I manage the podcast for the Oakland Symphony Chorus. We record and post our rehearsals every week. I’ve been doing this for 10 years with no major issues. I use a Zoom H4 digital recorder and Audacity 2.3.0 on Windows 7. I normally place the recorder right next to the director (in the middle of the chorus), slightly behind her, and as high as I can get it on the stand while still being able to reach it to turn it on and off. The Zoom records a 45 degree fan in front of the recorder. We record in stereo to a .WAV file, compress using the defaults on Chris’ Dynamic Compressor, and publish in .MP3.
We have a new piece that is causing problems. It is a commissioned mass based on African-American spirituals, and the rhythmic patterns are very challenging, as the time signature changes frequently. Our director has taken to counting out the rhythms while the chorus sings; and chorus members have complained to me that they can’t hear the music behind her. To hear a sample of this, go to http://oscrehearsals.blogspot.com and listen to the recording for part 1 of the Jan. 9 rehearsal, starting about 20 minutes into the recording, up to about 1 hour 4 minutes.
Our director records very loud, partly because she uses an amplified wireless mic (so she won’t have to shout), and partly because of the recorder placement, which is between her and the amp for her wireless mic. Can someone suggest a placement for the recorder that would reduce the volume from the wireless mic while still picking up what she’s saying? I’m hoping it’s as simple as moving the recorder to the other side of her and a little forward of her, which would require a longer extension cord. I don’t know how to record her voice on a separate channel.
Any suggestions gratefully accepted.