This is a musical test that lasts just under two minutes. It is five repetitions of the same 20-second sample of acoustic guitar.

This was recorded in August 2015 in The Mother Lode's main live room, and it was the first piece of recording ever done at the studio! It was intended for internal use to test microphone positions, but we decided it illustrates nicely how we can use our natural space to bring our recordings to life.

It is shown here to illustrate the effect of having natural reverb available for a beautiful, spacious sound. This can avoid having to add artificial reverb, plus it means where multiple instruments are played we can have a really authentic room sound instead of room-emulation reverb modelling.

This is just a combination of a couple of "close" microphones picking up quite a "dry" (non-reverb) sound, and a pair of "room" microphones picking up a more ambient sound with a lot of natural echoes from the room. The close mics were about 25cm from the sound source, and the room mics each around 2-3m distant.

1. The first sample is "dry": the close mics

2. The second sample is the room mics only

3. The third sample starts dry but we bring in the room mics half way through the sample to bring a lively reverb mix to bear. (It's a bit heavy in this sample, so that the effect is quite clear - we wouldn't necessarily recommend this much "liveliness")

4. The fourth sample is the blend of the close and room microphones all the way through

5. Finally, the fifth sample repeats the first - a dry sound - for back to back comparison purposes

For those with interest in the technical aspects, the close mics were the Royer R121 and an AKG C414 both through the DACS Mic Amp, and the room mics were a Rode NTK and a Rode NT1-A, both through the Audient console's preamps. The guitar was a Martin DRS2.

In the following illustration, we have a drummer playing in the main live room. The first cycle is the overhead mics only (Royer SF12).  Then we bring in the close mics on kick drum, snare, and toms.  In the third cycle the room mics are faded in and kept up for a cycle or two - this illustrates a "lively" drum sound - then faded down again.  The final cycle is the close mics only.