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Beethoven Sound Test

Discussion in 'Submission Room' started by fluterific00, Jan 31, 2013.

  1. fluterific00

    fluterific00 Member

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    Story and Clark was tuned just the other day as was the Kimball. :)
    I think the sound turned out pretty good, but I just want to make sure the sound is right for future recordings. I know it's not a perfect recording, but it was just something to record to test the sound.
    It's Beethoven Sonata in E flat and the section called Minore, which I've never seen in a sonata before.
    You don't have to put this up, unless it's good enough. I know you like whole sonatas, though.
    I think the sound pops at the end, but I'm not quite sure why.
     
  2. rainer

    rainer New Member

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    Then why did you decide to play this on a third piano? :twisted: Seriously, this doesn't sound like a piano that's been recently tuned. There are voicing issues too, with some notes having a distinctly different tone quality from that of their near neighbours.
    I think the recording quality is adequate, but it kind of sounds as though you've turned the sensitivity down but are playing loudly. This piece should be mostly quiet. The piano itself doesn't sound as good as it ought to, and I wonder whether some of its foibles could be de-emphasised by moving the microphones further away, to make them hear something more like what your ears hear when you're playing, and not what someone would hear whose head is right next to the strings.
    or at least whole movements. :wink: This is a minore section not of the sonata, but of its third movement.
    It should go a lot faster, by the way. That would stop you over-emphasising the first note of each triplet. You need to have more of a feel for whole bars, or groups of 4 bars.
    There is a significant hesitation at 0:30, but you play the right notes after it. On the repeat, you don't hesitate, but your RH plays E flats on the second beat instead of G flats.
    Watch out at 1:29 (the bar before the two bars which the LH sits out); here the RH should play A naturals, not A flats.
    I don't know what you mean. Is it the little glitch where, in the 6th bar from the end, the RH D natural jumps in a little early? I think that's no more than a nervous flub, nothing to worry about sound-wise.
     
  3. fluterific00

    fluterific00 Member

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    as far as voicing issues are concerned, I haven't played this piece much, it was just a sight read, basically, to get input on sound issues. I was trying to bring out the bottom notes as I felt that was the melody. I like your advice on keeping the microphone away, maybe that will clear up some of the tuning issues you seem to hear. I had thought about putting it underneath, but didn't know what that would sound like, so I strayed from that idea. I could not hear it as I was recording since I didn't headphones. I have noticed that a couple of notes seem out to my ear, but I don't think I even played those notes. It's an older piano, so the tuning block has some issues, otherwise it is in much better condition that it has previously. I can't imagine what people would have said about it before it was tuned. Thanks for the input. The placement of the microphone is a great idea.
     
  4. rainer

    rainer New Member

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    The term "voicing" is ambiguous, and I'm sorry if what I said failed to make clear which meaning I was talking about.

    It often refers to what the player does in order to adjust the relative loudness of simultaneous voices in the music, and this seems to be what you thought I meant, but what I actually meant is what the tuner/technician does to the hammer felts, not only to "fluff them up" when they've generally become too hard, but in particular to minimise any unevenness here, when different keys respond differently to identical finger attack.

    My impression was that some notes had a distinct "ping" to them. I found this particularly noticeable with the on-beat E flats above middle C in the 3rd and 4th bars after the repeat mark, from about 1:15. It may well not be voicing, and instead just be a side-effect of intonation.
     
  5. fluterific00

    fluterific00 Member

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    Anyway it was just a sample to see how things went. I haven't always had the best set up for recording. My senior recital was on the Steinway at our school and it was in summer, so they probably did not bother to tune the piano. So, there were issues with my recordings then. Also, they usually record in the back and since I had my recital in the summer, it was done recording was done up front. I haven't always had an mp3 recorder, too, which was an issue when I first learned about this. I actually found this site because of Joel Thomas, who no longer seems to do stuff on this sight. I went to school with him and was curious about his where abouts and stumbled on the site and thought I'd have a go at submitting. But my pianos are either not well tuned, or my recording skills are not accurate, or there are like one or two mistakes, so this site is tough, but I can appreciate why, but it can be frustrating and almost demeaning at times. This is the reason for the posts on samplings. I just have to see if I have the right set up, then I'll work on the piece more and finesse the music. I just try to find something to play that I could record easily without too much trouble. Maybe I'll grab my brother sometime and have him record me. He has the better set up and a recording studio in his room. Plus my instruments are always in places where people are and making noises and things, so it will be better to do this when they aren't at home, or I could go up to the college and record. I'm not promising anything there, though. It's so hard to keep a piano in tune.
    I have a new picture that could be a profile picture that was taken with a piano while we were on our cruise. Do I upload it to this post, or start a new one?
     
  6. fluterific00

    fluterific00 Member

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    here's my new profile picture. I have lost weight since my first picture.
     
  7. fluterific00

    fluterific00 Member

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    oops, I don't know how to take the bigger photo off. can I? I don't think you all need to see it that big. :)
     
  8. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    Okay, I have replaced the photo.
     
  9. fluterific00

    fluterific00 Member

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  10. fluterific00

    fluterific00 Member

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    I forget, Monica, that you've seen this on my facebook. :)
     
  11. fluterific00

    fluterific00 Member

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    Moments Musicaux Schubert. first test.
     
  12. Didier

    Didier Member Piano Society Artist

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    I think that you should focus first on the dynamics before worrying about the sound. The first and second themes of this third piece of the Moments musicaux (*) shall be played p. The third one begins f and comes back to p in its second half. Then the first theme is resumed pp and it is followed by the final ppp.


    (*) The correct writing of this French title has only one capital letter, even when the work is played by an American pianist :wink::
    [​IMG]
     
  13. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    This is not an mp3 file, I can't play it. Seems to be a RIFF or WAVE format. It's much too big also, 17 Mb while an 192 Kbps encoded mp3 of this two-minute piece would not be more than ca. 3Mb.
    So I can't judge this piece but based on the Beethoven snippet I tend to agree with Didier that the correct order is to first get the performance in shape, then worry about the sound.
     
  14. fluterific00

    fluterific00 Member

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    ok. I was tying to play it softly, but it must not have come through.
     
  15. fluterific00

    fluterific00 Member

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    I also thought I had sent it as an mp3, but I guess I hadn't. sorry about that.
     
  16. rainer

    rainer New Member

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    Chris: My default player (totem in Ubuntu) played it fine, but when I tried to load it into Audacity (to confirm my suspicion that the right channel is louder than the left), it went berserk. However, once I renamed the file to end in .wav instead of .mp3, Audacity was perfectly happy with it (and did indeed confirm said suspicion). Perhaps your player will play it too if you rename it.

    For a sound test it would be good to have more contrasting dynamics, you seem to be playing this at a healthy forte throughout. If in fact your actual playing level was softer, then your recording sensitivity is set too high. The level probably needs to come down even if you were playing f, because if you play ff, you will probably over-drive the recorder, causing clipping.

    If you are trying to evaluate your recording setup, it might help if you told us a bit about it, like where the microphone(s) is/are in relation to the piano. Is it different from how it was for the Beethoven sample?

    Certain notes come out more prominently than others, one in particular: the Ab below middle C, most evident in the first 5 bars of the 2nd repeated section.

    Your recording cuts off the first note of the piece, and cuts short the last note. You want a bit of (natural, not artificial) silence before you begin and after the last note dies out.
     
  17. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    I'm sure it will, most players go by the name rather than the contents to determine the type. But this is not the point here. It should be in mp3 format.
     
  18. rainer

    rainer New Member

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    Indeed. I only mentioned it because you had said that you "can't" play it.
     
  19. fluterific00

    fluterific00 Member

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    my piano was worked on again and some more adjustments were made. Perhaps I'll get to recording some more things when I have the time.
     

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