AES Section Meeting Reports

Toronto - July 20, 2016

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The Sound Summit Toronto was an opportunity for pro audio people to network and discuss techniques for capturing high-quality audio. This was a two day event. The sponsors were: DPA, LectroSonic, Sound Devices & K-Tek. These four companies have held several of these "Sound Summits" in other cities with much positive feedback.

"Day One" started at 1 PM, with an informal meet and greet, and refreshments.

At 2:00, presentations began from the 4 manufacturers lasting roughly 20-25 minutes each.

Tino Liberatore of K-Tek was the first presenter giving a history and operational requirements for boom handling. A brief overview of their product line was also provided.

Gabriel Antonini, presenter for DPA, provided a history and background of his company to begin his talk. He continued by discussing the benefits of proper mic placement, and included topics such as on/off axis response, and proximity effect. He played some audio samples to demonstrate these phenomena.

Carl Winkler from LectroSonic discussed optimizing wireless mics for the real world. The overview covered gain structure, transmitter placement, receiver antennas, diversity reception, RF cable loss, band planning and frequency coordination.

Jon Tatooles and Gabriel Benitez, from Sound Devices, spoke about their products for production sound and dialogue (mixers and recorders). John's talk focused on microphones but from the perspective of recorders and mixers. The main point was getting everything right, at the source. This is achieved by listening (monitoring) during the recording, much as a cameraman looks through a lens during filming. Gabrielle's talk discussed automixing. Automixing is designed for working with speech; not music, not effects and therefore should be turned off when recording that material.

At 3:30 the presentations concluded. There was more food and socializing.

"Day Two" was hosted by GerrAudio and Noble Street Studios. A DPA microphone workshop was held at Noble Street Studios led by Gabriel Antonini, focusing on drum micing techniques for studio recording.

The 1-hour session explored live drum mic techniques using DPA's 4099 instrument and 4000 series live recording mics, as well as others. Basically it involved discussing the mic setup and listening to the various combinations both in live performance and audio playback on Pro Tools. As well, mics were moved to various positions to audition different options. The impressive rejection characteristics were demonstrated by muting several mics.

Notable was the clarity. The drum mix (without the use of any EQ or compression) sounded 'finished'. Adding mics to the basic mix (via un-muting during playback) added to the sound, rather dis-colouring it, highlighting the linearity of the mics.

After the session there was a brief Q&A, followed by networking and socializing.

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AES - Audio Engineering Society