Usually I use my smartphone to record my organ videos but I realize its mic specifications are somewhat limited. It sounds OK to me but for audio experts probably not so much. Therefore today I've been testing various microphones to record my organ playing.
I have ZOOM H1 recorder and SONY ECM-MS 907 microphone available. I used ZOOM to record audios in the past but put it on hold for other options.
SONY microphone served me very well in the old days when I had MINI DISC recorder. This was before USB mics and it had LINE IN output only.
So today I made 3 recordings on my home practice organ of different improvisations on Genevan Psalm tunes using 3 different audio qualities. In every improvisation I played 2 verses in which I added the second voice in note-against-note counterpoint. Verse 1 has the tune in the soprano and in Verse 2 the voices switch (now the tune is in the bass). I hope you can listen to them and choose what sounds best to you.
No. 1 Genevan Psalm 46
For this recording I used the ZOOM recorded with the input level set to Auto (which is 50 %).
No. 2 Genevan Psalm 47
For this recording I used SONY microphone with the recording level set on 120 degree angle.
No. 3 Genevan Psalm 48
In the last improvisation I used the ZOOM recorder but disabled the AUTO input function and increased the mic level to 100 percent. Probably because of this I can hear some sound distortion at times, even though I play on a soft flute stop only.
I could have adjusted input level to 80 percent but it was enough for now (I might do another test recording in the future with this setting). However, my gut feeling is to go with Option 1 - use the ZOOM recorder set on AUTO input level in the future.
What do you think?
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Drs. Vidas Pinkevicius and Ausra Motuzaite-Pinkeviciene
Organists of Vilnius University , creators of Secrets of Organ Playing.
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