Micing grand piano live

Moderators: rick, Mark Bassett, gigpiglet

Micing grand piano live

Postby gigpiglet » Sat Jul 14, 2012 10:01 am

had to mic a piano last night, for live gig and simultaneous record/ radio broadcast.
i always do it the same way:

Gaff tape between the middle two rails in the piano (don't know the terminology) to make a kind of "bridge" then gaff a pair of SDC in XY onto that suspension bridge.
close, or short leg the lid

gets miss close to the strings for a really bright, cutting, loud live sound (maybe not the nicest in the world, but great for getting it in a mix) and cause of the gaff suspension no lo end feedback problems that you so often get with pianos on stage.

how do YOU mic them up - for live gigs i mean - no "good piano good room" comments!
Gareth Stuckey
gigpiglet productions:presents:recordings
gigpiglet
Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor
 
Posts: 1116
Joined: Tue Jun 01, 2010 4:10 pm
Location: sydney australia

Re: Micing grand piano live

Postby Chinagraf » Sun Jul 15, 2012 8:23 pm

Checkout the Pianomic series from Earthworks.
Awesome.
User avatar
Chinagraf
Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor
 
Posts: 1599
Joined: Wed Jun 22, 2005 1:09 am
Location: Melbourne

Re: Micing grand piano live

Postby Damien » Mon Jul 16, 2012 12:51 am

what mics, is thee monitors/spill etc..

lid open or closed?

band? how loud etc...

i have used 414/c3000's on top lid 1/2 open. closed i usually put PZM's UNDER on top of the rails.

one of the best sounds i have was a SINGLE sm57 under, about the middle about a foot away.. i listened for the LOUDEST bit and shoved the mic there, with a drum kit right behind... it sounded great.
Damien Young
Pony Music
03 9702 3244
0412 354 254
Damien
Regular Contributor
Regular Contributor
 
Posts: 308
Joined: Sat May 07, 2005 5:02 am
Location: Melbourne

Re: Micing grand piano live

Postby Gillian Lee » Mon Jul 16, 2012 10:36 am

A friend of mine taught me this setup- seems to work well for classical music.
MS pair of Sennheiser MKH-30 (fig 8) and MKH-40 (cardioid) small diaphragm condensers. Lid fully open, mics up high, about 15cms lower than the lid, and about 30cms back away from the piano to get a bit of space going. Mics angled down at the strings pretty much at the same angle as the lid.
Gillian Lee
Registered User
Registered User
 
Posts: 25
Joined: Wed Feb 23, 2011 12:23 pm
Location: Melbourne

Re: Micing grand piano live

Postby gigpiglet » Mon Jul 16, 2012 11:02 am

I'm always trying to do it in a rock situation
with drums/ wedges etc.

so the technique i mentioned (lid closed by the way if i didn't specify) is all about getting a "decent" sound but good feedback rejection and good level.
Gareth Stuckey
gigpiglet productions:presents:recordings
gigpiglet
Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor
 
Posts: 1116
Joined: Tue Jun 01, 2010 4:10 pm
Location: sydney australia

Re: Micing grand piano live

Postby Manning » Mon Jul 16, 2012 11:34 am

Piano geek time:

The metal thing in the piano is usually called the "plate" (but also the "frame" or the "harp")

The metal cross beams in the plate are called the stress bars. In a grand piano there can be 3, 4 or 5 of them, and they can be separate or branch out from a common origin at the keyboard side (it varies by the manufacturer).
Manning Bartlett, Studio Laughing Duck, Glenorie NSW
http://www.studiolaughingduck.com
User avatar
Manning
Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor
 
Posts: 1099
Joined: Wed Sep 28, 2011 6:47 pm
Location: Glenorie NSW

Re: Micing grand piano live

Postby jkhuri44 » Mon Jul 16, 2012 12:50 pm

these kinda dealies look pretty sweet:

http://www.gollihurmusic.com/product/1301-KANDK_SOUND_PURE_PIANO_PICKUP.html


ANyone tried em before?
Jamil Khuri
Amusement & Audio Engineer
"it's not awesome unless its 240bpm with distorted 909 kicks!"
jkhuri44
Forum Veteran
Forum Veteran
 
Posts: 2528
Joined: Wed Sep 20, 2006 10:53 pm
Location: Dundas

Re: Micing grand piano live

Postby jasound » Mon Jul 16, 2012 3:07 pm

Hey Pigglet have you tried your setup but with omnis.
AB works better, but a 90 degree with some space between the mics also works.
The great thing is you get no proximity effect, and it sounds more even.
You will have to roll off the extended low end though.

We have just got a pair of Earthworks piano mics, I've only tried them once and they seemed
pretty good

DPA Compact 4023-53 with the magnet an suspension mic clips work well for decoupling low end, and also sound great.
jasound
Registered User
Registered User
 
Posts: 172
Joined: Tue Nov 20, 2007 2:32 pm
Location: SYDNEY AUSTRALIA

Re: Micing grand piano live

Postby Hookemeister » Wed Jul 18, 2012 1:35 pm

one of the best sounds i have was a SINGLE sm57 under, about the middle about a foot away.. i listened for the LOUDEST bit and shoved the mic there, with a drum kit right behind... it sounded great.


Yeah Damien, for live, I have to agree with picking it up underneath the soundboard... more uniform, not so boxy.

In my days of playing live I used the above method but with 2 piezos attached to the soundboard. Rolled off the top end of the dynamic and used the piezos for stereo spread, attack and to replace the top end. Basically, get the level right with the 57, then fade up the 2 piezo's to bring it to life.

If feed back was a problem then I'd roll a 57 up in a small hand towel and sit the mic inside on the curved section of the harp where the holes are, about half way along the length of the harp, with the capsule above one of the holes and close the lid. Piezos underneath on the soundboard.

The trick with the piezos is getting the right adhesive to stick them to soundboard. If the adhesive is too thin they'll sound brittle... too thick and you'll loose sensitivity, top end and they'll sound boomy.

For recording, if you're going to mic inside the piano, with the lid closed, then I'd go with a pair of omni's or PZM's. If you're using PZM's taped to the lid, place a piece of thin felt between the lid and the PZM when you're attaching them
Greg Hooke
Hookemeister
Regular Contributor
Regular Contributor
 
Posts: 360
Joined: Sat Jul 10, 2010 8:47 pm

Re: Micing grand piano live

Postby AlCraig » Mon Dec 17, 2012 1:14 am

Hey gigpiglet, what happened to my reply?
Al Craig
Black Inc Recorders
User avatar
AlCraig
Registered User
Registered User
 
Posts: 97
Joined: Mon Sep 20, 2010 5:28 am

Re: Micing grand piano live

Postby gigpiglet » Mon Dec 17, 2012 4:03 pm

hey al...
i dont know. do you mean i owe you a reply (did i miss something?)
or did you post something and it didnt appear?
maybe try post again?
Gareth Stuckey
gigpiglet productions:presents:recordings
gigpiglet
Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor
 
Posts: 1116
Joined: Tue Jun 01, 2010 4:10 pm
Location: sydney australia

Re: Micing grand piano live

Postby AlCraig » Mon Dec 17, 2012 7:59 pm

GP, I had an entry in this thread, but now its gone.
Essentially, my suggestion was to try a stereo boundary mic (not PZM) taped to the underside of the lid.
Then, whether lid down, short stick or long stick, you get a really good result. I would think that with the lid down, this would work very well in a PA
http://eu.audio-technica.com/en/resources/0f77e8c9235b4eb3_at849_english.pdf
Al Craig
Black Inc Recorders
User avatar
AlCraig
Registered User
Registered User
 
Posts: 97
Joined: Mon Sep 20, 2010 5:28 am

Re: Micing grand piano live

Postby Thirteen » Mon Dec 17, 2012 9:12 pm

I remember the sound of a mic (TLM 170 I think it was) dropping into Burt Bacharach's grand during the show at the Opera House a few years back....
Steve Jones
User avatar
Thirteen
TRM Endorsed
TRM Endorsed
 
Posts: 1244
Joined: Fri Dec 01, 2006 5:08 pm
Location: Sydney

Re: Micing grand piano live

Postby gigpiglet » Tue Dec 18, 2012 12:21 am

the AT looks really interesting... i wonder what gain before feedback is like?
anyone have one?
Gareth Stuckey
gigpiglet productions:presents:recordings
gigpiglet
Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor
 
Posts: 1116
Joined: Tue Jun 01, 2010 4:10 pm
Location: sydney australia

Re: Micing grand piano live

Postby AlCraig » Tue Dec 18, 2012 12:33 am

Yes, I have two. One is permanently attached to my studio grand.
You could trial the other one if you want.
Al Craig
Black Inc Recorders
User avatar
AlCraig
Registered User
Registered User
 
Posts: 97
Joined: Mon Sep 20, 2010 5:28 am

Re: Micing grand piano live

Postby gigpiglet » Tue Dec 18, 2012 12:24 pm

next time i have a piano to mic ill shout out for sure!
Gareth Stuckey
gigpiglet productions:presents:recordings
gigpiglet
Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor
 
Posts: 1116
Joined: Tue Jun 01, 2010 4:10 pm
Location: sydney australia

Re: Micing grand piano live

Postby Chinagraf » Wed Dec 19, 2012 12:37 am

I've been trying out a few of the Audix mics for recording bands all in lately, and they have these lollipop head condensors, sx25 or something close to that, they have these little mounts that can clip on to the harp bars and sit under the piano lid and they sound nice. Pretty cheap I think too, like 650 bucks each or something like that.
User avatar
Chinagraf
Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor
 
Posts: 1599
Joined: Wed Jun 22, 2005 1:09 am
Location: Melbourne

Re: Micing grand piano live

Postby Chinagraf » Wed Dec 19, 2012 12:39 am

In fact, here's a link to a picture I found, not mine.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/scvlondon/5122347411/
User avatar
Chinagraf
Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor
 
Posts: 1599
Joined: Wed Jun 22, 2005 1:09 am
Location: Melbourne

Re: Micing grand piano live

Postby mylesgm » Wed Dec 19, 2012 5:18 am

need to add some shock mounts to those mounts if they are going straight onto the resonating frame of the piano...
Myles Mumford
Producer/Composer/Engineer/Sound Artist
Making records in sunny Melbourne

www.mylesmumford.com
User avatar
mylesgm
Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor
 
Posts: 1872
Joined: Mon Feb 09, 2009 6:48 pm

Re: Micing grand piano live

Postby Ben M » Wed Dec 19, 2012 9:54 am

mylesgm wrote:need to add some shock mounts to those mounts if they are going straight onto the resonating frame of the piano...

They have a capsule suspension system that might help a little with that. Not sure how effective that system is. Andy...?
User avatar
Ben M
Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor
 
Posts: 1896
Joined: Fri Jul 04, 2008 11:54 am
Location: Sydney and Kangaroo Valley, NSW

Re: Micing grand piano live

Postby Chinagraf » Wed Dec 19, 2012 7:10 pm

The capsule is isolated from the body. I don't own those particular ones, I have others, D6, D2's and D4's, i5's
but there's a video on vimeo showing the mounts etc - http://vimeo.com/33700615#
I heard a jazz recording with them on piano and they sounded great.
User avatar
Chinagraf
Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor
 
Posts: 1599
Joined: Wed Jun 22, 2005 1:09 am
Location: Melbourne

Re: Micing grand piano live

Postby TimC » Wed May 22, 2013 5:17 pm

I tend to use a combination of a few things

One is an AKG C411 stuck to the sound board, underneath the piano. You gotta play around to make it sound best..No spill. No real string sound though. The sound is great when it's in a mix but not solo..
I use this for monitor mix as you get heaps of gain..
Or an M88 about 4" over one of the sound-holes towards the back - once again try out for the best spot. I aim to keep the capsule beneath the body of the piano to avoid excess spill - that lid already acts as a massive reflector...

Combined with:
A spaced pair of SDC 6" above strings slightly behind hammers for quiet solo parts, where you want to hear string sound.
Or a 414 over the middle of the board quite high - depends on what sort of gain before feedback you want - it's always a tradeoff..

I try get a good blend between the board and string sound and then push the board up when I need level..
t i m c u r n i c k
TimC
Registered User
Registered User
 
Posts: 49
Joined: Wed Aug 01, 2012 2:31 pm
Location: Sydney

Re: Micing grand piano live

Postby headman » Wed May 22, 2013 5:58 pm

For live piano performance I would like to suggest an option:

http://www.helpinstill.com/

I supplied Newcastle Leagues Club with one of the early models in 1981. (trashed in the earthquake along with a Yamaha G3)
The new ones are even better and fantastic for live performances, and you never have to worry about feedback.
Nothing touches the soundboard except for a few felt padded feet and can be mounted in 10 minutes.Certainly worth a thought


headman
Richard Anthony Heads
Ars Longa, Vita Brevis
headman
Registered User
Registered User
 
Posts: 233
Joined: Mon May 09, 2005 6:39 pm
Location: Hunter Valley NSW

Re: Micing grand piano live

Postby Damien » Thu May 23, 2013 12:12 am

I have a helpinstiel... its for sale.

make me an offer.
Damien Young
Pony Music
03 9702 3244
0412 354 254
Damien
Regular Contributor
Regular Contributor
 
Posts: 308
Joined: Sat May 07, 2005 5:02 am
Location: Melbourne

Re: Micing grand piano live

Postby simonstav » Tue Jun 04, 2013 8:50 pm

Damien wrote:I have a helpinstiel... its for sale.

make me an offer.


Hey Damien

Why are you selling it?
Regards Simon

Simon Stavenuiter Audio Production
0425 795492

https://www.facebook.com/groups/320097701401132/
http://stores.ebay.com.au/Simon-Stavenuiter-Audio-Production
simonstav
Registered User
Registered User
 
Posts: 227
Joined: Sun Oct 23, 2005 1:27 am
Location: Geelong VIC

Re: Micing grand piano live

Postby audioio » Tue Jun 04, 2013 10:42 pm

headman wrote:http://www.helpinstill.com/

Tried one once. Not to my taste, I'm afraid. Sounded like a piano through a pickup (which, in a sense, it is). Still, as they say, your mileage may vary.

Now these sound incredible:
http://www.dpamicrophones.com/en/produc ... item=24378
David Rodger
audioio
Regular Contributor
Regular Contributor
 
Posts: 415
Joined: Wed Jul 28, 2010 4:05 pm

Re: Micing grand piano live

Postby Damien » Tue Jun 04, 2013 11:20 pm

im selling it as i have never used it..

its part of a friends estate. he used it lots in the 80's. i know this one was used/hired on lots of large tours.
i believe its complete and was working then it was carefully packed away.
Damien Young
Pony Music
03 9702 3244
0412 354 254
Damien
Regular Contributor
Regular Contributor
 
Posts: 308
Joined: Sat May 07, 2005 5:02 am
Location: Melbourne

Re: Micing grand piano live

Postby Aisle 6 » Sun Apr 20, 2014 3:50 pm

When I was touring Marina Prior last year I was just taking around a pair of Audio Technica ATM450's. They are a side address small diaphragm condenser mic. I also took two 200mm(W) x 200mm(L) x 100mm(H) packing foam blocks with a slit in two directions with me. For most places I just wedged the body of the mic into the slit in the foam block and placed the block on the frame where the sweet spots were. A spaced pair, one up near the hammers on the high side and one down towards the bum of the piano. Panned them left and right and touched a little EQ to taste. Sounded great. Simple, cheap and portable. You can run it lid open or closed. :-bd
Scott Mullane
www.aisle6.com.au
User avatar
Aisle 6
Registered User
Registered User
 
Posts: 12
Joined: Wed Jan 01, 2014 11:05 pm
Location: Brisbane

Re: Micing grand piano live

Postby Enginearing » Tue May 06, 2014 8:24 pm

Interesting, thanks Scott, I'd pondered using a pair of these because of the super low profile, but haven't had my own mic kit handy for any piano gigs I've done in the past few months. Gotta run what ya brung, so it's been 137s or 414s, (whatever we're given).

For the record, we used the earthworks PM40T for Sarah Blasko's heavenly Sounds run and it was amazing. Solid mounting system allowing a closed lid, sounded awesome and the gain before feedback was great for monitors.
Ben Milne
Enginearing
Registered User
Registered User
 
Posts: 50
Joined: Fri Feb 17, 2012 1:56 pm
Location: Melbourne, Victoria

Re: Micing grand piano live

Postby audioio » Wed May 07, 2014 11:42 pm

DPA 4099s sound amazing.
David Rodger
audioio
Regular Contributor
Regular Contributor
 
Posts: 415
Joined: Wed Jul 28, 2010 4:05 pm

Next

Return to Live Sound Forum

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest