I received this astonishing recording from my friend Grègory Chamming’s.
You have the word…
Hi Marco. I tell myself that we are fragile on this Earth… Yesterday, for the third time in my life, I had a “stormy” experience… I love thunderstorms, they fascinate me, and as soon as one breaks out, I feel “electric”, and that attracts me, and I’m going to see… So yesterday, I was sitting in a meadow, waiting for the storm to come… It’s coming from the north-east. Strong, more and more powerful. After a few minutes, before I could anticipate it, a bolt of lightning struck, and a few milliseconds later there was a great “Tsaaac!” in the air, barely a hundred metres from me… I found myself propelled by the phenomenal power of the lightning, to the ground, backwards, on my back. I could feel my heart racing and starting to beat very hard, just after it seemed to stop… I threw everything on the floor, and with a lot of pain, ran to take refuge in my van, parked 50m away. I think I was lucky again…
UNIVERSITY OF PAVIA – RESEARCHERS ‘NIGHT
September 30, 2022
Presentazione del Dr Gianni Pavan alla Notte dei Ricercatori a Pavia per illustrare i temi della bioacustica e dell’ecoacustica. Con ascolto di suoni di molte specie, dalle megattere a cervi, uccelli canori, anfibi e anche insetti. Con dimostrazione degli strumenti per registrare e visualizzare i suoni, tra cui la parabola Mid Side realizzata da naturesound.it e anche l’UltraMic 250k, microfono ultrasonico USB prodotto in Italia da Dodotronic che con il software di analisi e visualizzazione SeaPro (realizzato e sviluppato da G. Pavan al CIBRA dell’Università di Pavia) ci fa “vedere” e “sentire” in tempo reale anche gli ultrasuoni di pipistrelli e ortotteri.
A few weeks ago, I bought a pair of Earsight microphones 48V XLR plugs. After testing them with the new Zoom F3, I found that, as it was logical to expect, the stereo separation with these two omnidirectional capsules was not great, despite having adopted a self-built positioning system with the capsules angled 120° and 17 cm apart from each other.
So, I decided to create a separation by inserting a 12 cm diameter sphere, made up of a ball for gymnastic postural exercises produced in Germany, the BlackRoll Ball12, whose material seems to me perfect for the project.
As a first test, being a season in which the singing of birds even during is practically nil, I tried to quickly record a few minutes of nocturnal orthoptera chorus: Oecanthus pellucens, Eupholidoptera chabrieri schmidti, Modicogryllus burdigalensis.
People often debate the use of mono or stereo microphones inside a parabolic dish. This I have already mentioned here.
In summary: some prefer a mono recording for a “clean” use with spectrogram analysis, others prefer to obtain a stereo recording to have a pleasant soundscape. However, a stereo recording does not exclude the possibility of being able to use only one channel of the two to still obtain a good spectrogram.
Personally, I have always thought that the best thing would be to have both opportunities.
This is why I thought of designing and manufacturing (for my personal use) a Mono/Stereo microphone baffle to be inserted in a parabolic dish, which gives the possibility to separatly connect one of the two configurations when using a two-channel recorder, or both configurations at the same time if using a mixer/recorder with at least three channels..
Above the project drawing of the baffle and below the 3D printed realization of the microphone assembly.
Stereo capsules L-R; M = mono capsule facing towards the inside of the dish.
I asked about adding the two signals Mono+Stereo to Jules Ryckebusch who replied:
“The signals are adding. So that gives you, in theory 2X signal that works out to 6dB. It’s what people do when putting four mics in an array too. The correlated signal adds 6db and the uncorrelated noise only adds 3dB so there is an improvement in signal to noise ratio”.
Here a quick audio test using a metronome
below European robins at dawn (mono + stereo – Sound Devices 302 mixer + Tascam DR05X)
A few days ago, I received from Ivano Pelicella, owner of Dodotronic, the new HiSound Mono EVO parabolic microphone, equipped with 4 x AOM capsules. I report here my impressions of use, as well as some practical tests carried out both with a metronome comparing this Mono EVO version with the Stereo 1+1 AOM capsules version, and using the Mono EVO live with some target bird species (more a little cricket).
Below are recordings of various species, including Long-tailed Tit, Common Nightingale, Marsh Cricket, Common Pheasant, Blackbird.
I am not a fan of mono type recording, and I love stereo recording, whatever it is. That said, let’s move on to analyze what emerged from the use of this new parabolic microphone.
The first highlight is the gain of 4 dB using the Mono EVO compared to the well-performing HiSound Stereo. This is logical since in the stereo version the signal received by the single side capsule positioned on the baffle disc comes roughly from half a parabolic disc. In the mono version, the signal comes from the whole parabolic dish, so there is a doubling of the signal compared to the version with the stereo separator disc. However, it must be considered that this separator disc also has a signal increase function following the PZM effect (Pressure Zone Microphone).
Therefore, for a use that does not concern the recording of Soundscapes, this Mono EVO version is particularly interesting if you want to make recordings to be used later for some specific study involving sonographic analysis (spectrograms etc.). Furthermore, users interested in so-called NFC (Night Flight Calls) of birds, will certainly benefit of this specific microphone configuration.
In this few days, I tried to make recordings including the widest range of frequencies.
So on Long-tailed Tit (frequencies about 7000 Hz), Common Nightingale (to consider the peaks that can go into distortion, instead they hold perfectly here), Marsh Cricket (about 20 meters away, a very small cricket of 5-7 mm, with frequencies around 6 KHz), flight of Common Pheasant (to stay also in the medium-low frequencies).
Finally the Common Blackbird, a classic test as far as I’m concerned.
I just have to test the Mono EVO dish in the short term on particular small cicadas with an almost ultrasonic call…
I tested a ZOOM AM7 Mid-Side microphone for Android, by inserting it inside a 53 cm diameter paraolic disc, using a USB-C Male/Female cable.
For this Recording the REC Volume wheel was set almost to its maximum, at the 9 of 10 Level position, so part of the background noise is due to the very high setting. There is a bit of handling noise.
Samsung A30s – cable USB-C female to male – Zoom AM7 Android Microphone
Below are some pics of how I made, through 3D printing, the casing to insert the ZOOM AM7 Mid Side microphone.
Italian Agile Frog
Please refer to the paper below in downloadable pdf