Saturday, June 30, 2012

Euro Peppers Adventures Continue

So before I continue the Euro adventure updates, a brief pause to reminisce about a few highlights of the US I have left behind.

While touring east of the Mississippi how excited was I to catch one of the final performances of the T-Bone steak tour of Waffle Houses! 

In my beautiful home town Oxnard Shores (not just s pretty name), there is a guy who lives down the street from that makes boomerangs in his garage.  Whilst driving home a few weeks ago, Mmy daughter and I spotted this sign. Looks like he is bumping up his game from just making them to offering lessons as well. Clearly his entrepreneurial genius is shining through. My biggest concern is that the huge crowds of people flocking to master this new skill will crowd the streets and overwhelm the neighborhood. Especially being that he failed to put his street address or any form of indication of where he lives several blocks away. 

So meanwhile, I am rocking out on a European Peppers tour. Sunderland, show 2 at the Stadium of Light

Which turned out to be a bit of wishful naming.

The glory of tour sometimes seem to be endless. Hey look! Someone bought the crew dafter show dinner Yay, free sandwiches! Gosh, feeling loved right now!

Oooh, and wine too! Well, actually Scott and I just peeled the stickers off the sandwiches and stuck them on the wine as well to cheer every one up a bit more.

Sunderland show went well and was wet, wild and fun and next up, a bus and ferry ride to Dublin

And Dublin wanders

Oooh, waveform interference patterns from omni-directional duck sources

So far so good

Building the rock show and I had not noticed seeing the cable wrap method of creating cable looms before

Fantastic seminar in Dublin! Thank you all for joining!

Uh oh! Hmmm.  I deal with sound limits quite a bit but this one is especially concerning and in retrospect I wish I had flat out ignored it. Combined with the wind gusts it as it definitely left me with a much lower sound quality in some area than I ever wish to offer. 

Ahhh, but the sadness and dismay I felt was quickly melted away once I cast mine eyes upon the  glorious after show feast bestowed upon us.

Check out the trash truck in Amsterdam with the remote control arm that grabs the trash and huge underground container

And remote controller guy.

Sound Ponder of the Day

So imagine some scenarios in a free field with minimal reflections

1) Take a high fidelity musical signal split it into two signals delay one of them 3ms and then electronically re-sum them back together. What would that sound like? 

2) Take the same high fidelity musical signal split it into two signals, delay one of them 3ms and run them into side by side speakers.

3) The same as #2 but move the speakers 10 feet apart.

Now place a mic in each of the 3 scenarios such that the mic hears a 3ms offset between the speakers.  In the first two scenarios the mic would be centered and in the third, slightly off center.

Now take measurements of the split and electronically/acoustically 3ms offset recombined signals 

Finally listen to all three scenarios.

Which scenario sounds best? Which sounds worst?  Which measures best? Measures worst?

Now add in 1 more scenario:

4) The same signal into a single speaker, no delay, no split, no recombining.

Which sounds better to our ears, scenario 3 or scenario 4? Which measures 'better with test gear, 3 or 4?

Now compare scenario 2 and 3 by moving side to side several feet, bot measurement wise and by listening, which is more consistent? Which sounds better as you move around, 3 or 4?


Home stereo speaker placement has evolved to optimize the way our ears enjoy to hear by spacing the sound sources (speakers). Measurement microphones are blind to the direction sound radiates from, our ears are not.  Our minds calculate direction sound originates. Our ears factor out comb filtering issues from spaced sources, microphones do not.


  1. Shame I missed the Dublin seminar Dave as I was looking forward to it! Just happened to clash with Isle of Wight!

    In relation to open air gigs, what do you reckon the best way to tackle your mix when the wind is pushing most of your high's everywhere? Was mixing off a d&b J rig at isle of wight last weekend and pretty much used my headphones as a mix reference for most of the set as the wind was throwing the sound everywhere.

    Hope you enjoyed Dublin apart from that nasty noise limit!

    Cheers, Matt

  2. nice read dave, wish i was on this leg of the tour with you, i was looking forward to it.
    the catering looks, er, special!!! hope scotts coping without me on 1 of his spots :)
    take care, and keep the blogs coming mate,
    neil :)

  3. The first criteria sounds really bad. Either the microphone or the ears can hear a phase reverse sound. 3ms of delay is much shorter than a 'doubling' and will cause a total phase reverse around 167Hz.

    In the second criteria both microphone and our ear will capture a phase reversed sound.
    In the third the microphone can still measure a phase reversed sound but this time our ears don't. The left ear and right ear are hearing independently, and our brain don't sum them together. A short delay like this may lead to some reverb, which sound like as if you are hearing this in a room.

    I think the microphone will measure the best in the 4th criteria. But this will produce a mono, reflection-less sound to our ear.

  4. Thanks again for putting on a great seminar and letting us see how you work at the concert.

    At what angles from the listening position do we perceive the sources as separate and not interfering with each other?

    My answer to question four is; the best concert halls sound better than outdoors with an orchestra, they don't measure better. One of the reasons why a lot of concert halls from the 80's don't sound as good is they don't have strong lateral reflections, so having speakers either side would get you closer to that sound of being engulfed in the music.
    On this point, outdoors or in dry rooms it's a wonder people don't play delayed sound from the side to try and emulate strong lateral reflections. It would need a bit of thinking to get it right but you could actually use different delay times for each instrument to correspond with the different path lengths from that instrument to each side speaker. This would aid in the perception of stereo and make people feel engulfed in the music.
    The beauty of doing something like this is you can actually create your own 'acoustic space' that is controllable, less reverb could be used on the mains which would give more definition to the direct sound and the reverb(mostly from the sides) would seem more real.