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Connecting the recording world together...

I've been recording a set of congas with 2 matched dynamic mics X-Y and then a 3rd PZM mic 5 feet away mounted on a wall.

When I listen to the X-Y pair they sound fine. When I listen to the PZM room mic it sounds fine.

But when I listen to all 3 there is an unmistakable 'phasing' problem. But simply hitting the 'phase' button in my DAW only -partially- helps. I mean it's better, but it still sounds a bit 'phasey'.

OK, so what does one do if one mic is like 45 degrees out of phase (I just made that up)? Is this a placement issue?



Kapt.Krunch Sat, 02/04/2012 - 05:01

Suntower, post: 383936 wrote:
Is this a placement issue?

It sounds like you've answered your own question.(y)

Try moving the PZM...or if you can't put it somewhere else, move the congas and those mics around, maybe closer, a little at a time to see if you can get them to play nicely all together (using the same conga-mic placements).

That, of course, is assuming one of your conga mics is not actually out of proper phase, and not appearing out because of their respective placements to each other, which may cause one or the other of them to be out of phase with the PZM added no matter what you do? In other words, if the two conga mics are actually wired out of phase respective to each other, then no matter which way you phase the PZM, it's going to be out of phase with one of those conga mics.

Not likely, if they are identical properly-manufactured mics hooked up with properly wired cables, and not reversed anywhere...but nothing is impossible in "Magical Mystery Interconnect Land", where anything may not be as it appears.


RemyRAD Sun, 02/05/2012 - 18:57

If your Pressure Zone Microphone is more than 6 feet away from the other microphones, there should be no phase oriented problems especially if the microphone is taped to a wall for its ambient pickup. As mentioned, your option would be to move that microphone an inch, maybe two, maybe a foot or two. This will certainly change the time delay and also what frequencies may or may not be canceling.

There is another workaround. The Pressure Zone Microphone is there for the ambient pickup. You may need only to delay it by a couple of milliseconds in the timeline or with a plug-in or with the software's own internal feature set. By increasing the time delay, you are effectively and electronically moving that Pressure Zone Microphone to a location further away without actually moving it or having to re-record again. Delaying it too much will start to create an unknowing slap echo effect. Sometimes that's what you want other times it's not. And sometimes taking that delayed microphone to the left or right channel will create more a feeling of space and time in a place and within your sonic stereo image a.k.a. the HAAS effect. And that affect can be had from a microphone on the opposite side of the room or a microphone right in front of the others with a dialed in delay setting up a couple of milliseconds. The more percussive an instrument is, the shorter the delays should be. The more legato an instrument is, longer delays can be utilized before one starts to hear discrete echoes.

So your problem can in fact be controlled and remedied electronically after the fact of recording.
Mx. Remy Ann David