Monthly Archives: May 2011

Contact microphone

Metal bowl and hand massager


I have been thinking about buying a contact microphone for a while. I’ve seen plenty of blog posts where contact mics are used for recording interesting sounds. Buying a professionally made contact mic is not at the top of my shopping list at the moment, so I made my own using this tutorial as a starting point. I used an XLR connector instead of the 1/4″ jack mentioned in the tutorial.

I have a metal salad bowl that I’ve been meaning to record forever. It became the first subject of my contact mic test recordings. I placed the mic on the outer side of the bowl and put a small, battery powered hand massager in the bowl. The massager vibrated and rotated slowly in the bowl, sounding louder whenever one of the legs passed the mic. When the original recording is slowed down, it kind of sounds like heavy machinery at work at a distant construction site.

Equipment: Homemade contact microphone -> SD744T
Metal massage by ThomasAlf

Ambience Field recording

Airport ambience

Oslo airport

I really need to get better at bringing a small recorder when I’m going places. During the christmas holiday in 2010, I travelled back and forth a bit. I figured this would be a good opportunity to start bringing my recorder, so I did.. I set up my Zoom h2 when I was waiting at the different airports, and I got some useable ambience out of it. It’s nice to spend the waiting time “working” instead of just sitting around.

Below are some samples from Oslo airport.

Equipment used: Zoom h2
Oslo airport ambience by ThomasAlf

Oslo airport