Posts Tagged ‘Reykjavík’


In recent years, I have been on the evening shift on December 23 (Þorláksmessa). So I haven’t been able to go downtown Reykjavík to record the ‘mood for Christmas’. But this December I was on a day shift which gave me the opportunity to record.
The last time was 5 years ago when I recorded this beautiful song on December 23, 2017.
It was a different atmosphere in the city center this year. I didn’t understand what it was, at least now there were more foreign tourists and the streets were covered in salt-slush and ice. This year there were no beautiful singing voices in the crowd as so often before. However, music comes from some street stalls and bars. On the ice skating rink at Hallærisplan (Ingólfstorg square), music was played loud during the skating dance.
After total 1Km long walk the recording ends rather quietly in a bar where I bought a beer.
In this recording I am using the same ultralight stereo microphone as I did in 2017. Baffled double capsule EM172/272 with a LOM Phantom power amp,
But today I have filled the empty space inside the wind shield between the microphones with a sponge of different density which has improved the separation between the right and left channels. It reduced the audible phase error between the channels which was clearly audible in the 2017 recording.
In addition, in the space between the microphone, outside the Rycote WS2 windshield and under the HWC2 Hi-wind fleece cover, is also a sponge. That sponge stops most of the vibration in the windshield due to wind, without affecting the sound quality.
This stereo microphone is very light, can withstand incredibly high winds, as well it has almost no „handling noise“. It is therefore good for booming where strong winds can be expected.
In this recording I did not use HPF. Between the houses and out in the open spaces where I walked, there was a considerable amount of wind that probably few, if any, microphones would have been able to withstand without wearing a good fur windshield plus additional HPF.
The more I use this DIY mic, which is mostly made from scrap materials, the happier I am with it.
Earlier that same night, I also recorded with simple EM172 binaural microphones. In many ways, that recording was very funny because no one around me noticed that I was recording, unlike the recording below. But that recording will have to wait to be published until later.
I also recorded for over an hour at the bar a nice mood recording, but I will never be able to publish it because the bar was playing copyrighted music.
Quality open headphones are recommended while listening at mid to mid+ volume.
If the media player doesn’t start to play, please reload this individual blog in a new tab or frame.

(mp3 256kbps / 48Mb)

Recorder: Sound Devices MixPre6
Mics: Primo EM172 / EM272 capsules v. LOM phantom power amps  (Baffled AB)
Pix: Samsung S22

Weather: -10°C, calm to 5m/sec, clear sky.
Location: Downtown Reykjavík

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I am used to feed birds daily in my garden with all kinds of leftovers.
There are always some birds that watch my garden every day, and when they see me in the garden, some starling give a high pitch signal and some of them fly away. But shortly after that they come back with a flock of other birds, normally common starlings and redwings. Some birds like one blackbird and some redwings are now extra gentle around me while I prepare the food in the garden.
Christmas day, 25th of December 2016, was just like another „feeding day“. But it was snowing, so the traffic noise wash less than usual and therefore a perfect day to record a birds activity.
This recording starts slowly. Just few birds have arrived when the recording starts. But in the end the birds have eaten almost everything and they start singing, packed in the trees all a around my house.

(224kbps / 48Mb)

Recorder: Sound devices 788
Mics: Rode NT1a in Rycote Cyclone (AB50 setup)
Pix: GoPro Hero3
Weather: Cloudy, light breeze, snowing and -3°C

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IMG_0467 (1400x933)

„Oh boy another fireworks recording“. This came up in my mind when I decided to put this recording on the web.
But this recording was made in the end of the Reykjavik Culture Nights at 23rd of August 2014 when one third of the Icelandic population was in down town Reykjavik in a wonderful weather. As usual after the rock concert finished, the program ends with a great Fireworks show. This show is normally a big hit…even for recordists.
This recording was a „Binaural array test“. It is a microphone setup I hope I can develop for my needs for nature recordings. It is a pair of MKH20 microphones in a single Rycote stereo windshield which I hope will give a better result than AB40 array with BBG Rycote windshield. I also hope it will give more natural and relaxing „sound space“ while listening, similar as binaural recordings with Dummy head. Fireworks are probably not the best sound source for such test, but anyway MKH20 is a grate sounding mic and in this case it was important to detect sound from all directions to pick up the echo from buildings all around. The rumble bass and the calm music in the background is coming from the concert stage. The fireworks start slowly but end in total madness.
I recommend quality headphones while listening.
I will not inform about my opinion about this test- recording , but you are welcome to leave a comment below.

Flugeldar á menninganótt 2014

Það getur verið álika spennandi að hljóðriat flugelda eins og að mynda þá. Er það ekki í fyrsta sinn sem ég set upptökur af slíku efni á þennan vef.
Á menningarnótt notaði ég tækifærið og prófaði nýja uppsetningu á hljóðnemum sem ég bind miklar vonir með að ég geti nýtt mér í framtíðinnni við náttúruupptökur. Er þar stuðst við svokallaða Binaural uppsetningu þar sem staðsetning hljóðnema á að líkja sem mest eftir mannseyranu.
Upptakan af sýningunni fer hægt af stað en verður tryllingsleg undir lokin. Bassinn og tónlistin í bakgrunni kemur frá hljómsveitarsviðinu framan við Arnarhól. Ég mæli með góðum heyrnartólum til að hlusta á upptökuna
Varðandi upptökuna af flugeldasýningunni þá má segja að hún sé þolanleg, en stóðst samt ekki væntingar. Ég fer ekki nánar út í þá sálma hér, en leyfi hlustendum að dæma og segja frá sinni skoðun í „leave a comment“ hér fyrir neðan.

Download mp3 file (256kbps / 24,5Mb)

Recorder: Sound devices 744
Mics: Sennheiser MKH20 (binaual array)
Pics: Canon EOS-M

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Last spring was cold and windy and 26th of May was no exception when I cycle downtown Reykjavik with my recording gear. It was a accordion day and members of the Accordion club of Reykjavik was playing in the city hall. When I arrive it was overcrowded and the sound quality was poor from the amplified monitors. So I decided to stay outside and listen instead to the birds on the pound, close to the hall.
This recording contain my walk beside the pond, from the southeast side (as seen on the picture) trough the city hall to the northwest side, into very different atmosphere.

Gengið í gegn um ráðhús Reykjavíkur

Þann 26 maí gerði ég mér ferð í ráðhúsið í norðankalda til að hlusta á Harmonikkufélag Reykjavíkur spila á hinum árvissa harmonikkudegi. Það átti ekki að koma á óvart að hljómburðurinn í Ráðhúsinu var handónýtur svo ég staldraði stutt við. Í staðinn fór ég að fylgjast með fuglum á tjörninni og hljóðrita það sem fyrir augu og eyru bar.

Download mp3 file (16Mb / 192kbps)

Recorder: Sound devices 744t
Mics: Sennheiser MKH8040 (ORTF setup) in Rycote Windshield
Pics: Canon EOS M

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Reykjavik Marathon

Reykjavik downtown was a peaceful place when annual marathon was held 18th of August 2012. The weather was calm and no painful traffic noise as usual. Many streets were closed for cars so there was plenty of space for almost fourteen thousand runners this day.
I placed my microphones in a bush about 500 meters from the starting point.
In the beginning of the recording most footsteps are coming from right to left when runners are on the way to the starting point.
Air plains pass by from left to right and land on Reykjavik Airport.
Runners continue to pass on the way to the starting point, some of them arriving too late.
Few seconds after the race starts, runners begin to pass the microphones from left to right. And there is a lot of runners. Thousands of footsteps in just five minutes….and another airplane passes by the same way, but on the way to the airport.
Then, everything gets normal agin.

Reykjavíkurmaraþon 2012

Það var ákaflega notalegt og beinlínis streitulosandi að fara niður í miðbæ Reykjavíkur, morguninn sem Reykjavíkurmaraþon var haldið þann 18. ágúst 2012. Rúmlega 13 þúsund manns voru skráðar í hlaupið sem var metþátttaka. Veðrið var gott og það besta af öllu var að miðbærinn var laus við bílaumferð. Helsti hávaðinn kom frá gjallarhorni keppnishaldara og frá tveimur flugvélum sem komu til lendingar á Reykjavíkurflugvelli.
Staðsetti ég hljóðnema í runna fyrir neðan Fríkirkjuna og lét þá fanga það sem allt snerist um þennan dag. Í upphafi hljóðritsins má heyra fólk streyma frá hægri til vinstri á leið sinni frá bílastæðum við Hringbraut niður á Lækjargötu að ráslínu. Stuttu eftir að rásmerki er gefið koma hlaupararnir 13 þúsund eins og stórfljót frá vinstri til hægri sem svo hverfur á fimm mínútum. Þegar þeir eru svo horfnir úr augsýn færist allt aftur í eðlilegt horf við Fríkirkjuveg.

Download mp3 file (192kbps / 28,2Mb)

Recorder: Sound Devices 744
Mics: Sennheiser MKH30/20 (MS setup)
Pics: Canon 30D (see more pictures)

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Free Pussy Riot protest

At 17th of August 2012 about 100 protesters gathering together front of Russian embassy in Reykjavik call for free Pussy Riot.
The protest stay in one hour between 10 and 11am (Icelandic time). All the time people call “FREE PUSSY RIOT” so in the end when the lips and tongue get tired it start to sound like “Peoples right”.
Protest like this was held all over the world at same time.
Sadly during the protest three member of the Pussy Riot was doomed to stay in prison for two years.
For all those out of space who do not know Pussy Riot or human rights should search in Google for more information.
Please play this recording loud and share everywhere.  Now people all over world need to scream Pussy riot out of prison.

Frelsið Píku óeirðir

Fólk safnaðist saman framan við rússneska sendiráðið þann 17. ágúst 2012 til að mótmæla klúðurslegum mannréttindabrotum á þremur meðlimum punk hljómsveitarinnar Pussy Riot. Hafði hljómsveitin staðið fyrir því að syngja 40 sekúndna pönkbæn í hofi rússnesku rétttrúnaðarkyrkjunar þar sem María mey var beðin um að losa Rússland við Putin forseta.
Niðurstaðan var sú að þrír hljómsveitameðlimir fengu tveggja ára fangelsi fyrir uppátækið.
Mælst er til að upptakan sé hátt spiluð og henni dreift sem víðast svo meðlimum hljómsveitarinnar verði sleppt sem allra fyrst. Höfum það hugfast að það er litill sem enginn munur á rússneskum eða vestrænum stjórnvöldum. Það er því nauðsynlegt að berjast fyrir mannréttindum allstaðar og á öllum tímum.

Download mp3 file (192kbps / 28,17Mb)

Recorder: Sound devices 744
Mics: MKH30/20 (MS setup)
Pix: Sony DSC-P120
Video: Punk prayer „Fuck off Putin
Icelandic radioprogram about the Pussy Riot movment

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Accordion concert

Accordion day was celebrated all over in Iceland 5th of May with concerts in many public places all over the country. This was a perfect opportunity to cycle downtown and record a “squeeze box concert”. The concert was held in an open place at Hallærisplan (Ingólfstorg) in Reykjavik center and the players were members of the Reykjavik Accordion Club. In background, mostly on right side, are some bang and rumble noise from skate boards and motorcycles.
This recording was made with “binaural microphones” and Primo EM172 capsules.  There were rather much wind which sometimes disturbed the recording. So -20db was enabled at 20hz  in post.
Best to listen with headphones.

Harmónikudagurinn 5. maí 2012

Um allt land virðist sem þann 5. maí 2012 hafi „harmonikudagur“ verið haldinn  með pomp og prakt. Það kom ekki skýrt fram á heimasíðu harmonikufélaganna en um það mátti lesa á ýmsum öðrum blogg- og vefsíðum. Þennan dag var þó auglýst harmonikuball á Hallærisplaninu í Ríkisútvarpinu.
Það var því kjörið að bruna þangað á reiðhjólinu með upptökutæki og heimatilbúna “Binaural” hljóðnema. Það er því best að hlusta á upptökuna í góðum heyrnartólum.

  Download mp3 file (192kbps / 24,2Mb)

Recoder: Olympus LS10 (24hz/48Khz)
Mic. Binaural (Primo EM172)
Pix: Sony DSC-P120

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Í vetur bárust landsmönnum þær döpru fréttir að fuglalífi við Reykjavíkurtjörn hefði hrakað mikið síðustu ár. Það leiddi huga minn að því að ég ætti sama sem engin hljóðrit af fuglalífi við Tjörnina. En einhvers staðar á ég þó upptöku sem ég tók upp framan við Iðnó fyrir 30 árum.
Yfirþyrmandi umferðarniður hefur annars valdið því að ég hef ekki lagt það í vana minn að eltast við náttúruhljóð í miðbæ Reykjavíkur.
Framvegis skal verða breyting á, því spennandi verður að sjá hvort mönnum takist að endurheimta þá fugla sem verptu og komu upp ungum við Tjörnina um miðja síðustu öld .
Tvær helgar í janúar gerði ágæis veður. Arkaði ég með upptökutækin niður að Reykjavíkurtjörn sem var ísilögð. Stóð allt eins til að hljóðrita brak og bresti í ísnum, en ég komst fljótt að því að hann var ekki nógu kaldur, of mikill snjór á honum og að vanda of mikill umferðahávaði.
Fuglalífið varð því aðal viðfangsefnið þessar tvær helgar. Ákvað ég að staðsetja tækin á göngubrúnni frá Iðnó að Ráðhúsinu. Tveimur vatnahljóðnemum var stungið í Tjörnina u.þ.b. 20sm fyrir ofan botn með tveggja metra millibili. Fyrir ofan, á brúnni, voru hljóðnemar í XY uppsetningu.
Þarna má heyra hundgá, í fólki gefa öndum brauð og í útlendum ferðamönnum.
Undir yfirborði tjarnarinnar heyrast mikil skvamphljóð frá fuglum sem börðust um brauðið á yfirborðinu, einnig í skúfönd sem oftsinnis kafaði nærri hljóðnemunum. Þá heyrist málmhljóð þegar gengið er á brúnni og eitthvað slæst í burðarvirki hennar.


In two worlds

In Reykjavik center is a quiet big pond or a lake with many bird species, like Swans, Gooses and Ducks. Often people feed this birds with bread so outburst is normal when birds grasp the breadcrumbs.
This recordings was made simultaneously both above and under water on four tracks. Two hydrophones where placed 2 meters apart and 20 cm above the pond bottom. On the steel bridge above was two cardioid in XY setup.

Above the pond.
Download mp3 file (192kbps / 10,1Mb)

In both worlds. Above and in the pond.
Download mp3 file (192kbps / 10,1Mb)

In the pond.
Download mp3 file (192kbps / 10,1Mb)

Recorder: Sound devices 744 w/552 preamp
Mics: Aquarian H2a-XLR (spaced omni) and Rode NT1a (XY)
Pix: Canon 30D

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