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Author Topic: Do Mic pre's make a difference or mics?  (Read 5143 times)

Offline acupunk

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Do Mic pre's make a difference or mics?
« on: June 10, 2004, 11:47:28 am »
I just purchased the 3d audio mic pre CD.
there are several mic pre's to listen to. High end.
They all sound very similar, however the GML 8302 stood out.
Just beautiful.
Does it really that much what pre you have if it is clean?
or are the mics are more important?

Offline Eliott James

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Re: Do Mic pre's make a difference or mics?
« Reply #1 on: June 10, 2004, 01:38:49 pm »
Mics sound different, mic pres sound different, converters sound different, as do compressors, EQs, the recording medium........ most of them sound a little different, some of them sound very different....... but what sound you think sounds right depends on your taste only.


As to mics and mic pres, many have observed, and I agree, that mic placement has as much if not more impact on the sound than the sound character of the mic or mic pre.

Offline malice

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Re: Do Mic pre's make a difference or mics?
« Reply #2 on: June 10, 2004, 03:07:39 pm »
acupunk wrote on Thu, 10 June 2004 17:47

I just purchased the 3d audio mic pre CD.
there are several mic pre's to listen to. High end.
They all sound very similar, however the GML 8302 stood out.
Just beautiful.
Does it really that much what pre you have if it is clean?
or are the mics are more important?


Huh,


hmmmm,



I have to chime about this, I mean, I understand my opinion about this cd might be misunderstanded, but frankly ...


What is the point of this CD ????



I mean, I don't get it ...

here's why:

1) some pres might suck ass on several situation, and be great on others. One pre you would use on electric gtr might not be the one you pick for recording a tambourine. You would need like 10 CD (at least) to get the full idea ...

2) some mic are suiting a pre and some don't. I mean, I never use my TLM 193 anymore until I found a great combination for instance ...That's just an example. So basically, you would need like a hundred time the original amount of CD (10 >>>see paragraph 1: that would make 1000 ...)

3) Some pres have features that would change the tone for a given mic. Like the VIPRE for instance (that have adaptative impedance load) or the Requisite Pal+ (that have a feedback knob that add second order harmonics), most of them you can really change the tone by messing with the input/output level (like Summits Audio for instance).
Basically the different settings would lead to try like 3 or 4 different take per pre ... Huhhhhhh, that would make, hmmmmmm 3 to 4000 cds ????

4) Let's say that I just mentioned three brands not even represented, and that a quick look at the advertising at Lynn's site led me to the conclusion that we could name like 50 missing beauties at least ...

Huuhhhh, that would make (damn, I'm tired today)


hmmmm : 20,000 cds ...

and I'm being modest Very Happy


A lifetime to try and record ...


precisely my point


malice

Offline Fibes

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Re: Do Mic pre's make a difference or mics?
« Reply #3 on: June 10, 2004, 03:18:17 pm »
Trying to listen to what Lyn did is already tooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo much...

It's a nice effort at showing the nuances of pres, i am however of the belief that grabbing a pre that's in the ballpark and capturing the magic while it's still around is way more important than spending hours finding the perfect one for the source. Learn YOUR tools.

A good preamp (properly chosen) can do wonders for cheap mics and the mixing and matching of preamps (and mics)over the course of a project can help find sonic real estate for every track when it comes to mixing time. Cheaper pres when stacked can yield some haziness by the time they are multiplied out over the course of overdubbing. tracks can sound fine on their own but lack presence when thrown into the mix with other stuff. ....and then there's noise...
Fibes
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Offline bloodstone

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Re: Do Mic pre's make a difference or mics?
« Reply #4 on: June 10, 2004, 04:43:16 pm »
It's the old Catch-22.  A good mic can make a mediocre pre sound better, and a good pre can make a mediocre mic sound better.

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Offline Daniel_Dettwiler

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Re: Do Mic pre's make a difference or mics?
« Reply #5 on: June 10, 2004, 09:29:09 pm »
the longer I record the more I start to think that all those pres are not at all that important. Much more I like to spend time to check mics out. I think that the right mic on the perfect position is far more important that the pre. Normaly I just plug every mic into a GML Pre (I am lucky to have 12 GML Channals for use:-). Alternativly I might try DW-Fearn, Millenia HV3B or DBX Blue. But if I only had the GML's it wouldn't break the record to be honest.

daniel
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Offline Dan Kennedy

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Re: Do Mic pre's make a difference or mics?
« Reply #6 on: June 10, 2004, 11:34:56 pm »
It might be that you just have really f'ing good preamps too. Hard to fault any of them, for anything. Kind of a lofty position you got there...

Offline malice

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Re: Do Mic pre's make a difference or mics?
« Reply #7 on: June 11, 2004, 12:50:33 am »
Daniel_Dettwiler wrote on Fri, 11 June 2004 03:29

the longer I record the more I start to think that all those pres are not at all that important. Much more I like to spend time to check mics out. I think that the right mic on the perfect position is far more important that the pre.


I think the performer in front of the mic is what it is all about Smile

malice

Offline Daniel_Dettwiler

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Re: Do Mic pre's make a difference or mics?
« Reply #8 on: June 11, 2004, 01:27:05 pm »
Quote:

I think the performer in front of the mic is what it is all about

malice


So true (and often forgotten). And the Acoustics and the quality of the instruments... and the vibe in the place of the recording...  all 1000 times more important than what pre...

daniel
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Daniel Dettwiler
www.ideeundklang.com
www.volkshausstudio.com

Offline gtoledo3

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Re: Do Mic pre's make a difference or mics?
« Reply #9 on: June 11, 2004, 01:53:48 pm »
malice wrote on Fri, 11 June 2004 05:50

Daniel_Dettwiler wrote on Fri, 11 June 2004 03:29

the longer I record the more I start to think that all those pres are not at all that important. Much more I like to spend time to check mics out. I think that the right mic on the perfect position is far more important that the pre.


I think the performer in front of the mic is what it is all about Smile

malice


That is a fact, proven time and time again...

The main problem with the "preamp/mic/whatever cd's"- besides all of the other problems that have been listed- is that you are listening to solo-ed tracks. A pre will truly show it's sonic signature when you start stacking tracks up.

Offline davemc

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Re: Do Mic pre's make a difference or mics?
« Reply #10 on: June 11, 2004, 10:03:23 pm »
Every time I have purchased or tried a new mic pre or mic. I often already have by research an idea what I might use it on.
I will do some solo stuff to see the signiture.
Now when you solo this you really only start thinking X has more low-mid less high then Y. So you have to see after a few sessions moving things around what works best in certain situations. Everything is always changing that is why I have a varity of mics and mic pres so I can move colors around to create what I have inside my head.

Now a really good idea would be a multi track recording of say 4 different styles and using stock type of mics. Each going to say 8-10 different preamps.. How you would do this? I do not know. Again it would not give you the proper gain staging that some mic pres like better. Aslo using stock mics does not apply to everyone. Best bet is to research and see which you can try yourself.

Offline Lynn Fuston

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Re: Do Mic pre's make a difference or mics?
« Reply #11 on: June 12, 2004, 02:22:26 pm »
gtoledo3 wrote on Fri, 11 June 2004 12:53

malice wrote on Fri, 11 June 2004 05:50

Daniel_Dettwiler wrote on Fri, 11 June 2004 03:29

the longer I record the more I start to think that all those pres are not at all that important. Much more I like to spend time to check mics out. I think that the right mic on the perfect position is far more important that the pre.


I think the performer in front of the mic is what it is all about Smile

malice


That is a fact, proven time and time again...

The main problem with the "preamp/mic/whatever cd's"- besides all of the other problems that have been listed- is that you are listening to solo-ed tracks. A pre will truly show it's sonic signature when you start stacking tracks up.



You must've been reading my email. This project was already recorded earlier this spring. Six instruments (drums, elec. guitar, ac. guitar, bass, piano and voice) each recorded into a single song arrangement through each of 24 different preamps. 15 audio tracks wide, 24 preamp layers deep, the files are presented as 24/48 .wav's and you can either import them into the DAW of your choice or open the included PT mix file.

For more info and pictures, look in the Preamp Summit threads in this forum at 3dB.

 http://www.3daudioinc.com/cgi-bin/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=forum&a mp;a mp;f=22

Offline Lynn Fuston

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Re: Do Mic pre's make a difference or mics?
« Reply #12 on: June 12, 2004, 02:44:03 pm »
To answer your question, mic preamps make a very pronounced difference. Mics make an even more substantial difference. We auditioned between 3 and 6 mics for each source we recorded.

And here's a picture of Paul Leim, drummer, with me in front of the preamps we heard. He picked a clear favorite and first runner up among the ones we heard. He was truly shocked at how much difference there was between the preamps with everything else staying the same.

http://www.3daudioinc.com/DSCF0129.jpg

(sorry, can't figure out how to paste it into the message.)

Offline Peter Simonsen

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Re: Do Mic pre's make a difference or mics?
« Reply #13 on: June 12, 2004, 03:08:21 pm »
Lynn Fuston wrote on Sat, 12 June 2004 19:44

To answer your question, mic preamps make a very pronounced difference. Mics make an even more substantial difference. We auditioned between 3 and 6 mics for each source we recorded.



I would say you took to words right out of my mouth there Lynn. I agree preamps does make a difference..sometimes a Huge difference Wink

Kind regards

Peter
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Offline Jim Dugger

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Re: Do Mic pre's make a difference or mics?
« Reply #14 on: June 12, 2004, 05:22:15 pm »
Lynn Fuston wrote on Sat, 12 June 2004 13:44

And here's a picture of Paul Leim, drummer, with me in front of the preamps we heard. He picked a clear favorite and first runner up among the ones we heard. He was truly shocked at how much difference there was between the preamps with everything else staying the same.


Lynn,

You know from my posts on your forum I agree the pre can make a very significant difference.  That said...

I find the preamp becomes much more important the higher the gain.  So, with drums, sometimes I find the differece quite subtle indeed as often I am at the very lowest gain setting on the pre, pad on, and even then padding the output before the converter.  So, I guess I'm a little surprised Paul articulated hearing such a drastic difference pre-to-pre.

Could you describe the nature of the difference?

I did a "shoot out" on drums this morning... One preamp in particular is quite obviously different on snare, but beyond that I would say it's shades.  And, the pres I tested today were a quite different set of topologies:  Solid State Clean, Tube, 1073-like.  What am I missing?