Friday, April 24, 2015

Jeff Awards

We're delighted to share that Karli Blalock, 2014 Honors in Sound Design grad, been nominated for a Jeff Award for Best Sound Design, Non-Equity! The Jeff Awards cover the greater Chicago Area, so Karli was nominated out of a huge pool.

Congratulations Karli!

Saturday, April 11, 2015

The RCA 44

With Sweet Smell of Success preparations underway, this week Mike volunteered to bring in his restored vintage RCA 44 microphone for us to listen to (and for our amazing props master Pam to look at).  It's not every day we get to listen to microphones like this, and it was a treat!

We AB-tested the mic on Mark's acoustic and Ben's electric guitars, against one of our Earthworks M50s.  Both mics went into the Avid preamp (since it has an impedance selector), gain matched, and into ProTools.  We were all pretty amazed by the big (not noisy) sound it gave everything, and even when we moved the mics away from the guitars, by comparison the 44 made the omni mic sound brittle.

RCA44 Frequency response (not showing proximity effect!)
After a few minutes of tracking, I tried EQ-ing the omni to match the timbral differences.  We got close, but of course the natural "compression" the heavy ribbon gives the sound is not something you can get in digital-land. The Earthworks capsule is just too fast.

Just for fun, we re-patched the 44 into the Summit Audio tube EQ and compressors. What a beautiful sound!

I'm super grateful for the critical listening opportunities like this that really only come from a grad school program like ours.  Thanks Mike!