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    Using multiple microphones for field recording?


    I currently have a phantom-powered shotgun microphone (NTG-3) attached to a 2-track record. While the sound is excellent I would also like some stereo mixed into my recordings. With a multi-track recorder, could I combine my shotgun mic with a stereo mic in a single handheld setup? Which polar pattern would best suit the stereo-mic?

    Recordings will be outdoors and include things like birds at distance and up-close.

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    infact an eight (figure-8 ), than you could record MS!
    But there are good MS shotguns ready to use also:
    http://www.solidstatesound.co.uk/at835st_english.pdf
    http://www.sennheiser.com/sennheiser/home_de.nsf/root/professional_wired-microphones_broadcast-eng-film_005284
    or
    use a ready XY Mic like this one:
    http://www.sennheiser.com/sennheiser/home_de.nsf/root/professional_wired-microphones_broadcast-eng-film_003330

    Cheers

    audio.burkay.at soundcloud.com/burkay
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    Mid-side stereo seems like the easiest option. From what I read you get a merged left-right field (8-figure) that is modulated against the front field to generate the stereo image, with both mics at a single point? With XY, mics are also at a single point but you get separate tracks for left and right? How does it compare to spatially separated mics in setups like ORTF and NOS? Is adding a physical barrier between the stereo mics something to consider?

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    hishadow wrote:
    Mid-side stereo seems like the easiest option. From what I read you get a merged left-right field (8-figure) that is modulated against the front field to generate the stereo image, with both mics at a single point? With XY, mics are also at a single point but you get separate tracks for left and right? How does it compare to spatially separated mics in setups like ORTF and NOS? Is adding a physical barrier between the stereo mics something to consider?

    MS (Mid/Side): shortly: a cardiod pattern in the middle (therefore this stereo setup is always mono compatible) a figure-8 on top of it. The 8 signal is splitted into 2 channels which are panned hard Left and Right, one of those signals is phase reversed to get the stereo image. (I think the AT mic is already decoded, which means the mic outputs a stereo signal and not the plain 8 and cardiod signal, otherwise you'll have to decode yourself in postproduction).
    XY are usually 2 cardiods positioned on the some point with an angle of 90 degrees, therefore also mono compatible.
    AB, ORTF and other spatially seperated setups, you'll get a wider stereo image, but there is always the risk of phase problems and therefore mono incompatiblity.
    For field recordings, I'd recommend XY or MS setups, since the mics or diaphrams are together and therefore portable. Also the risk of a gap in the middle is not there, which is with a AB ie.

    audio.burkay.at soundcloud.com/burkay
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    Interesting with all the techniques available as you mention. They all seem to have some pros and cons associated with them. My first recording device was an in-ear binaural one but I replaced with with my current shotgun based because the audio-quality of my recordings wasn't that great. I really enjoy binaural stereo-sound though so if my recordings were restricted to headphones that wouldn't be a problem.

    Also, why is mono compatibility important? Is it for post-processing of the sound?

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    For several reasons: radio, mono speakers in theatre, phase problems...
    But nice article about it:
    http://www.soundonsound.com/sos/jun09/articles/qa0609_1.htm

    also: http://www.audiocourses.com/article1664.html

    audio.burkay.at soundcloud.com/burkay
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    burkay wrote:
    For several reasons: radio, mono speakers in theatre, phase problems...
    But nice article about it:
    http://www.soundonsound.com/sos/jun09/articles/qa0609_1.htm

    also: http://www.audiocourses.com/article1664.html


    Thanks for the links. As far as speakers go I wouldn't care about mono-compability. My recordings is primarily for myself and I use only headphones for listening, hence I would prefer something akin to binaural stereo. Wouldn't that resolve phase problems also since the sound channels are physically separated?

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    I am new to field recording so take what I offer with a grain of salt.

    I fooled with doing stereo field recordings of the ocean and found it not to be worth the effort.

    I found that I need a large mic separation (several meters minimum) to get good stereo effect. For play back I have to use head phones to hear the stereo effect because my home setup in not good enough.

    Perhaps for bird song recording it might be a little different. I think I will point the mic's at about 120 degrees to get maximum effect. One probably get some good call and response with that setup.

    Joe

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    Interesting link for MS recording:
    https://plugin-alliance.com/en/newsreader/items/ms-what-is-this.html

    audio.burkay.at soundcloud.com/burkay

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