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Obtaining Silence

Discussion in 'Technique' started by juufa72, Sep 30, 2006.

  1. juufa72

    juufa72 New Member Piano Society Artist

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    For those who record themselves please help me.

    1) When do you record? What time of the day?


    I've been trying to record but there are multiple occasions when someone downstairs would slam a door or a plane fly over the house, or the wind would rattle the windows
    Mind you that I am a student so from 7am to 6pm I am out of the house

    2) Is there a technique you use to tell everyone in the house, nicely, that they should shut up and keep quiet!?


    I write this because I need to find someway of controlling the enviroment around me. These interruptions are picked up by the mics and only frustrate me because I need to rerecord. That leads to anger because I am starting to get sick of playing the same damn piece over and over and over again. Finally, this chain reaction gnaws away at my patience to a point where I just quit for the day and have a pot of boiling rage pent up inside of me.


    Any help would be nice.

    -JG
     
  2. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    I think that's the perfect way to get some quiet.
    But I know what you mean. Most days as I'm practicing, a chipmunk decides to park itself right outside the living room window and make squeaky, chirping noises for a half hour. Then lately, a cardinal has been flying into the window like it's trying to come in. If I were recording, you would hear a thud and much squeaky chirping in the background. Don't give up. You'll get a clear recording eventually. Maybe one of those editing programs can eliminate background noises?
     
  3. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    You should plan a recording session in advance, telling everyone you are going to do this and would appreciate some quiet. I am lucky to have my 'own' room and I stick a big piece of paper on the door 'Do not come in' and disable the outside tap which makes an awful racket when turned on.
    When something unexpected happens though, I'd just replay that section of the piece, starting at a convenient point when there's sort of a break, and cut out the offending part later on the PC. Starting all over should not be necessary.

    You want to take care with that boiling pot of rage though. Relax, man ....
     
  4. juufa72

    juufa72 New Member Piano Society Artist

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    Oo I do hate chipmunks. I hate when one of them climbs the tree by my bedroom window and start to chirp at sunrise.

    How much does an editing program cost for the computer?

    I fear that I cannot do anything about the rage. Generally I am a very easy going guy and virtually carefree. But thats the bad thing. Things that annoy me (being woken up by a loud noise, repeative noises--pen clicking, bubble gum chewingl; nail biting; snot sniffiling etc.) it just is put down inside and ignored, but the tolerence level slowly diminishes to the point where I want to throw my desk at a student biting their nails.

    I think I need some way of relaxing. And making mistakes or being interupted when I play only builds on the urge to do something destructive.


    Thank you
    -JG
     
  5. lol_nl

    lol_nl New Member

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    I don't record a lot, but I prefer the evening, because usually I'm more relaxed by then and I can concentrate better (and it's not very noisy outside).

    Just tell them that they should be quiet :).

    Don't know where you live, but if you live with students in one house, it's impossible to keep them quiet :wink: :? .
     
  6. juufa72

    juufa72 New Member Piano Society Artist

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    No I live at home with the parents and a loud hound. I could not keep my sanity if I were to live with people my age. Someone would be beaten with a towel and a bar of soap at night.


    Oh I have a question for the edirol users. Everytime I press the record button the microphones pick up the clicking noise. Is there a remote for this unit?
     
  7. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    :shock: I am surprised they have not fixed that in the R9 model. I always have the same with the R1, a plopping noise like a cork pulled from a champagne bottle. Never worked out how to avoid that, all I could think of is cutting it off with Cooledit..... It's a royal pain in the bottom !
     
  8. PJF

    PJF New Member Piano Society Artist

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    If I want to make a recording free of noise, I post my intended recording date on the refrigerator door a month in advance. I make an appointment with my family. I would never try to record without first making sure that everyone is in agreement. Half the time, I invite an audience (usually my siblings and their families, sometimes the neighbors show up) to observe the performance. It's a perfect stage simulation. I do it about once a month. Setting a specific date and time, sets a performance deadline in my mind. There's no better motivation.

    If I'm making a non-formal recoding, I don't care about the background noise. If I did, I would be crazy(er) :lol:



    Pete
     
  9. robert

    robert New Member Piano Society Artist

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    I make recordings rather late and the reason is that I have small kids and it is not possible to have them quiet. Also, I do not have my own room (planning on building one though) so best chance is when everyone have gone to bed. It has the disadvantage that you are pretty tired of course and is not the best time of the day to make a really good recording.
    It is not possible in my case. Kids 3 and 7 years old forgets within a couple of seconds that I asked them to be quiet.
     
  10. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    Assuming you are able to find some quiet time to record, I offer these additional tips to quiet your local recording venue:

    Turn off Ventilation System Fans: It is amazing how humans' sense of hearing is able to filter out these room sounds that are nearly always in our presence indoors. Microphones do not discrimminate musical sounds from extra-musical sounds, and they happily capture the noise from your ventilation system.

    Turn Off As Many Nearby Room Lights as Possible: Incandescent lightbulb filaments and flourescent lighting tubes' ballasts (transformers) sing in synchrony to the electrical utility company's 50 Hz or 60 Hz alternating current frequency. Microphones pick up this annoying, not-so-soft buzzing sound. Whilst we are at it, if you are recording in the home, and your electric refrigerator is within earshot, you might do well to unplug it during the recording session -- just remember to plug it back in upon completing your recording.

    Turn Off Nearby CRT-type Computer Monitors and Television Sets: Electron guns in conventional computer screens and television screens undergo a process of "rastering", repeatedly scanning across the screen, from left-to-right and top-to-bottom. This process is why such screens emit a high pitched buzzing sound. If such equipment is operating in the vicinity of your microphone, the former's noise will make it into your recording.


    Obtain Microphones that Possess Directional Pick-up Patterns: It seems Edirol recording machines are quite the rage around this website. While I have nothing against this product, it is important to note that its microphone pick-up pattern is termed "omnidirectional". That is, it picks up sounds emitted from front, the rear, the sides, and above and below the microphone's sound capsule.

    If possible, acquire microphones with a "cardioid" (literally meaning heart-shaped from the latin root word cardio) pick-up pattern. To grasp what this means, imagine a heart shaped outline, turned upside down, such that the point of the heart is on top. Now imagine that the microphone's capsule is embedded in the bottom point of the heart shape. The mike's pickup pattern selectively "hears" a higher percentage of sounds that are directly in front of it, less to the sides of it, and relatively little of what is behind it.

    The idea with aiming a directional microphone is to provide your mike only musically related sounds, and reject as many non-musical sounds as possible.

    There are even microphones called "shotgun mikes", such that they effectively only pick up what is directly in front of them, and nearly completely reject sounds entering from the sides or rear. I do not recommend a shotgun type microphone, because they do not sound natural with piano music.


    Hopefully you will find this information helpful in reducing the amount of extraneous noises that leak into your recordings.



    Sincerely,

    Joe
     
  11. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    boiling rage! hah! great description...

    unfortunately to be really serious you probably need to have your own
    studio apartment, the best kind are guest cottages the kind behind
    larger homes.
     

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