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  • Recording a Leslie

    Every Leslie sounds different.No two are identical.Close,but never identical.
    Safe bet if the box sounds great on one organ,it will sound great on another.

    Microphones can be a 'matched pair' X/Y and are generally used on a treble horn.
    Large diaphragm mics are generally used on the woofer.No two are identical.

    Other techniques are used when needed.

    A single Shure SM57 on the side of a treble horn not too close,maybe a foot away, along with a Neumann U67 at the bass port
    on this 'shorty' 145 box/122 amp(142)....is really focused and ballsy!
    The same mic technique on a 251 box had more 'wash' below 120 HZ.
    Less 'wow' effect of the recorded woofer on tremelo while maintaining the speed ramp times; a shorty box is tighter sounding.

    Finding space that isn't in conflict with a pair of guitars,bass,drums,vocals,horns,strings is a case by case basis.Every song is different.
    Comparing a large bass to treble palmsmear/speed change 're-intro' between the two boxes is interesting.
    The 145 grabs the ramp sound better than the 251.
    Any time the engineer needs to 'cut' more or carve out frequencies it is most likely below 160HZ and above 4K.
    This narrows the Q in those bandwidths,having less 'wow' on the 160HZ and a 'backed off' dynamic mic has more breathing room up top!
    Very little EQ was needed on the 145 compared to a 41" box!

    It's really important to have the Leslie as mechanically quiet as possible.Non musical artifacts can ruin the take.
    The Ventilator is as quiet as it gets.....but will it ever capture anything different or unique for your recording?
    Good as it sounds,all the other recordings of this 'recording'........add up to fatigue to these old ears.
    A real Leslie can do things a Ventilator static sample can't do.
    Using the 'room' and mics is different than plugging in a stomp box.
    A100/251 A100/147 A102/222 B2/142 BV/147 BCV/145 M3/145 M102/145 M111/770 L101/760 T222/HL722 M111/770 no B3/C3!

  • #2
    So good to hear your experience on this stuff, Pete!
    For those who aren't in the know, Pete was Rockin' it back in the seventies and recorded on CBS and Columbia records with Jim Foster:
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fosterchild.
    A web search has Pete's name cropping up all over the place.

    Of course, his real claim to fame is that I bought an organ and Leslie off him.
    Actually Pete, the timbers from those shipping pallets are still coming in Useful! Canadian woods have just become crossbeams in our new garage wall.
    -1958 Hofner 550 archtop guitar -1959 C3 and PR40- -1964 Busillachio Harmonium- -1964 M101-
    -1967ish Leslie 122- -1975 T500 (modded..chopped, and reassembled!)-
    -DIY 760 FrankenLeslie/rat hideout-
    -1980 Electrokey Electric Piano- -Yamaha electric Harmonium (early 80's?)-
    -1990 Jansen GMF150 amp- -1992 Korg 01W/fd- -1992 G&L S-500 geetar.

    Comment


    • #3
      Ha! Oops. I hope you didn't mind me plugging your past history like that?
      Perhaps I had too much coffee?
      -1958 Hofner 550 archtop guitar -1959 C3 and PR40- -1964 Busillachio Harmonium- -1964 M101-
      -1967ish Leslie 122- -1975 T500 (modded..chopped, and reassembled!)-
      -DIY 760 FrankenLeslie/rat hideout-
      -1980 Electrokey Electric Piano- -Yamaha electric Harmonium (early 80's?)-
      -1990 Jansen GMF150 amp- -1992 Korg 01W/fd- -1992 G&L S-500 geetar.

      Comment


      • #4
        Doon!

        One can almost never have too much coffee!

        Thanks for the kudos!
        Trust your M101/122 are purring at idle,roaring at full throttle!

        My days in Fosterchild had a rather steep learning curve LOL.
        It was a great 'foot in the door' and really jumpstarted my music 'career'.

        It's all good man.
        The studio was another visit to the fabled 'Mushroom' studios on West 6th Ave.
        Now operating as Afterlife,that room still has it's sound intact.
        The crucible of west coast rock-n-roll for over half a century.
        Mud Bay Blues Band have been around here 40 years,I am lucky to be included on some sessions.
        They really plan the sessions and tunes beforehand.....that's how it should always be done IMO.

        Lots of nice vintage keyboards to play there. A100/CV 147RV,122/ Rhodes Stage ,Wurli 200,Hohner Pianet,Mellotron and
        a really nice pre 'improved action' 1921 Steinway B .
        A wall of open back Fender guitar amps ranging from 1950 to the present.A working museum.....
        Neumann,Pultec,RCA,Neve,API,really well maintained vintage stuff.

        Knowing what sounds you are looking for can be a challenge on unfamiliar gear.
        I ended up using the Nord C2D 'clean 1960' and Leslie 142,along with the Steinway.
        Fast turn around times on overdub days made that decision for us.
        Everything is done quick on a 'budget' and still has big $ sound!
        One solo is on the Wurli 200.It uses the mic'd speakers and funky tremelo.
        In a sparse setting this really draws you in.

        I have never had to service motors or change belts on my Neo Ventilator......in it's defense.
        Gigs are a whole different thing.Usually the FOH tech asks for the Ventilator instead of mic'ing a Leslie.
        Consistency and duplicating night after night with little or no sound check makes that decision for us.

        I have gone to the trouble of having the 'full monty' at gigs,sounding 'average to bad' in spite of my efforts.
        The mic'd Leslie sounded 'chirpy' and yet the Ventilator sounded smooth throughout the dynamic range.
        Half the techs these days have little or no experience mixing a 'keyboardist',though they have all mixed.
        ..." I will send you a stereo feed of my keyboards".......handing over separate lines for everything to someone
        unfamiliar with my 'mix' just won't happen.
        This pair sums to mono with one switch.....on solos I can make full use of available headroom if needed.
        Using 20 inputs ain't gonna happen at gigs very often though.

        Repurposed wood is a huge industry here.Many restaurant table tops are fashioned in a shop on my delivery route.
        It's all 100 plus year old timber otherwise unobtainium!
        Good on you Doon! Even a lowly shipping skid gets a second life!
        A100/251 A100/147 A102/222 B2/142 BV/147 BCV/145 M3/145 M102/145 M111/770 L101/760 T222/HL722 M111/770 no B3/C3!

        Comment


        • #5
          I use a pair of Sennheiser e609's on the horn, on the open rear side a centimetre or two away from the cabinet, spaced equidistant from the axis of rotation (note: this places the left mic further inboard from the outer left edge of the cabinet, and the right mic is as close as possible to the right edge), both mics angled at 45° so they point directly at the axis and form a 90° angle to each other.

          For a more subdued sweep, place the mics outside the two louvred sides furthest from the motors, at 90° to each other, both mics dead centre on the axis of rotation and pointing straight in. Vary the distance to the louvres to control the amount of sweep.

          A third option for a completely self-contained internal mounting system is to mount the pair of e609's inside the left edge of the cabinet (i.e. the motor side), as far apart as possible and aimed flat to the horn.
          The unique flat shape and side-address of the e609 makes internal mounting very easy.

          In either case, the 90° angle is the key - it provides enough good stereo imagery without the seasick overly dramatic throbbing of a 180° configuration.
          The 180° method also creates two “sweeps” per rotation - it's over the top IMHO.
          One sweep is more natural.

          A single large diaphragm dynamic or condenser mic on the bass rotor completes the picture.
          i prefer to mic the bass rotor on the open rear side, with the mic aimed off-axis and pointing away from the direction of rotation to minimise wind and throb noise.
          Last edited by Papus; 05-20-2019, 05:15 AM.
          Current:
          1971 T-202 with Carsten Meyer mods: Remove key click filters, single-trigger percussion, UM 16' drawbar volume correction. Lower Manual bass foldback.
          Korg CX3 (original 1980's analogue model).
          1967 Leslie 122 with custom inbuilt preamp on back panel for 1/4" line-level inputs, bass & treble controls. Horn diffusers intact.
          2009 Marshall 2061x HW Plexi head into Marshall 4x12 cabinet.

          Former:
          1964 C3
          196x M-102
          197x X5
          197x Leslie 825

          Comment


          • #6
            Here are some pictures of the internal mount for e609's. The sound is natural, with one sweep per rotation. Wind noise is non-existent.
            A great way to permanently mount mics inside your Leslie whilst maximizing the distance from the horn to the mics.
            You may only view thumbnails in this gallery. This gallery has 5 photos.
            Last edited by Papus; 05-20-2019, 05:40 AM.
            Current:
            1971 T-202 with Carsten Meyer mods: Remove key click filters, single-trigger percussion, UM 16' drawbar volume correction. Lower Manual bass foldback.
            Korg CX3 (original 1980's analogue model).
            1967 Leslie 122 with custom inbuilt preamp on back panel for 1/4" line-level inputs, bass & treble controls. Horn diffusers intact.
            2009 Marshall 2061x HW Plexi head into Marshall 4x12 cabinet.

            Former:
            1964 C3
            196x M-102
            197x X5
            197x Leslie 825

            Comment


            • #7
              This configuration, with the e609's mounted horizontally, protrudes the furthest from the cabinet but provides the most subdued sweep and minimal wind noise.
              You may only view thumbnails in this gallery. This gallery has 5 photos.
              Last edited by Papus; 05-20-2019, 05:38 AM.
              Current:
              1971 T-202 with Carsten Meyer mods: Remove key click filters, single-trigger percussion, UM 16' drawbar volume correction. Lower Manual bass foldback.
              Korg CX3 (original 1980's analogue model).
              1967 Leslie 122 with custom inbuilt preamp on back panel for 1/4" line-level inputs, bass & treble controls. Horn diffusers intact.
              2009 Marshall 2061x HW Plexi head into Marshall 4x12 cabinet.

              Former:
              1964 C3
              196x M-102
              197x X5
              197x Leslie 825

              Comment


              • #8
                This is my preferred configuration for external mic'ing, with the e609's mounted vertically for minimum external protrusion from the cabinet.
                You may only view thumbnails in this gallery. This gallery has 5 photos.
                Current:
                1971 T-202 with Carsten Meyer mods: Remove key click filters, single-trigger percussion, UM 16' drawbar volume correction. Lower Manual bass foldback.
                Korg CX3 (original 1980's analogue model).
                1967 Leslie 122 with custom inbuilt preamp on back panel for 1/4" line-level inputs, bass & treble controls. Horn diffusers intact.
                2009 Marshall 2061x HW Plexi head into Marshall 4x12 cabinet.

                Former:
                1964 C3
                196x M-102
                197x X5
                197x Leslie 825

                Comment


                • #9
                  If you don't want to cause too much cosmetic/structural alteration to your 122, simply insert 3/8" bolts through the support struts for the rear top cover, for your mic clips.
                  The left mic will be further away from the horn than the right, but it still produces a nice stereo image.
                  You may only view thumbnails in this gallery. This gallery has 5 photos.
                  Current:
                  1971 T-202 with Carsten Meyer mods: Remove key click filters, single-trigger percussion, UM 16' drawbar volume correction. Lower Manual bass foldback.
                  Korg CX3 (original 1980's analogue model).
                  1967 Leslie 122 with custom inbuilt preamp on back panel for 1/4" line-level inputs, bass & treble controls. Horn diffusers intact.
                  2009 Marshall 2061x HW Plexi head into Marshall 4x12 cabinet.

                  Former:
                  1964 C3
                  196x M-102
                  197x X5
                  197x Leslie 825

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Another alternative if you don't want to cause any cosmetic/structural damage to your Leslie: use a stereo T-Bar mic mount, position it centered on the axis of rotation.
                    Sennheiser e609's are perfect to achieve a low external profile.
                    You may only view thumbnails in this gallery. This gallery has 5 photos.
                    Current:
                    1971 T-202 with Carsten Meyer mods: Remove key click filters, single-trigger percussion, UM 16' drawbar volume correction. Lower Manual bass foldback.
                    Korg CX3 (original 1980's analogue model).
                    1967 Leslie 122 with custom inbuilt preamp on back panel for 1/4" line-level inputs, bass & treble controls. Horn diffusers intact.
                    2009 Marshall 2061x HW Plexi head into Marshall 4x12 cabinet.

                    Former:
                    1964 C3
                    196x M-102
                    197x X5
                    197x Leslie 825

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      The classic simple configuration: identical mics top and bottom, outside the louvres, centered on the axis of rotation.
                      Amount of sweep is determined by distance to the louvres.
                      You may only view thumbnails in this gallery. This gallery has 5 photos.
                      Current:
                      1971 T-202 with Carsten Meyer mods: Remove key click filters, single-trigger percussion, UM 16' drawbar volume correction. Lower Manual bass foldback.
                      Korg CX3 (original 1980's analogue model).
                      1967 Leslie 122 with custom inbuilt preamp on back panel for 1/4" line-level inputs, bass & treble controls. Horn diffusers intact.
                      2009 Marshall 2061x HW Plexi head into Marshall 4x12 cabinet.

                      Former:
                      1964 C3
                      196x M-102
                      197x X5
                      197x Leslie 825

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        A few more colourful shots of the least intrusive "permanent" mounting option.
                        Works for the woofer rotor too, I have a boundary mic clipped to the rear bottom cover strut. Wind noise and throb can be a problem with certain mics, this Beyer Dynamic mic has no issues.
                        You may only view thumbnails in this gallery. This gallery has 5 photos.
                        Current:
                        1971 T-202 with Carsten Meyer mods: Remove key click filters, single-trigger percussion, UM 16' drawbar volume correction. Lower Manual bass foldback.
                        Korg CX3 (original 1980's analogue model).
                        1967 Leslie 122 with custom inbuilt preamp on back panel for 1/4" line-level inputs, bass & treble controls. Horn diffusers intact.
                        2009 Marshall 2061x HW Plexi head into Marshall 4x12 cabinet.

                        Former:
                        1964 C3
                        196x M-102
                        197x X5
                        197x Leslie 825

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Last photo - I promise!
                          Here's where to mount your two top mics to obtain a symmetrical stereo image
                          outside
                          the louvres, if that's your thing.
                          I didn't use an identical pair for some reason in this photo, and the large diaphragm condenser is further away than the e609, but you get the idea.
                          Mount the mics dead-center of the axis of rotation, at 90 degrees to each other on the two louvered sides furthest from the motors.
                          Note that this means the mic on the "front" of the cabinet will not be centered on the cabinet because the horn is
                          not
                          centered!
                          I see MANY technicians mic'ing Leslies with the mics centered on the cabinet - this will NOT produce a symmetrical, perfect stereo image!
                          Also, you won't obtain a perfectly symmetrical stereo image if you put one mic outside the louvres and the other mic on the open rear side.....
                          You may only view thumbnails in this gallery. This gallery has 1 photos.
                          Current:
                          1971 T-202 with Carsten Meyer mods: Remove key click filters, single-trigger percussion, UM 16' drawbar volume correction. Lower Manual bass foldback.
                          Korg CX3 (original 1980's analogue model).
                          1967 Leslie 122 with custom inbuilt preamp on back panel for 1/4" line-level inputs, bass & treble controls. Horn diffusers intact.
                          2009 Marshall 2061x HW Plexi head into Marshall 4x12 cabinet.

                          Former:
                          1964 C3
                          196x M-102
                          197x X5
                          197x Leslie 825

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Have seen Leslie rotor accidents with mics up and down.Not pretty.Usually clocking the phenolic treble horn.
                            "Why my upper and lower covers stay on".......OR the louvre sides only for mics thanks.
                            I'm usually preoccupied with performing and getting that right,leaving the rest of the tech side to those who provide that as a job.
                            The main thing is making music for the customer and making sure they are happy if not thrilled!

                            I will try that stereo X/Y you describe Papus! Quite sure that's what the engineers are doing with the upper pair of 57's.
                            'Just' 57's through some 1071 Neve strips.....and a Pultec......
                            Trying to keep lower tremelo from interfering with other low frequencies is tricky.
                            If you want to keep some low end on the Leslie and do both?
                            Place the mono low end mic at the bass port on the middle back panel.
                            An amazing tight low tremelo. Think it was an U47.

                            More EQ cut on a 41" box than a 33" box is my experience.
                            A100/251 A100/147 A102/222 B2/142 BV/147 BCV/145 M3/145 M102/145 M111/770 L101/760 T222/HL722 M111/770 no B3/C3!

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Sweet Pete View Post
                              Have seen Leslie rotor accidents with mics up and down.Not pretty.Usually clocking the phenolic treble horn.
                              "Why my upper and lower covers stay on".......OR the louvre sides only for mics thanks.
                              I'm usually preoccupied with performing and getting that right,leaving the rest of the tech side to those who provide that as a job.
                              The main thing is making music for the customer and making sure they are happy if not thrilled!

                              I will try that stereo X/Y you describe Papus! Quite sure that's what the engineers are doing with the upper pair of 57's.
                              'Just' 57's through some 1071 Neve strips.....and a Pultec......
                              Trying to keep lower tremelo from interfering with other low frequencies is tricky.
                              If you want to keep some low end on the Leslie and do both?
                              Place the mono low end mic at the bass port on the middle back panel.
                              An amazing tight low tremelo. Think it was an U47.

                              More EQ cut on a 41" box than a 33" box is my experience.
                              Yes, rotor collision is a problem!
                              That's why I prefer the Sennheiser e609's in my X/Y configuration - there's simply no way a rotor strike can occur.
                              Unfortunately most House PA's and engineers will go for the obvious choice when mic'ing a speaker cabinet: the venerable SM57.
                              This puts your rotor at risk of being struck if the engineer shoves the mic too far into the cabinet.
                              For the minor cosmetic damage of putting three 3/8" bolts through your rear top and bottom cover struts and investing in two or three e609's, you can guarantee the sound engineer a quality mic feed and ensure you get fairly consistent sound through the PA every time.

                              I agree the taller cabinet can tend towards being too boomy.
                              Fortunately I run my T202 through guitar pedals, so I can EQ it before it hits the Leslie.
                              You can also shape the bottom end response in the PA by adjusting the level of the bottom rotor mic in the mix, but this won't help your on-stage sound much.

                              The attached photos show that a rotor strike is impossible in each scenario.
                              You may only view thumbnails in this gallery. This gallery has 5 photos.
                              Last edited by Papus; 05-21-2019, 08:03 PM.
                              Current:
                              1971 T-202 with Carsten Meyer mods: Remove key click filters, single-trigger percussion, UM 16' drawbar volume correction. Lower Manual bass foldback.
                              Korg CX3 (original 1980's analogue model).
                              1967 Leslie 122 with custom inbuilt preamp on back panel for 1/4" line-level inputs, bass & treble controls. Horn diffusers intact.
                              2009 Marshall 2061x HW Plexi head into Marshall 4x12 cabinet.

                              Former:
                              1964 C3
                              196x M-102
                              197x X5
                              197x Leslie 825

                              Comment

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