This is the entry page for a section about the equipment I have.
Use it to navigate to other parts of the section
This section is not yet complete. The microphone section is more or less done (though often being added to). The Telinga mic is designed for use with a parabolic dish and is my main recording tool. The pages for the Røde NT1-A and NT55 mics and the AudioTechnica 3032 mic have musical samples where they're compared with simultaneously recorded samples made with a Neumann TLM 103 microphone. The pages on recorders and cameras are underway, except for the page about my digital camera, which is finished.
This is how it goes at the moment:
Introductory page for Mics & Mic Samples A relict page but with some amusing pics. From there use the side panel (or the links below) to go to the individual microphone pages. These are:
Telinga Stereo DAT mic The versatile stereo mic in a dish I always find myself using. Mid to high price. Two pages of bird samples here: dawn chorus + nightingale, cuckoo, nightjar, Little Owl and tawnies. Comments on using this setup added May 2007.
Røde NT1-A Cardioid. The Rødes are inexpensive but highly regarded, so I thought I'd better have a couple. Problem is they're studio mics with a 1-inch diaphragm and they're darned heavy to lug outside, so so far I've only used them statically. They do make nice recordings. This page has musical samples (singer and piano) comparing the Rødes with the Neumann TLM 103. Also links to other sites where you can hear how the NT1-A performs with natural sounds.
Røde NT55 Couple of mics I've bought recently. One of Røde's newest offerings, they come with interchangeable omni and cardioid capsules. What a brilliant idea. I got them because I need a portable directional pair -- the NT1-As are not carryable and the AT 3032s are omnis. Also got them because of Røde's growing reputation, praise for the similar NT5s, and the fact that I like what I hear from the NT1-As very much.
AudioTechnica 3032 Omnidirectional, ca £100 each. Bought in 2006 and now my workhorse field mics, with another pair bought a year later. This page uses singer and piano samples to compare the 3032 with the TLM 103 and shows it to be pretty impressive. A very quiet mic. Now sadly discontinued
Sennheiser MKH 20 Omnidirectional, ca £900 each! Only one outdoor sample here as this was a pair of mics I hired to do some music recording. The MKH series are the mics of choice for many professional bird recordists.
Sony ECM 909 Single-point stereo mic. Budget. Included because I used it years ago to do interviews in Jamaican bauxite mines, from which I've resuscitated a take-off in a small plane. Quite impressive, but self-noise and only moderate gain means you'd soon want a better mic for birds -- I've tried.
Visivox SCM-Pro My first mic bought for birds. This stereo pair and pre-amp are a budget setup that may be of interest to someone starting out on bird recording. A good learning tool and quite acceptable for the price, but if you get serious you'll want to move on.
Mic specs Basic info (frequency response and polar diagrams) about the main mics listed here.
Microphone & Recordings links A page of links to sites where you can hear long, quality recordings made with named mics and equipment.
Ony semi-active yet -- just some pics. Descriptions of recorders will go here.
My sound recording gear is an HHB Portadisc minidisk recorder and an Edirol R4 four-channel hard disk recorder. I've found it really useful to have a 4-channel recorder. The mics I use with the recorders are the Telinga mic and dish, the Røde NT1-A and NT55 mics, and the AT 3032 mics.
My camera's a Panasonic Lumix FZ30. There's a review and sample pics.
I also use a Sony Handycam model DCR-PC8E bought some years ago for movies. An incredibly good and reliable piece of gear, beautifully compact in the hand. All it lacks is a hotshoe. The "E" after the model designation simply stands for the version that was on sale in Europe. No review yet, just a pic.
Other pages with recordings
My small collection of bird recordings can be reached from the Birds main page.
A compendium of the calls made by these owls. Work in progress.
Finally, here's a rare treat. Go to my page on Aimi for links to YouTube clips of this astonishingly talented and sensitive pianist.
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