Hours 15 – 17: South Common Ambience

Tonight I ventured out to the south common, a large grassland in my city, Lincoln. I’m recording at the moment for Taphobos, and part of the game is set outside, in a graveyard, so I’m trying to capture as much ambience as I can to weave together in the game. I decided to head up to catch the sunset, and brought a recorder with me to capture some ambience. The space is big, but not huge; it is also surrounded by roads unfortunately, and it was roughly 5 when I arrived at my recording position, meaning the roads were at their busiest. Nevertheless, I settled down and began recording.

As it was a relatively long walk (and because the 633 was booked by someone else tonight), I decided to use the Zoom H4n with the Rode NT4 stereo mic. This was no massive deal, as the H4n still records in 96k and has two XLR inputs that I could link to take a stereo file of the recording.I brought a little tabletop mic stand to put the Rode on, and just used the Zoom’s Rycote to keep out any wind. The recordings were, well, okay. I think I’m particularly critical, but I found the pre-amps very noisy – noisier than i’d expected. The 633 isn’t exactly perfect – but it is a clear step above the Zoom in terms of the signal-to-noise ratio. But hey, the Zoom is a fraction of the price. Anyway.

I did capture a fair amount of traffic noise, but I did also get some really lovely ambience, particularly birdsong. I was sat just in front of a large woodland area, and I recorded a large amount of multiple birds singing, and the echo through the space. There were a number of different voices – and I’ll definitely use a lot of the birdsong when i’m constructing the ambience in Taphobos. In future i’d love to try and get up there and catch the sunrise – as i’m aware the birdsong is particularly beautiful then. Maybe something for a later post.
I found the mic to be particularly sensitive, which was very interesting at points. I could clearly hear peoples voices and movements from 50+ meters away, and I occasionally heard voices from people I couldn’t see around me (which was very weird).

I’m going to keep this post short and sweet, and end with a sample of the recordings. As usual, minimal processing, and just edited to show a a very short excerpt of what I captured.


Thanks for reading! I’ll be back soon with more.




Hours 15 – 17: South Common Ambience

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