Golden Gate Bridge assay 2

The Bridge in typical SF morning weather, seen from the south—city—side.
Jacob JL Dickinson, photographer for Golden Gate Bridge Assay #2. See his photostream on Flickr.

Flushed with early success, we purchased a Schertler pickup designed for “ethnic instruments.” Early experiments with viola and tabletop were very promising. And here, at last, are the results of our second bridge walk. Other variables besides the microphone itself? More traffic—probably since we spent four hours this time and left close to noon—made the bridge far louder than on assay 1. Sound quality was better overall; since the mic was adhered and not hand-held, there are fewer clicks and pops. And the files are smaller, since we dropped down to a 44.1 kHz 24-bit sample and bounced down to monophonic after downloading.

Files were processed using MOTU Digital Performer. The only operations were (1) normalization to maximize levels and (2) re-export to WAV in non-interleaved format to reduce the file sizes. Further processing and incorporation in derivatives is, of course, up to you. If you absolutely must have the originals in all their pristine flaw-fulness, contact us.

Audio files in MP3 format are available for re-use and mixing on our Sounds pages. Each text link below points to the download page for the file. If you do re-use the work, please post a trackback to your new composition and announce what you've done.

[edit] Sights and sounds

October 18, 2009

Placing the Schertler mic on "Joseph's hollow form."

Golden Gate Bridge, south-east approach. Jacob and Dave make preliminary observations. Interleaved stereo from the Sony built-in mics.

We experimented with the Schertler contact microphone attached with putty to the statue of Joseph B Strauss.

The fidelity of the Schertler is appreciably better than the improvised rig used in assay 1.
Art Brut. The south tower tempts us with visions of vibrating catwalks.
...and Art Deco. The view from the tower base towards Marin County.

Approaching from the south, we repeated some of the captures from the first assay. The handrails remained fascinating.

At the south tower, we started miking a few different things, including a lamp-post.

The north-side cables had just received a new coat of paint.

We drove to the Marin side and proceeded toward the south. At the north end, there is a pedestrian access way underneath the roadway, which is a very loud area with a distinct character.

The north tower looms above traffic, hosting a pair of security cameras.
A minor tourist attraction at the north tower. Dave mics the access hatch.

Now we gathered our first set of samples heading south.

The session wraps up with seven recordings taken from the skin of the east leg of the north tower.

All audio files on this page Cc by sa 80x15.png 2008 D A Ayer.

Photos this page ©2009 JJL Dickinson. More photos and contact info on Flickr.