Rode Procaster dynamic mic loud hiss

Help for Audacity on macOS.
Forum rules
ImageThis forum is for Audacity on macOS 10.4 and later.
Please state which version of macOS you are using,
and the exact three-section version number of Audacity from "Audacity menu > About Audacity".


Audacity 1.2.x and 1.3.x are obsolete and no longer supported. If you still have those versions, please upgrade at https://www.audacityteam.org/download/.
The old forums for those versions are now closed, but you can still read the archives of the 1.2.x and 1.3.x forums.
kozikowski
Forum Staff
Posts: 69243
Joined: Thu Aug 02, 2007 5:57 pm
Operating System: macOS 10.13 High Sierra

Re: Rode Procaster dynamic mic loud hiss

Post by kozikowski » Tue Apr 20, 2021 10:18 am

Hum.

Are you using a laptop? One of the less obvious hum pathways is the connection to the wall—your power brick or cable. A test is to do the same recording with and without the wall connection. I've had instances where the performer couldn't use battery power because the batteries were in such bad shape. All of these jobs depend on your computer working correctly.

I didn't see any hum problems with the last test—the condenser long test. I can't explain that.

Koz

kozikowski
Forum Staff
Posts: 69243
Joined: Thu Aug 02, 2007 5:57 pm
Operating System: macOS 10.13 High Sierra

Re: Rode Procaster dynamic mic loud hiss

Post by kozikowski » Tue Apr 20, 2021 10:23 am

And one complexity note. Yes, Audacity has "Macros" which are programs that group associated tools into one action. There is a Macro for AudioBook Mastering, but it's not unconditionally stable under Audacity 2.4.2. It's only recommended for Audacity 3.0.0 and later—Audacity 3.0.2 is current. So that gets five steps down to three.

Once you get the DeSibilator settings you like (do try -20 Threshold), I think I can get it down to two. Noise Reduction is hard to automate because of its two-step nature.

Koz

kozikowski
Forum Staff
Posts: 69243
Joined: Thu Aug 02, 2007 5:57 pm
Operating System: macOS 10.13 High Sierra

Re: Rode Procaster dynamic mic loud hiss

Post by kozikowski » Tue Apr 20, 2021 10:44 am

I didn't post the Audiobook Mastering Suite settings.

This is the short form.

Image

And this is the same thing from the formal instructions.

https://wiki.audacityteam.org/wiki/Audiobook_Mastering

Again, don't skip steps or add any in the middle. The three tools work together. It is a "suite", a harmonious grouping. Filter Curve removes microphone rumble so Loudness Normalization works OK. Limiter cleans up Loudness errors.

Mastering guarantees the first two audiobook standards, Peak and RMS (Loudness). If your studio and microphone can meet noise, you have all three.

Look down that posting I wrote for the other reader. That covers many of the not-so-obvious requirements for ACX posting.

Koz

Ani365
Posts: 48
Joined: Thu Jan 07, 2021 11:00 pm
Operating System: macOS 10.14 Mojave

Re: Rode Procaster dynamic mic loud hiss

Post by Ani365 » Wed Apr 21, 2021 6:06 pm

Wow, yes my head is swimming! Trying to soak up all this info.

As for noise reduction tool, I do make sure to select a new clip each time I record - I figured the room tone changes a little bit each time anyway so might as well select a few seconds each time to tailor it anyhow.

I have not tried DeSibilator yet, but I just installed it according to your instructions and can't wait to give it a try!
I don't remember. Are you using Audacity 3.0.0 or 2.4.2?
2.4.2. Guess I'm due for an upgrade! Doing that now.
A test is to do the same recording with and without the wall connection.
I did actually try this and there doesn't seem to be a change. I have been plugging it into the wall.
I didn't post the Audiobook Mastering Suite settings.

This is the short form.
Okay, got it. These are the settings I follow when mastering, straight from the same webpage.

As for all this, obviously it would apply to any mic I'm using, and would give me the best possible quality. I will definitely try adding the DeSibilitator as well to see how that sounds.

Still though, I feel like the dynamic mic (which is what I'm currently trying out, not the condenser which I returned) has a much louder hiss the condenser and I guess my question is, is there any way to fix that beyond all of these mastering settings? Is there a problem with my equipment or setup at the source?

I liked to condenser but I wanted to see if I could get the dynamic to work well for me and right now the hissing is too noticeable in comparison, so I don't feel comfortable submitting auditions with it, even with all of the mastering being done to it. It doesn't seem to really help.
If I can't get it working with a lower hiss I'll probably return it and go back to the condenser mic and just suck it up and edit out all the little clips and mouth noises manually, because I'd rather have a quieter background noise. To me that sounds higher quality. I may also try the Shure, like I mentioned, just to see if it also makes that same loud hiss as the Rode Procaster. Will keep you updated.

In the meantime, if there's any ideas as to why the Rode procaster is hissing so much louder than the condenser mic, let me know. Like I said in a previous post, I can get the dynamic mic to pass ACX, but it doesnt sound good enough to me, it doesnt pass my test if you know what I mean.

As always, thanks for the help.

kozikowski
Forum Staff
Posts: 69243
Joined: Thu Aug 02, 2007 5:57 pm
Operating System: macOS 10.13 High Sierra

Re: Rode Procaster dynamic mic loud hiss

Post by kozikowski » Wed Apr 21, 2021 6:29 pm

not the condenser which I returned
My head is really spinning right now. If you don't have a condenser microphone, where did you get the long test from?
I have not tried DeSibilator yet, but I just installed it according to your instructions and can't wait to give it a try!
The DeSibilator is used to clean up the excessive hard crispness and harshness of the condenser microphone. It's possible that you may apply Mastering and DeSibilator at the -20dB threshold settings to your condenser and not need as much post-production editing because many of the ticky, annoying mouth noises may be gone or not as obvious.

That 20 setting cleaned up your long test beautifully, in my opinion. That's not the test file sent. I sent the earlier, lighter correction.

No idea why your dynamic microphones are hissy.

The SM7b is normally bought with a Cloud Lifter volume booster and it's not a casual purchase.

Screen Shot 2021-04-21 at 11.11.07.png
Screen Shot 2021-04-21 at 11.11.07.png (296.62 KiB) Viewed 271 times

That's one reason it's not a good alternative for the cash-strapped home performer.

Koz

jademan
Forum Crew
Posts: 1280
Joined: Fri Jul 17, 2009 10:11 pm
Operating System: Please select

Re: Rode Procaster dynamic mic loud hiss

Post by jademan » Thu Apr 22, 2021 7:46 pm

Ani365 wrote:
Wed Apr 21, 2021 6:06 pm
if there's any ideas as to why the Rode procaster is hissing so much louder than the condenser mic, let me know. Like I said in a previous post, I can get the dynamic mic to pass ACX, but it doesnt sound good enough to me, it doesnt pass my test if you know what I mean.
Did you turn off your 48V ? I don't think it helps dynamic mikes.

kozikowski
Forum Staff
Posts: 69243
Joined: Thu Aug 02, 2007 5:57 pm
Operating System: macOS 10.13 High Sierra

Re: Rode Procaster dynamic mic loud hiss

Post by kozikowski » Thu Apr 22, 2021 8:47 pm

I don't think it helps dynamic mikes.
It doesn't. But it's a good idea to match Phantom Power (48volts) to the microphone. Most condenser microphones need it, most dynamic microphones won't know it's there, but you can destroy a ribbon microphone by plugging it into 48 volts by accident.

Image

This is fake. Gary Owens is really announcing into that tiny black lavalier microphone clipped to his jacket, but had they plugged that big 44BX ribbon microphone into a sound mixer, it would have worked.

Koz

Ani365
Posts: 48
Joined: Thu Jan 07, 2021 11:00 pm
Operating System: macOS 10.14 Mojave

Re: Rode Procaster dynamic mic loud hiss

Post by Ani365 » Sat Apr 24, 2021 4:00 pm

Hi Koz and Jademan,
My head is really spinning right now. If you don't have a condenser microphone, where did you get the long test from?
Ah, okay. I did have a condenser, which I returned to try the dynamic. I wanted to show you the difference between my condenser sample and my dynamic sample because I thought the condenser had so much less hiss and was the kind of background level I was hoping to get my dynamic to sound like.

The SM7b is normally bought with a Cloud Lifter volume booster and it's not a casual purchase.
I was going to try it with the fethead I am using with the Rode Procaster and see how it sounds, supposedly it's similar to a cloudlifter, right?
That's one reason it's not a good alternative for the cash-strapped home performer.
True, that's definitely why it wasn't the first mic I tried....

Did you turn off your 48V ? I don't think it helps dynamic mikes.
Oh, no I had 48v turned on!! So should I try it with the 48v off?? Could that be the solution?
you can destroy a ribbon microphone by plugging it into 48 volts by accident.
Oof, is the rode procaster a ribbon mic? Could I have "Destroyed" the mic by using the 48 volts? :shock:

Thanks so much guys.

kozikowski
Forum Staff
Posts: 69243
Joined: Thu Aug 02, 2007 5:57 pm
Operating System: macOS 10.13 High Sierra

Re: Rode Procaster dynamic mic loud hiss

Post by kozikowski » Sat Apr 24, 2021 4:48 pm

should I try it with the 48v off?? Could that be the solution?
Dynamic microphones can't "see" phantom power because of the way they're wired. It doesn't make any difference to them.
...supposedly it's (FetHead) similar to a cloudlifter,
There are on-line podcasts with people comparing CloudLifter to FetHead. I don't know. I've never used either one. I have a small sound mixer that has enough volume boost without them.
is the rode procaster a ribbon mic?
No. It's a dynamic (moving coil) microphone. No ribbons. Ribbon microphones are an oddity. They're delicate and heavy and it's usually a big deal when someone trots one out for a job.

As I posted, I got your long condenser microphone test to sound very nice with Audiobook Mastering, the DeSibelator to get rid of the harsh SS sounds, and gentle Noise Reduction.

Koz

kozikowski
Forum Staff
Posts: 69243
Joined: Thu Aug 02, 2007 5:57 pm
Operating System: macOS 10.13 High Sierra

Re: Rode Procaster dynamic mic loud hiss

Post by kozikowski » Sat Apr 24, 2021 11:22 pm

Try correcting the long condenser sound file you sent me. Use Audiobook Mastering and DeSibilator at these settings, except change the Threshold number from -12 to -20.

Screen Shot 2021-04-24 at 4.02.15 PM.png
Screen Shot 2021-04-24 at 4.02.15 PM.png (172.23 KiB) Viewed 167 times

And then Noise Reduction of the Beast (6, 6, 6).

When I did that, the sound came out clear, smooth, mellow, and quiet with no instances of ticking, cracking, or Essing.

Now you know what a Studio Performer does, and you're struggling with being a Studio Engineer. Shortly, you'll be wearing your Studio Producer hat. The one that decides what to do, the direction of the production, and writes checks.

Koz

Post Reply