Sunday, June 19, 2011

June 11, 2011 Merriweather Post Pavillion, Columbia, MD Sources Review

Phish brought their summer tour to a two night stand at Merriweather Post Pavillion.  I've only seen one show there, and it was a barn-burner back in 1998. This night wasn't as memorable as that one, but it offers a few choice nuggets.  Not nearly as many tapers made the trip as did to Camden the night before, but there are still 4 different sources to choose from.  Thanks go out to the tapers that did record this night and took the time to share their recordings with all of us.

Source 1 (hereafter KM140 source)
Source: Neumann ak40 > lc3ka > km 100 > V3(spdif) > (Oade) R-44 (24/48)
Location: Center Section Row DD seat 135
Transfer: sdhc>audacity>cdwave>tlh

16 bit source

Source 2 (hereafter DPA source)
Source: DPA 4022 (ortf)> oade m248> mytek stereo 192 adc> sd 744t
Location: OTS/JROC/7'
Transfer: 744>samplitude>cd wave editor>tlh

16 bit source

Source 3 (hereafter MK4v source)
Source: schoeps mk4v (nos)> kc5> m222> nt222>sonosax sx-m2> sd 744t
Location: OTS/JROC/7'
Transfer: 744>samplitude>cd wave editor>tlh

16 bit source

Source 4 (hereafter SPTFB2 source)
Source: SP-TFB-2 > SP-SPSB-10 > MARANTZ-PMD620
Location: LAWN 

16 bit source 

Phish - 6/11/11 "Wilson" > "Sand" from Phish on Vimeo.

None of these sources are perfect, but they all sound pretty good.  All of them could use a bit more of Mike, so perhaps he just wasn't as loud in the room as he was at some of the other venues?  Anybody at the show who could comment on that would be great to hear from.

The KM140 source, like the DPA source, has noticeable wind noise at the beginning of the show.  There is also slight phase-shift consistent with wind, though not nearly as prominent as on PNC night 1 recordings.  Mike is fairly muddy down low and could certainly be up in the mix more.  On Sand, you can hear that the bass isn't as tight sounding as on the DPA's.

The DPA source is the best of the evening.  As I mentioned above, it does suffer from some wind noise, and Mike isn't as loud as I would like him, however of the 4 sources available is has the best bass tone and the high-end is pretty good too. 

The MK4v source, like the other sources, has low bass levels.  It is also, like the KM140, a bit muddy in the lowest frequencies.

The SPTFB2 source has good definition on the bass, but the overall sound is distant.  Likely because the recording was from the lawn, the crowd is noticeably louder on this recording.  Again, the bass could be up higher in the mix.

Happy listening!


  1. Hi! I was at both MPP1(pit) and MPP2(near OTS).

    For MPP1, the low end was tremendous near the back of the pit Fish-side, but it rolled off significantly as you moved closer to the stage. I suspect there was quarter-space loading happening at the back of the pit, as the floor and back walls of the pit were solid concrete. Both Mike and the kick drum were physically moving my body. A great experience! Unfortunately, I had to flee to the lawn mid set2, since it got so crowded I couldn't deal anymore. It sounded terrible on the lawn, very quiet and lots of crowd chatter.

    For MPP2 I was seated near the OTS, and the low end was not very strong. Nowhere near as strong as towards the front of the center section seats and back part of the pit. Mid to high-range was excellent though.

    Thanks so much for your reviews!

  2. I've got a buddy working on remastering one of these and on the next night. If that gets done, I'll have a link to it. He can do wonders with a good source. Bring up the bass a tad, etc. Thanks for your input. I heard there was a really big ceiling fan in the venue and that is what causes the wind noise on the tapes.

  3. you should go back and review my mk41 source for this nite. i was late to post it....first night i had run this configuration of gear, and was worried i had run it too hot. Not so....sounds pretty sick. Might be my own favorite sounding nite of my mini-tour....