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Which of these would record piano best?

Discussion in 'Recording/Live Sound' started by Tubes and Strings, Jan 26, 2008.

  1. Tubes and Strings

    Tubes and Strings Supporting Member

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    Which of the following would you use (or combination of them) to record a baby grand piano:

    Audio-Technica AMT410 Vocal Microphone
    Audio-Technica Pro41 Vocal Microphone
    Audio-Technica Pro61 Vocal Microphone
    Nady RSM-5 Studio Ribbon Microphone
    MXL 991 Instrument Microphone
    MXL 990 Vocal Microphone

    I can borrow any/all of these and I have another couple of MXL (large and small condenser) as well. I wasn't real happy with the sound I got from mine last time I experimented... this after several hours trying differetn locations and different pianos.
     
  2. smorgdonkey

    smorgdonkey Member

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    I think the best large diaphragm mic would be the choice. The further away the piano is mic'd the higher you want the mic(s) raised.
     
  3. elambo

    elambo Member

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    Borrow them all. Try them all.
     
  4. Tubes and Strings

    Tubes and Strings Supporting Member

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    Anyone here who can speak from experience with these? I'm hoping to hear some opinions based on good / bad experiences... Clips are even better.

    Anyone?
     
  5. alvagoldbook

    alvagoldbook Member

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    I would use a vocal condenser type of microphone. Maybe a Rode NT-1. If you don't have access to that kind of mic, any decent vocal condenser should do the trick.

    If it's a grand piano I would place the mic about 6 to 8 feet away from the piano and about 8 feet in the air. I would also suggest using a room mic (another condenser) as a room mic, just to see what it captures.

    If you're using a keyboard, you could either do a direct line in (not something I'd suggest unless you have to) or if you use a keyboard amp, I would mic the keyboard amp pretty much like you mic a guitar amp.

    just my 2 cents.
     
  6. alvagoldbook

    alvagoldbook Member

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    I would NOT use a ribbon mic on a piano. Not unless you want your piano to have a slight distortion sound to it.
     
  7. rah3

    rah3 Gold Supporting Member

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    Too many questions to ask before making recommendations -

    Is the piano in a studio? (Acoustically correct space)
    Is this a solo piano piece?
    What genre of music?
    Is this piano track going to be used on a track with other instruments?
    Are you tracking with other instruments in the same room?
    Do you want a good stereo image of the piano?
    Does the piece use the entire range of the piano or is it a R&R track?

    Can you narrow down the variables?

    -RAH3
     
  8. MichaelK

    MichaelK Member

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    I would first try whichever has the flattest response curve or widest frequency range, hopefully it will be one and the same mic.
     
  9. nor

    nor Member

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    Two powered condensers (no battery power).

    One on the open end, about halfway up the opening, flush with the lid (when the piano top is opened/closed it should just clear the mic). Point it at the midpoint of the soundboard.

    Place the other on the back (away from the pianist) - position depends on the piano. Have the pianist play while you move your head around to find the sweet spot - put mic #2 there.

    These are just starting points, YMMV. Don't care for any of those choices for piano...
     
  10. Tubes and Strings

    Tubes and Strings Supporting Member

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    answers below...

     

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