How To Record Double Bass With the N8

Audio Samples and Techniques Using the AEA N8

Because of the N8’s open, natural character and expansive tonal range, it is the ideal mic to capture upright bass. Its far-field functionality and figure-of-8 polar pattern allow for the blending of the direct sound of your instrument with expansive, dimensional room sound.

Close Miking

When recording upright bass, try positioning the N8 between 1 and 4 feet in front of the instrument. Within that range, the N8 can be moved closer or farther from the bass to temper the amount of low-end proximity effect. Typically upright basses are best recorded at a height where the neck meets the body; this yields a well-blended sound from the sound hole and the bowed/plucked strings.

Distant Miking

Like most acoustic instruments, much of an upright bass’ sound comes from the room it inhabits, so accurately capturing the room is vital in achieving a comprehensive tonality. With this in mind, experiment with the vast spatial range of the N8 and its great capacity for far-field applications. The N8 delivers an astonishingly balanced treble/bass ratio from as far as 20 feet away.

Two N8s can be set up in Blumlein Configuration or ORTF when miking upright bass and placed at a distance to capture the room tone. This setup will act as another stereo perspective to the close mic and will provide added depth and dimension to your tracks. In many instances, this pair of N8s is all you will need to capture the sound and image of your upright while retaining the natural room reverb. These configurations are easy to setup when using the NUVO Stereo Kit and NUVO Blumlein Coupler.

Ribbon Mics
Distant Miking String Sections, Quartets, and Orchestras

The far-field N8 delivers a balanced treble/bass ratio from as far as 20 feet away, supplementing the direct sound of an instrument with expansive, dimensional room sound. Recording an entire string section is made simple by fixing two N8s in the Blumlein configuration or ORTF and perching it 6 to 10 feet in front of the instrumentalists. By moving the N8 or N8 Stereo Kit array closer or farther from the source, one can find the desired treble/bass ratio as well as balanced direct sound/room sound.

N8-Upright-Bass-ORTF Pair of N8s in ORTF

In many instances, a pair of N8s positioned in Blumlein configuration or ORTF from 10 – 20 feet away from an orchestra is all that you need to really capture the sound of the musicians in the room. This setup with N8s has become a staple in Hollywood when recording movie scores.

In the following video, Kaleidoscope, an incredible conductorless chamber orchestra, performs a breathtaking piece by Prokofiev with only a pair of N8s in ORTF positioned 10 feet above the stage. In this video, only the N8s are heard.

Learn How The N8 Can Improve Your Recordings

How To Record Cello With the N8
How To Record String, Wood, Brass Sections, and Orchestras With the N8
How To Record Violin and Viola With the N8

Audio samples and techniques for tracking violins and violas with the N8.