Nat

Mic to record solo violin
« on: April 28, 2015, 04:37:28 PM »
Hello forum,

I've got to record a solo violinist for a project shortly, doing some overdubs to create 4 separate string parts using the one violinist. They'll be mixed relatively in the background on quite a complicated Latin mix with tons of perc, piano, double bass, flute, layers of BVs etc.

I'm going to the violinist's house to record with just my laptop, an interface, headphones and whatever mics I take with me. It's going to be in his livingroom so the acoustic unfortunately won't be very good, so I'm going to have to mic quite closely I imagine.

The question I have is, what mic would you use in this situation? I've recorded string sections in a nice room successfully before using a pair or Coles 4038s but unfortunately I no longer own those mics having sold them in a fit of madness a few years ago when I thought I was getting out of recording! But I've never recorded solo violin before in these circumstances. What I have available is an Oktava MK012 with omni, cardiod or hyper cardioid capsules, an Audio Technica AT4033 or a Neumann KMS104 (actually a hand held SDC intended for onstage vocals, hypercardiod). I did a little research and I could hire a Neumann M49, U67 or U47 (or anything the have at FX Rentals in London really) for the day relatively inexpensively - the question is, would it be worth it, and which would you go for?

Or could I get a result with what I've already got?

Advice appreciated!

Nat
--Nat


bernbrue

Re: Mic to record solo violin
« Reply #1 on: April 28, 2015, 04:59:38 PM »
I had very good results with a Neumann KM84.
Bernd
« Last Edit: April 28, 2015, 05:48:52 PM by bernbrue »

abbey road d enfer

Re: Mic to record solo violin
« Reply #2 on: April 28, 2015, 05:18:45 PM »
What I have available is an Oktava MK012 with omni, cardiod or hyper cardioid capsules, an Audio Technica AT4033.
I would be perfectly happy with these, no need to hire.
Who's right or wrong is irrelevant. What matters is what's right or wrong.
"The important thing is not to convince, but to give pause for thought." (B. Werber)
Star ground is for electricians.

Upacesky

Re: Mic to record solo violin
« Reply #3 on: April 28, 2015, 06:01:09 PM »
Here a small image about some violin radiations:

http://www.phy.duke.edu/~dtl/136126/restrict/after/10/vlnrad.gif

abbey road d enfer

Re: Mic to record solo violin
« Reply #4 on: April 28, 2015, 06:26:06 PM »
Here a small image about some violin radiations:

http://www.phy.duke.edu/~dtl/136126/restrict/after/10/vlnrad.gif
It doesn't show radiation in the vertical direction.
Violin is usually (and with good resaon) mic'ed from above.
Who's right or wrong is irrelevant. What matters is what's right or wrong.
"The important thing is not to convince, but to give pause for thought." (B. Werber)
Star ground is for electricians.

joaquins

Re: Mic to record solo violin
« Reply #5 on: April 28, 2015, 06:35:10 PM »
I'd go for the Oktava, pick the polar pattern in place, you can carry the extra capsules without trouble I guess   :o

JS
If I don't know how it works, I prefer don't turn it on.

shot

Re: Mic to record solo violin
« Reply #6 on: April 29, 2015, 02:03:33 AM »
I've had good results using Oktava 012 with pad fitted when violin is played hard.
I feel that oktava sometimes can distort on louder signals but 10db pad fitted between capsule and body is perfect to control that.
 :)

chefducuisine

Re: Mic to record solo violin
« Reply #7 on: April 30, 2015, 01:18:17 PM »
I never recorded a solo violin but a group of violins instead. So probably this is of limited help...

In the past I used a pair of M149 in a Blumlein setup (2x Figure of eight).
I read this in a book from Bruce Swedien and simply tried it. If you have a nice room this does the trick...
I always had excellent results.

pucho812

Re: Mic to record solo violin
« Reply #8 on: April 30, 2015, 01:19:47 PM »
best violin mic I ever used was a km-86 by neumann.
Every mic has a purpose it might be a door stop or a hammer, but every mic has a purpose.

Whoops

Re: Mic to record solo violin
« Reply #9 on: April 30, 2015, 09:40:39 PM »
What I have available is an Oktava MK012 with omni, cardiod or hyper cardioid capsules, an Audio Technica AT4033.
I would be perfectly happy with these, no need to hire.

Your Mics are fine, dont need to rent anything.
Use two mics, one on each separate tracks
- Oktava MK012 with  cardiod capsule if you want a more focused and less room sound, or with the omni capsule if you want a more natural sound and can live with the added ambiance.
- Audio Technica AT4033

Use the Oktava as the main one (10 to 20 cm) and try another position with the AT4033, if the room sounds good, use the AT further away to capture the Violin with more room ambience.

Try to avoid the Harshness of the Bow normally between at 5khz to 10khz, moving the Oktava a little bit until you find the sweet spot.
« Last Edit: May 05, 2015, 10:20:16 AM by Whoops »


dmp

Re: Mic to record solo violin
« Reply #10 on: May 01, 2015, 09:22:01 AM »
My experience with Violin has been that close micing is very difficult because the sound up close isn't the sound you hear a few feet back (and like). Once I recorded with a SDC up close - a few inches above the soundboard on the bass side - (AT4031 or AKG 460, not sure which) and a ribbon a couple feet overhead on the bass side.
The ribbon sounded great, the SDC was unusable. This was for folk rock  - so a softer sound was desired.
 

abbey road d enfer

Re: Mic to record solo violin
« Reply #11 on: May 01, 2015, 09:52:05 AM »
My experience with Violin has been that close micing is very difficult because the sound up close isn't the sound you hear a few feet back (and like). Once I recorded with a SDC up close - a few inches above the soundboard on the bass side - (AT4031 or AKG 460, not sure which) and a ribbon a couple feet overhead on the bass side.
The ribbon sounded great, the SDC was unusable. This was for folk rock  - so a softer sound was desired.
 
I've recorded hundreds of violin tracks with a Primo electret mic back when I was in folk music. Now I use either an MTG 295 or an AT4041, mainly country music. It should be positioned more than a few inches from the soundboard, rather a couple feet.
Who's right or wrong is irrelevant. What matters is what's right or wrong.
"The important thing is not to convince, but to give pause for thought." (B. Werber)
Star ground is for electricians.

emrr

Re: Mic to record solo violin
« Reply #12 on: May 01, 2015, 11:33:25 AM »
The answer among your mics rests entirely on whether they are a strident sounding player or smooth and mellow.  Not knowing, I'd personally probably start with the oktava omni, it's a bit smoother sounding than the other capsules.   I might change it.  So....there's a million opinions. 
Best,

Doug Williams
Electromagnetic Radiation Recorders

"I think this can be better. Some kind of control that's intuitive, not complicated like a single knob" - Crusty

"Back when everything sounded g

Rocinante

Re: Mic to record solo violin
« Reply #13 on: May 02, 2015, 12:41:48 AM »
I've recorded more than a few violins.  I also had a really anal retentive violinist band-mate (and studio musician) who obsessed with having his violin sound perfect in every performance recorded or live.  He was also really talented (and a dear friend) so I looked over his idiosyncrasies no matter how annoying they were.  But boy oh boy did we go through mics and pre amps before he was happy. 
I've used both of the mics you have (and still do) on violin with good results.
The km84 like Bernbrue mentioned I rented once and it gave me great results (or easiest to capture) but I remember being really surprised by the AT4033 and it's usually one of the first I grab when dealing with acoustic instruments (or at least the scratch tracks).  The MC-012 is really perfect for violins as I have found that it tames the sharpness that can come across with stringed instruments YMMV.   Having two is great.
Violinist can be really drastically different so mic placement really takes experimentation with each particular violinist.  As a general rule I never close mic a violin.   I try to keep the mic roughly 10 inches from the violin and at about 10 inches above and facing far right of the violin or the players shoulder.  IMO I think its best not to aim for the sound hole or strings as its way too easy to pick up just the highs as well as the bow scrape.   
  For preamps I had read it was best and have always used very clean pres.  That said the best recording of a violin I ever got was actually from an Avalon so....
There's obviously so many variables like the room your recording in, the players ability and style, etc... that make an incredible difference how it will turn out.  But like others have said and I am really just echoing their suggestions both of the mics you have are good for tracking violin.

 
 
If there's a harder way to do this, I haven't found it yet.

gyraf

Re: Mic to record solo violin
« Reply #14 on: May 05, 2015, 03:54:07 AM »
I like an U89 on solo violin.

Come to think of it, this is the only use where I like the U89..

If you need enhancing the "real" violin sound, try a KM84 - it tends to sweeten up points where the '89 gets harsh.

Jakob E.
..note to self: don't let Harman run your company..

pH

Re: Mic to record solo violin
« Reply #15 on: May 05, 2015, 01:42:28 PM »
I've had great luck with dynamics, they may not be as detailed as a condenser but can soften a harsh top end and minimize the room sound. Recently did a session like yours, living room on a fairly busy street, an EV RE55 sounded excellent. Sometimes I've gone through all the fancy mikes and ended up using a 57.

Paul

Andy Peters

Re: Mic to record solo violin
« Reply #16 on: May 07, 2015, 01:45:19 PM »
I've had great luck with dynamics, they may not be as detailed as a condenser but can soften a harsh top end and minimize the room sound.  Recently did a session like yours, living room on a fairly busy street, an EV RE55 sounded excellent. Sometimes I've gone through all the fancy mikes and ended up using a 57.

What you want is a Beyerdynamic M201TG. As Steve Albini says, it's what the SM57 would be if the SM57 was a microphone.

-a
"On the Internet, nobody can hear you mix a band"

Re: Mic to record solo violin
« Reply #17 on: August 02, 2015, 02:43:13 AM »
I'll join in and agree that the KM 84 / KM 86 are really nice mikes for a solo violin. The only thing I'd add is that while the polar pattern is extremely smooth and lovely, basically flat over the front hemisphere, the KK84 capsule is fairly 'wide'. If the room is not that good, it's worth tweaking the placement and/or adding some gobos or portable absorbers to clean up the near field around the performer.

The Oktava MC012 would be a good second choice, and the same placement and absorption suggestions would apply to the Oktava cardioid capsule. I haven't used their hyper capsule, and maybe that would work well? Worth a try.

Re: Mic to record solo violin
« Reply #18 on: November 14, 2016, 10:51:23 AM »
sE Electronics Neve RN17. You can thank me later.

kante1603

Re: Mic to record solo violin
« Reply #19 on: November 14, 2016, 01:42:36 PM »
Schoeps CMC6 or CMC5 plus the capsule you need,MK4 as a standard to start with.


Best,


Udo.