A few weeks ago I was talking to a longtime client of mine at a local industry meetup, and she mentioned that they had a huge printing operation. I had no idea that this existed at their place and immediately asked for permission to go record it. She laughed at my nerdiness and did whatever it was that she needed to do to get me in.
I scheduled the record for a day that was relatively light at the office, but having never seen a large scale printing press in person I wasn't exactly sure what kind of rig to bring. I figured that the machines would be loud, would have noises coming from all over, and would be in a relatively noisy environment.
I decided on my CM3s for XY, a schoeps CMC6.mk41 for hypercardioid, and I brought my electrostatic and contact mics as well.
Once I arrived at the plant and was introduced to the person in charge, I looked around and assessed the situation. What was in front of me was not only a large printing press, but a full scale CD and DVD production factory as well.
Everything was running in basically the same room, so it was noisy as hell. After some quick inspection I decided that I didn't want to risk messing anything up with the contact mics, and I really just wanted to get as much general coverage as I could in the short window of time that I had available to me. As such, I ditched the crazy mics and just rolled the CM3s, the CMC6.MK41, and the D50.
I generally just used the D50 for generic ambiances, but when my time crunched in the end I used the D50 to catch one printer while simultaneously rolling on the other.
Everything was basically running on a 24/7 schedule, so I wasn't able to get much with regards to starts and stops, and as noted the ambient noise was pretty intense so while this stuff is usable as design elements, it's not particularly comprehensive or documentary.
Here's what I came up with: