ADVICES for recording a HORNs BAND, mic selection...

Discussion in 'Brass' started by Alécio Costa - Brazil, Aug 20, 2002.

  1. Alécio Costa - Brazil

    Alécio Costa - Brazil Well-Known Member

    Mar 19, 2002
    Hi friends,
    I will be soon recording a Horns Band, with 35/40 very young but good musicians on a budget project.
    I have previuosly recorded nice small Camerata CDs and horns section inside my studio, but now it will be a complete different approach.
    I have the following mics on here:
    2 AT 4050
    2 C3000B
    2 C2000B
    2 C418
    1 SM91
    2 BETA57
    1 BETA58
    1 SM58

    I am planning to buy three additional mics among the ones below:
    a) NT1
    b) Nt2
    c) AT4047
    d) At4040
    e) At3035
    g) C3000B

    I need help with the following doubts:

    a)Which 3 mics should I but to complete my kit among those on the above list?

    b)Which can be the best arrangement to record this project? spaced omnis, L/R over the conductor´s head with spot mics so as to not lose focus? it will be around 17 different voices, maybe mic each voice so as to avoid bad acoustic influences of the place but having to deal with phase problems later?

    Would like to thank you in advance!
    Nice tuesday!
    Eng. Alécio Costa - Brazil :w:
  2. Alécio Costa - Brazil

    Alécio Costa - Brazil Well-Known Member

    Mar 19, 2002
    man, where are the guys from this forum?????
  3. e-cue

    e-cue Active Member

    Oct 5, 2000
    Sorry for the delayed response. Couple things: This is difficult for me to answer or make suggestions because when I do these types of sessions, they usually allocate a budget large enough to rent more appropriate gear (C-12, 47 Fets, U87s, U-47 tubes, B&K's, D50's earthworks, etc) for the task at hand.
    That being said, I'd go a little bit of a different route:
    2 (many more) EMC 8000's (around $35 NEW!!!)
    Either 2 B2's or 4 B1's (B2's are about $200, B1's are about $100 each)
    2 Crown PZM sound grabbers ($75 or so each)

    The reason I say this is, the 8000's are like omni rip off's of the earthworks mics. The B2's are like U87 rip offs. The B1's are too, only they are cardiod only. The B2's would be a better investment as they are multipattern, and sound much closer to the 87 than the Node stuff IMHO. Use the B1/B2's over the conductor. Flat, no pad, card. Take the ECM8000's and use them like room mics, walk around on the outside parameter about ten feet or so back and listen for the sweet spot. Check this against the B1/B2's religiously. (a phase clicker is a life saver in these situations, but if you must, blast a boombox in the middle of the pit and check it before the group shows up) Now, get a ladder and with the boombox playing, listen up against the wall toward the front of the room, and try to find the spot where it sounds like the sound is bouncing off the wall. Tape the PZM mic there. If you can't do this because of the dimensions of your room, move some gobo's (the one with the hardest surface you have) to the front of the room, again using to head to listen for the spot where it sounds like the sound is bouncing off of the gobos. This should sound really good if your phase relationship is correct as a starting point. Keep extra AAA batteries on hand... the PZM's gobble them up like a mofo.

    The rest of you mic'ing really, really depends on the song arrangement and players, but generally I'd say:
    2 AT 4050 : Strings or Trumpet
    2 C3000B : Flutes/ Pic or Trombone
    2 C2000B : French Horns or Flugle Horn
    2 C418 : Sax or clarinet
    1 SM91 : Mono Flute
    2 BETA57, 1 BETA58, 1 SM58 : Individually mic tuba / basses

    I MUST have a list of the exact instruments I'm using before at least a day before I start. Try to get a copy of the score, or at least talk to the conductor to figure out if there are any solos/strong parts, etc. These sessions take a lot of planning to properly be exucuted.
  4. e-cue

    e-cue Active Member

    Oct 5, 2000
    And I agree, it isn't as popular here as it used to be.
  5. Alécio Costa - Brazil

    Alécio Costa - Brazil Well-Known Member

    Mar 19, 2002
    thanks a lot e-cue. Many mics you mention here I have never hear before. In fact, it is a budget project, so what can I do...

    I have recorded 4 cds of small orchestras, sound good, one of them has a big succes but now I am quite worried about extreme leakage and phase due to lots of trumpets, etc.

    If possible, I would like to send you a sketch of the band. It is a kind of celebration for the cnductors 20+ years of dedication to this independent group. Lots of leads at every song.
    The project will be recorded at an old theater, wood in the floor as well as in the ceiling, concrete walls, not so bad place like the ones I had to do the Camerata.

    Today, I talked to the nice conductor and there shall be up to 23 voices. I don´t know how to translate evry name of it, but it is a mix of Horn Band with an Army (??) set:


    b)Sax section:
    tenor (2 voices)

    flute (3 voices)
    clarinet (3 voices)

    d)other horns
    trumpet (2 voices)

    so.. what are your suggestions? Iam willing to buy 3 more condensers like the AT4040. what are your suggestions?

    Some guys on the other forum told me to stick with themain stereo scheme over the conductor´s head with the 2 AT4050´s and add some spot mics to the softer sections.

    But I am afraid to deal with the different leads. Of course I am planning before hand and will have a description of every song so as to tweak or alter mic placement .

    Hope to hear from you again my friend! and many thanks for all your attention!
  6. RecorderMan

    RecorderMan Distinguished Member

    Mar 28, 2001
    A fine answer e-cue.
    btw: relax out there...I've been woking hard the last week (with the flu in the middle...although i didn't stop) AND my internet is at my office, so I can't do this just before bed, ect.
  7. e-cue

    e-cue Active Member

    Oct 5, 2000
    I sincerely hope you get better.

    Alécio, the MP3 you sent me sounds wonderful. The main thing I think you should consentrate on is your stereo imageing. The depth is there, I just believe that you could get a little more space during the more dynamic parts of the song. I'd also like sound more rides, esspecially on the low end. The front instruments have much more definition, so try raising your mics by the conductor a little bit more if possible. Some D50's would kick ass on the bass, but I think 4050's should do the trick if you are on a budget.
  8. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    Jul 2, 2002
    77 Sunset Lane.
    IMO, with that many pieces in the ensemble I would also opt to do a decca tree or some other mic over the conductor type of thing. Individualy micing everything could turn into a nightmare. If your concerned about missing parts or sections you can add some hyper cardioid or cardioid spot mics, making sure the spots are in phase with the overheads and running them to their own track. Don't add too many spots and make sure everything is in phase with the main mics and each added spot. This approach requres a good sounding room with at least 14 feet high ceilings. You can add some ambience mics if you wish running them to the stereo channels or to their own tracks. I have found these kinds of projects to be the most fun to do. Have a blast! Fats
  9. Alécio Costa - Brazil

    Alécio Costa - Brazil Well-Known Member

    Mar 19, 2002
    thanks e-cue. In fact, the Camerata CD is already edited and mixed. Monday I have to start the mastering process... also on a budget. Not the best equipment but gifted years on here, so let us see if it will become a new cucces like their previous CD...

    I will be using PT 5.1.1 mix, with Q10, Power dither and TC MAster X. Oka, you all can crucify me now but it has to be done.
    e-cue, do you have any suggestions like HPF´s, high mid definition, expand or not.
    The conductor complains a little - he wants more reverb, but then things will become too washed, buried, far from the listener.

    Many thanks for all your input. In other forums I did not receive so good info!!!!

    but what about this new challenge, this Horn band?

    Main stereo pair with AT4050´s over the conductor and some spots at weaker sessions? I am afaraid of losing some leads on each different sections of the 14 songs.

  10. Alécio Costa - Brazil

    Alécio Costa - Brazil Well-Known Member

    Mar 19, 2002
    e-cue.. what do you mean with the sentence: sound more rides... ?
    I did not understand this expression!
    hehehe sorry!!!!!!

    Cedar flats... among the list I put on the post.. which mics would you advice me and in which instruments? clarinetes? tubas? flutes?

    trumpets, sax are quite spl....

    thanks again! :w:
  11. e-cue

    e-cue Active Member

    Oct 5, 2000
    Rides: Fader rides, rises in levels to accentuate, or highlight a certain section. Especially on the Bass... Listen to the song down, and ask yourself "Did I think about the bass while listening?". Do this for each instrument. Try to let each instrument have one part of the 'conversation' so to speak. (no pun intended)

    As far as verb. Those damn conductors love that crap. They also love their string instruments to play way behind the beat. I'm not sure what gear you have access to, but I would suggest the 480L Hall, or some type of Dark Chamber with at least a 60 MS predelay. This will help your verb from getting too washy.
  12. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    Jul 2, 2002
    77 Sunset Lane.
    The List E Cue provided was about as good of a mic allocation as you can get with what youv'e got. I would look to purchase 3 large diaphram condensers capable of mono pattern.
    You need these for the main room Decca trees. I stress you should only spot mic a few things. If you have more than 8 or 10 inputs its a real problem. Put some mics up and listen a move them around until you achive the best overall balance. Fats
  13. Alécio Costa - Brazil

    Alécio Costa - Brazil Well-Known Member

    Mar 19, 2002
    thanks to my friend´s Cedar and e-cue!!!!!
    The EFX I used with the Camerata Project you listend on the small sample mp3:

    02R : Hall 2.3 sec
    Plate 1.3 sec
    01V: Hall 3.2 sec
    hall 3.2 sec with bigger pre-delay
    MPX1: Carneggie hall simuation Algorithm Preset
    TSR12: long hall ( with very loww return)

    It is a budget project with a satisfactory equipment.; done entirely with PT 5.1.1, G4 800, 23GB disk space attached to one ADAT bridge going semi direct uted to the 02R.
    Monitors: Monitor Ones - Alesis

    e-cue: we did fade rides during the automixes of every song. Maybe they were not enought ( for yous taste). The conductor and the producer were giving me the points. I am the recording enginner/mising mastering and a kind of "co-producer". However, the whole arrangement is in their heads!!hehe

    Cedar.... I ave been thinking of 2 AT4050´s at cardioid pattern over the conductor´s head for this new project of the horn band). Spaced omnis shall pick up too much room!!

    My doubt now is...
    Which mics should spot which instruments? the percussion set certaibnly I will pck up.

    among the mics I mentioned above, I wanna buy three more. Will I be oka with 3 At4040´s?
    or any other model?

    Many thanks!!!!
    Nice saturday!!!
  14. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    Jul 2, 2002
    77 Sunset Lane.
    All of the Audio Technica mic line is useable stuff. I have a pair of 4033's and I've found them very versitile. I would at least check out what it sounds like with 3 mono large diaphram mics (Decca Tree) before rejecting the idea. You might be surprised. The venue you described sounds like it would be perfect for this technique. Fats
  15. sign

    sign Guest

    Yes, and who is going to do something about it? We are the ones who can do that right?

    It seems to me this forum is in a downward spiral. The last post on Harvey's board was on juli 31! And Harv is such a great guy :tu:
  16. Alécio Costa - Brazil

    Alécio Costa - Brazil Well-Known Member

    Mar 19, 2002
    I have to thank a lot for the nice cooments and suggestions of my friends on here, much more than in other forums with hundred people but I wished the traffic was more intense. I always select the topics of the last 5 days and I see no much news.
    let us promote this place on a better way to other guys?

    Thanks Cedar, e-cue.

    BTW... Cedar, what is your main job? studio?

    Nice sunday!
  17. audiokid

    audiokid Chris Staff

    Mar 20, 2000
    BC, Canada
    Home Page:
    Hi everyone, I've been watching this thread and I'm sure glad to see these replies here! I definitely screwed up by putting the user fee on the forum, I regret that for sure. I was in a desperate situation, it saved our ass (thank you to all the supporters) we have our own server now but in doing so it kicked us down a few notches with ratings during my hard times. We are gaining again though :) and having bro's like you is great to see. RO is here for the long haul. Maybe we should do a gear giveaway or something. If anyone has any ideas let me know.
  18. sign

    sign Guest

    Hi Chris, how's life treating you?

    This board used to be a great place a while ago, no trolling, flames or whatever.

    I sinceraly hope it will gain it's popularity again, but I'm afraid that needs some time.

    Whish you all the best bro!!
  19. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    Jul 2, 2002
    77 Sunset Lane.
    My main job has been music all my life. In the past several years I have owned and engineered at my own 2000 sq foot comercial studio in the SF Bay Area where I was fortunate enough to record with some major recording artists. I sold out a year and a half ago and now am semi retired. I own the coolest DAW home studio in the neighborhood and I am still active in artist and song development and marketing. Fats
  20. Alécio Costa - Brazil

    Alécio Costa - Brazil Well-Known Member

    Mar 19, 2002
    thanks Cedar, I will visit you someday as well as some nice folks I have developed true friendship in other forums like Brad, Ronny, steve and so!!

    But semi retired man? already? sorry for asking...?
    me 32

    it is great to have advices from people like you all! I have very much to learn and I am willing to learn. I imagine I am one of the few brazilian guys on here, specially at this time of night!!
    Nice tuesday!

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