Someone emailed me a bunch of questions - here are some of the answers:
vocal chain: I use a Rode K2 tube mic through a Brent Averill 1272 preamp, sometimes through an 1176 compressor into my Roland recorder. By turning down the attenuation as far as it will go on the Roland, I am using as much of the 1272 as possible. Ideally I would bypass Roland preamps but you can't do it on those durn things.
reverb: I like stuff pretty dry, especially vocals, maybe a little room sound here and there on other stuff. For this CD, I hardly used any digital reverb at all and instead ran separate signals into a speaker in a large tile floor room and at the other end of the room put up a couple Oktava 012 mics. $50 each at G.C. - best deal ever but they don't sell them any more I don't think.
Anyway, then I brought up the real room reverb on a separate track so I could EQ it and control the amount. I like to change it occasionally for different parts of the song to make the choruses bigger than the verses and stuff like that.
I use the proximity effect for a fuller vocal - finding the optimum spot depending on the song.
Everybody's voice has their own mic - I have a friend who sounds better on a Shure 58 than anything else I have - through the Brent Averill of course.
I also made a bunch of pres from a company called Seventh Circle Audio and they are great.
The Fathead was pretty cool to start with but the Lundahl mod improved the quality about 30 - 35% in the highs, lows and overall clarity. I recently got two more Fatheads at the Pot Luck Audio conference in New Orleans - way cool event - next year it is June 12, 13, 14.
ribbon mics: Ribbons work well for rounding off the edge - trumpet, tambourine, shaker, anything bright and harsh. I am planning on trying them for drum over heads because they're supposed to be really good for those.
They are also great for isolating guitar and voice when performed at the same time. They have a figure 8 pattern and the null side around the edge is deader than the deadest point on a cardiod pattern.
I don't know about the Cascade turbo thing but the ribbons need a lot of clean gain and tube pres can be noisy so I wouldn't recommend those. There is a way to use a Mackie mixer coming out of the inserts and not going through all the electronics - pretty clean way to go and not bad - cheap.
AT 4033: The 4033 is a great all around mic - I think it has only one pattern. It's pretty bright, can take a lot of SPL, built well. I got one of those new from the factory from a seller on ebay for 225. 4033 runs on phantom power, Fathead doesn't. They really are totally different.
There is a really cheap condenser called an AT 2020 or a Studio Reference or something - $99!
Also Aphex makes a tube mic that sells for around 150 or so that is very close to a $3000 Telefunken. Check out PSN's podcast for info.
I mentioned the delay in the last post. Well, when I dug it out of the mothballs, the battery was dead and it wouldn't hold any settings or presets. I do quite a bit of electronic type suff so i thought shoot, I'll just replace the battery. I ordered it from Mouser- a great supplier and proceeded to do one of the stupidest things ever. I tried to solder the tabs directly to the battery! NEVER DO THIS.
I couldn't get the solder to hold so I looked up some stuff on ye olde internet. That's when I was reminded batteries can explode when heat iss applied. My face was about a foot away and I was not wearing goggles. STUPID MOVE. By some incredible stroke of luck the battery did not explode and I still have my eyesight. This move continues to haunt me though. Please be careful.
I ended up ordering another battery with solder tabs especially mde for this, soldered it in wearing safety goggles.
I play keyboards and sax in some situations - quite a bit lately with a really good band - check us out at jangomonkey.com . It's sort of a rock band with lots of room for improvisation. I have this digital delay from a long time ago, you know, around the time they first came on the market? Anyway, I was trying to figure out a way I could control it and had it sitting on a shelf on a keyboard stand. Trouble is all the buttons and knobs were at waist level and it wasn't so easy.
I tried to figure out a way to prop it up so the controls would face up. That's when I realized, after a little measuring, I could cut a slot in my shelf the same size as the delay minus the rack ears which would keep it from sliding all the way through. So now I have a shelf for my mixer, delay, set list, flashlight and maybe a beer. The delay is 25 years old so this isn't a huge risk. I will try to remember to post a couple pictures of it very soon.
Herman Miller Aeron chair. Now I can sit in the studio at the desk for 10 or 12 hours with no soreness! It's been really amazing. I've heard folks grumble about these but if you get the right size they are fantastic. I got a bargain on mine from a used office furniture place on craigslist.