (figure-8 pattern)
    Can you use two bidirectional mics for M S?

    Are you using the FF800 for this?

    we're famous already?
    Royer R-101 Blumliem - Google Search
  6. TheJackAttack

    TheJackAttack Distinguished Member

    Yes. In fact many stereo mics are designed/used this way. Set up one way (say blumlein) and if you don't like it, rotate the array 45° and try the other. Just decode the side channel only in the DAW. I have used MS technique with an omni as the mid in certain situations as well.

    My signal path will be R101-->True Precisian8-->FF800-->split into HD24XR/Glyph hdd(Reaper64).
  7. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    awesome! Thanks for getting into this with me. I was looking over this:
    - Recording the Classical Guitar : Recording Magazine -

    I would love to do reviews with our members like this. Do you want to try this someday? Anyway, I'm (M/S) side railing my own topic lol...

    And I see you are using Reaper! Isn't it unbelievable?
  8. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    What do you mean
  9. TheJackAttack

    TheJackAttack Distinguished Member

    The following is sort of a Barney style representation so remember it's analogy:

    Well, there are two ways to decode M/S signals. Remember that you are in essence taking three microphones (L+M, M, M+R*) and making two signal paths for the stereo image (ignoring for now if the mid mic is fig8 or omni). The first way to decode this is with a mic preamp with a built in decoder. My Precision8 has a mid side decoder built into channels 1/2 but rarely use that, choosing instead to manually decode if you will with option 2. In the preamp version of this decoding, you adjust the width of the sound field by how much of channel 2 (S) that you crank up.

    Option 2 is to decode the two raw tracks in a DAW. Leave Mid alone. Create a third track and dublicate your S signal onto this track. Invert the polarity of this 3rd track and pan it hard right (depending on how you oriented your original S microphone). Go back to your original S track and pan this one hard left (opposite the duplicated track).

    Now you have three tracks: M/S+/S-. I take this one step further and create a bus which I send the signals (post fader) from the now two side tracks. I then move the bus track to be adjacent to the Mid track. Now you can easily adjust the stereo image. In my methodology I start by getting the Mid track to the point I like it and then bring up the Side bus to match tastefully.

    A third option is to decode the raw tracks with a plugin like MSED. I usually only use a plugin if I am altering an already recorded 2-bus mixdown without having any original tracks.

    This isn't really explained very well to my taste but I'm sort of doing about six things at once here while watching my 13mo.

    *This is better explained with pictures here
    and here
  10. TheJackAttack

    TheJackAttack Distinguished Member

    I like to track with Reaper for sure. I'm still most comfortable working with Audition3 for manipulation etc likely because I've been using it for so long. On projects without deadlines I am forcing myself to learn more about Reaper. I am running the 64bit version on Win7 64.
  11. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    Wow, I have my reading list now. Thanks for chiming in to explain this all!

    Looking forward to hearing how you and others like the R 101's .

  12. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    But, hehehe... Back to your project. I'm thinking M/S is the better solution for this concidering less than perfect room acoustics and audience level yes?
  13. TheJackAttack

    TheJackAttack Distinguished Member

    I like M/S quite a bit. It is my default for "close" micing classical chamber ensembles. I'll probably have some spots on the piano too depending on time allotted for set up. I'm also playing in the Beethoven so I have to split my concentration. Provided they don't turn on the heat, the hall is very nice sounding. The heat however is steam/radiator. clank clink clank psshhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.
  14. TheJackAttack

    TheJackAttack Distinguished Member

    Royer R101 Manual

    This explains MS and Blumlein pretty well in addition to recommendations for specific instruments.
  15. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    What an excellent manual, thanks for posting that.

    Do you tape the ends or use something that keeps the two mics tight together? Is that critical in Blumlein?
  16. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    BLUMLEIN with Royer Ribbon and Piano

    Looking at this as a Blumlein technique example on Piano tips here http://www.royerlabs.com/recordingtips.html


    Looks like they are taped?

    I'm looking here for visual examples on doing this with an Orchestra Royer Microphone - Recording Tips Orchestra and Strings but I only see more isolated config. How would you either M/S or Blumlein in front of the orchestra? You don't happen to have any live images around do you? Oops, I see we could do the same with the 101's like the example of a


    This would be the same similar setup for what you are planning but somewhat more difficult with two separate Royers?
  17. TheJackAttack

    TheJackAttack Distinguished Member

    The SF24 image you describe is exactly how I use MS on an orchestra. A different technique would be to use your stereo mic (SF12 or SF24) in place of the center mic in a decca array and a R101 in left and right position. Basically any way you can imagine a variation just like when using condensers or tube condensers. Another useful method: Place a M/S array like you describe (SF12) and then a R101 halfway between conductor and back desk violin and another R101 halfway between conductor and the principal bass-same height and angle and on the same horizontal plane as the SF12.

    I have not usually taped the ends of the mics. Often when I have used MS on a group, I use a C391 with a C394 piggy backed on top of it. When I use the C414's I use the bottom one straight up in card and an upside down perpendicular C414 in figure 8. In both versions I get them as close as possible without touching. Now the way the Royers shape up, I might consider taping them. What I really want is an SF12 to go with this pair. Then a pair of MA100's. Then...........
  18. Cucco

    Cucco Distinguished Member

    FWIW -
    Using M/S in a bad room isn't necessarily better than Blumlein. In fact, it can be worse! For those situations, a good pair of cardioids in ORTF is likely a FAR better solution.

    The reason being - The rear lobe of the Mid mic will pick up the "bad" room at an equal volume as the dead-center image of the recording. Not so good. Also, if the group is too small for the stage (say a bad, multi-purpose theater with a 7 piece ensemble that doesn't know how to fill out the hall), you're likely going to get a very washy sound with M/S. Moving in a Blumlein so that the caps are pointing to the very outer edge or just slightly in from that will actually do pretty well. Just be sure to keep all of the instrumentalists in a line-of-sight to the elements. This means angling the mics downward to get all of the instrumentalists on a visual plane.

    I've got a pic and a clip somewhere that shows an SF12 used in Blumlein over a large ensemble with the elements aimed down roughly 20 degrees. If I can dig it up, I'll post it here.

  19. Cucco

    Cucco Distinguished Member

    Another FWIW Chris -

    That pic that you posted with the Royer over the orchestra -
    Unless there's some serious image distortion going on, that mic is too low. The last rows of brass will sound like they're in a different zip code from the rest of the musicians!

  20. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    Hey John,

    How did you like the Royer R-101's?

Share This Page