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Author Topic: Good books on mics  (Read 6366 times)

klaus

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Good books on mics
« on: April 17, 2011, 10:29:34 PM »

Originally Posted By: JonesH on Mon, 07 January 2008

Hi!
 Can you recommend any good books on microphones and mic techniques?

Below is a list of books I'm planning to buy, I'd very much appreciate if people gave their opinions on this list (i.e. which ones are good, wich ones aren't and so on):
 
Handbook for Sound Engineers (Ballou)
 Microphones: Design and Application (Burroughs)
 Sound Recording Handbook (Woram)
 Acoustics (Beranek)
 Recording Music on Location (Bartlett) (This is according to Bartlett himself the replacement for his Stereo mic techs book)
 Tonmeister technology (Dickretter)
 Microphone Book (Eargle)
 
Thank you!
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Klaus Heyne
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ilcaccillo

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Re: Good books on mics
« Reply #1 on: January 25, 2022, 10:07:04 PM »

Old thread, but I just got a really nice book on microphones and would like to share it.
It's called "Witnesses of Words: How 20th Century Microphones Made History".



It has high quality photos and interesting info on most of the microphones made in the last century.
It's a must have for any microphone lover, and you can buy it directly from the author:

https://www.witnessesofwords.com/en/

https://www.witnessesofwords.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/01WOW_cover.pdf

https://tapeop.com/reviews/gear/121/witnesses-of-words-how-20th-century-microphones-made-history/


As for advice on a book with mic techniques, I really like the "Recording Engineer's Handbook",
It has a nice section with advice and micing techniques for many different instruments:



https://www.amazon.com/Recording-Engineers-Handbook-4th/dp/0998503355

https://www.bookdepository.com/The-Recording-Engineers-Handbook-4th-Edition-Bobby-Owsinski/9780998503356?redirected=true&utm_medium=Google&utm_campaign=Base1&utm_source=PT&utm_content=The-Recording-Engineers-Handbook-4th-Edition&selectCurrency=EUR&w=AF7DAU9STXB6ZRA8V3XC&gclid=CjwKCAiA3L6PBhBvEiwAINlJ9BbbeW0TPUp1ewqLvXOrdOrJOSguvOpkeAeV7Fm6eqsvzcQsUlf3bhoCR0kQAvD_BwE
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David Satz

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Re: Good books on mics
« Reply #2 on: December 02, 2023, 06:06:06 PM »

The van der Hoeven book is a marvel of design. layout and photography. It's definitely fun to look at. I wouldn't consider it a reliable reference source on the history of microphones, though. I've been meaning to write to the author about one particular "howler" that keeps turning up on the Internet and that he seems to have fallen for.

But it's really an attractive book on a certain level, and it must have taken him an immense amount of time and effort to put it together--so much so that I really have to admire it for that alone.
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klaus

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Re: Good books on mics
« Reply #3 on: December 02, 2023, 08:17:37 PM »

I've been meaning to write to the author about one particular "howler" that keeps turning up on the Internet and that he seems to have fallen for.

The suspense is killing me.
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Klaus Heyne
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David Satz

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Re: Good books on mics
« Reply #4 on: December 02, 2023, 09:04:39 PM »

It's the simple question of who (or which company) first manufactured and offered condenser microphones commercially--and the answer is Western Electric, several years before Neumann. They supplied condenser microphones to film studios by 1925-26, and Victor and Columbia signed up to use their equipment, including condenser microphones, in the switchover from acoustic to electrical recording of phonograph records. Some WE and RCA condenser microphones (the latter manufactured under a cross-licensing agreement) were used in radio broadcasting by the mid-1920s as well.

WE made condenser microphones well before those dates, e.g. for public address systems as early as 1921, but I'm not sure whether the microphones were available generally that far back. E.C. Wente's patent application for the basic design was filed in 1916. The workings of the capsule were also detailed in articles in The Physical Review starting in 1917. A T & T used these "condenser transmitters" for research and measurement within the telephone system (which is what they were invented for) for several years prior to their commercial introduction. The designs underwent several stages of development, such as aluminum-alloy membranes rather than stainless steel, and the use of grooves in the backplate to improve the damping of the membrane around the system's resonant frequency, between 1916 and 1921-22. By then the microphones had a wider frequency range than any recording or broadcast media that could convey their signals.

Unfortunately the publicly available information regarding types, specifications, and years of introduction is incomplete at best. A T & T's archives are private, and the people who write about old microphones, sound for film, the record industry, radio broadcasting and telephony of the era don't seem to talk to one another. The most important WE capsule types seem to be 370W, 361W and especially 394W (see attached page from a 1931 article in Bell Systems Technical Journal). Not many are in collectors' hands, since as a rule they were leased, then returned after the leases expired.
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