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User reviews and opinions
|JorikZ||6:04pm on Sunday, May 30th, 2010|
|How can I use that MD to record from a CD or COM? I got it a few days ago. It looks good and I like it. However.|
|lgharis||12:17am on Tuesday, April 20th, 2010|
|Excellent product for the price. I spent a long time looking for a minidisc player to meet my needs and that was consistent with my being a tight-wad. pretty good This minidisc player/recorder has great recording and it has great sound. Good, but not that good ... This Model is a PLAYER/RECORDER with only 10-Second Shock Resistant Memory (when most have 40 sec.).|
Comments posted on www.ps2netdrivers.net are solely the views and opinions of the people posting them and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of us.
Sonic Studios Live Ambient Stereo-Surround Recording/Playback Tips Page
Making History with DSM Stereo-Surround Microphones Learn about HRTF stereo-surround recording methods & gear Tips to operate and maintain portable audio recorders How to optimize the playback listener experience
Live Recording Tips Deck/Gear Maintenance Stereo-Surround Methods
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Types, Methods of HRTF
"Head Related Transfer Function" Baffled Omni StereoSurround Mics Binaural vs. DSM Headwearing DSM Neck Mics? DSM Questions Recording FAQ MAG REVIEWS Types of Mic DIY HRTF Baffle (Thread) DSM mic hum fix? (Thread) Comments
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Useful Stuff & Fluff:
Mic Choice Live Recording Smallest 24bit Deck/DSM mic Combo
DOWNLOAD TIPS PAGE AS A PRINTABLE & WEB BROWSE-ABLE ACROBAT (.PDF) FILE
DSM HRTF HEADMOUNT TIPS
DSM Stereo Mics are Headworn (HRTF Dual-Omni BAFFLED) design pickups to record the best 3-D stereo sound possible. The instruction pamphlet included with every DSM suggests positioning the two pickups forward of the ears to about the temple of a person (or dummy head) but, theres more to the story. The position the pickups are placed, back towards the ears or forward into the temple area, makes a difference to the perceived higher frequencies on the recording. Positioning DSMs closer to the ears will give excellent 3-D headphones reproduction while still retaining very good (much better than in-ear Binaural) loudspeaker reproduction, but.the perception of higher frequency detail is softer speaker reproduced than perception encountered with headphones listening.
file:///D|/Sonicweb%20Dreamweaver%20Edition_Recent/tips.htm[4/11/2010 1:32:33 AM]
Alternately, positioning the pickups far forward into the temple area increases the perception of higher frequencies on loudspeakers while still retaining excellent 3-D headphone reproduction! Oftentimes its how your ear/brain actually perceives that makes all the difference. Thats psycho-acoustics for you! A better understanding of this phenomenon is simplified by realizing that DSM microphones are positioned at a place where you record the acoustical impression in dimensional acoustic space. Conversely, reproducing the recorded impression involves completing what you started by doing a recording in the first place, namely, completing the action by reproducing the DSM recorded sound exactly from same the place in space!
COMMENT: While person head mounting or using LiteGUY baffle is best for stereo image quality (and a number of other good reasons), some want "max stealth" low profile recording instead, having outfitted a special shirt or jacket with (button-down?) collars to hide the pickups from view underneath the collar front flaps. A custom button hole located at the inside rear of the collar allow the pickups + cord threaded from inside to being secured under the collar flaps. Safety pins, gaffer's tape, and a custom made cloth loop may be considered to secure the pickups. This arrangement must be carefully tested to avoid rubbing noises and blocking the front view of pickups, but will give satisfactory speaker playback recorded results when head mounting is not practical. While the stereo image recording quality is significantly diminished with collar mounting, there's someadvantage when blocking (or at least reducing)some of the rear/side crowd sounds is desired.
For the best 3-D image fidelity, listen to the DSM recording from wide spaced, precisely angled
speakers directed or positioned exactly the opposite (reverse facing, 180 degree) direction of the original live sound recording microphones as suggested below.
If a DSM recording was made with pickups placed close to the ears, best listening experience is with open type headphones having large 40-50+mm sized diaphragm. Jecklin Float Phones electrostatics (at one time sold by MAY AUDIO) and Sony MDR-F1 or CD2000 and newer MDR-SA3000/5000 models are known to reproduce the most natural sounding 3-D and optimum high frequency details (SA5000). If loudspeaker listening is you main objective, position the DSM pickups further forward of the ears, even centered into the temple area for best high-frequency details perception with loudspeaker playback systems. See Speaker positioning for 2 or more speaker systems that allow for best imaging.
CAUTION: MiniDISC Deck, BE IT "NOT MOVED" WHEN RECORDING
ALL small MiniDISC decks are extremely sensitive to skipping, leaving blank disk spaces if bumped or moved a little too much while recording. Severe skipping or blank recorded spaces may make your minidisc jump from playing one track immediately to the next track (if you are lucky to have another) during playback. Do Not put MiniDisc decks in purses, equipment bags, or pants pockets while recording. Instead, place on a steady and secure (table) surface or HANDHOLD gingerly, keeping all necessary deck movements slow and deliberate. If you often find yourself standing in an active crowd where getting bumped is the usual, or if you like to be moving around while recording, consider using a DAT deck instead, Mini-DAT's can usually hit the ground without audibly interrupting the recording; noted from personal slippery fingered experience with TCD-D8 on several occasions!
To setup Sony MZ-NH1 HiMD for live music recording with DSM stereo mic suggest the following:
From the MENU, selectRECset, and select RECvolume to enter MANUAL REC adjustment mode, and also select MICsens to select SENS LOW; USE ONLY THIS SETTING to avoid distortions and volume pumping with musical bass notes. Instruction for MANUAL REC mode is on page 38, and setting the mic sensitivity is on page 35 of the owners manual. ALL MANUAL MIC INPUT RECORDING SETTINGS WILL RESET to full AUTO (Sony's TYPICAL default) when you STOP recording, so with Sony MD, you have to push all the buttons again to gain control for MANUAL REC level and LOW microphonesensitivity SETTING EVERY TIME YOU START UP TO RECORD AGAIN! Avoid Sony's insanity to fully discourage practical high quality microphone recording in the proper manual REC level mode / low mic input sensitivity. See Sony's typical MD deck mic recording setup problems for yourself by downloading Sony MZ-NH1 Hi-MD recorder Owners Manual ACROBAT.PDF file HERE
The RH910 HiMD model 'seems' to be reversing some of the analog recording problems associated with Sony MD models in general. Ability to transfer original analog.WAV files recordings using USB (for editing?) now appears possible, and is a first for this format, at least without resorting to a hack program. Someone needs to verify.WAV file on the MD deck is also accessible outside of the 'SonicStage' management program to appear like a regular audio file on an external drive as the owner's manual (.pdf) infers. Manual REC level and MIC input sensitivity adjustment seem less menu-buried on the RH910. Still, REC level cannot be adjusted while recording, and it is unclear if MIC input sensitivity settings are also 'forgotten' along with manual REC level mode when stopping a recording session.
REDUCING INPUT NOISE ON FOSTEX FR2 & MOST NEW TECHNOLOGY (NT) CF & HD PORTABLE DECKS
The good news is the FOSTEX FR2 is easy to operate and fairly well designed with good features and performance. Powering is an issue with solution using an external battery pack. One powering solution that connects 8 D cell pack using dummy AA cells as described at: EXTERNAL BATTERY SYSTEMS/TIPS The internal mic preamplifier on the FR2 seems mostly adequate for larger diaphragm, high output 'true balanced' type mics. However, like most NT decks (Edirol-Roland R-1/R-4, Marantz PMD-600 series), the FR2's MIC/LINE balanced inputs are highly susceptible to internal/external noise sources. This is especially true when running on the AC adapter with ANY TYPE of mic input, and if inputting an UNBALANCED lower level mic or unbalanced line source (like from standard configured DSM mics, single ended preamplifiers, and powering adapters). This is due to less than optimized design of most first generation NT portable digital recording decks that includes digital system noise getting into the low level analog signal process, and external electrical noise (AC hum, radio signals) working into the not-yet-refined ground path circuitry of these newer decks. At least one exception is Sound Devices 722/744T decks and (some) battery powered external microphone preamplifiers with refined very quiet/external-internal noise immune inputs. SUMMARY: For lowest noise ANALOG recording performance, run deck solely on battery power, and input to these type decks ONLY true BALANCED output MIC/LINE externally connected equipment. PA-10DXLR5 is a true input/output balanced powering adapter for connector upgraded DSM microphones models. PA-24NJ/X is a balanced output external mic preamplifier suitable for all decks with balanced LINE level inputs.
AVOIDING ANALOG INPUT DECK OVERLOAD DISTORTIONS
MOST Mini-portables in use today will overloadto cause analog circuit clipping distortion. Indication that mic input stage clipping is likely occurring is when LEVEL adjustment necessitates turning down to #4 or below 30-40% of the adjustment range for seeing VU peak indications -12 dB to -4 dB peaks for most other DAT models. LOOK where you have this knob or the up-down button adjustment set. If set < 40% of total REC adjustment maximum, then good chance of MIC input (sometimes also LINE) deck overload, at least until you know better from trying it first.
There are two main types of REC Level Adjustment Displays taking the place of the DAT's #0 to #10 REC LEVEL level knob markings (like shown in the picture above-left) INSTEAD, most newer digital audio decks indicate the REC LEVEL Adjustment ON THE LCD DISPLAY; usually positioned somewhere BELOW the VU indicator Some display a RECORD Level Adjustment Left-to-Right reading BAR GRAPH that indicates possible audible input overloads STARTING when the Bar Graph shows about 35-40% of 100% full up. If the REC LEVEL Adjustment bargraph indicates an adjustment is selected below 35% of full up, then input clipping distortion is likely easily audible. Some decks do not use a bar graph to display where you've set the Manual REC LEVEL. INSTEAD, a series of numbers are displayed on the LCD display.
The series of setting numbers is sometimes in TWO SETS when in MIC input mode (Sharp MD). Displays of #0-#20 indicate the deck is set in "L" Low input sensitivity (equivalent to the 20 DB ATTENuation setting on DAT) and input clipping distortion is unlikely with number settings indicated at #8 or higher out of #20 max, for getting adequate -12 dB VU to 0 dB VU REC signal peak readings. The second numbered set on the Sharp MD reads #21-#30 indicating the deck is set in the "H" High mic input sensitivity range (equivalent to the 0 DB ATTENuation setting on DAT). BEST TO AVOID using the #21-#30 "H" range. You are RISKING having input clipping distortion UNLESS VU readings are unable to reach GREATER THAN -14 dB VU with the deck set at #20. In other words, try to keep maximum recording level input "headroom" by staying in the "L" Low input sensitivity range, UNLESS VU is less than -14 dB peak, then good chance the +20 db "HIGH" boost setting is OK. (Suggested TCD-D100/PCM-M1 mic input settings for moderate lowto-loud sounds shown below) This Low or -20 dB mini switch positionis considered normal and best for most moderate-low to very loud sound recording and is the preferred setting even if the LEVEL Knob is needing to be 100% full up maximum to for ~12 dB good VU indication. On most models, the mic sensitivity input switch actually changes the first stage amplifier gain instead of conventional reduction of mic signal via resistor attenuation network positioned before the mic amplifier. Sharp MiniDisc decks also reconfigure the gain of the mic preamplifier from low gain to boosted gain when crossing from #0-#20 record level adjustment to #21-#30 record level setting range.
Depending on the output or sensitivity of the microphone being used and how loud the sound recorded is, the L or -20 db Attenuated position MAY NOT lower thesignal sufficiently to avoid overloads. This is commonwhen using the larger diaphragm (capsule) sized and/or higher output 48 volt phantom powered microphones recording amplified Pop/Rock venues.
In this case there are three options:
1) Use the Attenuation switch (commonly found on the microphone body) or 2) Install an in-series attenuation network between the microphone and the deck, but NOT between the microphone and it's source of 'Phantom power' (when mic is without an internal battery supply). 3) Use the LINE input(s) on the deck which have at least -20 dB less gain that mic inputs and are much more resistant to be overdriven with direct Level Knob control(s); exception is the Sony D7/8 decks where the Level Knob does not totally control the line input signal from causing clipping distortion from very high 'Pro mixing board type' inputs.
Remember the #0 to #20 or "L" Low mic sensitivity or -20 dB attenuation MIC INPUT mode is the NORMAL setting for these decks.
The other, higher (boosted) gain mode should not be used for quality mic input purposes (maybe best for dictation, lecture/seminar low level recording), UNLESS UNABLE to reach 50% half VU scale or -14 dB VU with loudest momentary peaks.
USE the Line input with large (diaphragm/capsule) MICS (especially 24-48 volt) for moderate-toVERY-LOUD live events.
INPUT SETTING TIPS ON NON-STOCK DAT DECKS WITH (OADE MOD) LOWERED PREAMP GAIN
In a message dated 11/16/01 6:43:09 AM Pacific Standard Time, firstname.lastname@example.org writes: << I have been 'studying' your recording tips, so I THINK I know what to do for a quality recording. The only thing I'm afraid of is turning my record setting ABOVE '4'. I have never had to record above that level, but I'm hoping your mics will allow me to go above that, to avoid clipping. Tom Axxxxxx >> Hello Tom, I think you've got this tip totally BACKWARDS. Setting the level knob Below #4 or below (for having VU readings about -12 dB VU) means your mic input to the preamplifier or the input gain is way too much, and the bass is getting clipped even if the VU level shows it is not overloading! Knob settings above #4.5 (to #10 max) means your mic input level (and setting of the 0 dB and 20 dB attenuate switch) is totally OK. Please reread the http://www.sonicstudios.com/tips.htm page. Also realize that most people with a DSM pop/rock low gain mic USUALLY MUST have the M1 DAT deck in the 20 dB attenuate switch setting for recording amplified club/concert music, and also remember to use only the MANUAL recording mode. HOWEVER, BECAUSE OADE MODIFIED YOUR DECK TO HAVE LOWER MIC PREAMP GAIN, YOU WILL find the 0 dB attenuate setting IS MORE LIKE THE NORMAL (stock -20 dB deck) SETTING, FOR THIS DECK ONLY. YOU MAY STILL BE OK to use the 20 dB setting for most loud music concert venues and the loudest of club type venues. HOWEVER, if you CANNOT get the -12 dB VU average reading with having #10 LEVEL KNOB (turned full up) with the 20 dB setting, ONLY THEN USE the 0 dB switch setting, turning the level knob down (but hopeful not below #4.5) to get about 50% VU deflections or -12 dB VU average peak readings. ALSO READ TAPERS TIPS for more tips on keeping the recording level adjustment appropriate for the music. IN OTHER WORDS, your deck is NOT STOCK (With having the OADE MOD), so some of the suggestions saying that 20 dB or LOW sensitivity is the normal DOES NOT ALWAYS APPLY TO YOUR CURRENT M1 OADE MODIFIED DECK. So, you may have to boost the mic preamplifier gain to 0 dB setting (which is a NO-NO on a stock DAT deck for recording not so loud Rock/Pop venues), but ONLY if the 20 dB setting gives too little gain/VU levels. Follow these tips carefully and PRACTICE by going out to record some really loud club type pop/rock music A FEW TIMES. Much better to make your mistakes during practice than mess up during the U2 event. Most large concerts should actually be a bit to alot louder (and cleaner sounding) than most club venues, so using the 20 dB deck setting with nearly full up to #10 level knob is likely the best loud concert recording setting to start with even with having the OADE mod, but please be prepared for big events with having some practice first. Best Regards, Leonardo
(Back to Tapers Tips Page) (Back to Page Top)
MaintainMini-Stereo Jack/Plug Contacts & Strain Relieve Mic Cords
Smaller is Better for some things and not for others.
As portable recording decks, jacks, and plugs get smaller, the need to compensate for less contact area and spring force becomes increasingly important to insure consistent results when recording. Small decks are dependable as long as the recordist is aware of the limitations; therefore, some important facts about whats not so robust and problematic about the smaller connection hardware is important to know.
FACT: Mini-stereo contact spring pressure is far less than on 1/4 & XLR type connectors.
RESULT: Fingerprint residue thats not always wiped off
before plugging-in will collect inside the jack, and quickly interfere with signal purity, even generate severe static (mic DC power) noises.
The lighter contact forces of mini-connectors dont push aside the film coating of grease and grim as do much larger connectors. Also realize that its almost impossible to handle a mini-mic. plug without touching the metal surface, leaving fingerprint residue on the plug thats deposited into the mic jack with each insertion cycle. As each insertion continues to add more residue, the contacts reach saturation and can no longer push aside this toughening film. Furthermore, contact corrosion from fingerprint salts (like that of sea water) eventually eats up the metal when moisture is present. This produces slightly audible degradation of the signal quality at best to complete intermittent interruption of delicate mic. Signals and will ruin the recording in the worst case. When phantom type power is also supplied to the microphones through the mic. jack (as with external microphone "Plug-in-Power" feature common to portable Video, DAT & MiniDisc decks), highly audible static type noise is the result. This is especially audible when the microphones plug is only slightly moved by an unsecured mic. cord.
SOLUTION TO MINI-CONNECTOR STATIC NOISE AND INTERMITTENT AUDIO IS AS FOLLOWS: Clean & recondition noisy mic. jacks with 91 - 99% pure isopropyl alcohol. Repeatedly insert a headphone type plug soaked to the point of dripping (filling the alcohol bottle cap and dipping only the metal part of the mini-plug works well) into the mic. Jack until any connection noise disappears. Monitor the progress with a set of headphones while the deck is in a record function. Rotating themicrophones plug should not produce audible noise with cleaned and conditioned contacts. Applying a contact conditioner to already cleaned plug and jack metal parts (Stereo retailer & Sonic Studios available ProGold by CAIG Labs works great) once to several times a year will help protect contacts from corrosion/wear and from producing noise for much longer between cleanings.
(Return to Tapers Tips Page)
CAUTION IS ADVISED: AVOID PLACING CONTACT CLEANER ON ANYTHING BUT THE METAL CONNECTOR PARTS; Plastics can be softened, discolored, and even dissolved! This may actually coat the very metal contacts intended for cleaning! Fortunately, deck input jacks are reasonably resistant to alcohol and most plastic safe cleaners when used occasionally and with care.
WARNING: Never spray anything into the jacks on a deck. Most Minideck jacks are not the enclosed type anymore, but are open, allowing sprays to go where they can cause mechanical problems with the mechanical type transport mechanisms and coat the tape/optical head(s). Use the method described above with the miniplug, or purchase a special plastic cleaning brush from CAIG or Sonic Studios (a tapered shaver/dental plague cleaning brush may also be used).
Avoiding The Mini Connector Shortcomings For Professional Work:
TCD-D100 & PCM-M1 DAT Deck Tip
(The photos on the left and far below illustrate the best strategy for Sony DAT, MD, and portable audio hard disk recording decks)
2) Secure the mic cord between the deck and the carrying case, or use Velcro to prevent connection movement noise, spontaneous unplugging, & input jack damaging strains from occurring.
Always wipe off the mic plug before plugging-in with a clean cotton
cloth (or shirt) or tissue paper. The plug should be mirror-bright-shiny clean before making the connection. Click for MiniDISC MIC cord securing & General MD recording setup tips
(Right) The input/output cords are both secured with PA-24NJ preamp's integral Velcro tie.
A more permanent smart right-angle mic. cord bend around the deck is best produced by carefully heating the entire bend section (a hair dryer is handy), applying the necessary bend, then let cool before releasing the bend.
The Sharp MD-MT20 minidisc deck has room for just 1 cord securing strap. Position the 2 Velcro patches (the hook
type) as shown to avoid blocking anything important. Secure the cord with the bridging strap (the loop type) as shown above.
PA Adapters are accessory for powering DSM mics and have options of also having "Bass Cut" filters.
The Input Jack to the PA connects to the DSM mic output Plug. This interface should be kept from disconnection or movement by using one of the two available moveable cord securing straps as illustrated here in the two photo tips. The PA's output plug is secured to the deck just like the DSM mic plug/cord shown in the previous tips.
Are Gold Plated Connectors Naturally Better? Gold is plated onto a connectors base metal and is a <5 to ~25 micro-inches very thin to extra thick plating; usually much less than 5 micro-inches is used. It may be surprising to know that Gold is NOT the best conductor of electricity, silver is far better, with copper just behind as the most common materials in use these days.
However, Gold does make a better and more consistent electrical contact because it is corrosion resistant to most everything. But what may really matter the most is what's UNDERNEATH the Gold plating. Gold is very, very soft metal and is easily pushed aside leaving the base metal of the connector to show through in the most used areas, which is exactly the area where the metal-to-metal electrical connection takes place. Most frequently the underneath base metal on gold plated plugs is BRASS; this looks a lot like the gold plating until it tarnishes and gold plates very easily to the brass metal alloy. In contrast, most NON-Gold plated connectors have a form of nickel plating (over brass) that is also very corrosion resistant, but not as corrosion resistant as gold. However, nickel plating is made thicker than gold and is a much less soft metal; lasts much much longer as a plate for sliding contact purposes. If the gold plating is really thin (most usual for consumer gear), then using just brass underneath allows the connector to look 'good as gold' in the store, BUT after getting used a bit, the gold plating will wear through to expose brass to corrosion.
Here is the bad news: brass metal surfaces will quickly corrode to having a very, very hard surface skin (acts like anodized aluminum that resist further deep corrosion) that will not conduct electricity. This leaves you with a far worse connection than most anything you can think of. Mostly leaves you with no connection until something scrapes down hard on the brass to make a good but very temporary connection again. So as the gold wears off, the brass shines through to tarnish; hard to keep from making anything but very inconsistent and mostly poor connections. This is the bad news with these types of gold plated connectors, especially after they get worn from active cycles of plug and unplug use. The commercial electronics industry also makes use of gold plating for sliding contacts, BUT ONLY after a 15 to 50 micro-inch plating of NICKEL is first laid down on copper (PC circuit boards) or brass/steel (as for quality military/commercial connectors). In this way, as the Gold predictably gets worn away after repeated working, but there is still a good nickel plating metal contact underneath. This dual plating method always insures that some kind of good reliable electrical contact surface remains after years of active service. With Gold plate over nickel, the brass or steel base metals rarely ever wears through the nickel in normal expected use. So, it is often best NOT to get the gold plated connectors as they more often DO NOT MAKE A GOOD CONNECTION after too short a time of use. Better to get more durable nickel (sometimes made better with silver alloy) types that last far longer and can be cleaned with alcohol easily. Brass does not clean well and needs an abrasive material to scrape down to some newer brass; like using a pencil eraser or extra fine abrasive grit paper. Why the makers of these connectors do not first plate nickel over the base BEFORE gold is almost a mystery to me, but go to Radio Shack and take a look at all those gold plated connector parts. They all seem just Gold plated over Brass; not good at all. Using Brass as the only base metal seems to look better when using the usual very thin Gold plating; you will buy this quicker than the appearance of thin gold over nickel, it would not be as bright or 'gold looking' I would guess. If you have gold connectors, then I strongly suggest NOT using anything abrasive to clean them (at least until the gold is worn out in critical places), just use pure 91% isopropyl alcohol on a cloth. I suggest using some ProGold contact conditioner to the cleaned connector to help keep the brass base metal from wearing through the gold very quickly.
Remember, that which is golden is not necessarily the best connector for the long run.
NOTE: Sonic Studios gold plated connectors are a full 25 micro-inches of gold OVER 50 micro-inches of high quality nickel plate; this will always provide long life and reliable connections for many, thousands of cycles and for years of challenging environmental exposure. A technical sheet on connectors and what happens to gold with and without ProGold treatment is linked to my accessories page at: http://www.sonicstudios.com/access.htm
Recording MUSIC with Bass Filters: Advisory
<< ------------- DAT-Heads Digest Query ----------------- Date: FBI, 21 Jul 2000 18:08:44 -0500 From: " J V " Subject: Bass filter for older Sonic Studios DSM-6P I'm looking for a an inline bass roll-off box (preferably with adjustable settings) that will be fully compatible with the Sonics DSM-6 P ( the older hardwired power supply model) , i.e., it can accept a 1/8 inch stereo plug and can plug into the 1/8 inch mic input on my M-1. I understand
Marcsounds used to carry something similar to this, are they still around ? john >>-----------------------------GuySonic Replies: IN-Series Bass filters for electret are mostly too specialized to mix and match from different mic models/makes. The unique driving ability or impedance of a particular mic capsule AND the input resistance (Impedance) of the deck's input will greatly effect both the mic's AND the filters performance and quality factors; the parameters are INTERACTIVE. In other words, mixing is not a good idea in this case for more than one reason and especially if you care about getting specific and quality results without needing to be also extremely lucky. In specific to John's situation, the suggested solution is to change the hardwired DSM-6P (vintage) version to being up-to-date with current DSM models. This would allow connection to any of the current PA powering + Bass filter models that best fit his particular recording requirement. (SEE PA powering and bass filter adapter chart on page: http://www.sonicstudios.com/pa_x.htm) The best service now for the updating of older DSM- 6P models is the low cost DSM mic "Refurbishment" service that includes the new model form-factor update + diaphragm clean + new windscreens = mics look and work like a brand-new-one and can be directly powered by portable DAT/MD decks and/or a PA. bass filtering adapter. AND WHILE ON THIS TOPIC: It seems that "a bit too much that bass filtering" is an easy thing to do when all you got to do is slide a switch and viola!. there's now less bass in the recording. Microphone BASS Filtering can be a good thing to even up the overall "tone" balance of a recording AND it also gives more analog input or recording "headroom" that helps to enhance the overall resolution of higher frequencies. In other words, you can turn up the REC level a lot more FOR MIDS AND HIGHS because the strongest (bass) sound component is now at a much lower deck input level. Sometimes it's not that you can do it (reduce the bass content with a filter), but it's really about knowing WHEN and WHEN NOT and HOW MUCH TO reduce bass sounds. If the sound is SO loud that your hearing gets distorted OR if you are prudent in saving your ears with wearing earplugs (especially when right-up close to the stacks), you MAY NOT be HEARING the overall tonal balance of the venue WELL ENOUGH TO MAKING the most appropriate bass filter selection. Too many recordings I've lately heard seem to error on WAY TOO MUCH BASS FILTERING as to lose most sense of the real "GUT and emotional FEELing" of the music; this is big part of the live sound that I personally find important. However, very "thin sounding recordings" are MORE OFTEN caused by POST BASS Filtering in a digital sound editing (DAW) program than by the use of real-time microphone filtering, but both mechanisms can do equal damage or benefit to a recording DEPENDING. That's 'Depending' on your own taste in sound preferences and 'depending' on what's the most important aspects of a particular music style. For example; Maybe some Metal Rock styles are most cherished by the majority of their fans for that 'screaming inyou-face' guitar/vocals style that is impossible to hear from being buried in massive bass sounds if played 'straight' on home stereos. Lose most of the bass by filtering and you'll get the "in-yourface" guitar/vocal aspect much easier with regular good quality consumer playback gear. The only problem is it's a bit on the thin sound side of live, but the more important aspects of the music is most accessible to fans.
Question: What if it starts raining on me and Im wearing them? Answer: Water will not harm the mics but, if enough water gets on the foam windscreen, the
sound will be reduced; if on the inside diaphragm, the sound will be mostly muted until the mics dry out completely. If it should rain and your hair is too short to deflect the moisture, keep a cap with enough of a brim to shade the pickups from wind driven rain. Dense fog is usually not a problem unless there is also a wind blowing directly into the windscreen; this will drive moisture into the foam, might cause sounds to be water attenuated after a period of time. TheWHB windscreen headband protects all water from reaching the foam and mic diaphragms but, the headband fabric can get water saturated to the point where the sound gets attenuated a little bit ; not a serious problem unless in a soaking downpour where an umbrella should be employed. Back to Q&A)
Question: Any concerns the little wind screen will fall off? Answer: After 4-8 years of steady usage the windscreens can get bit worn but, none have
actually fallen (completely) off even after 8 years. The mic diaphragms can be cleaned after 3-5 years of usage (suggested $85 refurbish service) and a new windscreen can be attached at that time. If you (are the firstto!) experience any lifting of the windscreen within two years, the windscreen will be repaired at no charge. (Back to Q&A) (Back to Page Top)
Question: Im psyched to use them! Im just needing a little guidance about care. Im generally pretty careful, but when Im in a hurry (the lights went down as Im headed to my seat.) I can be a little reckless. Answer: Haste makes waste is a good motto to abide by here!
I well know that feeling and excitement to get the recording equipment set up and operating while keeping from distracting my neighbors with my passion for recording AND get it operating BEFORE the program starts!!! Cant miss note with out regret! You will not damage the mics with reckless abandon (unless you step on the pickups!) but, you may do damage to your decks input jacks and transport if not ESPECIALLY very gentle and careful when loading and unloading the tape; do make sure the lid is ALL THE WAY OPEN until the latch clicks before handling the tape.
It does well to give yourself as much time to set up or much better to have everything mostly in place and ready before walking in. I like to have the glasses hanging down on my chest and connected to the deck in my pocket or equipment pouch when entering.
Ive already tested that the mic, deck, tape, and connections worked by doing a test recording at home or before walking in. (I do this for may own piece of mind and nerves). When I do get to my seat, I start by pulling the deck out (within 3-5 minutes of the venue start), turning it on and pushing the REC button ONCE only for setup standby (not in pause II mode yet), double check that Ive got the deck in MANUAL LEVEL (NOT AUTO), MIC SENS in (L), adjust the LEVEL knob up (4-10) until getting a definite VU indication, and put on the glasses just before the program starts when everyones attention is mostly on the stage (even when recording with complete permission, a taper can be distracting to those around enjoying the show so try to be considerate). To Record, (TCD-D7 & D8/D100) now push the PAUSE (II) button TWICE to have the deck actually load the tape AND start recording. Make sure the deck is still NOT IN PAUSE and is really recording by pushing the display Counter MODE button until the either REM (remaining tape time) or ABS (absolute) time indicator shows; this will show 00:00:01 seconds ticking off (up or down) if the tape is actually in motion. You will see the 00:00:00 time display changing where before in pause it was not. You now are making a recording; occasionally check the decks VU but, mostly enjoy the show! When the venue starts, adjust for maximum VU peak at around -12 VU and leave it there unless the show gets louder later on; then leave it there unless it later gets louder still.
NOTE: The D100/M1 (with more accurate VU over D7/8) & SBM-1 allow for fewer quality compromises when
recording to close to maximum 0 dB (100%) VU peaks, but care must be taken to avoid overrange clipping.
Best to be conservative with average VU readings of -12dB (50% full scale) with occasional signals reading no higher than -4 dB (~75%) MAX VU peaks in most cases. This is good advice for getting cleanest sounding recordings on BOTH DAT and MiniDisc recorders.
You can look up and down without much affecting the recorded sound but avoid looking to the left or right if possible; this will affective the recording. Grooving with the music with side to side or bopping head motions is completely acceptable and recommended when appropriate. Avoid being a distraction: When everyone is bopping and somebody is like a statue, guess who stands out? The statue is distracting to those around you gets noticed every time in a crowd of bopping people! So, get with the show like everyone else and take home a great recorded personal memory. (Back to Q&A) (Back to Page Top)
DECK MAINTENANCE TIPS
DECK Cleaning Tips: Avoid getting alcohol into any of the moving parts bearings, gears, and cams as this would dilute the important lubrication for these parts; never spray any solvent into a tape mechanism to avoid removing or displacing lubrication from and onto other areas. Always use the smallest alcohol holding foam swab that still allows a decent cleaning area and precision placement to only the areas within and concerning the tape path. Do be careful with the pinch roller and especially the capstan bearing to avoid running alcohol down the capstan and into the bearing lubrication area; invert the deck if possible to change the direction of gravity fed runoff to be away from this bearing. In other words, always use as little cleaning solution as possible to avoid contamination from solvent runoff into lubricated parts areas; this can bleed lubrication from where it needs to be and run it to where it should never be!! Often 'foam tipped' swabs absorb too much solvent for safe cleaning. Instead, wet a lint free cotton cloth placed over the swab or handle for more sensitive area cleaning; i.e., capstan spindle/pinch roller. The most important areas of maintenance remain the rotating or stationary heads; less frequently, and on very used decks.the rubber pinch roller (cleaned & reconditioned with CAIG Labs RBR product)..capstan spindle..and lastly.tape path guides are much less likely to be of any problem; best serviced with the occasional dry fabric tape mentioned. (Back to Page Top)
THREE BASIC TYPES OF CLEANING TAPES
COMMON ABRASIVE WET-DRY TAPES NON-ABRASIVE DRY FABRIC TAPE
There seems to be (3)three distinct type cleaning tapes sold today for maintaining R-DAT machines. There's the very common dry abrasive type, the wet-dry fabric type, and the dry fabric type (DIC DAT). Service shops generally recommend the first (abrasive) category listed below but, there are proponents who argue that any one type is superior to the others. The real reason for using a cleaning tape is to prevent or remove recording/playback head-clogs; the effects are usually noticeable as a loss of high frequency resolution and/or "stuttering". (Stuttering is most noticeable during playback of a good recording when dropout error-correction circuits cannot keep up with lost data due to head clogs that force the head away from close contact with the tape surface.) Head clogging also effects the recording process in similar manner but errors are permanently tape recorded. Regular cleaning and good quality recording tapes is good preventative maintenance for all tapers.
COMMON ABRASIVE DAT CLEANING TAPES
(Back to Cleaning Tape Types)
The first, and most common used, is the abrasive type that utilizes a mildly abrasive tape good for over 100 cleanings. The tape removes deposits that clog heads by a polishing action. This type of cleaning tape will not be very effective in removing particulate or residues from other than the rotating recording/playback heads but, seems effective most times in curing a bad case of DAT "stutter". Some service shops recommend regular use of an abrasive cleaner claiming increased head life! The idea here seems to be that recording heads need a regular aggressive re-polishing cycle to reform the micro-sized head surface shape or to remove a head clogging 'hard-glazed tape residue' ; perhaps at the expense of increased DAT head wear-down! Service technicians are also quick to point out that regular DAT recording tape is abrasive anyway; therefore, R-DAT heads (like VCR's) are actually constantly "cleaning" themselves in a wear down process and really shouldn't need cleaning if quality recording tape that's in good condition (not worn out) is used. My personal experience, while limited, has lead me to handle each DAT deck individually;even if I have two of same model; one may regularly develop clogs, while the "identical" other DAT rarely needs maintenance. The variations of how each deck handles tape within the tape path (with high tension, normal tension, or too little tension, etc.) will vary with the R-DAT head's ability to write-read the tape, normally or excessive wear of tape, self-clean or accumulate clogging tape debris, and either graceful/even head wear without clogging or increasingly misshapen the R-DAT heads with use, displaying frequently clogging during the process. The question still remains; are abrasive tapes good for your DAT machine? Answer: Maybe, sometimes, and yes occasionally; depending on the deck. The Dry-Abrasive type cleaning tapes are somewhat thicker and less flexible than normal tape and as such, will wear the R-DAT heads differently than what's occurring with normal tapes. This may be a benefit for those decks that excessively accumulate clogs due to a misshapen head that's in need of re-polishing to a different and perhaps better shape. However, it still needs to be determined if the abrasive cleaning tape is making the R-DAT head shape better or worse; careful evaluation of the frequency of clogs after 'polishing' is all-important.
PLEASE NOTE: Both dry and wet/dry fabric cleaning tapes should not be rewound due to the fabric fiber breaking down after the first pass. The results of multiple fabric tape rewinds can create lint and dust inside the tape path that may also cause clogs.
ALWAYS KEEP A SPARE DAT CLEANING TAPE HANDY
Back to Cleaning Tape Types Back to Page Top Return to HomePage Return to Tapers Tips Back to Accessory Page
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Copyright Sonic Studios 1997 -2010 All rights reserved. Updated 4/11/2010
EBOX SMB5 SMB2 SM - MT
EBOX SMB5, SMB2 SM5, SM2 MT50, MT20
This manual describes products of the EBOX, SMB5, SMB2, SM and MT series. The purpose of these sensors is to measure linear or angular displacements on industrial machines and automation systems. The measurement system includes a magnetic tape and a magnetic sensor. The tape has alternating magnetic north/south poles are magnetized at a certain distance called the pole pitch. As the sensor is moved along the magnetic tape, it detects the displacement and produces an output signal equivalent to that of an incremental encoder or a linear scale. The flexibility of the tape allows it to be used for both linear and angular applications. The sensor has to be matched with the appropriated magnetic tape (see chap. 2.1).
We strongly recommend carefully reading this user manual and following the following installation guidelines: - Sensor head should be installed as close as possible to your control unit - Always use shielded cables and twisted if possible - Avoid running the sensor cable near high voltage power cables (e.g. drive cables) - Install EMC filters on sensor power supply if needed - Avoid mounting sensor head near capacitive or inductive noise sources such as relays, motors, and switching power supplies Connect according to the supplied pin-out.
1 Safety summary
The sensor can be identified by the label's data (ordering code, serial number). This information is listed in the delivery document. The technical features of the product can be determined by the ordering code (see chap. 11 "Ordering code").
2.1 Sensor and tape combinations
Sensor SM5 SM2 SMB5 SMB2 Tape MT50 MT20 MT50 MT20 Resolution max. 5 m 10 m 10 m 10 m Gap sensor/tape 2.1 mm 1.0 mm 2.1 mm 1.0 mm
Install the product according to the protection level provided. Protect the system against knocks, friction, solvents, temperatures under -10C (14F) and over +70C (+158F). Be sure that the system is mounted where hard or sharp objects (e.g. metal chips) do not come into contact with the magnetic scale and the bottom of the sensor head. If these conditions cannot be avoided provide a wiper or pressurized air.
1 Safety summary 2 Identification 3 Installation 4 Mounting recommendations 5 Output signals 6 Electrical connections 7 Parameters setup 8 Dimensional drawing 9 Maintenance 10 Troubleshooting 11 Ordering code
Pag.9 di 16
4 Mounting instructions
4.1 Magnetic tape Total length of the magnetic tape should exceed measuring length at least 10 mm (0.4") each side. The magnetic tape has been delivered in a roll and can be cut to the desired length with any sheet metal cutting tool. Make sure that mechanical installation meets the system's requirements of planarity and parallelism between sensor and tape. (see fig. 1. and chap. 2.1). Attention!! The active side of magnetic tape (black side), however installed, has to face the active part of magnetic sensor ("scale side").
4.1.1 Mounting with the double-sided adhesive tape
Use this installation for applications in clean environments with little contamination. For mounting in highly contaminated places and under the effects of spray water, use of liquid glue is recommended. Step by step procedure:
Mounting surface (1) must be dry and clean in order to achieve secure bonding. - Remove short parts of the protection film (2) from the adhesive part of the tape (3) and adhere by pressing the tape firmly on the mounting surface. - Carefully clean the tape (4). - Remove short parts of the protection film (6) from the stainless steel protection tape (5) and adhere by pressing firmly. Attention!! For secure bonding, oil , grease, moisture and dust must be removed without leaving residues. Gluing should be carried out in dry environment and at temperatures between 20C (60F) and 30C (85F). When mounting the magnetic tape, please ensure that the bending radius is not less than 350 mm (13").
Pag.10 di 16
EBOX SMB5 SMB2 SM - MT 4.1.2 Mounting with double backed adhesive tape and screws Remember that the maximum allowed gap is between sensor and tape and NOT between sensor and profile surface. 4.1.5 Mounting on circular surfaces
Carry out the mounting procedure as per chapter 4.1.1 and additionally attach the tape on both ends only outside the measuring length with screws or rivets. This is recommended only in contaminated environments where the tape may peel. 4.1.3 Mounting in a groove
Mounting procedure for circular/angular applications is same as for linear applications (see chap. 4.1.1). The resolution of the system depends on the diameter of the tape. See fig. 9 for minimum radius of circular applications. 4.2 Sensor mounting 4.2.1 Sensor type R (rectangular) Sensor can be fixed by means of two M3 screws over the buttonholes. Make sure that the gap between sensor and tape is in respect with (fig. 1) along the total measuring length. Avoid contact between the parts. You can check planarity and parallelism between sensor and magnetic tape using a feeler gauge. The max. allowed gap is listed in chap. 2.1. 4.2.2 Sensor type C (circular) (Series SM2-C, SM5-C, SMB2-C, SMB5-C) The sensor can be fixed in a corresponding mounting hole by means of the two nuts. Make sure that the gap between sensor and tape is in respect with (fig. 1) along the total measuring length. Observe the correct alignment of the marker on the tape. Avoid contact between the parts. You can check planarity and parallelism between sensor and magnetic tape using a feeler gauge. The max. allowed gap is listed in chap. 2.1.
Provide a groove on the mounting surface. The tape can be installed in the groove (fig. 6) and simply fixed as described in chap. 4.1.1 or completely covered (fig. 7) with nonmagnetic liquids (e.g. Loctite liquid aluminum). In this case installation of the protection tape is not necessary. 4.1.4 Mounting with PS1 profile (accessory)
Step by step procedure: - Place the tape on the mounting surface and attach according to chap. 4.1.1. The protection tape should not be mounted in this case. - Cover the tape with PS1 profile (fig. 8) and make attachment holes along the profile's groove without damaging the tape. - Fix the profile with screws or rivets
Pag.11 di 16
5 Output signals
PP* PP* PP*
Specifications of the cable Type : Flexible cable (according to VDE0295) Wires : 6 x 0.14mm2 + 2 x 0.24mm2 Diameter : 5.2 mm 0.2 mm ( 0.2 in 0.01in) Bend radius : > 55 mm (> 2") Movement : max. 60 m/min. (max. 65ft/min.) Impedance : 6 x 145 , 2 x 87 6.2 Electrical connections with DB9 pin conn. (only EBOX series) Pin 9 Function A /A GND B /B 0 /0 +Vdc GND
As the sensor is moved along the magnetic tape, it detects the displacement and produces an output signal equivalent to that of an incremental encoder or a linear scale. The signal output is proportional to the measuring speed and to the displacement of the sensor. Resolution after quadrature can be setup by means of resolution selection switch (see chap. 7.2). Index signals are sent once per pole for the duration of a measuring resolution increment. In connection with these signals and external sensors (e.g. inductive proximity switches), one reference point can thus be produced per external sensor. The output circuit is Push-Pull as per default but can be set to Line Driver according to instructions in chapter 7.1.
Notes: All sensors have AquadB and inverted signals. A = A signal /A = inverted A signal (or complementary signal) if the receiving device will accept them; otherwise the outputs should to be insulated. Attention!! Connecting /A, /B, or /0 together, to +Vdc or 0Vdc may cause permanent damage to the converter. All EBOX and SMB series have A, /A, B, /B, 0, /0. We recommend always connecting the inverted signals. Notes: - While connecting, power must be switched OFF - Check correct connections before switching ON - We recommend that the sensor head be mounted as far as possible from any capacitive or inductive noise source such as motors, relays and switching devices. - Avoid routing the sensor cable near high voltage power cables in order to reduce influences of electric noise - Only use shielded cables and wire with a cross section between 0,14mm 2 and 0,5 mm2
6 Electrical connections
6.1 Electrical connections (only for SMB5 and SMB2 series) Output A /A B /B 0 /0 GND +Vdc Color yellow blue green orange white grey black red
Pag.12 di 16
EBOX SMB5 SMB2 SM - MT - The shield of the cable and 0Vdc wire should be connected to ground (GND) - Electric noise sources should be linked with noise suppression filters - Total length of connection cable from sensor to receiving device should not exceed 50 m (55')
0,0125 mm 0,025 mm 0,05 mm
0,005 mm 0,01 mm 0,02 mm
7 Parameters setup
(only EBOX) The following parameters can be setup manually. - output circuit - resolution 7.1 Step by step procedure for output circuit setup - open the EBOX cover by means of the four screws - set the jumper as per fig. 11 or fig. 12 to the desired position - close cover with screws Push-Pull output circuit @ 24Vdc
8 Dimensional drawing
8.1 Rectangular sensor (SM-R, SMB5-R, SMB2-R series)
Line Driver output circuit @ 5Vdc
8.2 Circular sensor (SM-C, SMB5-C, SMB2-C series)
7.2 Step by step procedure for resolution setup Turn the resolution seletion switch using an adeguate screwdriver. By setting a position you select the corresponding resolution (after quadrature) listed below.
Pag.13 di 16
EBOX SMB5 SMB2 SM - MT 8.4 EBOX - The sensor touches the tape because tolerance gap between sensor and tape are not observed. Check sensor's active side if damaged. - The sensor has been damaged by short circuit or wrong connection. Problem: The measured values are inaccurate - The gap between sensor and tape is not observed along the total measurement length. Check according to chap. 4. - The connection cable runs near to high voltage cable or shield is not connected correctly. See chap. 6. - The max. counting frequency of your receiving device is too low. - A section of the magnetic tape has been damage mechanically or magnetically along the measuring length - The measuring error is caused by torsion of the machine structure. Check parallelism and symmetry of machine movement.
11 Ordering code
11.1 Sensor SM (sensor SM2, SM5)
The magnetic measurement system doesn't need any particular maintenance but as with all precision devices it must be handled with care. From time to time we recommend the following operations: - Check the gap between sensor and magnetic tape along the measuring length. Wear of the machine may increase the tolerances. - The surface of the magnetic tape should occasionally be cleaned using a soft cloth to remove dust, chips, moisture etc.
Serie Series SM5 - SM2
- X - X
The following list shows some typical errors that occur during installation and operation of the magnetic measurement system. Problem: The system doesn't work (no pulse output) - The tape or sensor has been mounted incorrectly (the active part of the tape doesn't face the sensor's active side). See chapter 4 for correct installation. - A magnetic piece or tape is in between the sensor and the tape. Only non-magnetic materials are allowed between sensor and tape.
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