THE ART OF RECORDING

The art of recording is very easy and catchy.


No.

It's not.

Obviously.


There are tons of rules but honestly I'm not here to teach. I am here to let you know the most intriguing parts of it.


So we will make it easy and and let's start!


PART I

Where recordings take place


The first thing that you have to think is WHERE you will recording. There are so many factor that might be considered. The real difference is about indoor or outdoor.


Indoor:

If you want record the place:

In this case you are interested about context useful as foley track. You have only to place your mics. Finding constance is the optimal solution do make samples that permit loops with less editing.


If you want to record something in the place:

The place must be quiet as you can and if it's full of forniture and tents to prevent echoes and recording errors is surely better. Never choose an empty place or a very big one.

Remember, in this case you are trying to record the subject not the place.


Outdoor:

If you want record the place:

This is the most relaxing work the only thing that you have to chose is the zone and the time slot. Maybe you have noticed that when we are talking about environment the time slot is important and could be very different, so I usually split this takes: Sunrise, morning, afternoon, evening, night.


If you want to record something in the place:

The most difficult recordings if you are not in the middle of the desert because you have a lot of interferences. Literally. Everywhere. People screaming, traffic noise and also nature will have no pity for you. As the indoor environment recording, finding constance is the optimal solution do make samples that permit loops with less editing.

The solution? You are forced to choose very low noise hours of the day. Easy on city edge but If you live in a city center surely you will discover that record between 2am to 5am is the best choice.


PART II

Looking for noisy parts

Foley

When I talking about "Noise" in foley contest I mean the "interesting spot" so try to point in various direction the mic to find the better spot. This is a personal taste approach and it's always different.

Specific Source

In this case Noise is something interesting that introduce complexity in the recording. The perfect example is a car. If you record a car need more than the engine sound, we have to looking for others source like exhaust pipe or a specific spot inside the engine block ( belt, cylinders or stuff like that) or you could approach the sound recording from the inside of the car. Be curious and find your spots.


PART III

Choose the right mics!


Most commons used mics for recording can be roughly reduced about 2 types:


Condenser (Small Diaphragm)


These are my first pair of small diaphragm mics, I tried an espansive pair of Neumann when I was a student at the conservatory I a remain pleased. My funds is limited and this is the better solution I can afford. Russians are not famous for good mechanics but I confess that they surprise me. Wonderful and Sensitive. I suggest these for entry level newbies.

Pro

  • Very Sensitive

  • Condenser

  • Tiny

  • Interchangeable capsule

Cons

  • Fragile

  • High pressure intolerance

  • Expensive

Dynamics



I love this dynamic, it's the "Nokia 3310" of mics. If you have to record some engines or loud stuff this is your best friends.

Pro

  • - High pressure resistance

  • - Indestructible

  • - Cheap

Cons

  • - Less sensitive

  • - Heavy



PART IV

Collateral Equipment


Mics are not recorders. They are transducers so you need a recording platform: if you have the chance and access to a power station you can use your own audio board easily. Sometimes instead you are in the middle of nowhere so you need a battery powered portable recorder or a portable audio board.


Portable Recorder



Usually they have nice condenser mics integrated with basic choices about framing angle. They are cheap but some of them have a really impressive quality. And last but not the least, they are really portable. This one eat batteries like candies so pick you two or more pair of refill.

You can use a pair of other mics instead integrated ones, it depends what are you looking for.


I really love this one.










Windshield



I never understand why they are so expensive, some of them are not difficult to craft.

They are really important if you record stuff in an open space. Wind is one of your worst enemy and can destroy your recording session irreparably.

But hey! Don't worry you can create it by yourself with some like 10€ each. You need synthetic fur and a mentally predisposition to stitch.



All the basic stuff you need to start recording basically ends here.


But if you have some microphones you want to add you probably need this equipment too:


Cables


Here represented the top and the end of the cable. Standard canon XLR cable is necessary each microphone to be able to record.



Mics Stand



This stand is an example, there are many different measures and shapes.

This tool is necessary to maintain mics faced to the sound source.

Prepare to mount and dismount a lot of times all day long.














Portable Recorder Audioboard



This is the next step if you need to record environment or an object from different POV. Sometimes more mics means more details!









Good, if you have red till here now you have basic knowledge and all necessary information do you need to start recording.


Good work! Enjoy!


2016 - 2020 - Cooper Keegan - Musician. Sound Designer. Sound Engineer. Composer. Arranger. Artist. Producer. Videomaker. Foley Artist.

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