Author Topic: Bach Partita No. 2 in C Minor, BWV 826 by Tatia Chikovani  (Read 2672 times)

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Offline Alvis

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Bach Partita No. 2 in C Minor, BWV 826 by Tatia Chikovani
« on: March 20, 2014, 02:20:41 AM »
Hi, I thought I'd share our recording and see what you guys think.

Tatia performs Sinfonia while i did the recording. Please comment on the quality of either :-)

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/ODAkM9w7VKw" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/ODAkM9w7VKw</a>

Enjoy!
-Alvis

Offline Holden

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Re: Bach Partita No. 2 in C Minor, BWV 826 by Tatia Chikovani
« Reply #1 on: March 20, 2014, 11:59:33 AM »
Great performance and a very clean and detailed recording. Perhaps too detailed as the sound of the pedal mechanism is quite prominent in the opening bars though I am not sure how you would deal with this.
Cheers

Holden

Offline Alvis

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Re: Bach Partita No. 2 in C Minor, BWV 826 by Tatia Chikovani
« Reply #2 on: March 20, 2014, 01:03:59 PM »
Thanks for your reply!

Yeah, I hear the pedal noise too, but it is aparently deviosly hard to avoid "mechanical" sound when making a clean and detailed recording. I experimented with several angles and distances. I suppose I could try to record a little further away from the lid next time.

Thanks again!
-Alvis

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Re: Bach Partita No. 2 in C Minor, BWV 826 by Tatia Chikovani
« Reply #3 on: March 20, 2014, 01:18:11 PM »
Great performance and a very clean and detailed recording. Perhaps too detailed as the sound of the pedal mechanism is quite prominent in the opening bars though I am not sure how you would deal with this.
+1
I suppose I could try to record a little further away from the lid next time.
I'd think that would be an excellent idea.
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Offline 71 dB

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Re: Bach Partita No. 2 in C Minor, BWV 826 by Tatia Chikovani
« Reply #4 on: March 20, 2014, 02:19:58 PM »
Please comment on the quality of either :-)
Thanks for sharing! What microphone set up did you use?

I listened to this with headphones and I'm sorry to say the sound isn't very pleasant because there's quite a lot of spatial distortion (signal differencies between left and right channels are unnaturally large with headphones without crossfeeding). Do you know OSS set up (optimum stereo sound) ? It produses sound that works with loudspeakers and headphones, because the stereo image is based on both frequency dependent amplitude and natural phase differencies.

I had to use my strongest crossfeed option (-1 dB) to get almost spatial distortion free sound with headphones.

Some guidelines for recording (good microphone set up manages to satisfy these more or less):

- Low frequencies (below about 800 Hz) should be almost monophonic.
- Time difference between channels shouldn't exceed 0.6 ms, at least below about 1500 Hz.

Like others have mentioned, the sound it very detailed and I agree more hall acoustics is a good idea. Too much direct sound compared to  reverberant diffuse sound make the spatial distortion problems worse.


Spatial distortion is a serious problem deteriorating headphone listening.
Crossfeeders reduce spatial distortion and make the sound more natural
and less tiresome in headphone listening.

My Sound Cloud page

Offline Holden

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Re: Bach Partita No. 2 in C Minor, BWV 826 by Tatia Chikovani
« Reply #5 on: March 20, 2014, 02:46:35 PM »
I've listened again (because I like the performance) and then listened to my reference recording by Sergey Schepkin and the difference in recorded sound mentioned by 71dB is apparent. In this I can hear the reverberance of the hall acoustics through my Shure SRH840s and the frequency range across my head is far more evenly divided.
Cheers

Holden

Offline Alvis

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Re: Bach Partita No. 2 in C Minor, BWV 826 by Tatia Chikovani
« Reply #6 on: March 21, 2014, 02:23:54 AM »
Hi again.

I'm using stereo-paired SE1a small membrane condenser microphones in an ORTF configuration.

The reason why you're hearing these distortions is because I have the gear, but not the firsthand knowledge or skill with recording. I'm basically just learning as I go. I was under the impression that the ORTF setup was supposed to help, but I'm going to look into the OSS setup you mentioned. and definitely get more distance from the piano.

Thanks for your feedback :-)
-Alvis

Offline 71 dB

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Re: Bach Partita No. 2 in C Minor, BWV 826 by Tatia Chikovani
« Reply #7 on: March 21, 2014, 09:50:00 AM »
Hi again.

I'm using stereo-paired SE1a small membrane condenser microphones in an ORTF configuration.

The reason why you're hearing these distortions is because I have the gear, but not the firsthand knowledge or skill with recording. I'm basically just learning as I go. I was under the impression that the ORTF setup was supposed to help, but I'm going to look into the OSS setup you mentioned. and definitely get more distance from the piano.

Thanks for your feedback :-)
-Alvis

Ok, so your microphones are 17 cm (~7 inches) apart and and angled 110 degrees?

Such configuration ensures that time difference between channels is less than 0.6 ms (that's good). However, since cardioid mics are used, the amplitude difference gets easily too large for headphone listening, especially when the recording is acoustically dry.

What to do?

- Keep the distance of your mics at 17 cm, but reduce the angle between them (for example use 70 degrees or even less). The wider orchestra you record, the bigger angle between mics in ORTF. Now you are recording piano only. That's something narrow. The direct sound of a piano should be almost monophonic (sound comes from a narrow angle). The diffuse reverberant sound field gives ambience. We are now half a century after the early stereophonic recordings. There's no need to overblow left and right. People expect natural sound.

- Increase the distance to sound source as mentioned already. Cardioid mics cut bass frequencies and more reverberant sound will compensate that a little. The acoustics is part of the sound (that's why music halls have acoustics!). Don't be afraid to include it to your recording, but too much is always too much (here you are very far from too much imo).

I think OSS is one of the best set ups there is. You need the "Jecklin" disc between two omnidirectional mics. Since omnidirectional mics are flat down to the lowest frequencies of human hearing, there's no loss of bass.

Thanks for your feedback :-)

-Alvis

You are welcome Alvis. Hopefully you don't feel I was harsh. It's just that "it's nice" comments don't help at all went you need advice. I am talking about the sound with headphones because:

- Spatial distortion is a real problem and a nasty one
- I believe getting the sound "right" for headphones means you are on the right track. Headphone sound is a good indicator of how healthy the spatial attributes of the recorded sound are.
- Headphone listening is popular these days, thanks to portable mp3 players and smartphones.
Spatial distortion is a serious problem deteriorating headphone listening.
Crossfeeders reduce spatial distortion and make the sound more natural
and less tiresome in headphone listening.

My Sound Cloud page

Offline Alvis

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Re: Bach Partita No. 2 in C Minor, BWV 826 by Tatia Chikovani
« Reply #8 on: March 21, 2014, 12:31:11 PM »
Hopefully you don't feel I was harsh.

Not at all, I welcome constructive criticism, and that's exactly what you offered.

You're spot on about the microphone setup I used. I'm interested in the OSS setup, but I'm going to try DIYing that Jecklin disk. It's $300 and too much for a simple piece of wood with foam on each sides.

Tatia and I are going to try to record Haydn Sonata in D Major tomorrow. I'm not going to be able to get a disk that soon, but I will definitely do something with the angles and distance. I'll post it here and we can see if we're able to make a difference.

BTW, Tatia is annoyed that you're not critiquing her performance ;-)

-Alvis


Offline 71 dB

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Re: Bach Partita No. 2 in C Minor, BWV 826 by Tatia Chikovani
« Reply #9 on: March 21, 2014, 02:02:33 PM »
Not at all, I welcome constructive criticism, and that's exactly what you offered.
Thanks! That's what I try to do. ;)

You're spot on about the microphone setup I used. I'm interested in the OSS setup, but I'm going to try DIYing that Jecklin disk. It's $300 and too much for a simple piece of wood with foam on each sides.
Yeah, Jecklin disk is a nice DIY project.

Tatia and I are going to try to record Haydn Sonata in D Major tomorrow. I'm not going to be able to get a disk that soon, but I will definitely do something with the angles and distance. I'll post it here and we can see if we're able to make a difference.
Yeah, I'm sure you can get a nice result with ORTF when the parameters are right. Very interesting to hear the results of your experimenting.

BTW, Tatia is annoyed that you're not critiquing her performance ;-)

-Alvis
Oh, I'm very sorry about that. I am more into the technical side of things and I don't have much to complain about Tatia's playing. I felt the tempi are very good. I also think that the playing got better (more self-confident sounding) after the first minute. At 0:36 happens something distracting (is it only me?).

Spatial distortion is a serious problem deteriorating headphone listening.
Crossfeeders reduce spatial distortion and make the sound more natural
and less tiresome in headphone listening.

My Sound Cloud page

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