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recording method vs sound reproduction

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He has the mikes inside the piano. LOLOLOL

 

You sure about that? If he has, he's doing something very different from what most people who stick the mikes in the piano are doing! What I heard is a piano that is NOT 10 (or 50) ft wide, is centered on stage, and is the right size and has plenty of ambience with none of the mechanical mechanism sounds that most other in-piano mike arrangements have. Now, I, myself have put an accent mike or two over the edge of a piano case before when I thought that the piano needed a bit more "presence" due the venue's acoustics, but it was always subordinate to the overall stereo pair. It sounds to me like if he has mikes inside the piano, he's done it this way. If not he's doing something totally unfamiliar to me. I'll go back and to listen to it again.

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He has the mikes inside the piano. LOLOLOL

 

We use the same setup for every recording. It does not matter if it is just piano, or any other chamber music arrangement. We only use two mics and they are always placed on the same exact spot of our auditorium outside of the stage area. There is no mixing involved, left mic is left speaker and right mic is right speaker. We have obtained this sound by working the acoustics of the auditorium itself.

 

To see how this works for tenor and piano try out track 14 "Chitarrata abruzzese."

 

Songs of Paolo Tosti - PlayClassics, the art of true music

 

For soprano and piano you can try track 8 "Sliczny Chlopiec."

 

Chopin Polish Songs - PlayClassics, the art of true music

 

If you cannot stream it please tell me so. I will be happy to send you this samples.

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We use the same setup for every recording. It does not matter if it is just piano, or any other chamber music arrangement. We only use two mics and they are always placed on the same exact spot of our auditorium outside of the stage area. There is no mixing involved, left mic is left speaker and right mic is right speaker. We have obtained this sound by working the acoustics of the auditorium itself.

 

To see how this works for tenor and piano try out track 14 "Chitarrata abruzzese."

 

Songs of Paolo Tosti - PlayClassics, the art of true music

 

For soprano and piano you can try track 8 "Sliczny Chlopiec."

 

Chopin Polish Songs - PlayClassics, the art of true music

 

If you cannot stream it please tell me so. I will be happy to send you this samples.

 

I think that this "outside of the stage area" positioning is probably the "secret" to the natural sound of these recordings (a realistic and very pleasant "warmth" with no exageration of "presence" or "detail").

This is great work Mario.

 

Even if you are using a microphone with a typically "toppy" frequency response, it doesn't show.

 

Best,

Ricardo

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We use the same setup for every recording. It does not matter if it is just piano, or any other chamber music arrangement. We only use two mics and they are always placed on the same exact spot of our auditorium outside of the stage area. There is no mixing involved, left mic is left speaker and right mic is right speaker. We have obtained this sound by working the acoustics of the auditorium itself.

 

To see how this works for tenor and piano try out track 14 "Chitarrata abruzzese."

 

Songs of Paolo Tosti - PlayClassics, the art of true music

 

For soprano and piano you can try track 8 "Sliczny Chlopiec."

 

Chopin Polish Songs - PlayClassics, the art of true music

 

If you cannot stream it please tell me so. I will be happy to send you this samples.

 

 

I knew that those mikes couldn't have been inside the piano with those results!

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Mario,

 

Do you use some kind of coincident or near coincident arrangement?

 

Ricardo

 

 

We are using plain ORTF. But the reason for the sound quality is the fact that the auditorium has practically been built around these two mics to produce this sound.

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I knew that those mikes couldn't have been inside the piano with those results!

 

Yes, there was no other way to go. Here are the reasons why we had to go this way. This is the explanation from About - PlayClassics, the art of true music

 

Artists spend their whole live working on their technique to produce variations in the sound of their instrument that may seem imperceptible but have a great impact on the musical message. Therefore, in order not to alter this message, it is essential that recordings preserve this sound intact.

 

Music is communication.

 

It is communication between the artist and the listener. The more obstacles there are between the artist and the listener the more the message will deform and the worse the communication will be.

 

The only factor that stands between the artist and the listener in a concert situation is the effect the hall produces on the sound of the instrument. But this effect occurs in real time and it is perceived by both parties allowing the artist to maintain control of the communication. A concert situation is therefore a favorable situation to produce music.

 

In the case of a commercial recording there are several factors that hinder communication.

 

When recording, what the artist hears and controls is the effect the hall produces on the sound of the instrument, that is the sound he works with to communicate with whoever is listening, but this sound gets lost in space without reaching anybody's ears. What is picked up while the artist is playing is the sound registered by the microphones deliberately placed close to the instrument precisely to avoid picking up the sound of the hall. The color, balance and dynamic range of this two sounds (the one from the hall and the one from the take) are totally different, so while the artist delivers his controlled message, we pick up a different one that the artist does not control. In this first step the artist loses control with respect to the sound.

 

The takes to be used for the assembly of the work are chosen during editing. Normally the artist is not involved in the editing process. The decision about which takes will be chosen rests in the hands of others. But, how can you keep the integrity of the artist's message if the words are chosen by another person? In this second step the artist loses control with respect to the interpretation.

 

In most cases multiple microphones are used to record each instrument. During the mixing process the sound of these microphones is combined to create a stereo sound. This process can not recreate the balance and image that the artists produced while making the recording. Besides the artists were not aware of the effect this process was going to have so it would have been impossible for them to try to adapt to it. In this third step the artists lose control with respect to the balance and image between instruments.

 

All these losses of control represent a significant deterioration in the integrity of the message that reaches the listener, so we can say that commercial recording is an adverse situation to produce music.

 

The Truthful Recording Technology eliminates these barriers providing direct communication.

 

In our studios the recording hall is configured so that the sound of the hall is practically the same as the sound of the take. Also during recording when the artist listens to his takes what he hears is exactly the same sound the listener will hear allowing the artist to adapt maintaining full control of the sound aspect of the communication.

 

So far this situation is just as favorable to produce music as the concert situation. But furthermore, during the editing process, the artist is the only one responsible for choosing the takes and his judgment prevails over any other giving him total control over the interpretation too with what we are able to improve the concert situation where there is no possibility to repeat a passage to improve the message.

 

In addition, all recordings are made in exactly the same conditions. It's like listening to all these artists from the same chair of the same auditorium. This allows the listener to establish objective comparisons on the ability of artists based on the result of the different recordings.

 

The Truthful Recording Technology developed in our studios guarantees the integrity of the sound and the interpretation of the artist while giving the listener total control over everything he listens to. Therefore we can say that recording with this technology provides the ideal situation to produce true music.

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Yes, there was no other way to go. Here are the reasons why we had to go this way. This is the explanation from About - PlayClassics, the art of true music

 

Dear Mario Martinez,

your approach seems very interesting indeed and I would really like to hear how your recordings actually sound compared to several others where I have been at sessions and can later compare to the recorded result in HI RES PCM or DSD.

But why don't you offer your recordings as DOWNLOADS ??? And as masterfile downloads???

To me it seems as if you are wasting a lot of the advantage of your approach by actually not offering the recordings in the highest possible quality the resolution they were orginally recorded at!

I am very spoilt listening a lot to both live acoustic music and HI RES recordings, but I was very disappointed when I listened to a 24/96 recording at mp3 quality via my electrostatic speakers for the first time yesterday.

I simply can't understand why you waste the opportunity to offer high quality music and recordings by offering only low res streaming quality???

 

In my view streaming is for kids and pop rock crap and the same goes for mp3 IMO!

Most listeners and music lovers who like art music and classical DO NOT stream and do not download low res quality.

Porque?

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But why don't you offer your recordings as DOWNLOADS ??? And as masterfile downloads???

 

Thank you very much for your feedback. We would love to offer these masterfiles to the public. We just need a little more time to figure out the best way to do it.

 

In the meantime, please go ahead and download this 24 bit 96 kHz version of the Albéniz "Iberia. Book 1. 3 El corpus en Sevilla." (346,2 MB)

http://www.playclassics.com/PlayClassics2496.wav.zip

Everybody is welcome to download the file :)

Edited by Mario Martinez
broken link

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Thank you very much for your feedback. We would love to offer these masterfiles to the public. We just need a little more time to figure out the best way to do it.

 

In the meantime, please go ahead and download this 24 bit 96 kHz version of the Albéniz "Iberia. Book 1. 3 El corpus en Sevilla." (346,2 MB)

http://www.playclassics.com/PlayClassics2496.wav.zip

Everybody is welcome to download the file :)

 

Thanks a lot Mario Martinez ,I have downloaded and listened two times via my electrostatic speakers to your 24/96 masterfile "El corpus en Sevilla."

I have to take your word about the acoustics of the venue since I haven't been there. But I can safely say that tonally and timbrally this is very much as I know a good piano sounds in a smallish a bit dryish acoustic.

You have managed to capture the percussive character of Albeniz's wonderful music and the register of a grand piano very realistically imho.

An intimate but not overclose ,very stable realistic size image where one does not have to listen to all the clutter and mechanical noises of the instrument but still get all the wonderful rich sonority of a grand piano very close to how it sounds live. I would love to hear more great music both well performed and recorded from you!

Contact a hi res download site like eClassical for example and make your recordings available there.

otra vez Muchas Gracias Chrille

PS great playing too who is the artist?

And I might add for those who don't know it yet: this is a Demonstration Quality Recording

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I have to take your word about the acoustics of the venue since I haven't been there. But I can safely say that tonally and timbrally this is very much as I know a good piano sounds in a smallish a bit dryish acoustic.

 

Thank you very much for listening!

 

We are dedicated to chamber music. We are purposely recording this music in a way that resembles its original setup. Our auditorium is a small hall, much the size of the palace chambers used to perform chamber music back in the XIX century.

 

This type of space (when treated correctly) provides a much warmer more intimate sound experience. The instruments are in the middle of the room and people are seating all around them. The sound is direct (you are very close to the instruments), yet there is a bit of reverb from the room (but never quite as much as you would have in a large hall)

 

The artist is Luis Grané. You can read the full booklet of the album here:

Albniz Iberia - PlayClassics, the art of true music

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To me it seems as if you are wasting a lot of the advantage of your approach by actually not offering the recordings in the highest possible quality the resolution they were orginally recorded at!

 

We have been working on a solution, and this is what we have come up with:

 

if you help us fund an album, you will be able to download the MP3 files and the Original Masters (wav 24bit 96kHz) directly from our web site.

 

All you have to do is:

- Enter the album's page.

- Choose a donation amount.

- You will be taken to PayPal to process the donation.

- PayPal will take you back to the album and you will be able to download both the mp3 files and the Original Masters (they are both zip downloads)

 

You can donate from as little as 6€. Please choose whatever amount you think is fair.

 

If you do donate 18€ or more you will be included on the album's Sponsors List.

 

We hope you find this solution useful. If you have any questions or issues please send me a PM.

 

Thank you all very much! We would love to hear your feedback :)

 

Debussy Prludes. Book 1 - PlayClassics, the art of true music

Chopin Polish Songs - PlayClassics, the art of true music

Albniz Iberia - PlayClassics, the art of true music

Songs of Paolo Tosti - PlayClassics, the art of true music

Cabrera plays Debussy - PlayClassics, the art of true music

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