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Audio field mixer and mics

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Matt Oaten
Audio field mixer and mics
on Nov 17, 2010 at 10:25:05 am

Hi,

After a request from our boss to improve the quality of our interviews we're looking at investing in a field mixer, rifle and lavalier mic. We shoot on 5Ds and 7Ds, our current set up is poor, with a rode ntg2 mic straight into a Zoom H4n.

I'm looking at getting the Sound Devices SD302 Field Mixer, the Sennheiser ew 112-p G3, the K6/ME66 short gun. We need to minimise echo, limit and monitor peaking and monitor the sound. Does this seem a sensible option, or are there other choices that would yield us better results for the money?

Would it be a sensible option to consider taking a feed from the mixer straight into the Canons, or would you advise going into the Zoom? Or an entirely different solution?

Thanks for your help,


Matt Oaten


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Ty Ford
Re: Audio field mixer and mics
on Nov 17, 2010 at 12:41:15 pm

Hello Matt and welcome to the Cow Audio Forum.

I have not heard from anyone in my group of mixers who has found a way to get good audio out of a Canon 5 or 7. At this point we believe that it's just not possible because of design limitations. Until Canon decides to do something about that, or unless you can unlock the genie in the Canon, the best advice is to double record.

This won't be the first time audio was ignored on a video camera. The RED had horribly stupid problems with audio when it came out. It took them some time to admit the problems were worth fixing.

That leaves a lot of options. One of the best solutions on your case would be the Sound Devices 552. It a 5 channel mixer with built-in two track recorder. Very high quality. Next down is their 302 unless you find a 442 in good condition.

The Sennheiser G3 and ME67 are entry level quality, but acceptable unless you're aiming for really good sound. The hollow sound you refer to is likely due to misuse of a shotgun mic. More on that here.
http://gallery.me.com/tyreeford#100038

Hope this helps.

Regards,

Ty Ford

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






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John Moore
Re: Audio field mixer and mics
on Nov 17, 2010 at 3:44:57 pm

If I were putting together a basic rig like you are needing I would go with a couple of options:

SD 302 mixer
Fostex FR-2LE recorder
Sennheiser G3 wireless (I wouldn't use the included lav)
Countryman B3 lav (replaces stock G3 lav- better sound & smaller)
Rode NTG-3 short shotgun

If you were on a budget you could get away with replacing the 302 & the FR-2LE with an Edirol R-44 recorder... While not the ideal, because of the loss of the mixer, the R-44 has an excellent mixer-style interface. I would still go with the G3 & the B3 lav because of the better sound & the ability to hide the B3. If you don't need to worry about hiding the lav you could use the stock G3 lav, I just don't like the sound.

I also like the Rode NTG-3 over the ME66, I thought the ME66 sounded quite thin. The NTG-3 is fuller sounding & is good at rejecting RF signals. It is also more forgiving & doesn't have as "tight" a front pattern as the MKH-416, which it is patterned after.

John Moore
sound.flyingmonkeystudio.com


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Matt Oaten
Re: Audio field mixer and mics
on Nov 17, 2010 at 3:55:02 pm

Thanks for your input guys, I will talk things over with the team here and see what we think will work best for us.

And Ty, this is the 2nd time you've helped me out, many thanks!

Matt


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Ty Ford
Re: Audio field mixer and mics
on Nov 17, 2010 at 4:01:10 pm

Matt,

Everyone here has a lot to offer. I'm very fortunate they hang around.

Regards,

Ty

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






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Matt Oaten
Re: Audio field mixer and mics
on Nov 24, 2010 at 11:54:18 am

Just to let you know that we've decided to spend the cash and get the SD702 and a NTG3 - I think it'll definitely be worth it in the long run. It's arriving tomorrow, looking forward to recording some half decent audio for a change!

Thanks again for your help Audio Pro's,

Matt


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Ty Ford
Re: Audio field mixer and mics
on Nov 17, 2010 at 3:59:29 pm

"If you were on a budget you could get away with replacing the 302 & the FR-2LE with an Edirol R-44 recorder... While not the ideal, because of the loss of the mixer, the R-44 has an excellent mixer-style interface. I would still go with the G3 & the B3 lav because of the better sound & the ability to hide the B3. If you don't need to worry about hiding the lav you could use the stock G3 lav, I just don't like the sound.

I also like the Rode NTG-3 over the ME66, I thought the ME66 sounded quite thin. The NTG-3 is fuller sounding & is good at rejecting RF signals. It is also more forgiving & doesn't have as "tight" a front pattern as the MKH-416, which it is patterned after."

John,

Were you aware that the lav that comes with the G3 is better than the one they used for the G2? From some folks I'm hearing there's only so much you can do with the G3 mic replacement due to its front end. I'd like to hear a TRAM 50 through it to see what that does, but I haven't had (and probably won't have) the opportunity.

The NTG-3 is definitely better sounding than the ME66/67 and my tests agree with your assessment that the NTG-3 has a slightly wider pattern than the MKH 416. Good for "two shots", but not in areas of noise or reflectivity.

A starter kit should also have a good hypercardioid or supercardioid; the best being a Schoeps CMC641. From there on down it's an MKH50, AT4053b, Audic SCX-1HC or an Oktava MC012 with hyper capsule.

and proper wind protection, a suspension mount, cables, etc..

Regards,

Ty Ford

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






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Tony Connoly
Re: Audio field mixer and mics
on Nov 17, 2010 at 4:23:23 pm

Ty,

Since they already have a NTG-2, I'm wondering what added benefit the NTG-3 will get them.


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Ty Ford
Re: Audio field mixer and mics
on Nov 17, 2010 at 4:53:58 pm

Tony,

There's a quantum leap between the NTG-2 and NTG-3, but if they are happy with what they're getting...

Regards,

Ty

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






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Tony Connoly
Re: Audio field mixer and mics
on Nov 17, 2010 at 5:00:24 pm

Ty,

Can I ask you to elaborate on the main differences between the NTG-2 and NTG-3 (or if you know if a good resource that has covered this topic)?

Many thanks.


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Ty Ford
Re: Audio field mixer and mics
on Nov 17, 2010 at 5:14:20 pm

http://reduser.net/forum/archive/index.php/t-17857.html

Ty Ford

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






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Tony Connoly
Re: Audio field mixer and mics
on Nov 17, 2010 at 8:29:54 pm

Thanks for the article Ty, though I did not understand a word of it. Somebody on another site wrote that you said you liked the low-end of the NTG-2 more than the NTG-3. Anyhow, I clearly don't know enough to even ask an intelligent question about the differences between two mics.


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John Moore
Re: Audio field mixer and mics
on Nov 17, 2010 at 6:29:24 pm

Ty- I have both the G2 & G3 systems, and while the G3 stock lav is preferred over the G2 I still prefer the Countryman B3 sound over both... I also like the size, since I usually have to hide the lav on the talent. If they're not having to hide the lav- then the G3 lav sounds okay out in the open.

Also- I would add the AKG CK93 hypercardioid (with the SE300B body) to the list of hypers... I prefer it over the Oktava, mostly because the Oktava has handling noise problems. I also like the smoothness of the CK93. I haven't used the AT4035b, but I know a lot of people like it when you're talking the under $500 range.

John Moore
sound.flyingmonkeystudio.com


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Ty Ford
Re: Audio field mixer and mics
on Nov 17, 2010 at 6:52:41 pm

Thanks for your thoughtful reply, John.

I know of the CK93, but haven't used it yet.

The Countryman B6 are also very high on my list for waterproof, hiding and sound.

Regards,

Ty Ford

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






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Eric Toline
Re: Audio field mixer and mics
on Nov 24, 2010 at 1:03:56 pm

Re: Audio field mixer and mics
by John Moore on Nov 17, 2010 at 1:29:24 pm


"Ty- I have both the G2 & G3 systems, and while the G3 stock lav is preferred over the G2 I still prefer the Countryman B3 sound over both... I also like the size, since I usually have to hide the lav on the talent. If they're not having to hide the lav- then the G3 lav sounds okay out in the open."


If you have the G2/3 EW 112 then you get the ME2 omni. If you get the EW 122 then you get the ME4 cardioid. It's a wide cardioid and sounds a lot better than the omni. In fact I prefer it over the B3.

Eric


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