Crown’s Quarterly Microphone Newsletter Bruce Bartlett, Editor Winter 2000
SASS® Makes Demo Recording Easy
Sometimes, making a demo recording can be
done in a matter of hours instead of weeks.
Mark Darnell, a Crown microphone technician,
came up with a nifty way of recording his jazz
combo. He arranged the band in a basement
room, and miked them all with a SASS-P MKII
stereo mic (Fig. 1). The mic was raised on a boom
stand about 1 foot below the ceiling.
Since there was no mixing involved, Mark moved
the instruments toward or away from the SASS to
adjust their balance and stereo position. After a
few trial recordings, he wound up with a realistic,
honest demo tape of the band’s performance.
This method may not work well with all types of
bands. It would be hard to record a rock band like
this and still get a good balance and a tight sound.
But if you have a small acoustic jazz group you’d
like to record, the SASS just might work for you.
Britney Spears Relies On Crown Featured Inside
SASS® makes demo recording easy
CM-311AE s Britney Spears relies on Crown CM-311AE
s PZM panel helps pick up choir
Garth is in good company. The October
1999 issue of (wow) Cute magazine fea- s Theater sound-master describes PCC-160
tures several photos of pop superstar usage
Britney Spears wearing a Crown CM-311AE s
Wireless SASS allows easy stereo recordings
headworn microphone. The popular teen-
s Mic techniques for acoustic instruments
age performer recorded the albums “(You
Drive Me) Crazy” and “Baby One More Time” s SASS provides surround audio for video
(now 6X platinum). Also shown sporting
the mic is teen singer Tatyana Ali. s CM-311A praise on the net
s Miking a flute with a headworn mic
s CM-150 users please note!
s Need a connector added to your wireless mic?
Photo from Cute magazine by Frank White
PZM® Panel Helps Pick Up Choir
Recording engineer David Sherman shared with us how he solved a choir-miking problem:
“The engineer and technicians had to design and
install a sound system to accommodate a cathe-
dral ceiling in St. Margaret’s Catholic Church in
“It was impossible to install microphones from
the ceiling that would adequately amplify the
choir’s sound. To solve the problem, our techni-
cians removed a PZM-6D from its plate and fas-
tened the mic to a piece of plexiglass on a mic
stand. The mic picked up the choir’s sound as it
hit the plexiglass and bounced back within the
hemispherical polar pattern of the microphone.
“This setup was a success with the church and
choir. Because of the mic’s mobility and versatility,
the church can use it for other activites such as
their children’s program. This item will work well
for other churches with this same problem, and
possibly for other difficult miking situations.”
Theater Sound-Master Describes PCC®-160 Usage
Brian Ronan has been the production sound engi- “Due to advances in reliability, radio mics are Cabaret. There is no hope of picking up the sing-
neer on several Broadway shows such as Rent, pretty much the standard tool for vocal enhance- ers on foots as there is a band playing upstage of
Guys and Dolls,The Secret Garden, and Damn Yan- ment. Foot mics [such as the PCC-160] are still them in that particular show.
kees. His Broadway sound designs are You’re a used as a backup and to feed a constant room “In Charlie Brown, I’m using three PCC-160s across
Good Man Charlie Brown, Little Me, Cabaret, Tri- send to the backstage program monitors and the the floor. We had to use the foot mics this after-
umph of Love, and 1776. in-house infrared listening system. noon because an actor’s radio mic went out
Brian has this to say about his use of Crown PCC- “Currently I have one PCC-160 on the floor at briefly.”
160 stage-floor mics:
Wireless SASS Allows Easy Stereo Recordings
Some wireless mic companies make small transmit- put it on a 15-ft.high mic stand to record an orches- Here’s how to set the pot:Place the mic to pick up the
ters that can be plugged into regular microphones. tra. No hassle with running cables. You also could sound source, or to pick up a loudspeaker playing a
You take a standard hard-wired microphone, unplug carry the SASS on a roller coaster and record the ride, recording of a similar source (at a realistic volume).
its cable, and plug in a wireless transmitter. Then you with the receiver and recorder back on the ground. Record the receiver’s signal. Starting with the trim pot
pick up the mic’s signal with a receiver. turned up full clockwise, make a recording and play it
One caution: Make sure that the sound source will
back. It it’s clean, you’re done. If it’s distorted, turn
This concept can be applied to the Crown SASS-P not overload the transmitter. Inside most transmitters
down the trim pot a little and record again. You want
MKII stereo mic with great results. For example, is a trim pot that is used to set input level. You should
to adjust the trim pot as high as possible without
mount two wireless transmitters on the SASS and adjust this pot to prevent distortion.
audible distortion on loud peaks.
Mic Techniques For Acoustic Instruments
Acoustic Bass isolation. Caution: some notes are missing near
the bell because their sound comes out of the
The acoustic bass (string bass, bass viol) can be
tone holes. To get a warm, natural sound, mike
recorded many ways. This instrument puts out
the sax with a CM-700 about 1-1/2 feet away,
frequencies as low as 41 Hz, so use a mic with an
halfway down the wind column. Don’t position
extended low-frequency response. Three ex-
the microphone too close, or the level varies
amples are the CM-700 cardioid, CM-150 omni,
whenthe player moves. A compromise position
and GLM-100 omni.
for a close-up omni mic is just above the player’s-
For a well-defined sound, place a CM-700 a few side edge of the bell, aiming at the holes.
inches in front of the bridge, on the side toward
the G string (top string). For more fullness, move
the mic toward the f-hole. Another spot is a few Try a CM-700 or CM-200A about 1 foot away. If
inches from the top of the treble f-hole. Watch you need more isolation, mike closer and roll off
out for proximity effect (up-close bass boost), and some bass. The sound is thinner toward the edge
use the bass rolloff switch in the mic if necessary. of the head. Some banjos have resonator holes
around the head, and a mic placed near those
If you need more isolation, place a CM-200A Fig. 2.
holes will pick up a mellower sound with more
cardioid mic near the treble f-hole and roll off the
tone. A cloth stuffed inside the banjo will reduce
excess bass on your mixer.
feedback in P.A. situations. Listen to the fiddle itself to make sure it sounds
Here are some methods which isolate the bass
good. Correct any instrument problems before
For the most isolation, tape a GLM-100 mini
and let the player move around. They work well
omni mic to the head about one inch in from the
bottom edge, or on the tailpiece, or on the bridge. First try a CM-700 or CM-150 mic about 2 to 3
• Wrap a GLM-100 mini omni mic in foam rub- You can wedge a pickup between the strings feet over the bridge. This distant miking gives an
ber (or in a foam windscreen) and mount it in below the bridge and the banjo head. Put the airy, silky sound; close miking sounds nasal and
an f-hole. pickup flat against the head surface. scratchy. If the ceiling is low, reflections might
• Tape the cable of a GLM-100 to the bridge. color the sound. In that case, cover the ceiling
Mandolin, Dobro, Bouzouki, Lap Dulcimer
over the fiddle with a sleeping bag or foam. Or
• Wrap a CM-700 in foam padding (except the Mike these about a foot away with a CM-700. If
have the fiddle player sit down.
front grille) and squeeze it behind the bridge or you need more lows and more isolation, mike
between the tailpiece and the body. If you have to mike close — say, for a singing
close to an f-hole. You can tape a GLM-100 mini
fiddler — aim the mic horizontally at the mouth.
omni near an f-hole and tweak EQ for the best
• Try a direct feed from a pickup. This method
adds clarity and edge, but might sound electric. Other methods: Get a GLM-100 mini mic, and
Also wrap a GLM-100 mini omni in foam and clip its holder to the violin’s tailpiece. Mount the
stuff it in an f-hole. Mix this mic with the mic a few inches from an f-hole or over the
Place a CM-700 cardioid (a flat-response con-
pickup to round out the tone. You may need to bridge. Or clip the GLM-100 to the strings be-
denser mic) about 2 feet over the center of the
roll off the bass of the f-hole mic. Flip the po- tween the bridge and tailpiece; aim the mic at the
soundboard (Fig. 2-A). On stage, place a CM-700
larity of the mic and use whatever setting fiddle body. If necessary, cut a little at 3 kHz to
6 to 12 inches over the middle of the top end (Fig.
sounds best. reduce harshness and boost around 200 Hz for
2-B). For the best gain-before-feedback in a P.A.
Saxophone system, mix in a GLM-100 very near the sound
hole (Fig. 2-C).
A sax miked very near the bell sounds bright,
breathy, and rather hard. Mike it there for best
SASS Provides Surround Audio For Video Shoots
boom and a couple of wireless spot mics are about all vinced a major cable network to use this approach in
you can handle. making a ten-part music documentary series... He’ll
have a SASS-P MKII mounted to a Steadicam sled
“As luck would have it, that’s just about all you really
running into a High-Definition Sony camcorder. The
need for news or documentary productions. The
whole design runs on batteries and straps to your
Crown SASS-P MKII, one of my personal favorites,
gives you an enveloping sense of ambience, while
providing a bed for seamlessly adding hidden body
“[I developed a production technique] called ‘Per-
On The Net
spective Imaging.’ Mount a contemporary film or
digital camcorder, from the modestly priced Canon
On the Internet newsgroup rec.audio.pro were these
XL-1 to High-Definition Sony, Panasonic, or JVC mod-
comments on the Crown CM-311A headworn mic:
els, to a properly matched Steadicam, Glidecam, or
Paddock PRO articulated arm and vest. You’ve created “The ONLY lead-vocal quality mic out there is the
a ‘Virtual Person’ who ‘remembers’whatever the op- Crown CM-311A. Street price somewhere around
erator ‘experiences.’ Take any surround mic (e.g. SASS- $300...You can’t go wrong.”
photo of camera and SASS mic
P), mount it to the hot shoe of the camera under-
In Issue 6 of Surround Professional, veteran — Charlie Tappa, Pro Sound Service
neath the quick-release plate, or anchor it to the sled,
soundmixer Gary Pillon describes a field recording
and you’ve given this ‘person’ electronic ears. You can “Take a look at the Crown CM-311A and 312A, IMHO
setup that provides excellent surround audio:
match visual images with real-time sonic textures it blows all the others away. Stock out of the box, it
“You learn‘purist’recording techniques at an early that otherwise could take weeks to build. comes with a power supply. It’s also available with-
stage of your career out of self-defense; a stereo out the power supply for wireless use only.
“Mike Sokol, owner of JMS Productions, has con-
— Edie, KitchinsynkStudio
Miking A Flute With CM-150 Users, Need A Connector
Please Note! Added To Your
A Headworn Mic
Mike Sokol, a contributing editor for EQ magazine, To provide the best possible performance, Crown
suggested that a reader use a Crown CM-311AE utilizes a high-performance and highly delicate
Crown can solder a connector of your choice onto
for miking his flute (EQ June 1999): titanium diaphragm on the CM-150 microphone.
a GLM-100E, CM-312AE, CM-311AE, or CM10E.
Both the titanium diaphragm and steel grille can
“One of the best flute sounds I’ve gotten recently
The costs are below:
be easily damaged by impact. Additionally, the
used a Crown vocal mic that mounts on a
diaphragm is susceptible to damage due to ex- Lemo or Hirose $60.
headband (for example, Garth Brooks or Janet
Jackson-type mic) positioned up next to the Switchcraft $25.
player’s cheek. This kept the mic out of the breath When placing the protective plastic cap on the
To have this service done, have your Crown mic
blast, and the talent was able to use different mic, DO NOT cover the air-release hole, as you may
dealer special-order the mic with the connector.
flutes without changing mics. cause permanent damage to the diaphragm.
Please be sure to specify the pinout of the con-
“And best of all, he had a UHF transmitter (wire- DAMAGE TO THE CM-150 MIC CAPSULE OR nector.
less) on it so he could walk around stage while GRILLE DUE TO IMPACT OR EXCESSIVE PRES-
playing — certainly more dramatic than being SURE IS NOT COVERED UNDER WARRANTY.
tied to a single mic position.”
Microphones Available From Crown
CM Series PZM Series MB Series
PZM®-30D Studio PZM with switchable dual
CM-700 Cardioid condenser, 30 Hz - 20 LM-201 Supercardioid lectern Five styles of surface-mounted,
kHz, for high-quality recording or P.A. CM- frequency response (flat or rising). 5quot; x 6quot; microphone with swivel mount for noise- supercardioid mini mics. Some use MB-100
700MP is matched pair. boundary plate. XLR connector. free adjustment. Pop filter and shock mount. or MB-200 interface with programmable
Low-Z balanced. Powered by phantom or 12- switching and sensing. Inconspicuous, af-
CM-200A Handheld cardioid PZM-6D Low-profile PZM for conference or 24V DC adapter. fordable multi-miking for conference tables,
condenser mic for stage vocals/instruments. plexiglass panel. Switchable dual frequency security, distance learning, boardrooms, and
Warm, smooth, and articulate sound. Very response (flat or rising). 2quot; x 3quot; boundary LM-300A Economical and elegant dual courtrooms.
low handling noise and pop. Low-Z bal- plate. XLR connector on 15 foot cable. gooseneck mic that retains its shape.
anced. Supercardioid condenser element. XLR
PZM-20R Flush-mount PZM fits into a output, low-cut switch. Optional metal-
CM-310A DIFFEROID® Handheld differen- square cutout or 4quot; x 4quot; electrical-outlet box screen grille and LM-300SM Shock Mount.
tial condenser mic for stage vocals. Cardioid. for permanent installations. Use one mic for
Warm, smooth sound. Extremely high gain- up to eight people. Screw-terminal output. LM-300AL Same as LM-300A but
before-feedback. Low-Z balanced. 5quot; longer.
PZM-185 Tabletop, handheld or adapter-
CM-311A DIFFEROID Headworn differential mounted microphone. Built-in power-supply LM-301A Same as LM-300A but screws onto
condenser mic for stage vocals and sports- interface, phantom power or internal bat- a flange. Allows cable
casters. Extremely high gain-before-feed- tery. Fiber-reinforced, high-impact plastic to exit downward or out the side.
back. Battery belt pack. CM-311AE connects body and boundary. 7quot; long. XLR connector.
directly to 9V wireless microphone transmit-
PZM-10 Security and surveillance mic.
ter. CM-311AHS mounts on Sony MDR-7506
Inconspicuous. Mounts in drilled hole, XLR
output. PZM-10LL is line level, 12-24V DC
CM-312A Headworn hypercardioid mic for powered.
GLM-100 Miniature omnidirectional con-
stage vocals and sportscasters. Small and
denser microphone. High SPL capability.
PZM-11 Security and surveillance micro-
light. Good gain-before-feedback. Battery
Reduced pickup of handling noise and wind
phone. Inconspicuous. Mounts in electrical
belt pack drives mixer or transmitter.
noise. XLR connector on 8' cable. 20Hz -
box. Screw-terminal output. PZM-11LL is
CM-312AE connects directly to wireless
20kHz. Model GM-100E comes without
line level, powered by 24V AC, DC, or phan-
microphone transmitter. CM-312AHS
connector for connection to wireless micro-
mounts on Sony MDR-7506 headphones.
PZM-11LLWR is water-resistant, line level,
CM-30 Miniature supercardioid condenser
GLM-200 Miniature hypercardioid con-
powered by 24V AC or 12-24V DC. Mounts in
mic for inconspicuous overhead miking of
denser microphone. Increases gain-before-
choirs, orchestra sections, theater stages,
feedback, reduces pickup of leakage, back-
conference tables, audience reaction. Elec-
ground noise and room acoustics. XLR
tronics mount in electrical box.
connector on 8' cable.
CM-31 Same as CM-30 but with cylindrical
electronics interface PCC®-160 Supercardioid surface-mounted
and XLR connector. microphone for stage floors, lecterns, and
news desks. Increases gain-before-feedback
CM-10 Mini omni lavalier, phantom pow-
and rejects sounds to the rear. XLR connec-
ered. CM-10E is same but without connec-
tor on 15-foot cable. Black or white.
tor, for wireless microphone transmitter.
Crown’s professional microphones are guar-
PCC-170 Same as PCC-160 but attractively
CM-150 1/2quot; omni condenser anteed unconditionally against malfunction
styled for conference-table use. Mini XLR
for free-field sound measurements, sound- from any cause for a period of three years
connector on rear or stereo phone plug on
level meter, and pro (one year for Sound Grabber) from date of
bottom. PCC-170SW has on/off membrane
recording applications. CM-150MP is original purchase. Should one of our micro-
SASS Series phones malfunction, it will be replaced or
repaired at our expense, including all U.S.
PCC-130 Same as PCC-170 but with cardioid
round-trip shipping. This warranty does
element and smaller. PCC-130SW has on/off
SASS®-P MKII PZM stereo microphone.
not cover finish, appearance items, cable
Wide, smooth frequency response. Sharp
or cable connectors. This warranty does
and spacious imaging. Mono-compatible. No
not cover normal wear and tear, malfunc-
matrix box required. Battery/phantom
tion due to abuse or operation at other
powering. Low-cut switches. 20 Hz - 18 kHz.
than specified conditions. See your Crown
All accessories included.
dealer or representative for complete
SASS®-P MKII HC Same but without carry- warranty details or contact Crown direct
ing case or accessories, lower cost. at 1-800-342-6939.
P.O. Box 1000 PAID
Elkhart, Indiana, 46515-1000
Permit No. 178
Address Service Requested
Your ideas on how to use Crown microphones are important to us, and to the readers I hereby authorize use of this material in the Crown
of Mic Memo. Could you let us know what you are doing with your microphones?
Mic Memo. You may may not use my name.
Write or sketch your idea here, tear off this portion, fold and tape. No postage
needed.You may also send the information via e-mail to email@example.com
Elkhart, IN 46515-1000
Post Office Box 1000
POSTAGE WILL BE PAID BY ADDRESSEE
ELKHART, IN FIRST CLASS MAIL PERMIT NO. 36
BUSINESS REPL MAIL