'Big Mick' Hughes

FOH sound engineer for Metallica, ‘Big Mick’ Hughes, is now using DPA’s d:vote 4099 instrument microphones for drummer Lars Ulrich’s cymbals and toms: ‘After 30 years with Metallica and 15 years miking Lars’ drums with another brand of microphone, I was finally persuaded to test DPA microphones…’ he says.

The move was prompted by Morten Uldbæk, the Danish distributor for Midas consoles: ‘I have to admit I had never considered DPA as the right kind of microphone for live rock music, but after giving them a try I was really impressed with their brightness and crispness.’

The final impetus for the switch came from studio engineers working on the soundtrack for Metallica’s 3D film Through the Never, which had its first public screening at the Christopher B Smith Rafael Film Center in California.

‘The recording guys were not happy with our old mics because they didn’t deliver the audio they wanted across the full frequency range,’ Hughes says. ‘Obviously for a surround sound, 3D movie it was important that the audio was perfect so I suggested the DPA d:vote 4099 mics and, after carrying out A/B testing, they were very happy for us to switch to them.’

Hughes adds that, as the DPA d:vote 4099 mics are clearer in the higher frequency ranges, he no longer needs to use an exciter across the cymbal and toms sub group on his Midas console. ‘Technology does move on and I’m always looking for better solutions,’ he says. ‘Now that I have discovered DPA, I am looking forward to trying out a few other models and already have my eye on the d:dicate 2011 recording microphones as I’m told they are great for drums as well.’

More: www.dpamicrophones.com

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