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Author Topic: Schoeps - "sound" and impedance issues  (Read 19056 times)

Offline Plush

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Re: Schoeps - "sound" and impedance issues
« Reply #30 on: July 23, 2005, 02:06:10 pm »
I find the discussion very surprising.
Actually I'm shocked by those who call Schoeps
a grainy sound. Not an exciting sound??--then get a more exciting
instrument!

My maxim is:

(With a neutral microphone)"The microphone is not making the sound.
                           The source is making the sound."

I don't take this discussion seriously at all.
Hudson Fair
Atelier HudSonic, Chicago

http://www.myspace.com/hudsonek

Offline David Satz

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Re: Schoeps - "sound" and impedance issues
« Reply #31 on: July 23, 2005, 04:37:06 pm »
Plush, like you I don't know what to say if people call Schoeps microphones "grainy" sounding, but that's partly because I've never been able to figure out what "grainy" is supposed to mean where sound is concerned. I only know that it isn't good. But even conceding that a "neutral" microphone still acts like a microphone and that our conventional ways of reproducing audio still don't sound quite like the real thing most of the time, I don't want false promises to be left hanging in the air regarding Schoeps microphones.

Specifically, not quite all of their music capsules are designed for the flattest possible frequency response. The MK 4V cardioid (the one that is laterally addressed) has a slight high frequency "marketing peak," and any of their omni capsules other than the MK 2 will have a high-frequency rise on axis if it is used closer to the sound source than intended--though that's just as true for anybody else's omni capsules unless they are teeny-tiny.

--best regards

Offline LRRec

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Re: Schoeps - "sound" and impedance issues
« Reply #32 on: July 23, 2005, 09:27:37 pm »
Plush wrote on Sat, 23 July 2005 19:06

I find the discussion very surprising.
Actually I'm shocked by those who call Schoeps
a grainy sound. Not an exciting sound??--then get a more exciting
instrument!


I don't take this discussion seriously at all.



Plush,

Let me get this staight, because people have had experiences and opinions different from your own, you won't take this discussion seriously?

Thanks for letting us know.

Also, I don't think anyone in this thread who has been critical of these microphones has said the reason they didn't care for them was that they were not 'exciting'.

David,

I agree, it is extremely imprecise using language to describe what we hear in audio, but until somebody comes up with something better, it will have to do. Unfortunately, words such as grey, black, orange(!), opulent, grainy, sexy (as our moderator likes to use), neutral, bright and even exciting can mean different things to different people.

Steven

Offline Rick Sutton

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Re: Schoeps - "sound" and impedance issues
« Reply #33 on: July 23, 2005, 10:59:33 pm »
I don't have a lot to add in the technical discussion but thought I'd add my experiences with Schoeps mics. Over the years I've owned 4 CMC bodies and 6 various MK capsules. I was originally attracted to them for use as remote recording mics for choirs but really never got the results that I had hoped for. I've since returned to Neumann KM84's which consistently give more pleasing results with choirs. I've had reasonable success with Schoeps in other applications but not until I stumbled across a combination of a pair of old CMC bodies with a new pair of MK4 capsules coupled with Tab-Funkenwerk V72S preamp on my Yamaha C7 piano did I become a fan of the microphones. My C7 has been problematic to get a full sound from without  the top end becoming harsh. I thought I'd tried every combination in my studio but the Schoeps/Tab combo has been absolutely superior to all my other mics, which include many wonderful tube condenser  and ribbon models.
Anyway, I sold my other Schoeps bodies and capsules but the mismatched ugly duckling combo ( old grey bodies and shiny new silver capsules) are not likely to be sold for a long time.
Rick

Offline ted nightshade

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Re: Schoeps - "sound" and impedance issues
« Reply #34 on: August 21, 2005, 12:34:43 pm »
FWIW my experiences with various Schoeps capsules and bodies are archived here. Suffice to say that the mk4 is not, to my taste, the most thrilling Schoeps capsule out there. I vastly prefer the mk41, which has served me very well within it's limitations, and all mics have limitations. I've captured some beautiful colors and emotions with the mk41/cmc6 combination, using just a single mic. The vibe was very much there.

I do hear that grainy thing too. All I can say is, placement placement placement, and sometimes a different mic does better. Great tool though.

Just have 'net access for a couple days here, BTW- glad to see this remains a great forum.
Ted Nightshade aka Cowan

There's a sex industry too.
Or maybe you prefer home cookin'?

Offline Jim Williams

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Re: Schoeps - "sound" and impedance issues
« Reply #35 on: August 21, 2005, 01:16:40 pm »
I first got a pair of Schoeps in 1983. Thought they were real clean through a transformerless mic preamp. My opinion has reversed 180 on them. They are too dirty. They mask low level details.They have too much transistor color. They cost too much. They also make the best 1/2" capsules in the world. Too bad the electronics don't live up to the capabilities of the capsules. I havn't used them in 10 years, although I've tried. No of the artists I tried them on liked them either.

The circuit is now used extensivly by the Chi-coms in the low cost Marshall mics(MXL2003). It's one of those circuits that grabs you at first, then fatigues the ears after time.

One Reporter's Opinion.
Jim Williams
Audio Upgrades

Offline Schallfeldnebel

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Re: Schoeps - "sound" and impedance issues
« Reply #36 on: August 22, 2005, 02:18:44 am »
Jim Williams wrote:"Too bad the electronics don't live up to the capabilities of the capsules. "

Then the new CMD2 digital microphone conditioner amplifier AD converter module with AES 42 output will surprise you.

Although maybe not available yet on the market, I have been testing with them for a couple of weeks, and I am very enthusiastic about them.

Erik Sikkema
Bill Mueller:"Only very recently, has the availability of cheap consumer based gear popularized the concept of a rank amateur as an audio engineer. Unfortunately, this has also degraded the reputation of the audio engineer to the lowest level in its history. A sad thing indeed for those of us professionals."

Offline Ivo

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Re: Schoeps - "sound" and impedance issues
« Reply #37 on: August 29, 2005, 08:55:17 am »
Jim Williams wrote on Sun, 21 August 2005 19:16

I fThey are too dirty. They mask low level details.They have too much transistor color. I havn't used them in 10 years, although I've tried. No of the artists I tried them on liked them either.



Well, if it is a general truth, Schoeps company would have ceased to exist long time ago ... Or could it mean that those using Schoeps microphones (after carefully selecting them among all the other branches) have something wrong with their ears ?
Ivo

VELVET MASTERING
www.velvetmastering.com

SAVITA MUSIC
www.savita.cz

Offline locosoundman

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Re: Schoeps - "sound" and impedance issues
« Reply #38 on: September 03, 2005, 09:21:48 am »
Just my $.02:

I have used the Schoeps CMC6 amplifiers with different capsules through several different preamps.  I especially like the sound of the Hardy M-2 with the Schoeps switch, but I also have enjoyed the colour that the API 3124 imparts in certain situations.

The only time I have ever noticed a "graininess" was once using the Schoeps with a Sytek preamp (which I believe is transformerless) as drum overheads, or times when I was recording with cheap AD convertors.  Sometimes good mic's and/or pre's can expose other flaws in your recording chain.

Best,
Rob Anderson
What does this little red button do?

Offline klaukholm

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Re: Schoeps - "sound" and impedance issues
« Reply #39 on: October 17, 2007, 02:22:43 am »
I have found that the 4003/millennia/prism combination can sometimes be too hard sounding in the upper mids or top end.
When this is the case our M150's have the same resolution but a milder top end. By aiming the mics more or less away from the bright source you get some control of the hardness albeit sometimes with some change in imaging.
When the M150's are too hard our Schoeps M222 are most likely in their right element.
To me neither of the three have too much or too little of anything, they are simply different tools for different situations and tastes.

I find it surprising that the top amplifier in the schoeps range, the M222, is not mentioned in this discussion.

As a spot for double bass in orchestra the mk4cmc5 can make the player/instrument come across as "pressed" and "stringy" to me.
The m222 with the mk6 in cardioid has a gentle high lift and seems to open up the sound and the playing seems more high class.
The interesting thing is that as a player, the added highs does not make it sound "brighter", atleast in players terminology.
The added treble changed the mids and removed the stringy/pressed feeling.

With a different bass and different player it might be the other way around.

I would suggest trying the M222 with a pre like the Millennia. I would also take a look at the mk4v capsule or even the mk5.

"Grainy" makes perfect sense to me. To me it is an impurity in the resonance of a sound. It often comes to mind in a sound that has white noise or "extra musical" components.
It can also be present in a sound that is "flarp", i.e. some flat and sharp components. An example can be a string instruments wolftone or simply a substandard player.

I am curious as to what improvements someone like Klaus can make on a cmc5 or cmc6.

Polyhymnia has chosen to make their own body for the capsules.
I would love a solid state option on par with the M222 bodies.
And I would gladly pay M222 money for it as well.

Kjetil Laukholm
CK Recording
Malmö Symphony Orchestra

Offline Yannick Willox

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Re: Schoeps - "sound" and impedance issues
« Reply #40 on: October 17, 2007, 06:05:02 am »
I have to agree with Jim Williams.
For me it is strange to see how Schoeps lovers mention the purity of the electronics as one of the advantages.
Some completely dislike the MKH series of Sennheiser because it is full of electronics. They can hear it.

Well, as Jim, I hear a completely artificial zingy thing on the Schoeps mics I have used, and records which I know to have used them.

That seems contradictory, but maybe some people are more sensitive to one kind of electronic sound, and others to another aspect ?

For me, the MKH series does something strange around 2K on some sources. But Schoeps on strings just sound like broken strings to me ...
Yannick Willox
Acoustic Recording Service

Offline Andy Simpson

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Re: Schoeps - "sound" and impedance issues
« Reply #41 on: October 18, 2007, 09:31:58 am »
Piano is one instrument where there is no sustained energy, unlike voice/violin/brass/etc.

Each note is a single attack and decay, which is easier for a microphone to deal with.

This is one possible reason why a microphone can be surprisingly useful on the piano where it might not be useful on other sources.

In any case, anybody who has spent any time trying to remove 'graininess' with EQ will know that these artefacts are time-domain related.

Andy

Offline Jim Williams

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Re: Schoeps - "sound" and impedance issues
« Reply #42 on: October 18, 2007, 11:55:04 am »
I have had good results in Schoeps and similar circuits by removing the European BC transistors and the jfet. I find the BC audio transistors to sound grainy, this was pointed out to me by tonmeister Andrew Lipinsky when I rebuilt his Beyer 740 mics. The Wima MKS mylar coupling caps help in softening this grain, pop in some MKP-2 polyprops and you will hear those transistors zinging along. Transformer input preamp also help soften the grain, a fast transformerless preamp makes them the Emperor with no clothes.
Jim Williams
Audio Upgrades

Offline Schallfeldnebel

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Re: Schoeps - "sound" and impedance issues
« Reply #43 on: October 18, 2007, 03:34:37 pm »
In the middle of the nineties my Schoeps CMC's were modified to B&K electronics alike designs, first with phantompower and later based on separate power-leads with 60V basic voltage for both preamp and capsule.

The results were not that much better from the original Schoeps designs, except the low end was a bit more tight with the MK2 and MK2s. What people have described here on the forum I can recognize, but in my opinion there may be another aspect causing disappointment with users.

Mylar/PE/polyester made omnis (Schoeps mk2(s), Neumann km183) do have higher mechanical distortion than e.g. the nickel DPA and B&K omni (measuring) microphones. When their behaviour is very neutral, like the Schoeps MK2(s) or H, this distortion might be more obvious and disappointing than with brands like Neumann, where aside the mechanical distortion also more musical colouration is a part of the design, and as a result the whole concept seems to sound more appealing.

Anyway the Schoeps cardioid MK4 for me belongs in the absolute top ten of cardioids, aside the DPA 4011, Sennheiser MKH406, Beyerdynamic MCD100, Sanken CU44X and others.

Erik Sikkema
Bill Mueller:"Only very recently, has the availability of cheap consumer based gear popularized the concept of a rank amateur as an audio engineer. Unfortunately, this has also degraded the reputation of the audio engineer to the lowest level in its history. A sad thing indeed for those of us professionals."

Offline Klaus Heyne

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Re: Schoeps - "sound" and impedance issues
« Reply #44 on: October 18, 2007, 08:08:28 pm »
Jim Williams wrote on Thu, 18 October 2007 08:55

I have had good results... by removing the European BC transistors and the J-Fet. I find the BC audio transistors to sound grainy


Which J-Fets and transistors do you find less "grainy", as you call it?

Quote:

 The Wima MKS mylar coupling caps help in softening this grain, pop in some MKP-2 polyprops and you will hear those transistors zinging along.


Is that a good thing to hear them "zinging along" ? Or did I misunderstand you?
Klaus Heyne
German Masterworks
www.GermanMasterworks.com