[Harp-L] Recording / Lee Oskars / Air leakage
I decided to use the same rig as Lee Oskar does/did for recording harmonica - Beyer M160 mic, Lee Oskar harps, decent preamp. I added M130 to M160 and recorded a couple of solos in the M/S mode. Result? Wow, I couldn't believe my ears, these ribbon mics get you such a mellow tone given you have one in your head and throat:) With a decent reverb - just a bit, the sound is huge and pleasing to the ear. No blues here, just some melody lines.
Apart from success with the tone, etc., I had an extreemly annoying problem associated with the air leakage that my Melody Maker appeared to have. As I listen to the recorded tracks and then again check it in live by playing to myself and listening I discover that harps leak air like a pump%$&??? I check my another Melody Maker and the same story with that one. Then I pulled out a couple of other Harmonic Minor harps - more or less same story depending on the register - low keys primarily. Good sound, but in holes 1 thru 4 these harps have obvious air leakage. I didn't expect that from Oskars - I check the positioning of the reedplates, tightened the screws, checked the gapping, etc. Almost no difference - I guess the comb and the reedplates are not flat and 100% sealed - hole dividers must be of different hight.
Now a question goes like this:
I know pretty well what to do with these harps in terms of gapping, sealing, etc., I'd rather would like to know your experience with the newly purchased Lee Oskar harmonicas (I know the harps are laying in the warehouse for a couple of years before the get sold, but hopefully yours are fresh - I bought mine some 6 years ago and didn't play until now)? Any comments on air leakage of Lee Oskars bought lately? Will I be free of extra fuss with finetuning them or it's inevitable anyway? I'd rather buy a bunch of new harps free of such unacceptable artifacts (if you compare such a harp wih the SP20 - it's like night and day, I guess some bad quality control). Yes, and I talk about Lee Oskar harps only.
Thanks in advance,
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