Ray Rayburn's Technical Page


I used to edit the bi-weekly Audio E-Newsletter for Technologies for Worship Magazine. Here are links to past articles (2014-11-11 it seems that TFWM has taken down these articles):

By Ray A. Rayburn

Wireless Changes (The Sky is not Falling) - 2009-04-13

Can They Hear? - 2009-04-27

Speech Intelligibility - 2009-05-11

VOCAL INTELLIGIBILITY - 2009-05-25

INTERCONNECTIONS - 2009-06-08

SOUND LEVELS - 2009-06-22

SOUND LEVEL METERS - 2009-07-06

QUESTIONS ABOUT SOUND LEVELS - 2009-07-20

LISTENING TO MICS - 2009-08-02

THE A/V DESIGN PROCESS - 2009-08-17

HARMONY - 2009-08-31

CEILING SPEAKERS - 2009-09-14

EQUALIZATION - 2009-09-28

ELECTRICAL POWER FOR AV - 2009-10-12

AES Convention Highlights - 2009-10-26

The Mix Pyramid - 2009-11-09

More On The Mix Pyramid - 2009-11-24

Christmas Gifts for Techs - 2009-12-08

Gifts - 2009-12-22

New Year’s Resolutions - 2010-01-04

How the Pros Shop - 2010-01-18

Room Acoustics - 2010-02-01

Microphone Usage for Recording - 2010-02-16

Microphone Usage for Recording Part 2 - 2010-03-01

Microphone Usage for Sound Reinforcement - 2010-03-16

Do you have a license for your wireless microphones? - 2010-03-30

Big and Little - 2010-04-12

The Game of What If - 2010-04-26

Make Lemonade - 2010-05-11

What is this “Balanced” stuff? - 2010-05-24

More Cowbell! - 2010-06-07

Be Still - 2010-06-22

A Time to Mend - 2010-07-06

A Time to Mend – Part 2 - 2010-07-19

A Time To Mend - Part 3 - 2010-08-03

Outside the Box, Outside - 2010-08-16

Why Should I Care About This 70 Volt Stuff? - 2010-08-31

Rodney Dangerfield at Church - 2010-09-13

What Makes Up a 70 Volt System? - 2010-09-28

Wireless Changes Are Coming - 2010-10-11

Stuff Happens - 2010-10-25

Coverage - An Important Part of Sound Design - 2010-11-08

The Audio Engineering Society - 2010-11-22

Why Test? - 2010-12-06

Where is Your Mix Location? - 2010-12-20

Gain Structure - 2011-01-03

Antennas for Wireless Microphones - 2011-01-17

Attitudes - 2011-01-31

Superbowl & Church Sound - 2011-02-14

Microphone Modeling - 2011-02-28

Category Cabling – Part 1 - 2011-03-14

Electrical Power Voltage - 2011-03-28

Category Cabling – Part 2 - 2011-04-11

Electrical Power Voltage – Part 2 - 2011-04-25

Wireless Update – May 2011 - 2011-05-09

Electrical Power Voltage – Part 3 - 2011-05-09

Getting There - 2011-05-24

Help! - 2011-06-07

Help! – Part 2 - 2011-06-21

Hearing Loss - 2011-07-05

Helping Those With Hearing Loss - 2011-07-19

Connecting Assistive Listening Systems - 2011-08-02

Sometimes You Must … - 2011-08-16

Sound Outdoors - 2011-08-30

Special Events - 2011-08-30

Value Engineering - 2011-09-14

Should a Mixer be a Musician? - 2011-09-27

iPhone - 2011-10-11

Helping Your Team - 2011-10-25

AES Review - 2011-11-08

Better Than God? - 2011-11-22

Electrical Safety - 2011-12-06

Coverage Angles - 2011-12-20

Counting Our Blessings - 2012-01-03

Pass It On - 2012-01-17

Sound Versus Distance - 2012-01-31

Sound Booth - 2012-02-14

The “Ideal” Soundman - 2012-02-28

Balanced Audio Permanent Install Cable - 2012-03-14

Balanced Audio Installation Cables - A Survey - 2012-03-27

Cabling Questions - 2012-04-11

How Loud Are We? - 2012-04-24

That Pesky Noise! - 2012-05-08

Wireless Distress - 2012-05-22

It’s the Little Things! - 2012-06-05

Intelligibility Measurements - 2012-06-19

Music and Frequencies - 2012-07-04

Listening - 2012-07-19

Power Sequencing - 2012-07-31

Wireless Microphone Interference - 2012-08-14

Unbalanced Outputs to Balanced Inputs - 2012-08-28

Getting Ready For Christmas - 2012-09-11


By Andrew Soerens

How close are you to burnout? - 2012-02-14


By Bill Johnson

Getting Better Lav Mic Performance - 2010-05-24


By Bill Whitlock

A/V Troubleshooting - 2012-03-14

Troubleshooting Unbalanced Interfaces - 2012-03-27

Breaking Ground Loops - 2012-04-11

Choosing Cables for Unbalanced Connections - 2012-07-04

Balanced Audio Interfaces - 2012-07-17

Pin 1 Problems and the “Hummer” - 2012-07-31

Troubleshooting Balanced Interfaces - 2012-08-14

Cables and Shields - 2012-08-28


By Bob Young

A Voice Crying in the Wilderness! - 2011-03-14


By Bruce Bartlett

Boundary Microphones: Sonic Problem Solvers - 2010-05-11

Miking Your Choir for Sound Reinforcement - 2010-06-07

Sonic Gremlins - 2010-07-06

Overcoming Mic Challenges - 2010-07-19

Caring For Your Microphones - 2010-08-03

TRAINING PEOPLE ON MICROPHONE USAGE - 2010-10-11

Solving Microphone Problems - 2010-12-20

STEREO MIC TECHNIQUES - Part 1 - 2011-08-02

STEREO MIC TECHNIQUES - Part 2 - 2011-08-16

CHECKLIST TO FIX WIRELESS MIC DROPOUTS - 2011-10-11

STEREO MIC TECHNIQUES - Part 3 - 2011-11-08

STEREO MIC TECHNIQUES - Part 4 - 2011-11-22


By Chris Rayburn

How to get Killed - 2009-05-11


By Curt Taipale

Amendments to God's Laws of Physics - 2009-04-27

SEVEN STEPS TO GREAT SOUND - 2009-06-08

MICROPHONES ARE COOL - 2009-07-20

MICROPHONES ARE COOL, part 2 - 2009-08-02

THE LAPEL MIC IS DEAD – LONG LIVE THE EARSET MIC! - 2009-08-31

KNOW THY STUFF - 2009-10-26

Way Cool Websites - 2009-12-08

It’s Not About the Gear - 2009-12-22

Way Cool Websites, Part 2 - 2010-01-18

Should We Go Digital or Stay Analog? Digital Consoles Part 1 - 2010-03-01

Should We Go Digital or Stay Analog? Digital Consoles Part 2 - 2010-03-16

June 12th is Coming: Are Your Wireless Microphones Legal? - 2010-03-30

First Glance – InfoComm 2010 - 2010-06-22

Are Tech Support Teams Needed at Practices? - 2010-08-16

Tech Team Get-Togethers - 2010-09-28

Audio Test Signals - 2010-12-06

Isolating the Guitar Amp - 2011-01-17

Shoot it Before it Multiplies - 2011-02-14

Making (Legal) Copies of Songs for Rehearsal - 2011-04-25

Mic Stand Accessories - 2011-06-21

Measurements - 2011-07-19

Christmas Past vs. Christmas Future - 2012-01-03

Using the Apple iPad in a Worship Service - 2012-01-17

Let’s Communicate - 2012-02-28

Preparing for a Worship Service - 2012-09-11


By Dale Alexander

THE MIX MUSICIAN - 2010-10-25

PRICE SHOPPING – IS IT ETHICAL? - 2012-01-31

LOUDSPEAKERS FOR WORSHIP - 2012-04-24

Loudspeakers for Worship Part 2: Monaural Systems - 2012-05-08

Loudspeakers for Worship Part 3: Stereo Systems - 2012-05-22


By Dale Shirk

WHY USE STEREO? - 2009-08-17

First Seek Advice - 2010-04-12


By Douglas Jones

LOUDNESS - 2009-06-22

Dead Cats? - 2010-01-04

More on the Dead Cats - 2010-02-01


By Eric Seifert

Worship Space Acoustics - Part 1 - 2011-05-24

Worship Space Acoustics - Part 2 - 2011-06-07

Worship Space Acoustics - Part 3 - 2011-07-05

Worship Space Acoustics – Part 4 - 2011-09-14


By Frank DeWitt

I Hate Hum - 2011-01-03


By Garret Maki

GET OUT FROM BEHIND THE CONSOLE - 2009-07-06

I LOVE ANALOGIES - 2009-10-12


By Gordon Moore

Tech Night – Does Your Church Have One? - 2009-04-13

The State of the Spectrum (as it applies to wireless microphones) - 2012-06-05

State of the Spectrum – Part II - Unlicensed Microphone Spectrum – how to find it - 2012-06-19


By Jeff Johnson

Are Tech Support Teams Needed at Practices? – Part 2 - 2010-08-03

Audience Blasters: Effects & Audience - 2011-09-27


By Jeremy Johnston

Build Your Own Digital Mixing Console? One Church's Story - 2010-11-22


By Kent Margraves

IEM MIXING, Part One - 2009-09-28

IEM Mixing PART II - 2009-11-09

IEM Mixing PART III - 2009-11-24

10 Tips for Improving the Worship Mix Prior to Sunday - 2011-10-25

Get Out of the Booth! - 2011-12-06

Audio Gain Structure For Wireless Microphones - 2011-12-20


By Kevin Watts

The Role of the Praise and Worship Team Members - 2010-09-13

Running a Soundcheck - 2010-11-08


By Paula Hendricks, M.A. and Norman Lederman, M.S.

LOOPING HOUSES OF WORSHIP: IF YOU BUILD IT… MORE HARD OF HEARING PEOPLE WILL COME! - 2009-05-25


By Steve Barbar

Perfect Acoustics? - 2011-02-28

Perfect Acoustics? – Part 2! - 2011-03-28

Perfect Acoustics? – Part 3 - 2011-04-11


By Ted Pyper

Background Noise in Worship Spaces - 2011-01-31


By William "Chip" Sams

Batteries for Church Audio – Part I - 2010-02-16

Batteries for Church Audio - Part II - 2010-04-26


Excerpted from the Pacific North West section of the AES website, Hat Tip to Rick Chinn

LAWS FOR AUDIO ENGINEERS - 2009-09-14


Below is an article I wrote for Technologies for Worship Magazine:

Analog Interconnections. The introduction was written by Vance Breshears.


Below are some of my technical comments from the Church-Sound-Check and Syn-Aud-Con email discussion groups. I will add to this as I have time.

Cleaning and Demagnetizing of tape recorders and duplicators.
Serial Interfacing
Equalizer Phase and Time Response
Filter Slopes
A brief history of the XLR connector.
3 Phase Power.
Flashlight Comparison.


Here is a PDF version of the slides from my Sampling & Quantization in Digital Audio seminar. When I give this live I have audible demonstrations of both sampling and quantization.


I have expanded my offerings to include precision test microphones (including a couple of models I hand make in my lab) and precision wireless measurement links.

Terrasonde Audio Toolboxes and other new and refurbished audio and acoustic test equipment.

Why Do Frequency Response Curves Matter?

I am now selling the Superlux™ line of microphones. They include fine 1" diaphragm condenser mics that sound similar to the Neumann U87's, and an excellent line of reinforcement mics.

Audix offers some unique microphones including their "microboom" choir mics. Check out their complete line here.

Lectrosonics makes some of the best wireless microphones in the world. They are the dominant brand in the film sound, television production, and ENG worlds. Their latest offerings are priced similarly or less than the better wireless offerings from other brands, but deliver superior sound quality, ruggedness, and reliability.

Mipro™ wireless microphones range from basic fixed frequency VHF and UHF models to full featured modular computer controlled 100 channel frequency agile UHF models. Mipro has made wireless mics for many companies including Beyer. Now you can get these quality wireless systems at better prices.

I also sell Avlex™ earset and headset microphones.

Quality used sound level meters with fresh calibrations.

If you have looked with longing at the Ocean Way HR-2 monitor speakers "designed by Alan Sides", have I got a deal for you. Those speakers are actually RCA LC-9a with added subs. I own a pair of RCA LC-9a customized with upgraded drivers, and they do sound very sweet. GC Pro sells these for $38,600.00, but I will sell you my pair for a mere $20,000.00. Email me at Ray (at) SoundFirst (dot) com for more details.

Check out the Thursday 18 November 1999 Wall Street Journal. It has a cover story on Vintage Microphones. The reporter did his homework, and interviewed Klaus Heyne, Stephen Paul, and Allen Sides among others.

Here are a set of response curves of a Klaus Heyne modified Neumann U87.

Here are sets of response curves of my ADK A-51s(LE) mics, sample #1 and sample #2. At 1/10 the price or less of the Neumann U87, these chinese made mics look and sound quite similar to the Neumann U87's!

Information on GenRad measuring mics is hard to find, particularly for the 1" ceramic mics. I have posted here scans from a GenRad manual. This also includes lots of valuable information on the directional characteristics of "omnidirectional" microphones, difraction effects and other related microphone characteristics.

The best contact, switch, and potentiometer cleaner I have ever used is Cramolin Contaclean, formerly known as Cramolin Red. Caig used to import this from Germany in bulk, package it in spray cans here in the USA, and sell it as their own product. It seems at some point Caig decided to sell a different product (maybe they make more money on it?) Caig then put out a totally misleading story about the EPA and Cramolin to explain why it was no longer available. Actually the EPA had problems only with the propellant Caig added when they packaged Cramolin in spray cans, and not with Cramolin itself. Caig's replacement product is called De-Oxit, which in my experience does not work anywhere near as good as Cramolin Contaclean. A couple of years ago I discovered Cramolin in Germany, and bought a case of Contaclean. It works just as good as it did back when I was buying it from Caig. The German packaging puts over twice as much in a can as Caig did, which makes it a better value. Unfortunately I don't know of a current USA source.

Here are my spreadsheets for calculating speaker wire size with new comments and instructions as of 2/27/2000. They are compressed using WinZip. They are in Excel97 format. The first is for low impedance loudspeakers. The second is for constant voltage systems.

Syn-Aud-Con is the premier training organization teaching sound reinforcement system design.

Church Sound Check is one of the best web sites and email discussion groups on church sound and other church technology issues.

Church Production Magazine is a resource and an educational tool for churches. I have written several articles for them.

Columbia College Chicago has an outstanding Audio Arts and Acoustics program founded by Doug Jones. This is the only 4 year college with courses on the TEF analyser. They have intensive courses in Acoustics and Audio Contracting.

Ken's Links on the ProSoundweb web site is the best starting place for finding professional audio companies. ProSoundweb also has many other useful resources including live chats on various audio topics.

Jim Brown is a top audio systems consultant. His web site has some useful articles. Here is his article on Wireless Mics. Another excellent article is Why Churches Buy Sound Systems Three Times, and How You Can Buy Only One. Check out all his articles here.

Rick Chinn is a design engineer and consultant in audio systems. There is a lot of great stuff on his Uneeda Audio page.

Craig Janssen is a top consultant who has probably designed as many contemporary church sound systems as anyone in the business.

Jensen Transformers makes some of the worlds finest audio and video transformers. It is also the place to go for some excellent and accurate Application Notes.

Benchmark Media Systems makes some of the world's finest mic preamps, distribution amplifiers, Analog to Digital and Digital to Analog Converters. Al Burdick, the company founder, has written a must read document "A Clean Audio Installation Guide" (requires Acrobat reader).



"Master Reference Book for Disc Recording" issued in February 1940 by the Recording Department, RCA Manufacturing Company, Inc. Camden, New Jersey, USA. Don't try to download this unless you have a high speed Internet connection as this is a 386 page book and the file size is 46.7 MB. Thanks to Doug Jones for the conversion of this historic book into pdf form.
Scully Lathe

RCA MI-3027 Microphone

This is the internal use only book that covers all the equipment used to produce sound recordings at RCA Studios worldwide as of February 1940. Only 15 copies of this book were ever made. This copy was issued to the studio in Hollywood, CA, and may be the only copy left in existance. It came into my possession when I worked for RCA Records in NYC and they threw it out in the trash.

It contains manuals, schematics, photos and more for:

Microphones
Filters and Compensator Units
Microphone and Re-recording Mixers
Amplifiers
Monitor Equipment - Meters, Loudspeakers Etc.
Recorders, Pickups and Related Accessories
Power Supplies
Recording Machines
Turntables
Test Equipment
Transmission and Schematic Diagrams
Equipment Assembly and Inter-unit Wiring Diagrams
Testing and Maintenance of Equipment
Operation Standards
Frequency Response and Performance
Material and Dimensional Data on Recording Blanks and Records


My comments on "The Ultimate Church Sound Operator’s Handbook" by Bill Gibson

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Edited 6/3/2016

Entire Site Copyright © 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2016 by Ray A. Rayburn. All rights reserved.

Mailing address:
Ray A. Rayburn
1716 Main St Ste A #300
Longmont, CO 80501-7413
USA