Ray Rayburn’s Technical Page

I used to edit the bi-weekly Audio E-Newsletter for Technologies for Worship Magazine. Here are articles written for that newsletter:

By Ray A. Rayburn

Can They Hear?Speech IntelligibilityVOCAL INTELLIGIBILITYINTERCONNECTIONSSOUND LEVELSSOUND LEVEL METERSQUESTIONS ABOUT SOUND LEVELSLISTENING TO MICSTHE A/V DESIGN PROCESSHARMONYCEILING SPEAKERSEQUALIZATIONELECTRICAL POWER FOR AVThe Mix PyramidMore On The Mix PyramidChristmas Gifts for TechsGiftsNew Year’s ResolutionsHow the Pros ShopRoom AcousticsMicrophone Usage for RecordingMicrophone Usage for Recording Part 2Microphone Usage for Sound ReinforcementBig and LittleThe Game of What IfMake LemonadeWhat is this “Balanced” stuff?More Cowbell!Be StillA Time to MendA Time to Mend – Part 2A Time To Mend – Part 3Outside the Box, OutsideWhy Should I Care About This 70 Volt Stuff?Rodney Dangerfield at ChurchWhat Makes Up a 70 Volt System?Stuff HappensCoverage – An Important Part of Sound DesignWhy Test?Where is Your Mix Location?Gain StructureAntennas for Wireless MicrophonesAttitudesSuperbowl & Church SoundMicrophone ModelingCategory Cabling – Part 1Electrical Power VoltageCategory Cabling – Part 2Electrical Power Voltage – Part 2Electrical Power Voltage – Part 3Getting ThereHelp!Help! – Part 2Hearing LossHelping Those With Hearing LossConnecting Assistive Listening SystemsSometimes You Must …Sound OutdoorsSpecial EventsValue EngineeringShould a Mixer be a Musician?iPhoneHelping Your TeamBetter Than God?Electrical SafetyCoverage AnglesCounting Our BlessingsPass It OnSound Versus DistanceSound BoothThe “Ideal” SoundmanBalanced Audio Permanent Install CableBalanced Audio Installation Cables – A SurveyCabling QuestionsHow Loud Are We?That Pesky Noise!Wireless DistressIt’s the Little Things!Intelligibility MeasurementsMusic and FrequenciesListeningPower SequencingWireless Microphone InterferenceUnbalanced Outputs to Balanced InputsGetting Ready For ChristmasEmergency Preparedness for ChurchesRecording ServicesHow Difficult Can It Be?When You Are Gone

By Andrew SoerensHow close are you to burnout?

By Bill JohnsonGetting Better Lav Mic Performance

By Bill WhitlockA/V TroubleshootingTroubleshooting Unbalanced InterfacesBreaking Ground LoopsChoosing Cables for Unbalanced ConnectionsBalanced Audio InterfacesPin 1 Problems and the “Hummer”Troubleshooting Balanced InterfacesCables and Shields

By Bob YoungA Voice Crying in the Wilderness!

By Bruce BartlettBoundary Microphones: Sonic Problem SolversMiking Your Choir for Sound ReinforcementSonic GremlinsOvercoming Mic ChallengesCaring For Your MicrophonesTRAINING PEOPLE ON MICROPHONE USAGESolving Microphone ProblemsSTEREO MIC TECHNIQUES – Part 1STEREO MIC TECHNIQUES – Part 2CHECKLIST TO FIX WIRELESS MIC DROPOUTSSTEREO MIC TECHNIQUES – Part 3STEREO MIC TECHNIQUES – Part 4

By Chris RayburnHow to get Killed

By Curt TaipaleAmendments to God’s Laws of PhysicsSEVEN STEPS TO GREAT SOUNDMICROPHONES ARE COOLMICROPHONES ARE COOL, part 2THE LAPEL MIC IS DEAD – LONG LIVE THE EARSET MIC!KNOW THY STUFFIt’s Not About the GearShould We Go Digital or Stay Analog? Digital Consoles Part 1Should We Go Digital or Stay Analog? Digital Consoles Part 2Are Tech Support Teams Needed at Practices?Tech Team Get-TogethersAudio Test SignalsIsolating the Guitar AmpShoot it Before it MultipliesMaking (Legal) Copies of Songs for RehearsalMic Stand AccessoriesMeasurementsChristmas Past vs. Christmas FutureUsing the Apple iPad in a Worship ServiceLet’s CommunicatePreparing for a Worship ServiceGet to Know Your TeamMarking Up Your Console

By Dale AlexanderTHE MIX MUSICIANPRICE SHOPPING – IS IT ETHICAL?LOUDSPEAKERS FOR WORSHIPLoudspeakers for Worship Part 2: Monaural SystemsLoudspeakers for Worship Part 3: Stereo Systems

By Dale ShirkWHY USE STEREO?First Seek Advice

By Douglas JonesLOUDNESSDead Cats?More on the Dead Cats

By Eric SeifertWorship Space Acoustics – Part 1Worship Space Acoustics – Part 2Worship Space Acoustics – Part 3Worship Space Acoustics – Part 4

By Frank DeWittI Hate Hum


By Gordon MooreTech Night – Does Your Church Have One?

By Jeff JohnsonAre Tech Support Teams Needed at Practices? – Part 2Audience Blasters: Effects & Audience

By Jeremy JohnstonBuild Your Own Digital Mixing Console? One Church’s Story

By Kent MargravesIEM MIXING, Part OneIEM Mixing PART IIIEM Mixing PART III10 Tips for Improving the Worship Mix Prior to SundayGet Out of the Booth!Audio Gain Structure For Wireless Microphones

By Kevin WattsThe Role of the Praise and Worship Team MembersRunning a Soundcheck
By Mike PerlmeterThe Case For Passive Arrays


By Steve BarbarPerfect Acoustics?Perfect Acoustics? – Part 2!Perfect Acoustics? – Part 3

By Ted PyperBackground Noise in Worship Spaces

By William “Chip” SamsBatteries for Church Audio – Part IBatteries for Church Audio – Part II

Excerpted from the Pacific North West section of the AES website, Hat Tip to Rick ChinnLAWS FOR AUDIO ENGINEERS

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 Introduction to Acoustics and Audio Concepts seminar.

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

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:

Filters and Compensator Units
Microphone and Re-recording Mixers
Monitor Equipment – Meters, Loudspeakers Etc.
Recorders, Pickups and Related Accessories
Power Supplies
Recording Machines
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

Back to Home Page.

Edited 3/20/2017

Entire Site Copyright © 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2016, 2017 by Ray A. Rayburn. All rights reserved.

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

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