Ribbon mic/floor monitor live use.

Discussion in 'Live Performance & Stage Sound' started by tuttermuts, Aug 15, 2018.

  1. tuttermuts

    tuttermuts SS.org Regular

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    Hey guys

    Been a while since I last posted here. Guess what? I'm getting married this weekend! Huzzah!

    So we found a cosy little countryside church and we want to bring a little duet. Vocals and classical guitar. My current idea is to use my ribbon mic into a floor monitor since it's not a big venue. And it's got plenty of natural sound going on as is. What do you guys think, good idea or feedback city?
     
  2. MaxOfMetal

    MaxOfMetal Likes trem wankery. Super Moderator

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    How small of a venue? Do you even need to amplify? I'm assuming everyone will be relatively quiet for it. How many people about? I've played my fair share of coffee shops and cafes with no amp.

    Is your acoustic an acoustic/electric? You might want to consider just plugging in and blocking the sound hole.

    Congratulations!
     
  3. tuttermuts

    tuttermuts SS.org Regular

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    Thx man!

    I think it's got around 50 ppl capacity. But probably won't fill it all the way (most peeps will join us afterwards at the party).

    It's a nylon guitar without any kind of output other then it's natural sound. We could do without amplification. But I think it might be a little thin. My intention isn't to blow the windows out of the place ofcourse :). Just a little extra to carry our voices. We also have a sound file to play so the monitor is there already.

    What if I aim the monitor away from the mic?
     
  4. MaxOfMetal

    MaxOfMetal Likes trem wankery. Super Moderator

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    Try it out, find what you can get away with as far as distance goes. Definitely face the speakers away from the mic.
     
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  5. TonyFlyingSquirrel

    TonyFlyingSquirrel Cherokee Warrior

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    I've done similar rooms with just my carvin acoustic amp, with my vocals going through it.
     
  6. Drew

    Drew Forum MVP

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    Do you have anything else other than a ribbon you can use?

    Ribbons have a figure 8 pickup pattern, which in theory COULD work if you had the two performers face each other, put the guitarist above the singer, and made sure the monitor was in the figure-8's null... But that would probably look pretty weird. The more conventional approach would be to have the performers face the crowd, the ribbon in front of them, and then the monitor on the other side of the ribbon, closer to and facing the crowd... But that would mean you'd be picking up as much sound from the crowd and reflections off the back of the room from the monitor, as you would from the performer. Ribbons are also fairly delicate and fairly weak, so you'd be running the monitor's preamp fairly hard, which could add additional noise. If you happen to have a condenser (or even a dynamic) with a cartioid or supercartioid pickup pattern, that facing the performers (cartioid would be ideal) would probably be your best bet to capture them clearly while minimizing room noise/feedback captured and played back by the monitor.

    Oh, and congrats!
     
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  7. tuttermuts

    tuttermuts SS.org Regular

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    I do have some dynamic mics (sm57, shure, ...the usual suspects) but I was thinking of using the ribbon to capture all three sources at once. Micing up a nylon guitar can be a bit of a hassle sometimes. However I did have the huge capture of the ribbon in mind, hence I look for advice. Maybe I'll bring multiple and try out what works best.
     
  8. Drew

    Drew Forum MVP

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    The BEST piece of advice I can give you is, if at all possible, do a dry run. :lol:

    I ended up doing something similar for a friend's wedding a little more than a year ago, and I was a little nervous about it and came up with a plan A, plan B, and plan C just in case things went wrong, brought a bunch of spares, and a couple things I'm pretty sure I wouldn't need, but just in case... I ended up on Plan C and using everything I brought, and thankfully it all went off without a hitch, but had I been able to do a test run in advance, I would have done a couple things differently. :lol:

    But, unless you can get the crowd into the ribbon's null (say, set the guitarist and singer up facing each other, at a right angle to the crowd, and angle the mic so it was facing up to the singer and down to the guitar), I'd worry about the figure-8 pickup pattern in a live environment like this.
     
  9. Given To Fly

    Given To Fly Contributor

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    Female voice and classical guitar is perhaps the most natural duo a guitarist can be in without fighting the instrument for volume. It just works. However, 9 times out of 10 you will be fighting the guitar for more volume anyways. (Performance spaces are more often than not, just spaces.) She needs to hear you, that is crucial because the audience will be paying attention to her. They will notice you but the human voice attracts attention unlike anything else. Here is where things get crazy. If you have a microphone and she doesn't, that image will rub people the wrong way. It really does not matter if they can hear you or not. People will fixate on that microphone and form an opinion about the music based on that alone. None of it is rational but it happens all the time, especially on Sunday mornings with beginning P&W bands. I think a ribbon mic will just make life more complicated on what will be a wonderful, but extremely complicated day. Make it an easy day and just take the guitar. ;)

    I noticed you are from Belgium. There are a lot of classical guitarists in Belgium. It really is quite incredible! Oh, and rehearse. I assumed you were planning on it. If you weren't, definitely rehearse...a lot! "Performing well is more fun than not performing well." Congratulations on getting married!
     
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  10. tuttermuts

    tuttermuts SS.org Regular

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    Finally I decided to go without amplifaction, the priest had a wireless mic which he held in place and that was just perfect. Thank you guys for all chipping in with plenty of advice. I'm glad I took the general idea of not going with the ribbon. That would only have added unnecessary stress. And stress I did have, glad I took a few simple songs. Playing huge crowds is nothing compared to this.

    Anyway thx guys!
     
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  11. Drew

    Drew Forum MVP

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    By the way, congrats!
     
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