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How do you like them apples? – Assignment 2

September 10, 2009

(One) A look at some different microphones:

Cardioid- Loudest in front, with an extrusive timbre; became quiet when turned even slightly to the side; and the rear had a louder yet somewhat diminished pitch dynamic (almost sounded as if sound was being sucked inward compared to front

HyperCardioid- Didn’t hear much difference from cardioid; may have sounded a little more dynamic in the rear than the cardioid, though this was subtle

OmniDirectional- The omnidirectional, like its name hints, picked up consistent and similar sound in all directions

Bidirectional- This figure 8 shaped graph helped us gather that the sound would be coming equally from the front and rear of the microphone. A quick spin of the mic in front of the pink noise confirmed our suspicions.

(Two) I definitely feel as if sounds are more defined when listened to through the headphones. There is less of a muddy background (steady drones become more pronounced) and even though there is some sustained background noise from wind, construction, and planes, the other noises at higher frequencies tend to be a little more clear. I find that directionally the sounds are a bit more difficult to place. This is likely because the mic is held away from the body.

Finally, in doing my hi-fi recordings I was most interested in using sounds that tend to be very soft and/or unnoticed and make them come to life. Therefore, one night as I was walking eating an apple and hearing the delightful crunch in my head, I decided ‘Apple Sounds’ would be a terrific element to capture. I took on the task of seeing how many varied sounds I could create with an apple which seems conceptually simple at first glance. I was pretty surprised at both the number of sounds I got and, even more so, of their emotive and evocative qualities. Turns out, there is such a thing as distinguishing between ‘determined’ ‘disdainful’ or ‘contemplative’ chewing.

How do you like ‘dese apples:

2 Comments leave one →
  1. September 12, 2009 3:12 pm

    This is really nice, so many interesting sonic qualities. What you say about the emotive qualities that can be expressed with “apple biting” it caught my attention, it is really true. It can be a really expressive human action/sound.

    Given the great number of sonic qualities obtained, it would be good to be more detailed with the descriptions, both describing/tagging the object/actions done and also describing/tagging the resulting sonic qualities.


  2. jaykadis permalink*
    September 14, 2009 7:59 am

    The cardioid should have had strong rejection at the back, diminishing smoothly as the angle rotates from front to back. The hypercardioid pattern has greater pickup from the rear than does the cardioid as you mention. The interesting thing about the figure-eight is its strong rejection at 90˚ as well as the strong pickup from front and rear.

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