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Trying to learn on my own. How about some advice?

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Brian B
Trying to learn on my own. How about some advice?
on May 25, 2005 at 8:29:41 pm

OK heres a little background on my cause.
I went to school in Florida for Audio then started teaming up with some people and making some short independent films.
I recorded the production sound and did the post/mixxing of the films.
got 3 under my belt now.

The advice I am seeking though is this.
Everytime I finish with a film I look back at it and hear alot of crap in my recording & mixes.

from the recordings I get hiss & hum
I tried to correct the problem by buying a different mic I go a Shure SM89 (didn't have the money for a senn 416 yet) would the senneheiser make a big difference in this?

In the mix.
I try to clean up my audio of hiss, hum, drop outs match up ambience and try to fix the actors not talking loud enough ( I like to blame them for me not gaining up enough haha)
I don't have much luck at hetting the hiss and hum out I've tried to methods sweeping around with an EQ looking for nasty to drop out. I take little chunks out now with the EQ and get pretty much the same result as taking big chunks out.

I have also used DINR first time I used it had a mess took huge chunks out and got some nasty digital sounds. The second time I took out 1.5db at a time about 3 rounds of this and it sounded good then I got into the mix and started boasting everything up to a decent level and surprise the noise came back.

What am I doing wrong with this?

I think thats enough to start with. hope that some pros can step in and give some advice.

I would like to talk some about recording good clean production audio to start with since there is never any budget or time for ADR.
1. What kind of mics?
2. How many on set?
3. Use a mixer or just go straight into the camera (which is a Panasonic DV100A -- with 2 SLR inputs)
4. What kind of levels should I look for peaking or not seems like they are never loud enough once I get to the edit. Even if there peaking. (with no distortion) just in the red.

Well if you have read this book of items I applaude you. And hope that you can help.

Brian B

I use ProTools 6.4 with Digi002.
Shure SM89 shotgun mic
Shure ksm27 for iso-booth dialogue.
Sony Lav (don't remember the model # -- its nothing to great)
Monitors Genelec 1029A's
Headphones Sony 7506

thanks a mill.

Brian B
Editor
Avid|DS
http://www.trueindiefilms.com
http://www.lithia.com


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Tom
Re: Trying to learn on my own. How about some advice?
by
on May 26, 2005 at 8:19:04 am

I will give you this link that should answer a lot of your questions

http://www.kenstone.net/fcp_homepage/location_sound.html#link%20one


You already answered one of your poblems, the actors not talking loud enough? Answer take 2, 3, 4 ,5 or what ever it takes to get it right. Also your mic selection is very limited. I would suggest renting some better mics. You audio is only going to be as good as your weakest link. Sounds like you are going directly into a camera? I would try a mixer. Study the link I sent you

good Luck

Tom


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Seth Bloombaum
Re: Trying to learn on my own. How about some advice?
on May 26, 2005 at 1:26:18 pm

You're going to have to figure out where the hum and hiss is coming in. The way to deal with the problems you're experiencing in mix is to not record them in the first place. IMHO your modest selection of mics is a different issue.

1) Buy or borrow a tester and check EVERY cable you use.
2) Listen to every mic you use before you go to the shoot. Figure out best use and placement on yourself and friends before the shoot.
3) Use of a mixer will give you a better opportunity to monitor levels into the camcorder. Take that camcorder off auto-gain and find output settings on your mixer that will reliably allow you to know when you're peaking at -10 to -12db on the camcorder. The idea here is that you should be able to tell this by looking at the mixer meters.
4) Build a cable set that sends two xlr from your mixer to the camcorder, and returns the headphone output from the camcorder. Insist on listening to playback of tape frequently.

It's a lot of hassle, but this is how to deal with hum and hiss - catch it at the source and make sure it isn't recorded. DNR is a band-aid that you should only have to reach for very occasionally.

Possible sources of hum and hiss include bad cables, broken mics, bad setups on wireless mics, bad recording levels, bad gain structure leading to mixer/camera electronics noise, ac cables lying parallel to mic cables, broken cameras, broken mixers, dirty AC power source, etc. Using the techniques above should allow you to catch any and all of these problems at the time of recording. If the work is important you want to be sure you have a clean recording while you can best fix it.


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Ty Ford
Re: Trying to learn on my own. How about some advice?
on May 26, 2005 at 9:18:08 pm

Everytime I finish with a film I look back at it and hear alot of crap in my recording & mixes.

--You don't hear crap while you're posting? If not, get bigger speakers and point them at your ears while you post and set your edit system up in a low noise environment.

from the recordings I get hiss & hum
I tried to correct the problem by buying a different mic I go a Shure SM89 (didn't have the money for a senn 416 yet) would the senneheiser make a big difference in this?

--If your problems are happening during acquisition, certainly.


In the mix.
I try to clean up my audio of hiss, hum, drop outs match up ambience and try to fix the actors not talking loud enough ( I like to blame them for me not gaining up enough haha)
I don't have much luck at hetting the hiss and hum out I've tried to methods sweeping around with an EQ looking for nasty to drop out. I take little chunks out now with the EQ and get pretty much the same result as taking big chunks out.

--hiss frequently indicates too low a record level or a bad transfer somewhere. Use a mixer with a good limiter next time so you can keep your record levels up without peaking.

I have also used DINR first time I used it had a mess took huge chunks out and got some nasty digital sounds. The second time I took out 1.5db at a time about 3 rounds of this and it sounded good then I got into the mix and started boasting everything up to a decent level and surprise the noise came back.

What am I doing wrong with this?

--ANY noise reduction must be used very carefully. WHile removing noise it also removes the good stuff.

I would like to talk some about recording good clean production audio to start with since there is never any budget or time for ADR.
1. What kind of mics?

Hypercardioid for boom; Schoeps is arguably the best; cmc641xt.
With lavs it's a toss up.


2. How many on set?

--enough to cover your action.

3. Use a mixer or just go straight into the camera (which is a Panasonic DV100A -- with 2 SLR inputs)

--Mixer with a good limiter. SOund Devices MixPre, 302 or 442.


4. What kind of levels should I look for peaking or not seems like they are never loud enough once I get to the edit. Even if there peaking. (with no distortion) just in the red.

--With the limiter set right, you should be able to do dialog with peaks at -3dB.

Well if you have read this book of items I applaude you. And hope that you can help.

Brian B

Odd you should mention book. I have one written just for folks like yourself. Check it out on my web site.

Regards,

TyFord


Ty Ford's "Audio Bootcamp Field Guide" was written for video people who want better audio. Find out more at http://www.tyford.com


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Brian B
Re: Trying to learn on my own. How about some advice?
on May 27, 2005 at 10:32:12 pm

Hi Ty Ford,

Just went to Schoeps.com and checked out there mics.

I looked for the 641xt but couldn't find it I take it is an older mic?

But the CMC41 grabbed my attention wondering if this would be a good choice for indoor production audio?
It looks like Schoeps doesn't recommend there mics for outdoor use.
But who knows until you try!

I have been looking back at my recordings and I do beleive most of it is just lack of experience I think my problem is gain stageing, and getting a good performance from the actors (basically I need to be more stubborn, not to hard for me, I'm just to freakin polite)

Once again thanks allot and hope you guys have a good memorial day weekend!

--brian b

Brian B
Editor
Avid|DS
http://www.trueindiefilms.com
http://www.lithia.com


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Brian B
Re: Trying to learn on my own. How about some advice?
on May 28, 2005 at 12:28:03 am


I just now realized that the CMC641
is a CMC6
with a 41 Capsule cool.
That mic looks great now I just need to find someone that sells it and save up some money!!!



Brian B
Editor
Avid|DS
http://www.trueindiefilms.com
http://www.lithia.com


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Brian B
Re: Trying to learn on my own. How about some advice?
on May 26, 2005 at 10:46:40 pm

I would like to thank everyone that has answered my questions they have helped out tremendously.

The answers are exactly what I needed to hear.

I am going to start tring your advice right now.

Thanks allot

brian b

Brian B
Editor
Avid|DS
http://www.trueindiefilms.com
http://www.lithia.com


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