Helpful ReplyPiano Microphones

Author
burgerproduction
Max Output Level: -86 dBFS
  • Total Posts : 209
  • Joined: 2015/05/01 02:49:17
  • Location: Italy
  • Status: offline
2018/12/20 16:10:19 (permalink)

Piano Microphones

Hi guys,
We've just bought a 'real' piano for my son. It's a Yamaha B series. That's my BIG spend for the year (oh, that and the new house :D)
I'm planning on using this piano for some songs as it has a sound a like one in Elliott Smith's Lost and Found.
Does anyone have some suggestions on good (not too expensive) microphones for pianos?
 
If it's any help, I already have an AKG C1000s (old model), but I'd need another mic to make stereo recordings.  I've heard about the need for balanced mic pairs to guarantee the quality of the recording...something I've never had to deal with before as a guitarist/singer.
 
Cheers!

Cakewalk by Bandlab, Sonar Platinum Lifetimer, Windows 10, HP Laptop, CPU i5, RAM 8GB. Audio interface: Edirol FA-101 Firewire interface with moded drivers. Microphones: Audio-Technica, M-Audio, Behringer, AKG. Pianos: Casio digital, Yamaha B1 upright.  Guitars: Dobro, Tanglewood, Danelectro, Fender. Hats: Fez
Check out my music :
https://53mph.bandcamp.com/album/like-water-to-the-sand
 
#1
GaryMedia
Max Output Level: -86 dBFS
  • Total Posts : 217
  • Joined: 2003/11/05 23:04:20
  • Location: Cary, NC
  • Status: offline
Re: Piano Microphones 2018/12/20 19:49:38 (permalink) ☄ Helpfulby burgerproduction 2018/12/21 10:01:39
Piano microphone choices are like choosing the right lens to take a picture of a mountain. 
 
That said, I go back and forth between using a stereo ribbon mic, and a stereo pair of Line Audio CM3's as an NOS pair spaced 13-inches apart and angled outward 15-degrees each. 
 
Be prepared for dozens of additional equally-valid suggestions.

CbB Win10 | Mac Pro 12-core 3.33GHz/48GB | TCL 55" 4K UHD | 480GB SSD | 6TB HDD RAID-5 array| 1.5TB SSD RAID-0 array | Midas M32 | 2x Audient ASP800 |  UAD-2 Duo PCIe | Adam A7X.
http://www.tedlandstudio.com/articles
#2
burgerproduction
Max Output Level: -86 dBFS
  • Total Posts : 209
  • Joined: 2015/05/01 02:49:17
  • Location: Italy
  • Status: offline
Re: Piano Microphones 2018/12/20 20:25:49 (permalink)
intrestingly, I can't find Line Audio mics for sale in Italy... Only via eBay, and they cost around 200 euro each. Is that about right?

Cakewalk by Bandlab, Sonar Platinum Lifetimer, Windows 10, HP Laptop, CPU i5, RAM 8GB. Audio interface: Edirol FA-101 Firewire interface with moded drivers. Microphones: Audio-Technica, M-Audio, Behringer, AKG. Pianos: Casio digital, Yamaha B1 upright.  Guitars: Dobro, Tanglewood, Danelectro, Fender. Hats: Fez
Check out my music :
https://53mph.bandcamp.com/album/like-water-to-the-sand
 
#3
msmcleod
Max Output Level: -72 dBFS
  • Total Posts : 920
  • Joined: 2004/01/27 07:15:30
  • Location: Scotland
  • Status: offline
Re: Piano Microphones 2018/12/20 20:38:32 (permalink) ☄ Helpfulby burgerproduction 2018/12/21 10:01:45
burgerproduction
intrestingly, I can't find Line Audio mics for sale in Italy... Only via eBay, and they cost around 200 euro each. Is that about right?




You can buy them direct from Line Audio in Sweden:
http://www.lineaudio.se/CM3.html
 
(somewhat archaic) ordering instructions here:
http://www.lineaudio.se/contact.html
 
Including VAT, I think it works out at around €135.
 

Mark McLeod
Cakewalk by BL | ASUS P8B75-V, Intel I5 3570 16GB RAM Win 10 64 + Win 7 64/32 SSD HD's, Scarlett 18i20 / 6i6 | ASUS ROG GL552VW 16GB RAM Win 10 64 SSD HD's, Scarlett 2i2 | Behringer Truth B2030A / Edirol MA-5A | Mackie MCU + C4 + XT | 2 x BCF2000, Korg NanoKontrol Studio
#4
wst3
Max Output Level: -55.5 dBFS
  • Total Posts : 1979
  • Joined: 2003/11/04 10:28:11
  • Location: Pottstown, PA 19464
  • Status: offline
Re: Piano Microphones 2018/12/21 02:10:51 (permalink) ☄ Helpfulby burgerproduction 2018/12/21 10:02:08
I would second both a stereo ribbon and a pair of small capsule condenser microphones. One intriguing take on the later is the Earthworks PianiMic - check it out even if you aren't interested (spoiler alert - it ain't cheap!)
 
I don't own any Line Audio microphones, but I've been quite happy with what I have on hand.

-- Bill
Audio Enterprise
KB3KJF
#5
seanmichaelrobinson
Max Output Level: -89 dBFS
  • Total Posts : 59
  • Joined: 2015/03/19 13:11:40
  • Status: offline
Re: Piano Microphones 2018/12/21 06:33:12 (permalink) ☄ Helpfulby burgerproduction 2018/12/21 10:01:52
I don't know what iSK's distribution is like in the UK, but it's worth looking into their small diaphram condensors, both the cardioid ones (distributed in the US as the " ") and their interchangeable capsule SDCs (called the "Little Gem" by the US distributor). The Little Gems run at the unbelievable price of $100 US for a PAIR with all three capsules and a stereo bar thrown in as well. Really incredible bargain.
 
By the way, iSK is the Chinese manufacturer of many many many countless bargain basement mics, but iSK is their in-house (fledgling) brand. And buying from the US distributor might be advised, as he does an additional level of quality control. I use these mics myself on grand piano, acoustic guitar, drum overheads, and even as boundary mics (omni capsule, a millimeter away from the wall but otherwise flush. ) Lovely sound (but higher self-noise than you'd want for really really soft sources, like, say, room-micing a choir from the back of a hall or something).
 
https://www.iskproaudio.com/collections/microphones/products/little-gem
 
 
 
 
 
#6
seanmichaelrobinson
Max Output Level: -89 dBFS
  • Total Posts : 59
  • Joined: 2015/03/19 13:11:40
  • Status: offline
Re: Piano Microphones 2018/12/21 06:37:02 (permalink)
As far as actually micing this bad boy, after a long period of trying different things I've finally been happy with sdc stereo pair, capsules almost touching, looking across each other, hovering over the bar/strut that separates the bass and treble sides of the harp assembly. Play with the angle in relation to the harp and try out different distances from there.

And your AKG C1000 should make an excellent room mic!
 
 
#7
burgerproduction
Max Output Level: -86 dBFS
  • Total Posts : 209
  • Joined: 2015/05/01 02:49:17
  • Location: Italy
  • Status: offline
Re: Piano Microphones 2018/12/21 10:01:00 (permalink)
seanmichaelrobinson
 Really incredible bargain.

Wow! iSK are cheap, in comparison to others. I think you can get them direct from the manufacturer.  I don't actually live in the UK, but in Italy, but I couldn't find any iSK products for sale on the usual Italian sites. Probably, the competition have cut them out.  I've found many German manufacturers such as Telefunken have a dominance over the Italian market. 
 
I like the idea of having some Swedish made Line Audio mics, but the payments page...I have to pay VAT, postage etc... and wait three weeks ... they aren't exactly begging for your custom, are they? 
 
Thank you all for your thoughtful comments.  Very helpful.

Cakewalk by Bandlab, Sonar Platinum Lifetimer, Windows 10, HP Laptop, CPU i5, RAM 8GB. Audio interface: Edirol FA-101 Firewire interface with moded drivers. Microphones: Audio-Technica, M-Audio, Behringer, AKG. Pianos: Casio digital, Yamaha B1 upright.  Guitars: Dobro, Tanglewood, Danelectro, Fender. Hats: Fez
Check out my music :
https://53mph.bandcamp.com/album/like-water-to-the-sand
 
#8
burgerproduction
Max Output Level: -86 dBFS
  • Total Posts : 209
  • Joined: 2015/05/01 02:49:17
  • Location: Italy
  • Status: offline
Re: Piano Microphones 2018/12/21 11:28:14 (permalink)
I've had a thought. 
I own an Edirol R-09 field recorder which has stereo mics.  Could this be used as a stereo source mic for piano?
I've used it to record my son's choir and got pretty nice results (as long as the audience don't shuffle their feet too much).  Are the microphones in this unit good enough for the task if lined-in to the laptop?
 

Cakewalk by Bandlab, Sonar Platinum Lifetimer, Windows 10, HP Laptop, CPU i5, RAM 8GB. Audio interface: Edirol FA-101 Firewire interface with moded drivers. Microphones: Audio-Technica, M-Audio, Behringer, AKG. Pianos: Casio digital, Yamaha B1 upright.  Guitars: Dobro, Tanglewood, Danelectro, Fender. Hats: Fez
Check out my music :
https://53mph.bandcamp.com/album/like-water-to-the-sand
 
#9
seanmichaelrobinson
Max Output Level: -89 dBFS
  • Total Posts : 59
  • Joined: 2015/03/19 13:11:40
  • Status: offline
Re: Piano Microphones 2018/12/21 16:26:26 (permalink)
I haven't used any Eridols but I have some experience with the Zoom recorder built-in mics. It seems to me that most of the field recorder-style small built-in mics can be pretty good (for what they are) with distance recording but can seem pretty hard and spitty/high-endy for any close-up applications (which makes sense, since they're voiced for distance sources.) You also don't have any flexibility in terms of the stereo image itself (which is another reason to go with two individual matched mics versus a single stereo mic, in my opinion).
 
Sorry, I wish I could recommend something easily available in Italy! When my wife and I were there in 2012-2013 we didn't do much else but busk a few hours a day and go to museums, so no gear shopping for us :)
 
These MXL SDCs sound good on piano, and have two capsules, one cardioid and one omni (have a pair of the card-only version, which I still use when doing a full-band setup--say, the MXLs on drum OHs and the Isks on piano). And most importantly, they are available in Italy--
https://www.biasin.com/en-us/
#10
seanmichaelrobinson
Max Output Level: -89 dBFS
  • Total Posts : 59
  • Joined: 2015/03/19 13:11:40
  • Status: offline
Re: Piano Microphones 2018/12/21 17:03:29 (permalink)
That being said, why not just try out different positions with the Eridol and see how it sounds? Is it threaded to mount on a boom?
#11
burgerproduction
Max Output Level: -86 dBFS
  • Total Posts : 209
  • Joined: 2015/05/01 02:49:17
  • Location: Italy
  • Status: offline
Re: Piano Microphones 2018/12/22 10:05:43 (permalink)
Unfortunately the Edirol R9 is an older model of digital recorder and doesn't have a thread. I usually use it by placing it in a flat surface.
the piano is arriving after Christmas, so I'll play about with placements and let you know how i get on.
thanks again for all your tips and help guys.
merry Christmas

Cakewalk by Bandlab, Sonar Platinum Lifetimer, Windows 10, HP Laptop, CPU i5, RAM 8GB. Audio interface: Edirol FA-101 Firewire interface with moded drivers. Microphones: Audio-Technica, M-Audio, Behringer, AKG. Pianos: Casio digital, Yamaha B1 upright.  Guitars: Dobro, Tanglewood, Danelectro, Fender. Hats: Fez
Check out my music :
https://53mph.bandcamp.com/album/like-water-to-the-sand
 
#12
gswitz
Max Output Level: -18.5 dBFS
  • Total Posts : 5694
  • Joined: 2007/06/16 07:17:14
  • Location: Richmond Virginia USA
  • Status: offline
Re: Piano Microphones 2018/12/22 21:01:39 (permalink) ☄ Helpfulby burgerproduction 2018/12/23 18:01:58
Watch for pedal thumping.

StudioCat > I use Windows 10 and Sonar Platinum. I have a touch screen.
I make some videos. This one shows how to do a physical loopback on the RME UCX to get many more equalizer nodes.
#13
Jump to:
© 2022 APG vNext Commercial Version 5.1