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  1. #1

    Bucket mute works wonders...

    I don\'t know why I didn\'t think of this before, but I didn\'t like to record my trumpet playing to much because I have a tiny room, it\'s always hot as hell, and my trumpet sounds too sizzly when I record to my condenser mic. I used a bucket mute, and rerecorded/added some parts, and it works amazing things. It sounds distant for soft sections, and you hear the trumpet, and not all the nasty stuff that you hear when you record too close. Try it, it does work quite well.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Bruce A. Richardson's Avatar
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    Re: Bucket mute works wonders...

    Originally posted by A_Sapp:
    I don\'t know why I didn\'t think of this before, but I didn\'t like to record my trumpet playing to much because I have a tiny room, it\'s always hot as hell, and my trumpet sounds too sizzly when I record to my condenser mic. I used a bucket mute, and rerecorded/added some parts, and it works amazing things. It sounds distant for soft sections, and you hear the trumpet, and not all the nasty stuff that you hear when you record too close. Try it, it does work quite well.
    <font size=\"2\" face=\"Verdana, Arial\">Hey,

    What mic are you using?

    I\'ll tell you the very best investment I ever made for my room, and it\'s a reasonable thing, too. Auralex. They\'re a foam treatment company (www.auralex.com) and they have a GREAT service where they\'ll design an acoustic treatment for your room based on a drawing.

    All you have to do is draw the floor plan (including gear, doors, windows, etc.), draw the walls, indicate the size of any openings, etc., and fax it to them. They have a team of on-staff acoustics engineers, who will design a custom treatment for your room--FOR FREE.

    I had $$$$$$ tied up in Sonex treatments in my room, and it was really horrible. I had given up. The new Auralex treatment was less than half what I spent on the Sonex, and I love the sound. I was about ready to ditch my monitors--now I wouldn\'t part with them. My mixes are translating perfectly now.

    But the reason I mention it to you is that your \"tiny room\" may be helped a great deal with ceiling diffusers. A bank of diffusers will make a small room sound much larger because it breaks up the \"ping pong\" effect between floor and ceiling, allowing you to use a lot less absorption to control the room.

    One of the first things I did in this room was record trumpet, and I was able to get a beautifully realized tone with a mic distance of about 3-4 feet from the bell. Without acoustic treatment you\'d get more wall-bounce than tone, but the Auralex really keeps the wall bounce out of the mic and lets me use these distances.

    I suspect if you\'re getting a harsh tone without the bucket you may be mic\'ing closer than that.

    For really close mic\'ing a trumpet (as in more of a jazz or pop tone), one trick that helps is mic\'ing from above at a downward angle. It takes the diaphragm out of direct line with \"the pipe\" and reduces all those extraneous close-up noises that you really don\'t want to hear. This technique is too \"inside your head\" for most orchestral work, but for intimate combo-type recordings it\'s nice...sort of a Freddie Hubbard/CTI kind of sound.

  3. #3

    Re: Bucket mute works wonders...

    Thanx, Bruce for posting.

    I\'m in Taiwan (sub trop weather) soo everything is made of concrete. I think I\'ll give Aurelex a try. That should help my heavy reflecting surfaces..I\'ve seen them advertised in the backs of recording mags.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Bruce A. Richardson's Avatar
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    Re: Bucket mute works wonders...

    Originally posted by Marty:
    Thanx, Bruce for posting.

    I\'m in Taiwan (sub trop weather) soo everything is made of concrete. I think I\'ll give Aurelex a try. That should help my heavy reflecting surfaces..I\'ve seen them advertised in the backs of recording mags.
    <font size=\"2\" face=\"Verdana, Arial\">When you call them (or write) ask for Jeff \"Ironjaw\" Hedback. You can tell him I sent you. His email address is:

    ironjaw@auralex.com

    Jeff was absolutely amazing with me. On their website there is a form which allows you to fill in the blanks and which coaches you through all the information they need to do your consultation.

    They have done so many rooms, chances are they\'ve already done one exactly like yours and have all the design plots ready to go. If they don\'t, or if you\'ve got a particularly egregious problem, they\'ll run a computer analysis.

    The problem with my room was twofold. First, the Sonex actually had quite a top-heavy absorption pattern so not only was I getting too much mid and bass at the mix position, I was getting way too much bass overall. Ironically, this made the room sound like there was not enough bass. We added lots of diffusion (the back half of the ceiling is a T-Fusor grid), a pretty good amount of full-band absorption (4\" foam), and lots of bass trapping in the corners (LENRDs and Corner Blocks).

    I can\'t tell you how jazzed I was when I just got the diffusers up, even before I got the absorbers and bass traps in. The room totally changed. Before it was OK for mixing, because the SONEX wasn\'t exactly bad stuff and I had learned to compensate for the bass. But it was never a very good recording space, and I had to mic a lot closer than I really like to do--so I generally used outside studios whenever I needed to do critical tracking.

    No more. Man, those diffusers make the room sound like it\'s three times as large, and all of the phase anomalies around the room just instantly went away. Diffusers take direct sound, and they scatter it 180 degrees, so the acoustic effect is the same as if you\'d raised the ceiling about ten feet!!

    Now I don\'t want to record anywhere but here, because I\'m getting the best tracks I\'ve gotten in my life. Recording vocals and solo instruments right under the diffuser grid makes the room sound like a medium size soundstage--nice life, but no reflections getting into the mic. If I want to really tighten down, I just move the mic to the other half of the room that has full absorption, and it sounds extremely tight but not dead.

    I really went hog-wild, and probably spent about $2500 in all--but really, that\'s about the price of a single Giga-computer, and the difference that investment made has already paid itself back five times over in outside studio time I would have needed. I was really concerned with the look as well, because I see a lot of clients here, so I spent probably double what I would have needed if I weren\'t also going for a certain look. For instance, instead of just trapping the corners of the room, I trapped the entire ceiling and down the corners to the floor, so the LENRDS would look like gigantic crown molding. Since you can never have too much bass trapping (it just helps reduce the overall buildup level after a point), this worked out great and it looks really great too. It just drove my price up quite a bit because it was about three times as much bass trapping as was actually needed to control my problem.

    I\'d urge anyone who wants to explore this to get in touch with Jeff. The analysis doesn\'t cost you a cent, and Jeff is a great guy. He\'s not just an acoustics engineer, he\'s a player, so he relates very well to musical issues. He\'ll even design your treatment in phases, so you can take care of the worst problems first and deal with less problematic issues as you can afford them. Since they don\'t sell anything direct, they\'ll simply give you the treatment plan and tell you where to contact a dealer to get the diffusers and foam.

    I can\'t say enough good things about the whole experience. And I can say this, for sure...I was shocked at how my opinion of some sample libraries changed when I changed my acoustic treatment!! And I was going from an expensively treated room to another expensively treated room. If you\'re going from an untreated space to an Auralex-treated space, you will crap your pants when you hear the difference in what comes out of your speakers (which I also experienced, since it was about four days of pure hell working with an untreated room before the Auralex came in).

    Good luck, and give Jeff a call. You\'ve got nothing to lose, and a lot to gain!!

  5. #5

    Re: Bucket mute works wonders...

    double thanx,Bruce. I wrote Jeff (and mentioned your name) and I imagine he\'ll be in touch soon. I think I send him some jpegs of the room, as well...so he can see what a foolish situation I\'m in.

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