β€œIt’s above you!” NIGEL JOPSON immerses his ears

We express the physical influence of the head by the Head-Related Transfer Function or HRTF (see Genelec Aural ID review, Resolution V19.1). This function mirrors how the head, the ears (and the torso) affects the transmission of an acoustical signal from a sound source to the eardrums. The size and the shape of the head, the size of the ears and the distance between the ears all filter the signal before it reaches the eardrums.

There’s no doubt the sense of realism is most keenly felt by the person who’s own head recorded the sound, or whose head was used as a model for a dummy — Arjen van der Schoot of Audio Ease (Altiverb) has a dummy of his own head — for making binaural IR samples. I think if I were recording very quiet sounds, or making wildlife recordings, I would experiment with placing the DPA rig on dummy heads. It’s impossible not to make some sort of self-noise or movement when recording binaurally!

Conversely, the DPA rig gives an incredibly realistic impression of footsteps, ambience, and movement from the point of view of a human being. Foley recordists are going to love it! Unlike some other binaural solutions, there’s a substantial amount of low frequency sound captured (traffic, airconditioner, machinery) which renders the locations with extra realism. Although I often found myself filtering at the low end, there’s no doubt the broad and linear frequency response enhances the sense of ‘being there’."



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