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Interview audio (off camera) - what device?

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David McGuire
Interview audio (off camera) - what device?
on Jul 16, 2009 at 6:15:08 pm

Forgive this newbie question

Im working on a small non profit project with a famous person. Im a camera man with a high end camera and good mike set up. Ive been asked to record a voice only interview. Weird for me but OK. There isnt any one else available- like a sound person.
This is a staged interview- non studio. What recording device would you recommend for audio that will underlie a web cast video?

It feels unprofessional to record into the camera or directly into FCP on my Macbook but if the audio is as good what are the benefits to using a digital audio recorded? What rental device would you recommend?

thank you

David McGuire
Seastewards.org
Media for a Healthy Ocean


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Steve Kownacki
Re: Interview audio (off camera) - what device?
on Jul 17, 2009 at 1:18:35 am

Hi David,
what would be unprofessional about using your camera setup if you are completely comfortable with the gear allowing you to focus on the creative and making the talent comfortable? I used to do that sort of thing for audio only, now I use my macbook with Peak audio thru an m-audio USB box. If the conditions are great, I use a shure KSM27, poor surrounding I use a supercardiod. Heck, it's 2 channel, use both. This is very reliable. I'd be leary, since you talk about a 'famous' person, about using any unfamiliar gear that may crash, hiccup, or cause you grief. People need to remember talent and skills, not your tools.

Steve



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Ty Ford
Re: Interview audio (off camera) - what device?
on Jul 17, 2009 at 2:11:44 am

Hello David and welcome to the Cow Audio Forum.

What camera?

What mic?

Regards,

Ty Ford



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Sam Mallery
Re: Interview audio (off camera) - what device?
on Jul 17, 2009 at 1:11:33 pm

I don't think it's the recorder you have to worry about, it's the microphones. If you have a good camera, chances are you have two XLR inputs. I would use the camera to record the audio, not Final Cut.

How is the interview being conducted? Is it just two people speaking? Are they at a table, or sitting in chairs, or on the street? Is there ambient noise? Are they moving around?

Answer these questions and we'll recommend microphones for the job.



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David McGuire
Re: Interview audio (off camera) - what device?
on Jul 20, 2009 at 7:34:46 pm

Thanks for all the great responses

I have an PWW EX1 XD Cam w/ 2 XLR inputs with a Sony ECM-673 Mike that I can boom. I have Shure SM 58 that culd be fixed. Its a one subject interview in a controlled sound setting- but not a sound booth.
I also Have a Shure wirelss lava but its a cheapy and created a buzz in the second channel when I tested so Ive eliminated that. Im also interested in lava mikes and wonder about recommendations.

thanks!

David McGuire
Seastewards.org
Media for a Healthy Ocean


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Greg Curda
Re: Interview audio (off camera) - what device?
on Aug 3, 2009 at 3:05:03 pm

If the gig isn't already done, I think I would play it safe, rent 2 hardwired Sanken COS 11s, or 2 Countryman B6s, heck, even 2 Sony ECM 50s, with tie/lapel clips, place each lav for the best sound (maybe midway between collar bone and sternum), plug those into the camera and go, recording each channel separately. At least your mics will match. Then it's just a question of levels...I might even be tempted to use...gasp...the auto gain function, especially if the interview will be spirited or prone to sudden outbursts, etc. I think on the EX1 if you set the levels lower, the auto gain won't kick in unless you need it, like a limiter...I could be wrong on that, so some experimentation and research is called for. Otherwise, just watch the levels (trying to set both mics at the same level, if possible) and don't get any peaks higher than -6 and not softer than -20. Experiment with this yourself and then verify and modify when talent arrives.

Then in post if your levels are correct, you should be able to cut back and forth, keeping the BG smooth, without having to have 2 channels open all the time...The key is matching the BGs so each cut goes smoothly across. If the room is really quiet, you could even leave both channels open, and let it rip at a constant level. This way, your BGs match by default.


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