What Mic to Use?

Discussion in 'Digital Audio' started by Sycodon, May 5, 2009.

  1. Sycodon macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 5, 2009
    #1
    Hi,

    I am new to digital audio and I am looking for advice about what kind of mic I should get for my application.

    The mic will go inside a tympani drum. It needs to be able to pick up very faint tones so that I can precisely measure the frequency at which the head is vibrating. Of course this means that it also has to be able to stand up to tremdously loud tones. So, very sensitve and accurate, yet robust.

    Second, I am looking for a primer of sorts on microphone technology and who the major players are.

    Please expound freely!
    Thx
     
  2. hakukani macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    Location:
    Hawaii
    #2
    Why inside the timpani? The head vibrates in different modes, at varying frequencies.

    Have you read TD Rossings book on the acoustics of percussion instruments?

    http://books.google.com/books?id=xqbNlVUsTU4C
     
  3. Sycodon thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 5, 2009
    #3
    It will be inside the tympani because it will become a permanent fixture. It will be less likely to be hit/bent/knocked off, etc.
     
  4. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2002
    Location:
    toronto
    #4
    so you're looking for a measurement mic?

    i'd be looking at Earthworks, for starters.
     
  5. Sycodon thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 5, 2009
    #5
    Hmmm...thanks for the tip. But I'm interested in only about $100 worth of precision...not $450!

    Do you have any sub-$100 suggestions?

    Thx
     
  6. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    Jul 18, 2002
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    toronto
    #6
    yes: rent.
     
  7. Sdashiki macrumors 68040

    Sdashiki

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    Location:
    Behind the lens
    #7
    well said. :D
     
  8. ChrisA macrumors G4

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    Jan 5, 2006
    Location:
    Redondo Beach, California
    #8

    If you goal is ONLY to measure frequencies and NOT the relative power in each frequency (that would be measuring the power spectrum) then any old cheap mic will be good enough.

    You will need "measurement mike if you need a flat frequency response. You also need a good mic to make good recording, Bt if all you need ate frequencies and just know a Sure SM57 or one of the sm57 knock offs. these dynamic mics can take a lot of abuse and sound presure.

    But you need to be more speciifc about what you are going to do with the recordings

    If the goal is to measure the relative power in each frequency that people will hear during a performance then you will want the mic outside the drum on a stand. unless of course you typically perfoorm with your listenings inside the drum. There are likely all kinds of standing waves inside that drive the all sides of the drum into hormonics of those. You really have to think about the goal in detail. But if you just want freq. and don't care anything about freq. response then you don't have to spend much. $100 would do well enough. Even if the recording engineeers here say it will sound poor you may not care if the goal is very narow - just measure the fundometnly frequency, say for purposes of tuning

    I've used the built in mic on a iMac to tune a bass guitar. I used the tunner the is built into Logic Express. It worked well except that I don't really want to carry an iMac around my little Korg tunner works as well

    That is another option. Spend 440 on a chromatic tunner.
     
  9. Benguitar Guest

    Benguitar

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2009
    #9
    Does anyone else suggest the Sennheiser e609 or the Shure UNIDYNE III 545SD?

    Both around $100.00

    I personally use the Sennhesier e609 for mic-ing my Fender Bassman 2x12 guitar cab, and through my Apogee Duet and I can adjust how sensitive it is. Been working great for me so far, and yet I haven't tried anything on it, it is said to be VERY durable. :rolleyes:
     
  10. hakukani macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    Location:
    Hawaii
    #10
    I'm confused about what you're trying to do here, as well.

    Are you doing science, tuning the drum, recording the timpani?

    (Incidently, the fundamental frequency of a timpani is not present when the timpani is struck as it usually is. The timpani is often used as an example in freshman acoustical physics classes to demonstrate that the sensation of pitch does not require the fundamental)
     
  11. ChrisA macrumors G4

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    Redondo Beach, California
    #11
    ...Does anyone have a link that explains this theory? I'd like to know why this is so.
     
  12. pkoch1 macrumors 6502a

    pkoch1

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2007
    Location:
    Boston
    #12
    I don't have a link, but to put it fairly simply, we know what the harmonic series sounds like by nature. Fundamental, octave, 5th, 4th, etc. We can sense the intervals between all of the overtones. If we take out the fundamental, and even the next bunch of overtones if you feel like it, we still pick up on the closer intervals of the harmonics that are higher up in the series. It doesn't sound like a higher pitch because the overtones are much closer together in frequency.

    If you really want to hear it, just pop a parametric eq on a sound of some sort and filter out the fundamental frequency with a high pass filter, then sweep the frequencies with a very narrow Q to hear all the overtones and their closer proximity as you go up.
     
  13. hakukani macrumors regular

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    Feb 9, 2008
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    Hawaii
    #13

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