February 15, 2019

Merry Christmas from New York City!

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!

Every year, I get the privilege of spending Christmas in New York City, a place where Christmas is spent well! I wanted to share a little bit of my experience with all of you this year, so I went around and recorded a few New York City Winter scenes in binaural so you can experience it with me!

Every year, Saks Fifth Avenue puts on a huge show on the front of their building. In case you don’t know, Saks is directly across from Rockafeller Center. So if you stand at the front door of saks and look straight out, you see this:

Rockafeller Center

Now, if you stand in Rockafeller Center and look at Saks, normally you just see the front of Saks. Pretty boring. Except for this time of year. During the month of December, Saks transforms the front of their building into a wonderful winter show. They have a massive light show, all choreographed to a specially made recording of “Carol of the Bells”. In years past, they have a ton of LED snowflakes and other lights that play on a midi sequence, however, this year, they changed it up a bit. They did the whole “3D Projection” gig. Pretty neat. I have a (poor quality) video that I shot on my iPhone that I’ll paste a little later. What I do have for you is a binaural recording of the show (plus the people and traffic…).

**These are Binaural Recordings, so you MUST WEAR HEADPHONES to hear them properly!!!** That’s my little disclaimer. K, thx bye.

BTW, the rig is similar to my previous binaural rigs (lavaliere / foam ear plug setup) using two Countryman B6 lavs hardwired into a 702T.

Neat huh? The track is available to download from Sound Cloud if you’d like it (actually, all 3 are!)

Another cool winter activity in NYC is ice skating. The most iconic place to ice skate is Rockafeller Center, but most of what you hear there is loud music and huge crowds of people! Not all that much fun. However, one of the most fun places to go is Wollman Rink in Central Park. It’s located in the center of the park (laterally), close to the south entrance. Easy to get to and MUCH bigger thank Rockafeller Rink. Most of the time there is music playing, but I got lucky and have a good stretch of skating time with no music. So in this recording, you get to hear the sounds of the skates and the people talking while they skate, all with the distant sound of the city in the background. Very cool.

Last one I have is again at the rink. I was lucky enough to be there when they closed, so I have this binaural recording of the Zamboni cleaning the ice (with no one around). The whole thing is like 10 minutes long! Here’s a minute and a half long snippet of it:

Well, I hope you’ve enjoyed my little “Christmas Card” to all of you. I know I enjoyed recording it. The holidays just feel so right in NYC.

Merry Christmas!



  1. Very nice!! Wish Kaleia and I could be in NYC for the holidays, maybe next year.

    Merry Christmas Colin!

  2. rene coronado says:

    very nice stuff! I’ve never been to NYC, but when I do go it’ll be at christmas time. thanks!

  3. Henry Howard says:

    What was the rig? Which mics.

  4. Great ! was it the countryman B6 version with the highest sensitivity (16mV/Pa) according to the manufacturer ? (B6W4)
    I’d like to make binaural mics just as you did.

    • I actually used the -10db version (B6W5). It’s the one with the red ring on the cable. Works really well for my purposes. I’ve never used the normal one (B6W4), but I’d guess it’d do the trick nicely too as long as you aren’t record anything too loud (Max SPL for the W4 is 120db).

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