Does anyone have any thoughts regarding the best set up in terms of miking the above. It's a smallish club venue, very successfully using a single L1M2 set up with 1/2 Mics, double bass and sometimes keys fed in. I'm looking for a single/dual mic set up (cost effective)to produce high quality for live jazz/blues. Advice on single/double mic set up and positioning would be useful. Currently trying an AKG C1000 condenser. With that in mind, what preset would be best for that particular mic?
Many thanks all!
Hi, 'gjck'! Welcome to your first post on this forum.
Regarding micing pianos: The best advice I've seen is this about micing a grand piano -- but it ought to give you a good idea about how to approach the upright as well.
I don't know specifically about that particular piano, but on many uprights you can easily take the lower panel off (the big panel between the keyboard and the pedals). That will not only give you a "bigger" acoustic sound, but will also provide some 'micing' access which you might not get as easily from the upper half (particularly if you need to keep the music holder available). The other mic-access, of course, is by opening the top lid -- but sometimes that top lid is 'locked down' when the keyboard cover is open.
... but that bottom panel is often less obvious (particularly if positioned sideways or facing the audience), rarely 'locked', and doesn't usually require any tools.
If the back of the piano is NOT against a wall/partition, the other mic access is from the back side (sound board). On one occasion, for instance, I used two mics with one at the back side near the low strings, and the other over the high strings through the open top lid.
As the referenced note describes, start with the best "1 mic" sound over the lower strings, then add in the upper-strings mic to "season to taste".
Thanks for that Dan. I'm somewhat limited by my technical knowledge I'm afraid! The equipment available at the moment however is the AKG C1000 with the possibility that we could add another of these and a separate mixer to give a single line in to the Tonematch. The dealer who we got the PA from suggested that mic as being high quality and durable. So far, we've had decent results with the single mic into the open lid of the piano, slightly towards the high strings. No feedback issues and the sound is pretty good. I've used the Audix VX10 preset so far, but am clueless about which mic preset would be best for the AKG, as there isn't one specifically for it (yet!). Any thoughts?
We can really open any of the panels up though it's really essential in a jam/singer session to have the music holder. Essentially then, miking through the top is the most practical option though we could try one in the top and another by the soundboard (the piano tends to sit more or less diagonally out from the right hand corner of the performance area so that most of the audience can see the keys. We do have a double bass fairly close to that which is also plugged into the Tonematch via a preamp.
So, I have a couple of questions to consider - one mic or two (and if two, what type of separate mixing device to enable a single line in to the Tonematch). Secondly, is the AKG C1000 the best option? (It is about the right price).
Any further thoughts?
By your comment about another mixer, I presume that you don't have any unused inputs left on your T1.
If you are not using all 4 channels on the T1, that is the obvious choice (e.g.: put the bass preamp output into channel 4).
Otherwise, look for a good-quality "mini-mixer" with 2-4 mic (XLR) inputs. You would essentially run the mixer "flat" (no EQ modifications), panning both the piano mic channels completely to one side (e.g.: Right), and then use one cable to connect the mixer's Right output to the channel where you previously had the piano mic plugged in -- and continue using the VX10 -- or chose the Keyboard category (so the zEQ settings are appropriate) and use the "flat" selection. When you use the mixer instead of the mic, you'll need to greatly reduce the Trim knob on that T1 channel first (turn it all the way down, set up the mixer, then turn up the Trim as needed). Watch the input LED on the T1 as you turn up the mics on the mixer ... you should never see 'red' flashes on that input (if so, turn down the Trim a bit).
When using two mics on an upright as you've described it, I'd start with just one on the back-side near the low strings --- get the best sound from that one mic by listening strictly to the low and mid-range sounds ... then position the 2nd mic over the open top near the high strings, mixing it in gradually to get the amount of "brightness" you desire.
With only one mic, all you can do is try different positions of the mic to get the best compromise of the "balance" of sound.
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