The following research was founded in class and I have used the website –http://ehomerecordingstudio.com/types-of-microphones/ to expand on that.
there are two main types of microphone ‘condenser’ and ‘dynamic’ condenser microphones optimally work for higher frequency sounds whilst dynamic covers low – mid range frequencies.
The large diaphragm mics would be used for loud low frequency noises as a large diaphragm means that it will not be able to record low energy sound as more energy is required to move a heavier diaphragm. Most large diaphragm mics, because their diaphragm has a large mass; generates enough voltage when it moves to mean that the microphone doesn’t need an external power source (in other words it is a passive microphone.) however as this microphone is a condenser microphone it does require power to amplify the voltage (phantom power) this does mean that they are better than the passive large diaphragm mics as they are better able to pick up softer sounds with higher gain.
Small diaphragm mics are more sensitive to lower energy sounds but wouldn’t be ideal for large sounds as it would peak very quickly. small diaphragm mics do need external power to amplify the voltage so that you get the sound at an audible level.
Large Diaphragm Condenser Mics.
A widely used microphone that works very well for vocals as well as a large array of instruments.
Small Diaphragm Condenser Mics.
Great for recording detailed high frequency.
Great for rock instruments
Used for very very low frequency sounds.
Ribbon mics are neither dynamic nor condenser it uses a thread of aluminum instead of a normal diaphragm. they have great durability and a higher range than most other microphones.
These mics can switch between three recording patterns omni, cardioid and figure 8.
These microphones get there power through a usb cable.
boundary mics are placed against the floor or wall making them immune to comb filtering (when direct and reflected sound combines out-of-phase)
different microphones have different recording areas meaning that they each are better at some tasks than others. For example the best path for recording ambience is an omni mic as it will record all the sound around it. the best for an interview would be a shot gun microphone path as it will barely record background noise but will pick up whatever is in front of it in an inverse squares cone shape. ‘The strength of the field is inversely proportional to the square of the distance from the source’ – Wikipedia
room types and resonance…
The space you are in is critical for sound recording as it will effect how the sound is reflected and what other sound is around. in college we looked at a collection of rooms and also explored outside by the river.
- The main stairway which is a large tiled room with a high flat roof and smooth walls (basically no soft furnishing.) This room we as a class unanimously decided was the worst for sound recording as the sound was bouncing around everywhere and you could hear the cars outside as well as people moving about the college.
- Reception which was better as it had some soft furnishing along with an apex roof which meant that the sound was diffused better also paintings covered the wall breaking up the smooth reflective surface. the down side to this room is that there is machinery such as scanners and printers constantly operating and there is no walls on two sides which resulted in background noise from the rest of college.
- The sound recording studio was surprisingly an ideal sound recording space as it had a lot of soft furnishings, wooden diffusers on the celling and sound proof windows with thick curtains this meant that there was no background noise and that all sound was very clear and had no echo*.
- The sound booth is completely sound proof due to a sound porous walls filled with foam, a soft carpet. So it is excellent for recording sound, however it isn’t aesthetically pleasing so it wouldn’t be ideal for an interview. Everything in the room is sound proof so everything is clear and there is no echo or background noise.
- By the river though aesthetically pleasing proves impractical as the water flowing causes way to much noise so you have to find a compromise to try and get the best of both worlds.
*Echo – The reflection of a sound wave that comes back to the source as used by radars and animals.