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What is the best way to do the audio on a shoot

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jonathan young
What is the best way to do the audio on a shoot
on Jun 25, 2008 at 2:56:16 am

Hello, I have a Panasonic DVX-100 camera, I have to do a shoot that requires 4 people to have have wireless mics, this is my first time doing something like this, is it as simple as hooking a mixer to the XLR input on my camera, and hooking the wireless transmitters to the mixer ? thanks


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David Jones
Re: What is the best way to do the audio on a shoot
on Jun 25, 2008 at 3:40:47 am

Hi Jonathan-

I'm not sure anything involving 4 wireless mics is simple ;o)

Are you doing it all or will you have help? On the camera, are you mixing two wireless mics to channel 1, and the other two to channel 2? Is this up to you how it is mixed, or the director/producer? What kind of mixer are you using? What kind of wireless transmitters/receivers?

As far as your question, yes, you would connect your outputs on your mixer to the inputs on the camera. Make sure you are set up to go line level-out to line level-in on the camera (or mic level-out to mic level-in if the camera doesn't have true line level). But make sure the inputs on the mixer are set to mic level-in for the wireless receivers.


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Will Salley
Re: What is the best way to do the audio on a shoot
on Jun 25, 2008 at 4:24:16 am

I would suggest you hire an experienced location sound person for this shoot, even if you don't have the budget. Miking four people with wireless and mixing the dialog properly is a challenge even for a well-equipped and experienced pro. The chances of a a first-timer" getting it right are next to nothing.

Using a pro sound person will also free you up to concentrate on whatever other job (cameraman I assume) you will have during the shoot. You can take the opportunity to learn some things regarding mixing and miking multiple talent but above all, you can have confidence that the sound takes will be useable.

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Ty Ford
Re: What is the best way to do the audio on a shoot
on Jun 25, 2008 at 11:26:58 am

I'm with Will.

This is not a "set and forget" job. Someone has to decide which mics are up, how far they are up, when they get pulled down, etc. or you end up with a huge amount of ugly room sound.

Before you jump into this, sit down with a sound person and go over the setups. I have had to tell shooters and producers that I can't give them good sound in certain situations. If the setups can be blocked out right, the problem goes away.

Planning......planning....and more planning.

Regards,

Ty

Want better production audio?: Ty Ford's Audio Bootcamp Field Guide






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David Jones
Re: What is the best way to do the audio on a shoot
on Jun 25, 2008 at 3:23:49 pm

I was wondering...could you tell us what kind of shoot this is?

I also agree with Will and Ty that this is not something you want to do alone. Anytime you're dealing with more than two mics and only two tracks, you can't just leave them all up and forget it. As Ty said, you'll wind up with so much room noise, the audio will be unusable.


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jonathan young
Re: What is the best way to do the audio on a shoot
on Jun 25, 2008 at 4:05:26 pm

This is a talk show type format, but you guys are right, I will find a sound person, but I do have the right concept with the mixer going to camera's ? what is the best setup as far as which wireless mics to use ? I am renting all the audio equipment from a film/video vendor, do you have any suggestions ?
Thank you all for time and expertise.



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Ty Ford
Re: What is the best way to do the audio on a shoot
on Jun 25, 2008 at 4:33:30 pm

If they are seated from beginning to end, go hard wired and use a Sure FP410 Auto mixer (that you will also adjust manually while in AUTO mode. You still need someone who knows what to do.

If some are coming on and other going off camera...well it depends. If it's casual, they put the mics on when they get on set and take them off as they leave,

More professionally, you'd use wireless for anyone going on/off set.

You could still use the FP410.

Only one camera? Well if you have two cameras, you can feed both with the FP410. It's a 4x1 mixer with two separate outputs. Not stereo, dual mono.

Regards,

Ty Ford



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Randy Wheeler
Re: What is the best way to do the audio on a shoot
on Jun 25, 2008 at 6:32:53 pm

Ty,

I have two FP410's and was wondering if you would use both of them in this situation if you had the choice. I was thinking that you could put two mics on each mixer and then run the mono output from each mixer into CH1 and CH2 of the camcorders. You would end up with two mics on each channel instead of all four mics on one channel which may be useful in post if there was any noise issues with the mics during the recording. You wouldn't be serial linking the mixers, they would operate separate. I velcro mine together, one on top of the other, when I use two in the field.

Also, what do you mean by "manual" when using the FP410? I still adjust the mic gain controls when using the FP410 but just wanted to know what you meant by it.

Randy


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Ty Ford
Re: What is the best way to do the audio on a shoot
on Jun 25, 2008 at 6:45:01 pm

Hello Randy,

Sure! if you have two FP410, you could use both, one to each camera track.

Either two and two or host on one and guests on two, depending on the dynamics.

If you only have one FP410 you should still be OK, just not as much separation.

There are settings inside the FP410. I usually choose the setting that reduces the level but doesn't take them it all the way out, the slower rather than the faster fade setting and the one that keeps the last mic spoken into open until someone speaks into another mic.

Yes manually riding gain on levels even though the Auto mode is engaged. The limiter in my FP410 is pretty good too. I think I use it most of the time.

Regards,

Ty Ford


Want better production audio?: Ty Ford's Audio Bootcamp Field Guide






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