Sound Recordings of Classic Aircraft

This is my museum collection of classic aircraft sound recordings made at various airshows and other aviation events in the UK during the past 5 years. All my aircraft sound recordings are of the highest quality I can manage. From a typical airshow of 3 or 4 hours, I usually expect 30 minutes of usuable aircraft recordings due to commentators, spectators and incorrect placement of recording equipment. I classify all these recordings as field recording as none of them are staged or processed after the sound recording is made.

My personal favourites are the Rolls-Royce powered aircraft (Spitfire, Hurricane, Lancaster) but a few cold was jets would make it onto the list as well.

Recording classic aircraft at an airshow

Aviation and aircraft recording is difficult to achieve well as aircraft tend to move quickly when you want to record them and not always in a way that works well with mic placement. I tend to leave around 18 - 20dB headroom if I'm expecting anything to fly close and up to 25 db if there's a prospect of anything with a jet engine. With aircraft and places I know well I usually shift around mic placement to get different recording dynamics. For places I don't know or new aircraft sound recordings I'll make a call first then leave it that way and see what happens. I guess this is quite like how people that record birdsong will work.My usual kit comprises of a Rode NT4 or Audio-Technica 822 into a Fostex FR2-LE. Some of the older recordings use HI-MD Sony Minidisc.

Its not just about a Spitfire, a Hurricane or Lancaster

Like a museum, the recordings are classified and arranged by manufacturer and type and vary from early aircraft (Sopwith Camel, AVRO 504k, Bristol Fighter) through World War 2 Warbirds (Spitfire, Hurricane) to modern jets (Hawker Hunter, BAe Hawk), including classic trainers. In some cases, they are recordings of the only remaining flying examples of the type.