To mic or not to mic, that is the question

Discussions relating to the classical guitar which don't fit elsewhere.
Bill B
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Re: To mic or not to mic, that is the question

Post by Bill B » Wed Jul 20, 2016 1:52 am

I greatly prefer un-amplified, whenever it's not ridiculous.
If your playing with a rock band, you probably need an amp.
In Segovia's autobiography, he talks about trying to convince promoters that the guitar could fill concert halls, as the hall owners didn't think it could. For whatever it's worth.
2013 Angel Benito Aguado
2005 Ramirez R-2

ben etow
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Re: To mic or not to mic, that is the question

Post by ben etow » Wed Jul 20, 2016 4:19 pm

AndreiKrylov wrote:
Moje wrote:Why is everything so polarizing in the CG world? To me it's obvious that micing can be done wel; if it couldn't, nobody would ever listen to recordings of anything, let alone CG. When it's done badly, it's a problem but that doesn't make micing "bad."
+1
+1

ben etow
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Re: To mic or not to mic, that is the question

Post by ben etow » Wed Jul 20, 2016 4:20 pm

John Ross wrote:
Moje wrote:Why is everything so polarizing in the CG world?
It isn't really the CG world, it isn't even really this forum, it's just a few people on it.
Worse happens/happened on the French counterpart...

ben etow
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Re: To mic or not to mic, that is the question

Post by ben etow » Wed Jul 20, 2016 4:28 pm

Lawler wrote:IME live miking can be a good thing if done by a skilled engineer using high quality gear... including a carefully done soundcheck adjusted based on the engineer's knowledge of how the hall will sound when full of people. From the player's perspective - During the soundcheck if you can't hear the amplification over your real playing while you're playing on stage, but the guitar sounds clear and realistic (and natural relating to the hall's real ambience) when you have someone else play it while you walk around the hall... you're golden.
I hope you'll come accross Jean-Luc Joie's new system. It equals the the quality gear skillingly used by a sensitive engineer virtually without the soundcheck part we needed before for "serious concerts in unfriendly acoustics" let's say.

Joie's amp system and guitar are one instrument, which both the player and the audience hear like any other instrument - cello, piano, whatever.

It is a completely new experience.

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Lawler
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Re: To mic or not to mic, that is the question

Post by Lawler » Wed Jul 20, 2016 5:08 pm

ben etow wrote:Joie's amp system and guitar are one instrument...
Ben, with a quick search I can't find any info on his amplification system. Does it use an internal wireless mic?

ben etow
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Re: To mic or not to mic, that is the question

Post by ben etow » Thu Jul 21, 2016 8:29 am

You may discern the eaarly version of Joie's speaker in a YT clip of Thibault Cauvin playing in Château Lafite-Rotschild, where the sound has been recorded from several meters ant the sound level was comparable with a piano.

I don't know the details, but I guess Jean-Luc will make some sort of announcement on this. For now, he's trying to get the utter best of his system's possibilities for the players - Thibault Cauvin, Gaelle Solal, Boris Gaquere among others. I tried it and am waiting for my speaker within a few weeks as my partner in Locango trio (with cello) already got hers. Truly stunning, incredible and indispensible for chamber music (and concertos of course).

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Lawler
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Re: To mic or not to mic, that is the question

Post by Lawler » Thu Jul 21, 2016 12:45 pm

ben etow wrote: I tried it and am waiting for my speaker within a few weeks as my partner in Locango trio (with cello) already got hers. Truly stunning, incredible and indispensible for chamber music (and concertos of course).
OK Thanks. It would be very interesting if you were to share your experience with the amplification system when you receive it.

edwardsguitar
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Re: To mic or not to mic, that is the question

Post by edwardsguitar » Thu Jul 21, 2016 3:21 pm

ben etow wrote:You may discern the eaarly version of Joie's speaker in a YT clip of Thibault Cauvin playing in Château Lafite-Rotschild, where the sound has been recorded from several meters ant the sound level was comparable with a piano.

I don't know the details, but I guess Jean-Luc will make some sort of announcement on this. For now, he's trying to get the utter best of his system's possibilities for the players - Thibault Cauvin, Gaelle Solal, Boris Gaquere among others. I tried it and am waiting for my speaker within a few weeks as my partner in Locango trio (with cello) already got hers. Truly stunning, incredible and indispensible for chamber music (and concertos of course).
I posed the original question in regard to solo concert performance. I certainly understand the need for amplification in ensemble situations. However, I have played and continue to play with vocalists, flutists, and string quartets, etc. unaided and it has worked very well. I am not saying it's for everyone; but pointing out that it can be done. Much depends on the room or hall, and the other players. If I was playing a concerto with an orchestra I would definitely want to use something, and the descriptions of the Jean-Luc Joie system sound excellent.

ben etow
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Re: To mic or not to mic, that is the question

Post by ben etow » Fri Jul 22, 2016 5:54 am

edwardsguitar wrote:
ben etow wrote:You may discern the eaarly version of Joie's speaker in a YT clip of Thibault Cauvin playing in Château Lafite-Rotschild, where the sound has been recorded from several meters ant the sound level was comparable with a piano.

I don't know the details, but I guess Jean-Luc will make some sort of announcement on this. For now, he's trying to get the utter best of his system's possibilities for the players - Thibault Cauvin, Gaelle Solal, Boris Gaquere among others. I tried it and am waiting for my speaker within a few weeks as my partner in Locango trio (with cello) already got hers. Truly stunning, incredible and indispensible for chamber music (and concertos of course).
I posed the original question in regard to solo concert performance. I certainly understand the need for amplification in ensemble situations. However, I have played and continue to play with vocalists, flutists, and string quartets, etc. unaided and it has worked very well. I am not saying it's for everyone; but pointing out that it can be done. Much depends on the room or hall, and the other players. If I was playing a concerto with an orchestra I would definitely want to use something, and the descriptions of the Jean-Luc Joie system sound excellent.
I also played chamber music without amplification and still solo music without, BUT:
1) even playing solos, with a very good guitar (one of the loudest and well projecting out of the 850+ I tried), I got frustrated in a small church (very high but small) where people at 10 meters couldn't hear more than 50% of my sound - those at 16 meters probably less than 30%. I didn't hear myself very well either. when you work hard to play Legnani caprices, HVL's 7th study or Invocation y Danza decently, I assure you you don't want to repeat the experience.
2) if a guitarist plays chamber music unamplified, this means he has to struggle for power/volume/projection (whatever you call it) and the others have to quiet down, which results in very low dynamic variation and ultimately in boring music IMO. I played chamber music unamplified when I had no alternative. Now, I have found an excellent one. And I hope everyone will too, because it will help guitarists to be heard with all the nuances (dynamics and tone colours) we all love about CG.

edwardsguitar
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Re: To mic or not to mic, that is the question

Post by edwardsguitar » Sat Jul 23, 2016 9:03 pm

ben etow wrote:
edwardsguitar wrote:
ben etow wrote:You may discern the eaarly version of Joie's speaker in a YT clip of Thibault Cauvin playing in Château Lafite-Rotschild, where the sound has been recorded from several meters ant the sound level was comparable with a piano.

I don't know the details, but I guess Jean-Luc will make some sort of announcement on this. For now, he's trying to get the utter best of his system's possibilities for the players - Thibault Cauvin, Gaelle Solal, Boris Gaquere among others. I tried it and am waiting for my speaker within a few weeks as my partner in Locango trio (with cello) already got hers. Truly stunning, incredible and indispensible for chamber music (and concertos of course).
I posed the original question in regard to solo concert performance. I certainly understand the need for amplification in ensemble situations. However, I have played and continue to play with vocalists, flutists, and string quartets, etc. unaided and it has worked very well. I am not saying it's for everyone; but pointing out that it can be done. Much depends on the room or hall, and the other players. If I was playing a concerto with an orchestra I would definitely want to use something, and the descriptions of the Jean-Luc Joie system sound excellent.
I also played chamber music without amplification and still solo music without, BUT:
1) even playing solos, with a very good guitar (one of the loudest and well projecting out of the 850+ I tried), I got frustrated in a small church (very high but small) where people at 10 meters couldn't hear more than 50% of my sound - those at 16 meters probably less than 30%. I didn't hear myself very well either. when you work hard to play Legnani caprices, HVL's 7th study or Invocation y Danza decently, I assure you you don't want to repeat the experience.
2) if a guitarist plays chamber music unamplified, this means he has to struggle for power/volume/projection (whatever you call it) and the others have to quiet down, which results in very low dynamic variation and ultimately in boring music IMO. I played chamber music unamplified when I had no alternative. Now, I have found an excellent one. And I hope everyone will too, because it will help guitarists to be heard with all the nuances (dynamics and tone colours) we all love about CG.
I haven't had that kind of experience with solo concerts, and my string quartet doesn't quiet down much, but you make a very good point about the nuances. I do have to play as strongly as I can with the quartet, and the nuances are lost. Also, it is a physical exertion that affects facility as well. I've always been puzzled by the large amount of chamber music for guitar in the 19th cent.; when the guitar of that time was quieter (for the most part) than the modern. That is a generalization of course; but outside the course of this discussion to get into that. What may have happened is that although our modern instrument is louder; it is not greatly louder. Whereas modern violins, cellos, etc. with their steel strings, Torte bows, more arched bridges, etc. are many times louder than their 19th cent. counterparts. So I believe the volume balance was not as much of an issue back then. Modern classical musicians are trained to play with large orchestras in large halls, and it's hard for them to tone that down. So in the escalating battle for more volume over the last 200 years, the guitar is still far behind. Just some personal thoughts and opinions, I am not presenting them as facts. Please keep us posted about this new system. One last thought though: I think it is still worthwhile for guitarists to develop their volume and projection for acoustic performances. The guitar may have a quieter voice than many instruments, but it doesn't have to be meek.

ben etow
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Re: To mic or not to mic, that is the question

Post by ben etow » Sun Jul 24, 2016 8:23 am

Lawler wrote:
ben etow wrote: I tried it and am waiting for my speaker within a few weeks as my partner in Locango trio (with cello) already got hers. Truly stunning, incredible and indispensible for chamber music (and concertos of course).
OK Thanks. It would be very interesting if you were to share your experience with the amplification system when you receive it.
Will do.

ben etow
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Re: To mic or not to mic, that is the question

Post by ben etow » Sun Jul 24, 2016 8:32 am

edwardsguitar wrote:you make a very good point about the nuances. I do have to play as strongly as I can with the quartet, and the nuances are lost. Also, it is a physical exertion that affects facility as well.
If nuances are lost, then I'm afraid music is lost too...
And I certainly don't want to suffer when playing music (a very good point made by Russell, Dukic and others during master classes).

ben etow
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Re: To mic or not to mic, that is the question

Post by ben etow » Sun Jul 24, 2016 8:42 am

edwardsguitar wrote: I've always been puzzled by the large amount of chamber music for guitar in the 19th cent.; when the guitar of that time was quieter (for the most part) than the modern. That is a generalization of course; but outside the course of this discussion to get into that. What may have happened is that although our modern instrument is louder; it is not greatly louder. Whereas modern violins, cellos, etc. with their steel strings, Torte bows, more arched bridges, etc. are many times louder than their 19th cent. counterparts. So I believe the volume balance was not as much of an issue back then.
The repertoire and most importantly the role of the guitar was different (mostly accompaniment.

Thanls to Torres and others, modern guitar sound bassier and to some extent more powerfull BUT loosing clarity at the same time. The few romantic guitar (original and copies) I tried gad a more distinctive (hence hearable) attack than 'modern" guitars while not being louder in decibels.

We shouldn't forget about the significantly higher pitch we use today (415>440 or even 442), which meant much more clarity for all other instruments whereas the guitar got less clear in the meantime...
Last edited by ben etow on Sun Jul 24, 2016 8:49 am, edited 1 time in total.

ben etow
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Re: To mic or not to mic, that is the question

Post by ben etow » Sun Jul 24, 2016 8:48 am

edwardsguitar wrote:Please keep us posted about this new system. One last thought though: I think it is still worthwhile for guitarists to develop their volume and projection for acoustic performances. The guitar may have a quieter voice than many instruments, but it doesn't have to be meek.
I most certainly will.

And I also think guitarists need to develop their tone producing abilities - for tone colours, dynamics and projection purposes.
I didn't study with Johan Fostier, Luc Vander Borght, Ricardo Gallén, Zoran Dukic and Pavel Steidl for nothing after all. They all speak about music and means to make it better, including in terms of tone production.

edwardsguitar
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Re: To mic or not to mic, that is the question

Post by edwardsguitar » Sun Jul 24, 2016 3:54 pm

ben etow wrote:
edwardsguitar wrote: I've always been puzzled by the large amount of chamber music for guitar in the 19th cent.; when the guitar of that time was quieter (for the most part) than the modern. That is a generalization of course; but outside the course of this discussion to get into that. What may have happened is that although our modern instrument is louder; it is not greatly louder. Whereas modern violins, cellos, etc. with their steel strings, Torte bows, more arched bridges, etc. are many times louder than their 19th cent. counterparts. So I believe the volume balance was not as much of an issue back then.
The repertoire and most importantly the role of the guitar was different (mostly accompaniment.

Thanls to Torres and others, modern guitar sound bassier and to some extent more powerfull BUT loosing clarity at the same time. The few romantic guitar (original and copies) I tried gad a more distinctive (hence hearable) attack than 'modern" guitars while not being louder in decibels.

We shouldn't forget about the significantly higher pitch we use today (415>440 or even 442), which meant much more clarity for all other instruments whereas the guitar got less clear in the meantime...
i agree with much of what you say. However, Giuliani (and many others of the period) wrote concertos, trios, quartets, and quintets where the guitar is featured and plays a predominant solo role. So, it is still a mystery to me, and the only answer I can come up with is the strings and the players back then were significantly quieter than they are today. But I can also imagine Giuliani yelling at the orchestra to stop playing so loud. :) A elderly jazz guitarist friend of mine tells of rhythm guitarist (archtop-plectrum style) Freddie Green playing in Count Basie's big band acoustically: Basie would tell the band "if you can't hear Freddie, you're playing too loud".

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