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Rode Smartlav? Any good? Or just a gimmick?

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Matthew Jeschke
Rode Smartlav? Any good? Or just a gimmick?
on Jul 1, 2013 at 12:17:55 am

I am in need of a discrete recording setup. A friend said he heard about the smartlav from Rode.

I'm curious if it's just a marketing gimmick? Are there other less expensive lavaliers that record just as well?

To fill you in if you have not seen it the smartlav is a lavalier with a jack that is compatible with a smart phone.

I understand that isn't the best jack for recording audio however, I do need something discrete and curious if that works well.

Thanks! here's the link to check it out, http://www.smartlav.com/

I'm learning the ropes of online publishing. Mostly as an excuse to play with more cameras.

Here's several of my latest ventures,
http://www.keystoaz.com
http://www.fitlish.com
http://www.corvettemedic.com


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Ty Ford
Re: Rode Smartlav? Any good? Or just a gimmick?
on Jul 1, 2013 at 12:30:08 am

Hello Matthew and welcome to the Cow Audio Forum.

It worked just fine into my iPad when using the Rode recording App that comes with it. With other iPad apps (I haven't tried all of them) I couldn't turn the gain down enough to prevent distortion.

Regards,

Ty Ford
Cow Audio Forum Leader

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


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Bill Davis
Re: Rode Smartlav? Any good? Or just a gimmick?
on Jul 1, 2013 at 1:45:15 am

At NAB this year, I shot and filed about a dozen stories as a reporter.

Some I shot on a DSLR, some on my iPhone 4 to see how that worked.

I had TWO of my recorded pieces fail for technical reasons - both were the ones I recorded to my iPhone. That content literally just disappeared after I had watched and listened to each one at the time of recording via immediate playback. When it happened, I tried to use standard file-recovery tools to recover the data - and nothing worked. I could not find ANY reliable file recovery software that works on iOS after the fact.

This is NOT to imply that phone recording is necessarily inherently bad. Just to note that the eco-system of using a smartphone as a primary digital recording device is immature at best.

I don't have a clue how the way an iPhone or iPad recording data differs from a laptop or dedicated digital recording device. But my NAB experience taught me to be VERY careful before I ever elect to use my phone or iPad as a primary recording device in the future.

FWIW.

Know someone who teaches video editing in elementary school, high school or college? Tell them to check out http://www.StartEditingNow.com - video editing curriculum complete with licensed practice content.


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Bill Davis
Re: Rode Smartlav? Any good? Or just a gimmick?
on Jul 1, 2013 at 3:25:19 am

Revision to the above. On re-reading, I note that it sounds like ALL my iPhone recordings failed. That's not the case. I did six separate iPhone video interviews and three worked perfectly. On two of the ones that succeeded, I married my iPHone video with H4N audio in post. (didn't have a way to use both a stick mic for the show floor interview AND record video on my iPHone simultaneously.

(Oops - protocol breach - I didn't remember the content I was posting was branded for another website - I've taken it down.)


I'm doing some stories from Comicon later this month if anyone knows a better iPhone solution - please let me know.

Thanks.

Know someone who teaches video editing in elementary school, high school or college? Tell them to check out http://www.StartEditingNow.com - video editing curriculum complete with licensed practice content.


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John Davidson
Re: Rode Smartlav? Any good? Or just a gimmick?
on Jul 1, 2013 at 2:08:22 am

Used it last weekend for my nephews wedding. We used the free Rode app because the paid one wouldn't install for some reason. I literally forgot about it until 3 minutes before they walked down the isle. Plugged it in, hit record, and begged somebody to give it to my nephew.

Awesome, awesome, awesome. No distortion and we got all the good audio on a very windy day with no wind noise. There are worse ways to spend $60.

John Davidson | President / Creative Director | Magic Feather Inc.


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