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May 2015

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Getting instruments to sound their best when miked in the studio is a constant challenge. In the May issue of RECORDING, we address just that, with a wide variety of applications articles and gear reviews aimed at miking instruments.

You can't mike an instrument without a good mic, and we review several of them in this issue in a wide variety of studio situations. Paul Vnuk Jr. comes out of his hard-working studio bearing reviews of Sennheiser's versatile MK 8 condenser mic, the intriguing new 6011A ribbon mic from Sandhill, and a hands-on drum miking clinic using the well-loved mics in Audix's newly packaged DP4 instrument mic kit. We also bring you reviews of headphones by Audio-Technica and M-Audio, a powerful hardware EQ from new firm Lightning Boy, Strymon's gorgeous Big Sky reverb, the cool REV virtual instrument from Output, and more.

When it comes to miking instruments, our writers bring a wealth of expertise to the table for your benefit. Indie producer/engineer Sven-Erik Seaholm talks about miking brasses and woodwinds in session; Michael Schulze brings us an in-depth article about miking the piano and a detailed look and listen to the famous Glyn Johns drum miking technique (featuring words from someone who'd know all about it); and Scott Dorsey teaches us the basics of mic patterns and tells about how a science fiction convention turned into one of the trickiest miking jobs in his long career.

All this plus First Steps with Paul J. Stamler, Readers' Tapes with Marty Peters, our usual monthly columns, and more, makes the May issue of RECORDING a must-read you won't want to miss!

Pick it up now on the newsstand... and so you get your next issue early (and save on cost), why not hit the big red SUBSCRIBE NOW button on this page and have RECORDING delivered to your door each month?


Sennheiser MK 8 Condenser Microphone   |   Reviewed by Paul Vnuk Jr.

Multiple patterns add versatility to this large-diaphragm condenser.

Sennheiser is one of the longest-standing brands in the pro audio industry, well known for wireless transceivers, headphones, and of course mics. U......Expand

Audio-Technica ATH-M70x   |   Reviewed by Mike Metlay

The well-liked M-Series adds a new model at the top end. What does it bring to the table?

Audio-Technica has garnered a lot of attention with its recent additions to the M-Series of pro audio headphones, and with ver......Expand

Plug-In Outlet: Boz Digital Labs +10db Bundle   |   Reviewed by Paul Vnuk Jr.

You've heard this sound more times than you can count; now it's available in software. Also: ace engineer David Bendeth and plug-in designer Boz Miller weigh in on recreating a world-famous channel strip for the DAW user.


Sandhill Audio 6011A Ribbon Microphone   |   Reviewed by Paul Vnuk Jr.

A new firm from Finland brings us new ribbon technology in a mic that really grew on us as we used it more and more...

Sandhill Audio is a Finish audio company started in 2008 that released its first product in 2011, after t......Expand

Strymon Big Sky Reverb   |   Reviewed by Paul Vnuk Jr.

There are studio-grade rackmount reverb processors and high-end plug-ins that dream of sounding as good as this guitar pedal.

We don’t often review guitar pedals in these pages, unless they offer something unique for the s......Expand

M-Audio M40 and M50 Headphones   |   Reviewed by Mike Metlay

Two new models with interesting design tweaks are appealing to look at, but how do they sound?

With the upsurge in mobile recording, small computer-based studios in rooms that can't support decent-sized monitors, and the sim......Expand

Lightning Boy Flux Bender Passive Equalizer   |   Reviewed by Paul Vnuk Jr.

Sweet tone and flexibility in an EQ that's the ultimate in boutique audio: handbuilt to order, one by one.

Based in North Collins, New York, Lighning Boy is the very definition of a boutique audio company. A still be......Expand

Reviewed & Revisited: Audix DP4 Instrument Mic Package   |   Reviewed by Paul Vnuk Jr.

The mics are familiar but this bundle makes them easily accessible. We revisit the designs and provide hands-on application tips for drum kit miking, too!

If you read our review of Audix's new Limited Edition D6 drum microph......Expand

Soundware Showcase: Output REV   |   Reviewed by Mike Metlay with Jon Hillman

Why would a studio want a virtual instrument full of sounds that are all, well, backwards? Find out here.

Output is a new sound library company that has taken the world of sound design by surprise with a first offering that's well-d......Expand


The Glyn Johns Mic Setup   |   Written by Michael Schulze

In words, pictures, and audio, we explain how three or four mics in the right places can make classic drum magic... and famed drummer Dave Mattacks offers a word or two on how his historic drum parts were miked, too.

I still......Expand

Sci-Fi Symphony   |   Written by Scott Dorsey

What was supposed to be a relaxing trip to a science fiction convention turns into a guerrilla miking session with a full orchestra, soloists, and nowhere near enough mics.

Normally, I spend my time making recordings that so......Expand

What's All This About Microphone Patterns?   |   Written by Scott Dorsey

Learn why singers who cup their mics have feedback problems, how a piece of tape can turn a cardioid mic into an omni, why it matters what your mic's grille looks like, and more.

If you go down to the corner music store, you......Expand

Horning In   |   Written by Sven-Erik Seaholm

Small studios recording modern rock and indie bands will often be called upon to handle one or more brass or woodwind players. Knowing how these instruments radiate sound will help you mike them effectively.

Among the instru......Expand

Miking The Grand Piano: From Classical To Pop   |   Written by Michael Schulze

The piano's a complex instrument, and mic placement is critical to get the tone you desire, whether a natural-sounding classical timbre or an in-your-face pop sound.

Today's grand piano is the result of a long evolution that......Expand

First Steps. Part 5: About Microphones -- II   |   Written by Paul J. Stamler

We continue learning about mics with a careful look at frequency response, and why you can't always trust the pretty graphs that appear in marketing literature.

How a microphone sounds depends a lot on how it responds to the......Expand

One For All And All For One   |   Written by John Fishell

Is it possible to record an entire album -- with guitars, piano, and percussion -- using only one microphone? You bet it is!

Last summer a talented singer-songwriter approached me to engineer/produce his next CD album projec......Expand

Fade Out   |   Written by Scott Dorsey

Orrin Keepnews, 1923–2015.

In the fifties, Orrin Keepnews and Bill Grauer were record collectors who were dismayed at so many classic jazz recordings of the 1920s no longer being available. Writing in a record collecting m......Expand

Kef America LS50 Wireless

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