Technical backstage: a small summary

Hi,

in that 2013’s last sunday I want write technical backstage section’s small summary.

I spoke about:

05 january 2014 I’ll start with new article about my eighties analog consolle D&R Dayner.

Happy new year!

Lorenzo

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Technical backstage: live recordings gears

It’s not a didactic section (when needed I’ll link related pages on manufacturer site) but so as to explain my approach to recording.


Hi,

since 1997 I recorded live shows like orchestra concerts, jazz ensemble and others with several audio recording systems.

I started with a dat-recorder Tascam DA-30 MKII, very reliable system, but with a no longer span memory (digital tape is a data frame with linear access) and 16 bit word-lenght. It worked from 48kHz to 32kHz (long duration). Tape lenght at 44.1/48kHz was from 5′ to 120′.

Today, it’s still available on my studio to transfer dat tape on audio files.

At the same time I bought two Alesis Adat blackface to make available multitracks recording with JLCooper Datamaster syncronizer.

This system worked with VHS tape at 48kHz@16bit to 42′ maximum recording lenght, as a consequence it was difficult to use it in live recording.

Adat blackface (image from net)

Adat blackface (image from net)

First recorder system on HD which I bought was two Roland VSR-880 coupled with digital consolle Roland VM7200.

At that time I was a Roland audio pro exhibitor.

Roland VSR880

Roland VSR-880

After I made a mobile workstation with an Apple iBook with RME Fireface800 and OctaMic. Actually I choose to substitute iBook with a MacBook.

Apple iBook with RME Fireface800 + OctaMic

Apple iBook with RME Fireface800 + OctaMic

Later I built a DAW Windows based with RME HDSP 9652+9632 (total 34 tracks). I used it to record Ottavo Ritcher “Molly’s Malone” live album (here Watermelon man from album). Today this mobile station is discontinued.

PC Windows mobile recorder with HDSP 9652 + 9632

PC Windows mobile recorder with HDSP 9652 + 9632

Today I have three workstations avalaible:

– Apogee Rosetta800 with firewire card coupled with Apple MacBook.

My best workstation: eight Shoeps microphones, eight Millenia preamps and eight Apogee Rosetta800 AD/DA channels.

I used it to record several live session of orchestra and choir ensemble (see antique music demo here)

MacBook with Apogee Rosetta800 with firewire card

MacBook with Apogee Rosetta800 with firewire card

– RME Fireface800 coupled with Apple MacBook

26 tracks with twelve microphones preamp on-board

I used it to record many concert of orchestra ensemble (see orchestral demo here).

MacBook + Fireface800

MacBook + Fireface800

– Joeco BlackBox BBR1U system

It’s a stand-alone system, 24 tracks, it write an audio streaming directly to external HD up to 96kHz@24bit, very reliable and with a very fine AD/DA converter. It’s perfect to record 24 tracks at 96kHz@24bit

I bought it in september 2012 to record 24 tracks 10hour/day for three months (over 900 hours total) during Alberto Garutti exposition at the PAC – Padiglione d’Arte Contemporanea in Milan.

Furthermore I used it to record new live album of Stormy Six “Benvenuti nel ghetto”, live album of Andrea Fedeli jazz trio, presentation of Born4Music jazz department and the last live session of Aspis choir.

Joeco BlackBox BBR1U

Joeco BlackBox BBR1U

Here to visit my website.

Cheers,

Lorenzo

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Copyright © 2013-2014 by iuatwest. All rights Reserved.
This material has been copyrighted, feel free to share it with others; it can be distributed via social media or pingbacks or added to websites; please do not change the original content and, provide appropriate credit by including the author’s name @ http://iuatwest.com and your readers shall not be charged by you under any circumstance.

Choir Aspis live recording

Hi,

yesterday I recorded the Aspis choir in concert at S.Ambrogio Church, Rozzano vecchia (MI).

I used Shoeps and AKG microphones, Millenia HV-3R preamplifier and Joeco BlackBox BBR1U recorder.

I recorded at 96kHz@24bit.

This was the last session to bring up the audio material to make their new album.

15dic2013_coro

Aspis Choir – 2013 december 15

15dic2013_Joeco

Joeco BlackBox BBR1U with Millenia HV-3R

The concert was recorded on video, coming soon I’ll link videoclip.

Cheers,

Lorenzo

Technical backstage: microphones preamplifiers

It’s not a didactic section (when needed I’ll link related pages on manufacturer site) but so as to explain my approach to recording.


Today I’ll speak about the second ring of the audio chain that is a microphone preamplifier.

I tried several of them while I was thinking about the adage “the worse ring define entire chain quality”.

At the end I chose Focusrite and Millenia.

Focusrite ISA series

This serie is originate from an original Rupert Neve’s project, realized to George Martin’s Air studio which sidecar of Studio One’s Neve consolle and later developed into well-knowed Forte consolle (late eighties).

Here you find Air studio historical page about Neve consolle and Focusrite sidechain.

Sir George Martin with original sidechain and ISA110

Sir George Martin with original sidechain and ISA110

Neve consolle A4792 with FSA110 modules sidecar (far left)

Neve consolle A4792 with FSA110 modules sidecar (far left)

Earlies modules made from FSA110 were ISA110 (premic/eq section) and ISA130 (dynamic section) where ISA standing for Input Signal Amplifier.

Further developments were ISA430 (producer pack) and ISA220 (session pack) strip channels with premic, eq section, dynamic section (ISA220 only compressor), de-essing and output stage.

Today it’s possible to find some racked channel strip.

Latest models are microphones preamplifiers rack modules ISA428, ISA828, ISA One (desk version) and Isa Two.


I bought two ISA428 with AD converter card and two ISA220.

They work very fine on vocals, percussions and instrumental direct inject like electric bass, guitar and piezo transducer with a nice and solid presence. I like ISA220 coupled with NeumannU87ai to record voice.

ISA eq is very sharp gear and all the small changes are immediatly audible and it’s perfect to add warmth, presence and intelligibility to every tracks. Dynamic section is beautiful with capaticy to forceful gain reduction (10dB) without artefacts.

I use both ISA220 like a sidecar of my analog consolle D&R Dayner.

Focusrite ISA 8-channel ADC cards on board on my ISA428 sound like my Apogee Rosetta800 (that is very good) and they convert eight channel each, summing ISA428 four channels with four external channels. Then two ISA428, eight microphone amplifier and sixteens AD channels conversion.

In this record I used FF ISA428 on drums and direct input of ISA220 for bass (mix is only level and panpot, no eq, comp or fx)

Millenia Media

Millenia Media is a very fine manufacturing gear founded by John and Cynthia LaGrou, his microphone preamplifier (here a chart on the design of microphone preamps by John LaGrou) are used everywhere it’s needed dynamic, wide and flat response, sensibility and depth of sound image.

Their gear is precious on acoustic instruments, classic and jazz ensemble and everywhere it’s fundamental absolute sonic and musical purity.


I bought a Millenia HV-3R, remote controlled version, eight channels microphones preamplifier to work at the best with my Shoeps microphones (see here my post on my microphones)

His sound is very clearly with excellent focus on mid and low frequency and very open high end.

This year I recorded a jazz ensemble (electric guitar, double bass, violin, sax and accordion) in a my studio but in a live like situation. Without worries about ambient noise, I used Shoeps and Millenia to best separation and quality of the sounds. The musicians have been very impressed, me too 😉

Listen them here (studio session)

or watch them here

Here on baroque music (live session)

Cheers,

Lorenzo


Copyright © 2013-2014 by iuatwest. All rights Reserved.
This material has been copyrighted, feel free to share it with others; it can be distributed via social media or pingbacks or added to websites; please do not change the original content and, provide appropriate credit by including the author’s name @ http://iuatwest.com and your readers shall not be charged by you under any circumstance.