FORUMS: list search recent posts

Field recording audio for XDCAM EX3

COW Forums : Sony XDCAM - EX & Related

<< PREVIOUS   •   VIEW ALL   •   PRINT   •   NEXT >>
William Mims
Field recording audio for XDCAM EX3
on Nov 18, 2009 at 4:44:12 am

Has anyone tried this: Instead of using wireless mics that sometimes have static problems as well as load the camera down (especially with a Steadicam Pilot) why not use the old film technique of a clapper board and have actors wear digital recorders with lav mics?
For under a $100 each, a Sony voice activated Digital recorder is a hands free item that can be hidden on the actor even better than a wireless mic system. In editing one could sync up takes with with video and the EX3 on board mic for reference as well as clapper board. Although this is an audio question, I think it is better to post with 'shooters' that are typically one person operations or at least smaller crews. Feedback please.

Mims


Return to posts index

Ron Pestes
Re: Field recording audio for XDCAM EX3
on Nov 18, 2009 at 5:45:15 am

To much hassle for me. I have had nothing but great success with my Sennheiser lav.

Apple Certified Master Pro FCS 2
Sony EX-3
MacBook Pro


Return to posts index

Dean Sensui
Re: Field recording audio for XDCAM EX3
on Nov 18, 2009 at 9:57:35 am

Here's the setup I'm using:

Two ATW-1800 dual wireless systems to provide four channels of audio. The Audio Technica 1800 systems have proven to be rock solid and durable. Sounds pretty good, too, if they're set up properly and good mics are used.

Edirol R-44 4-track recorder.

All are powered by an A123 Systems nano-phosphate battery pack that I built.

It records constantly. Both the camera and the recorder are set to time-of-day timecode. I use SequenceLiner with Final Cut Pro to roughly correlate the audio track with the video clips.

Here's a photo of the recorder system. It's in a small Pelican case. The four antenna leads are attached to a small antenna mast (just out of frame). If I shut it the system's weatherproof, although it does get warm in there if it's not shielded from direct sun.

http://hawaiigoesfishing.com/images/audio_box.jpg

Here's an example of the results. In post I can mute unwanted tracks or boost desired tracks. Very helpful when everyone is talking simultaneously. The on-camera mic, an AT-4051a, provides a backup and ambient if needed.

http://hawaiigoesfishing.com/shelter2009_silver2.html

This is single-camera coverage, in real-time. Unscripted.


Dean Sensui -- Hawaii Goes Fishing


Return to posts index


Chandler Kauffman
Re: Field recording audio for XDCAM EX3
on Nov 18, 2009 at 11:03:06 pm

Honestly I've had so much trouble getting decent sound when shooting as a one man band that I'd love to know what you come up with. I don't know if there's a problem with the audio system in my EX1 or the Sennheiser G2 wireless system or my Rode N2G shotgun mic, (or all of them) but things always start off sounding fine then a few hours in I get plauged by all sorts of brief hits of static and other problems that I don't have time to figure out in a doc situation.
On my last job I brought along a Zoom H4 SD recorder set at 48khz and used my old slate as needed, which while not a perfect solution, at least gave me 2 additional tracks as back up for when everything else started acting up. Which it did.
Dean, great set up by the way.
Guess the best solution is convincing the client it's worth it to hire a sound guy.
PS iPhones and Black Berrys give off a nasty pulsating hit when too close to wires or mics. Don't ask me how I know

Sony EX1
Canon 5d mark 2
FCP 6.06


Return to posts index

Craig Seeman
Re: Field recording audio for XDCAM EX3
on Nov 19, 2009 at 12:17:22 am

[Chandler Kauffman] " things always start off sounding fine then a few hours in I get plauged by all sorts of brief hits of static"

I use Sennheiser G2 system. That sounds like a wireless issue. Possibly low battery, bad cable, interference on the frequency you're using. Check Sennheiser frequency chart if you're in USA. Also use the scan frequency. RF interference conditions can definitely change throughout the day.

[Chandler Kauffman] "ther problems that I don't have time to figure out in a doc situation. "

For example?

[Chandler Kauffman] "Guess the best solution is convincing the client it's worth it to hire a sound guy. "

That always helps unless the size of the crew itself becomes an impediment as might happen in certain doc situations.



Return to posts index

Chandler Kauffman
Re: Field recording audio for XDCAM EX3
on Nov 19, 2009 at 12:28:15 am

Other issues have been using the G2 wireless and Rode shotgun driving in the middle of the night through a desolate stretch of Long Island (they do still exist apparently) and after about 20 minutes getting a rhythmic pulse of static on the shotgun signal. This was before I had an iPhone but it sounded a lot like the interference I've heard from that. Car radio was off, no other RF that I can think of.
Another example was using my Rode as a boom mic armed in over a guy for a talking head kind of thing. The level just progressively died until I barely got anything, including when the interviewee was thrashing on his electric guitar which blew the other mics out. Tested the AA battery and its fine.mics out. Tested the AA battery and its fine.
Do channels 1 and 2 on the EX1 correspond to Audio tracks 1 and 2 in FCP once you've begun editing?
True about crew size, but I've checked audio going into the camera from the sound guy and it's always way better than what I get

Sony EX1
Canon 5d mark 2
FCP 6.06


Return to posts index


Craig Seeman
Re: Field recording audio for XDCAM EX3
on Nov 19, 2009 at 1:40:03 am

[Chandler Kauffman] " driving in the middle of the night through a desolate stretch of Long Island (they do still exist apparently) and after about 20 minutes getting a rhythmic pulse of static on the shotgun signal." desolate areas sometimes can be near transmitter sites. I'm not sure how heavily this would impact the shotgun though. GPS maybe but I can't imagine that being a cause either.

[Chandler Kauffman] "Another example was using my Rode as a boom mic armed in over a guy for a talking head kind of thing. The level just progressively died until I barely got anything,"

This sounds like a power issue. I can't see the camera preamp being the issue. I've seen a little "sluggishness" on the EX's built in limiter and slow response when changing levels but nothing quite like you describe.

[Chandler Kauffman] "Do channels 1 and 2 on the EX1 correspond to Audio tracks 1 and 2 in FCP once you've begun editing? "
They should in the viewer window. Keep in mind it will come in to FCP center panned so that can impact things. I like things panned hard left and right so I know what's happening in each channel.




Return to posts index

Chandler Kauffman
Re: Field recording audio for XDCAM EX3
on Nov 19, 2009 at 2:00:44 am

Center panned as in it's mixing channel 1 and 2?

Sony EX1
Canon 5d mark 2
FCP 6.06


Return to posts index

Dean Sensui
Re: Field recording audio for XDCAM EX3
on Nov 19, 2009 at 11:39:11 am

Can't be the GPS. It relies on being able to pick up very weak signals, and can't afford to spew any RF of its own.

If you're experiencing strange interference on long stretches of desolate road, beware of UFO abductions.

Was the shotgun connected to the wireless transmitter, or was it hardwired into the camera? Seems like you're experiencing way too many problems, and it's more than just a wireless issue.

And, yes, certain cell phones can be a serious problem. Some producers will insist that all cell phones be turned off, not just set on silent. I was at a bar where the performer's PA system was picking up interference from a Nokia phone. It's a wonder the FCC approves such devices.

Dean Sensui -- Hawaii Goes Fishing


Return to posts index


Chandler Kauffman
Re: Field recording audio for XDCAM EX3
on Nov 19, 2009 at 4:17:52 pm

No GPS in the car, the shotgun was hard wired. I think I even tried using the on camera mic and got the same thing. But, whenever I've been tethered to a soundguy's set up everything has been fine.
The dealer I bought the equipment from in NYC mentioned I might "need the mic grounded" which sounded kind of odd to me. Wouldn't that be something built into the camera, mics etc at the factory?

Sony EX1
Canon 5d mark 2
FCP 6.06


Return to posts index

Craig Seeman
Re: Field recording audio for XDCAM EX3
on Nov 19, 2009 at 4:29:44 pm

You're certainly having an odd set of problems. I really wouldn't attribute these issues to the camera generally though.

The only issues I've personally experienced that is attributable to the camera are pumping on the limiter and slow response time when changing levels.

I'd say you might have a phantom power issue but you weren't using it in the above cases (unless you had it on by accident and that might create a problem). Maybe the preamp is having issues in your camera.



Return to posts index

Chris Eller
Re: Field recording audio for XDCAM EX3
on Nov 19, 2009 at 12:43:23 am

Dean,

That's a pretty impressive rig you've created there, very nice work.

The original poster mentions the EX3 camera specifically; the EX3 does output a genlock and TC-link signal, can receivers like your rig ingest the genlock and TC-link? If so, you're perfectly in sync when it comes time for post. Since I shoot mostly in 3D, I use the genlock and TC-link capability of the EX3 cameras extensively and it's a real life saver. If that can also help with off-camera audio, that's something he should look into.

Thanks for sharing the image and video.

--
Chris Eller
* Advanced Visualization Lab - Indiana University
* Chris Eller Photography, LLC
* Starrynight Productions, Inc.


Return to posts index


Dean Sensui
Re: Field recording audio for XDCAM EX3
on Nov 20, 2009 at 1:17:45 am

[Chris Eller] "the EX3 does output a genlock and TC-link signal, can receivers like your rig ingest the genlock and TC-link?"

Chris... I don't know what the TC-link signal is like. But if it's an audio signal then it's possible to lay it down on one of the four tracks on the R-44. Of course you do end up sacrificing one of the audio tracks.

It's also possible to link up a pair of R-44 recorders to provide up to 8 tracks. A bit more cumbersome but certainly workable.

Dean Sensui -- Hawaii Goes Fishing


Return to posts index

William Mims
Re: Field recording audio for XDCAM EX3
on Nov 22, 2009 at 4:33:40 am

When I originally started this post I was in the hopes that someone had already given my idea a try. What I have discovered instead is a rich assortment of valid reasons why a good wireless system is a much better idea, but also several have indicated how even a good system can have interference problems because of cell phones, ipods and RF interference. I suspect the latter will become even more of a problem as time goes by. Therefore I think my original thought may be a convincing one based on my experience as a film cutter. In those days we had no choice but to sync up our sound roll with our film roll via the 'clapper'. So for me that is no hassle. Later with video editing with linear tape, if there was a sync problem we could roll two sound tracks together, listen for the echo as the two tracks got closer together and finally with the two in sync the echo would disappear. What is great about Vegas, FCP and the others is we have a visual graph of the sound track so we can just look at both to sync the sound from a digital recorder with the on-camera mic for exact match in seconds. There are certain features such a set up should have if you are doing skeleton crew or gorilla type filmmaking, one being keep it simple for the actors, so voice activated recording would be one, size another and compatibility and ease of transfer to NLE files would be the other. Sony's latest digital recorder the PCM -10 with a street price of $ 300 is far less than any wireless system with that quality with a limitless (depending on your budget) number of tracks in the edit suite or actors with their own personal recorders. If you are doing corporate video you don't need a sound guy or worry about fluorescence lights or other RF problems. If you are using more than two actors you don't need a sound mixer. This recorder is as small as any of the belt clip transmitters actors wear so again no additional problems. I plan to purchase a few Sony PCM-M10s and I will report how the system works out. In the meantime if you are wondering how to meet the needs of your next video project without a lot of "sound" cash outlay, consider what I am suggesting. You may not want to spend $ 300 for this much quality for your project so you may want to shop for less expensive units by other manufacturers with similar features.

Mims


Return to posts index

<< PREVIOUS   •   VIEW ALL   •   PRINT   •   NEXT >>
© 2017 CreativeCOW.net All Rights Reserved
[TOP]