Monday, January 10, 2011

12-28-10 DCU Center, Worcester, MA Source Review

Hey Now!
Thanks for your patience. 10 sources for this show made it difficult to decide the best recording, and frankly, most are quite good, but all have some flaws.  As always, I want to thank the tapers for making such great recordings and getting them out to the community so fast.  Without their hard work, this kind of site wouldn't be possible.

Source 1 (hereafter MK22 source)
Source: Schoeps MK22>KC5>CMC6>Sonosax SX-M2>Apogee Mini-me(aes out 24bit/96khz)>COAX>Edirol R-44
Location: ORTF FOB DFC 60' from stage
Transfer: SDHC Card>usb>Macbook Pro>Wave Editor(tracking,fades,add gain,resample(izotope)/dither(mbit+) to 16bit/44.1k)>XAct(FLAC 8,ffp,fix sbe)

16 bit source
24 bit source

Source 2 (hereafter Beyer source)
Source: beyerdynamic CK930 > Sonosax SX-M2 > Marantz PMD-661 w/ "Oade Concert Mod" (@ 24 bit / 96 kHz)
Location: dead center of the front row of the taper's section
mics angled 90 degrees, spaced approximately 8 inches
Transfer: SDHC Card > Samplitude SE v9.1.1 (fades, resample to 44.1 kHz, dither to 16 bit, track splits) > FLAC v1.2.1 (Level 8)

16 bit source
24 bit source

Source 3 (hereafter BSC source)
Source: BSC1-K3 (hypers)>Lunatec V3 Analog>FR-2LE [BA TMod] (24/96)
Location: OTS/DFC/DIN/approx. 9' high
Transfer: CF Card > Audacity (fades, tracking, slight gain adjustment) > r8brain (downsampling) > TLH > Flac (level 8)

16 bit source
24 bit source

Source 4 (hereafter Busman source)
Source Busman Bsc1 (Hypers)HYDRA silver Shorty XLR'sFostex FR-2LE(Busman T-mod) @2496
Location OTS
Transfer CF CardWavelab 6.0(Resample and DitheringCD Wave(tackingTLH(flac 16 level 8)

16 bit source

Source 5 (hereafter AKG483 source)
Source: AKG c480b/ck63(DINa,OTS) > Lunatec V3 Digital > Edirol R-44(24/96)
Transfer: Wave > Soundforge 9.0(Normalize,Fade,Track,Resample,Dither 16/44.1) > Flac

16 bit source

Source 6 (hereafter MG200 source)
Source: Microtech Gefell M200's(DIN)>Audio Magic Hyper-Conductors>Edirol R-4(Oade T mod) @ 24/96
Location: OTS DFC
Transfer: R-4>USB>pc>Sound Forge 7(track, resample and dither to 16/44.1)> Flac Frontend 1.7.1

16 bit source

Source 7 (hereafter MG21+MG27 Matrix source)
Source 1: MG21 hyper's>Neve Portico 5012 (silk) mode>Tascam DR-680 @ 24/96
Source 2: MG27 omni's (3' split)>Lunatec V3>Tascam DR-680 @ 24/96
Location: behind soundboard just right of center, about 10' high
Transfer: Tascam DR-680 >Soundforge 9.0e (tracking, volume bump, fade on outro, resample, dither to 16/44.1) >Trader's Little Helper (flac conversion)

16 bit source

Source 8 (hereafter MK41 source)
Source: Schoeps One:MK41 (DINa) > KC5 > CMC6 > Apogee Mini-MP > Tascam HD-P2
@ 96 kHz/24 bit
Location: OTS: 2nd row, DFC, on stand 10-12' courtesy of Teddy
Transfer: Tascam HD-P2 > via firewire > Dell XPS M1730
Edited, downsampled, dithered and track split using
Vegas 9.0 & Sony Sound Forge 10.0c
Flac'd (8/8) using Trader's Little Helper

16 bit source
24 bit source

Source 9 (hereafter MK5 source)
Source: Schoeps mk5> KC5> M222> NT222> EAA PSP-2> SD 744t (@24bit/96kHz)
Location: FOB, DFC, 6' Stand, NOS, mk5/cardioid
Transfer: SD 744t> Samplitude SE 9.1.1(dither/resample)> CDWave> flac(16/44.1)

16 bit source
24 bit source

Source 10 (hereafter Sennheiser source)
Source: Sennheiser MD441U > Edirol R4Pro ( Oade preamp mod ) @ 24/88.2
Location: pointed at PA array, centered, 12.5 feet high.
Transfer: R4Pro > WaveBurner ( track on sector boundaries, fades, SRC, BDC ) > xACT ( to flac, and for tagging and checksums )

16 bit source

Again, sorry for the delay on getting this out.  There was a lot to plow through, coupled with family stuff, just couldn't get it done until today.

The MK22 source has kind of a hollow sound to it, its not that it's dull, it's just got a strange EQ to it.  There is a fair amount of crowd noise, which is not surprising considering it's an FOB source.  The bass has a bit of rumble to it, just not really clear.  The drums, however, sound nice and crisp.  Overall, this is not one of the best recordings from this evening.

The Beyer source, which was the best from the night before, suffers from low bass levels, which is surprising given that the night before the bass was excellent.  Trey sounds really in front on this recording for whatever reason.

The BSC source sounds a bit tinny, with extremely low bass in the mix.  The levels start very low, but are fixed after a few seconds, but even then, just not a lot of bass at all.

The Busman source, as typical for this fall, is very thin sounding, and the bass just isn't noticeable.

The AKG 483 source has a nicer bass presence than the previous 4 sources, but it is fairly rumbly as well.  Just not enough definition in the low-end for my tastes.

The MG200 source also suffers from relatively low bass levels. 

The MG21 Matrix sounds the best of all the sources.  It has nice highs, good mids, and good bass.  It is not as punchy as I would like, but it is the best of what is available.

The MK41 source has amazing levels, but the bass is still lacking in clarity at the low-end.  The Gefell matrix is just a bit better than this one.

The MK5 source, as usual, has excellent balance, but again, there isn't enough clarity at the very low-end.

The Sennheiser source, like the FOB MK22, sounds a bit hollow.  The bass is basically lost at the lowest frequencies.

After listening to all the sources, I have to wonder if the bass sounded good in the venue.  All of the sources suffer in one way or another from a lack of clarity in the lowest frequencies.  This was not a problem for the 27th.  Any comments from folks who were there would be appreciated.

Happy Listening!

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