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audio field recorder for doco

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Nicholas Canavan
audio field recorder for doco
on Jun 27, 2011 at 6:40:30 am

Hello to everyone.

I have been filming an independent doco film for the last few years. My camera is the Sony Fx1e. For audio i have been using the marantz pmd660 with a Rode NTG2 shotgun mic.

I have had many troubles over time with the marantz, and have previously talked about these in old posts on the forum.

So now i am fed up with it, and want to buy a new audio field recorder.

From researching it sounds like the zoom h4n may be ok...there also seems to be many more in the same price range. But i don't know if this will suffice for what i want. The doco is on the move sometimes, others its a sit down interview type thing.

It seems that for audio recorders it is either the $200-500 price range, or stepping up to the very expensive recorders.

My budget really can't step up to the recorders for $2000, $3000...unless there is a super good reason to invest that much money.

Any help/advice would be greatly appreciated.

Nick.


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Al Bergstein
Re: audio field recorder for doco
on Jun 27, 2011 at 9:53:55 am

R u working with a sound eng or is it just you alone?

What mics r you using? Xlr?

Tascam h2p2 is pretty sweet, around $800.

Read this too..
http://www.martin-doppelbauer.de/fieldrecorder/distortions.html

Edirol is superb at around $1k.

Alf


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Nicholas Canavan
Re: audio field recorder for doco
on Jun 27, 2011 at 11:29:45 pm

Hi Al

I have been working with a girlfriend of mine for the last few years..

She started with little experience, but over time has learnt the basics of recording and knows the marantz well. I now call her my sound recordist...not a pro, but she is doing pretty well with alot of practice.

Yes the mic is a Rode NTG2, xlr input into the marantz.

I will have a look at the tascam and edirol too...

I have read the link you gave, though it is very technical i think i can understand the gist of it. Basically it is saying that a hot signal going into the zoom h4n even with the zoom turned down will still distort? (sorry for my lack of knowledge here)..

I am a little worried, as my doco is filming a hip-hop artist, and when he does live shows, i need to get a feed from the live desk into my audio recorder for a recording of the show. (the marantz was a nightmare for this).


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Al Bergstein
Re: audio field recorder for doco
on Jun 28, 2011 at 4:54:17 am

I do sound off the boards a lot, the edirol is my choice though the tascam is a close second.

I don't use the zoom for line feeds, if i can help it. I do always try to use my mixpre.it's worth the money.

Alf


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Nicholas Canavan
Re: audio field recorder for doco
on Jun 29, 2011 at 2:48:43 am

Al, what is the main reason that the zoom lacks in situations getting feeds from sound boards? Just overall quality? distortion?

So you would normally use a mixer in between the board and your recorder just to get a better overall sound?


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Ty Ford
Re: audio field recorder for doco
on Jun 28, 2011 at 12:32:51 am

Hi Nick,

How many tracks to you expect to need?

Regards,

Ty Ford

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


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Nicholas Canavan
Re: audio field recorder for doco
on Jun 28, 2011 at 1:02:00 am

Hi Ty, most likely just the 1, since i am using just the 1 input from my rode ntg2 mic, xlr input.

Possibly use 2 when getting a live feed from a desk at a live music show..as it could be a left and right xlr ins to the recording device.

When or in what situations would call for more inputs? just out of curiosity?


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Ty Ford
Re: audio field recorder for doco
on Jun 28, 2011 at 1:11:31 am

OK,

When shooting a music video, you might want anything from a full multitrack feed from the console (16-to 24 tracks) plus live mics to recreate the sound the audience is hearing from the stage

You might want groups tracks, lead vocal, stereo instrument submix, stereo live mics.

You might want 4 tracks, as i'm doing this week for a three mic interview show. Each mic goes to a separate track and the 4th track is a mono mix of the three tracks. We'll use the mono mix unless I blow it somehow and then we have the isos to fix things.

Dialog scene or wedding video. Bride on one, groom on two, preacher on three.

Regards,

Ty ford

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


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Nicholas Canavan
Re: audio field recorder for doco
on Jun 29, 2011 at 2:52:30 am

thanks ty for your response.

Since i currently have only 1 mic, i guess its less likely i will use multi-tracks. However i have been thinking about wireless lav mics..as well as the shotgun rode ntg2 for recording.


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Al Bergstein
Re: audio field recorder for doco
on Jun 29, 2011 at 5:41:03 am

Nicolas, the zoom does not support true line in. You can easily search to find this well documented. You need to pad it, at best. Put a mixpre in front of it and you will be better off. This is the easiest way to explain it quickly. Search around for more detail, that's what i did.

Alf


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Ty Ford
Re: audio field recorder for doco
on Jun 29, 2011 at 11:27:58 am

Hello Al,

Are the Zoom H4n inputs -10 consumer line level?

That would make them between mic level and pro line level.

Regards,

Ty Ford
Cow Audio Forum Leader

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


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