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Bell mic or not?


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Joe Good
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2006 11:46 pm    Post subject: Bell mic or not? Reply with quote

Hey, I was wondering if any of you folks could tell me your thoughts on the use of clip-on bell microphones. Particularly:

1. Do they sound better per unit of money spent than regular ones when doing Jazz recordings?

2. Do they work well for live shows?

3. Do they sound right or interfere with mutes?

4. How much should I spend (budget of about $150, maybe up to $250)?


Also, do any of you have a groovy wireless setup? i.e., bell mic going to wireless transmitter, etc. And if so, does it work well, or is it tricky with RF and such.

Below is a list of the microphones at our studio if you wanted to make any recommendations.

• Shure 57


• Shure 58 Beta


• Shure 58


• Shure 81


• Sennheiser 421

• Audio Technica AT851a PZM


• AKG D112


• AKG C3000


Thanks kindly in advance
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mulligan stew
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2006 5:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There are a ton of recent threads in Other Toys about clip-ons and wireless rigs...

That said, I love my Roam One Elite wireless system (AMT mic, transmitter and receiver, all truly wireless--no belt pack):

http://www.music123.com/AMT-ROAM-1-Elite-i130943.music

A quality rig all around. But I will qualify this by saying I don't use it for standard acoustic trumpet. I use it for effects-driven stuff. For acoustic I use a standard mic so I can play the mic and get proxinity effects.

The Roam One is fine w/ mutes.
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crzytptman
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2006 9:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

For recording, of the mic's you have listed the 421 is by far your best choice. Hopefully, it is one of the older metal body ones. It is also an excellent live mic.

I have in the past used a Shure SM98. It's a great mic. My issue with clip on's is what they do to the resonance of the bell. Also, you get a lot of valve noise - you have to roll off the lows, which then makes the sound "whiney". I used to use an old TV antenna (rabbit ear) which I velcro'd to the bottom slide, then attached the mic so I could telescope it in and out. The problem with that is that when you attach something to the horn, especially in that position, you change the response and alter the resonant frequencies of the horn. Think heavy caps, braces, etc. I'm thinking about something that attaches to my left wrist . . . not joking!
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Joe Good
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2006 9:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yar, I've been using the 421 for recordings a lot. It's tough getting a clear image when I use harmon or cup mutes though. Maybe I need to fiddle with the EQ somewhat. I also started doubling the mics -- 421 and a 58, spread slightly so I can move a little. Not totally sure I liked the sound though.

That mic that Mulligan Stew linked has some sort of damper for reducing valve noise and stuff, but that rig is out of my budget for the moment.

The left wrist thing is a neat idea. You could get all '80s style with your wrist band.... Probably not too hard to rig something up with some stiff wire, but you'd have to go to a goth' leather shop to get the bracer you need
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crzytptman
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2006 1:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
you'd have to go to a goth' leather shop to get the bracer you need

Next time you're there, would you pick something out for me?
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_Kanstul-Krazy
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2006 1:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm not a real fan of the "clip-on" mics.

I had problems in the past with horns that have metal valve guides, particularly light weight horns (i.e. Bach *72, Kanstul WB, etc...). The clip-ons just tend to pick up and trasmit the metalic sound of the valves more (IMHO). Also, if you're playing gigs that require to switch back and forth between Bb Trumpet and Flugelhorns, also switching out mutes, clip-ons are a REAL pain. Again, IMHO.

I LOVE Sennheiser 421's!!! Those are GREAT mics. Don't let anyone tell you they're only for "studio" use either. We've used them on "Live" gigs and they work GREAT. I bought the Eagles Farewell Tour DVD several months ago (HIGHLY recommend to check it out). They have a horn section (3 saxes and 1 trumpet) that plays with them and they ALL use 421's. I say if the "real" Pro's use them, go for it. 421's stand up to the test when gig'n, too. They are built like tanks. Check out ebay for used ones, especially if you're looking for one of the older, supposedly better ones. I never could hear the difference between the old ones or the news ones?????

My 2cents worth!
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Joe Good
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2006 2:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

crzytptman wrote:
Quote:
you'd have to go to a goth' leather shop to get the bracer you need

Next time you're there, would you pick something out for me?


Would you like a Zorro mask too? !
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chrisherron
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2006 5:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've never needed a mic, in fact i've been told that i need to be quieter most the time (overpowering entire honor bands, lack of control).

Just thought i'd add my 2 cents however worthless it is. lol
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Don Herman rev2
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2006 10:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I refer a stand mic becuase it's easier to "work" the mic for expressiveness and it doesn't pick up handling, breath, and horn (valve/slide etc.) noise nearly as badly. Takes some practice, of course.

Of the mics listed, I would use the 421 for stage and C3000 for "safe" stage or studio. I personally prefer the sound of the C3000, but the 421 is arguably the best "dynamic" around for trumpet and is very rugged. The new MD 412 II has a five-position bass contour switch that seems a great thing to have (helps kill the proximity effect, which vocalists use all the time, and sometimes trumpet players -- but most often it just adds low-frequency breath and attack "pumping" noise to trumpet) and it is almost impossible to overload. The 81 is very flat and for that reason a bit "too" revealing on trumpet for me -- tends to exaggerate the high end and make the trumpet sound "brittle" (just to get technical ). The 57/58 work OK but you have to EQ a bit to eliminate the upper mid boost that helps vocals but makes brass sound strident to my ears (and perhaps nobody else's, of course). Pains me, an AKG guy, to say it, but I don't recollect that much about the 112 (have to look it up). The PZM is a boundary mic and not that great for stage band work (great sound, but tends to pick up too much of everything). I've not used a 58 Beta.

All in my opinion! - Don
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TonySwartz
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2006 1:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

What does Chris Botti use?

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TrumpetFunk
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2006 12:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

TonySwartz wrote:
What does Chris Botti use?




Going strictly on appearance, I'd say that's the SD Systems LCM-77.

http://www.sdsystems.com/

It's supposed to be what Alan (Mr fabulous) Rubin plays on and he's listed on their webpage. I've also seen Earth Wind & Fire use this mic (based on appearances only) and I think Miles did too.

This one definitely stays out of the way of mutes.

For me, that's what I'd get as it keeps the mount off the bell.

I already have an AudioTechnica ATM-35. It's a great mic, but for the bell mount. I've not had problems with mutes as long as the change isn't too quick.

I have not tried the AMT (Not ATM) Roam but know that many swear by it. They have an off the bell option too.

You're definitely looking for a $250++ mic. Worth saving up & waiting for.

As for wireless, they all go there, for a price and with a belt pack Plus transmitter. However, the best wireless I've seen is the Samson, which is based on the AudioTechnica Pro-35 mic. It's transmitter is right on the mic. So there's NO BELT PACK and NO CABLE, just a mic and small transmitter which takes one AAA Battery

Now, my preference is to get the clip off my bell as I have lightweight bell.

Also, to answer your other questions most of the mounted mics you've listed are not suited to recording. The Sure's will colour your sound. Aside from that they are fine live as you get a phat & "meaty" live sound.

Definitely, the Senn. 421 is great for recording and as a live mic. You may want to look at the AKG C3000 too.

When you record, you want a large diaphragm mic like the 421 or AKG. The clip ons are quite small.

Anyhow, just my 2¢ worth.
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Joe Good
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 05, 2006 12:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You guys rock!

Ya, looks like I'm going to save up for a good wireless (mostly for live and loud settings), and just keep using the 421 and the 3000 for the time being. I think I agree with the evaluation of the Shures, in that it definitely required some EQ to make it sound natural

Many thanks.
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mulligan stew
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2006 6:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

TrumpetFunk wrote:

I have not tried the AMT (Not ATM) Roam but know that many swear by it. They have an off the bell option too.

You're definitely looking for a $250++ mic. Worth saving up & waiting for.

As for wireless, they all go there, for a price and with a belt pack Plus transmitter. However, the best wireless I've seen is the Samson, which is based on the AudioTechnica Pro-35 mic. It's transmitter is right on the mic. So there's NO BELT PACK and NO CABLE, just a mic and small transmitter which takes one AAA Battery .


That's what I dig about my Roam system--the mic fastens to tubing (in my case, I use the bottom leg of the 3rd slide) and it has the transmitter right on the mic assembly. No cables, no belt pack, and one AAA lasts for 12 hours. It's a sweet system.
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TrumpetFunk
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2006 10:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
That's what I dig about my Roam system--the mic fastens to tubing (in my case, I use the bottom leg of the 3rd slide) and it has the transmitter right on the mic assembly. No cables, no belt pack, and one AAA lasts for 12 hours. It's a sweet system.


Which Model is that ? I've seen the off the bell, but with a belt pack. Do they have a photo of it on the site ?

It sounds exactly like what I want.

I haven't seen it and my local retailer doesn't stock it. They'd gladly order one for me though
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mulligan stew
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 07, 2006 11:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's this one right here:

http://www.music123.com/AMT-ROAM-1-Elite-i130943.music

It comes w/ a windscreen (not shown in that pic) and the clip assembly has additional hardware so you can mount it on a slide leg. The black "pod" right above the mic is the transmitter. The receiver is tiny and can be mounted on a rack or kept at your feet. I haven't noticed any blind spots or interference, and the mic quality is high. The mic itself is shock-mounted as you can see.

Best of all, there is very little valve noise, a problem w/ many clip-on mics.

I THINK I bought mine through Musician's friend but I can't find the invoice...in any case Google it and look for the best deal. You will dig it.

Oh yeah, it also comes with a nice hard case, padded, so it doesn't get banged around on the way to gigs.

edit: ah ha, this is where I got mine:

http://www.stevesmusiccenter.com/

Great price and incredibly fast shipping.
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ALLCHOPS
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 07, 2006 11:50 am    Post subject: SDS LCM 77 Reply with quote

I just delivery of my new SDS LCM 77 Wireless and had a chance to use it over the weekend! I've also had the opportunity to try the AMT Roam via my sax player on a few occasions (Bell Clamp) and thought that it was a great mic!

I can tell you that cosmetically as someone mentioned above the SD is the clear winner. When it comes to sound I am completely blown away by the SDS as well! The high mid's are unreal in the middle register! The highs just smack. My sound engineer is an old school guy and is a big believer in larger diaphram mic's. He can't believe how this mic sounds especially when I came from using a Sennheizer MD 441(Retail-$895.00) I've also used the Senn Md 421 but moved up to the 441 a few years back...

I have both options of being wired to a pre-amp or a belt pack. I use the belt pack at this point because we do some moving around on stage. The pre-amp option has the ability to turn up your volume and tweak your tone. I also use in-ear monitors so I can adjust anything I want going wireless!

If you want more info e-mail Brigitte @ SDS - She is very accomodating! tell her I sent you!

office@sdsystems.com

Good Luck!

Tony Gambaro
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mulligan stew
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 07, 2006 12:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

hey Tony, it's the duel of the competing mics!

just kidding. By the way I recently played the Stage One NY (Felix's) and was blown away. I am now figuring out how to buy one.
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ALLCHOPS
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 07, 2006 1:45 pm    Post subject: Mull Reply with quote

Felix's horn is outstanding! Russ Johnson plays the same model but I believe he has a lead pipe on his that mirrors 16mm gun!

Felix will put you in the right direction!

Good Luck!

Tony
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cjdjazztpt
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 08, 2006 7:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

chrisherron wrote:
I've never needed a mic, in fact i've been told that i need to be quieter most the time (overpowering entire honor bands, lack of control).

Just thought i'd add my 2 cents however worthless it is. lol


Ha...let's see you do that in a "commercial" setting.... Electric guitars, basses, mic'd drums, synths, and 100's to 1,000's of screaming crowds = the need to use a MIC!

or...

let's see you make a recording without some type of microphone...See what I am saying??
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cjdjazztpt
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 08, 2006 7:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Also, for live gigs I use the Samson Airline Wireless (clip on to bell...no belt pack or aggravating wired beltpacks) and I like it for live situations. Has a very hot pickup (audio technica ah-35 mic) and uses a AAA battery that lasts me 2-3 gigs. Well worth the $399 pricetag. FWIW from me!
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