Digital Sound & Music: Concepts, Applications, & Science, Chapter 1, last updated 6/25/2013
Figure 1.46 Meyer UPA-1P loudspeaker Analysis Hardware
When setting up sound systems for live sound, you need to make some acoustic measurements to
help you configure the system for optimal use. There are dedicated hardware solutions available,
but when you‟re just starting out, you can use software on your personal computer to analyze the
measurements if you have the appropriate hardware interfaces for your computer. The audio
interface you have for recording is sufficient as long as it can provide phantom power to the
microphone inputs. The only other piece of hardware you need is at least one good analysis
microphone. This is typically an omnidirectional condenser microphone with a very flat
frequency response. High-quality analysis microphones such as the Earthworks M30 (shown
previously in Figure 1.20) come with a calibration sheet showing the exact frequency response
and sensitivity for that microphone. Though the microphones are all manufactured together to the
same specifications, there are still slight variations in each microphone even with the same
model number. The calibration data can be very helpful when making measurements to account
for any anomalies. In some cases, you can even get a digital calibration file for your microphone
to load into your analysis software so it can make adjustments based on the imperfections in your
microphone. When looking for an analysis microphone, make sure it's an omnidirectional
condenser microphone with a very small diaphragm like the one shown in Figure 1.47. The
small diaphragm allows it to stay omnidirectional at high frequencies.
Figure 1.47 An inexpensive analysis microphone from Audix
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