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Looking For Direction

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Kyle Blackwell
Looking For Direction
on Oct 24, 2013 at 12:36:23 pm

Hey Everyone,

The company I work for has recently decided to get into producing product videos. However, due to space limitations we are having to shoot these videos on the production floor, in an empty space in the back of the warehouse. We did a test shot and everything looked okay, but our Lav mic on the talent was picking up just about everything else in the building, staple guns, paging, forklifts etc. Now it wasn't super loud or anything, since we are pretty far in the back, but the audio is there and it's distracting.

Needless to say we are now looking into getting a new mic, since sound proofing a section of the warehouse isn't really a feasible plan :). My first thought was a shotgun mic, but from what i'm reading people suggest only using them for outdoors, and to stick to cardioid mics when it comes to indoors. Our talent stands behind a table, and is roughly 8 feet from the closest XLR camera. The shot is pretty tight, so we could hang a boom and maybe gain another 2 feet on him, putting him only 6 feet from a mic.

Any suggestions on which type of mic / pattern would be good place to start looking? Thanks!


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Peter Groom
Re: Looking For Direction
on Oct 24, 2013 at 1:08:52 pm

Unless you treat the space isolating it from unwanted sounds then you will get them on your recording irrespective of which mic you use.
Basic rule. if you can hear the noises, so can the mic! Not rocket science really.

Get the environment right, and the kit right.
Peter

Post Production Dubbing Mixer


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Kyle Blackwell
Re: Looking For Direction
on Oct 24, 2013 at 1:12:18 pm

Thanks for the advice. So, even if I went with a shotgun mic and had it pointed at the talent / away from the production floor. I would still pick up background / ambient noise despite the mic having such a narrow pattern?


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Peter Groom
Re: Looking For Direction
on Oct 24, 2013 at 1:37:21 pm

Well of course it all depends on the type and levels of the extraneous noise youre fighting. Clearly using a directional mic pointing away from the noise will help, but if the noise is audible in the space youre pointing into then the mic will hear it as the sound is reflected not only direct.
what are the surfaces like in the space. Soft and absorbent or hard and reflective. Parallel to one another or broken up by screens and soft furnishings etc, carpeted or hard floor,
Is the ceiling low and absorbent or high and hard.

Why cant you do anything to isolate the space if this is given for you to shoot in?

You really want the walls to be solid and dense enough to stop sound transferring into the shoot space from outside. I suggest building a brick cavity wall filled with dry sand, and then treating the inside surfaces with absorbent panels to deaden the interior space.

It all depends on how serious you are about getting it to sound good.
Peter

Post Production Dubbing Mixer


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Kyle Blackwell
Re: Looking For Direction
on Oct 24, 2013 at 1:46:03 pm

The layout of the area is something along the lines of:
A: Muslin back dop
B: Insulated wall
C: Large metal mesh racks / Open to floor
D: Open to floor
X: Talent (Behind a waist high table)
V: Camera

----B------
|
|
A X V D
|
|
-----C-----


All the noise is coming from the direction of C and D, and the ceiling of the building is fairly high, 30ish ft. We cant really put up any walls since this location is hopefully "temporary", and will only use it for 6 months or so. Thanks again for the help thus far.


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Peter Groom
Re: Looking For Direction
on Oct 24, 2013 at 3:38:16 pm

Well as its temporary then it will never really get addressed to be a shooting space.
as much soft material as possible would be best for you
Peter

Post Production Dubbing Mixer


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Kyle Blackwell
Re: Looking For Direction
on Oct 24, 2013 at 3:45:58 pm

Thanks for the advice.


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Bill Davis
Re: Looking For Direction
on Oct 25, 2013 at 2:46:31 am

Kyle.

You're using the wrong type of mic.

In a situation like this, your only hope is to use the inverse square law to help you rather than hurt you.

Buy a headset mic. Something like a Countryman e6 or similar. If you cant afford that, try an aerobics instructor's mic. That will put the presenters mic element literally a fraction of an inch from their mouth. That will let you lower recording volume, suppressing the shop noise. Use balanced lines into a balanced audio recorder. If your camera doesn't record via ballasted connections, get a separate audio recorder and go double system.

It won't be perfect, and you'll have to record a good chunk of shop noise "room tone" to patch edits. But you will get listenable audio that way.

My 2 cents.

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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Richard Crowley
Re: Looking For Direction
on Oct 25, 2013 at 4:34:46 am

Mr. Davis and Mr. Kownacki are giving you the best advice. The ONLY way to deal with such an acoustical hall of mirrors is to get the microphone AS CLOSE AS POSSIBLE to the talent. That means a headset mic. There is no other practical solution in that environment, IMHO.

And it is madness to think about shooting while manufacturing is going on (or even night-shift cleaners, etc.) Schedule production for when nobody else is in the building. Or else find a more suitable place.


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Kyle Blackwell
Re: Looking For Direction
on Oct 25, 2013 at 12:00:48 pm

Thanks for all the feed back everyone. Headset mic seems like where I am going to start looking, and if I can't swing that, going to try and push for a different location. Thanks again for all the advice.


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Craig Alan
Re: Looking For Direction
on Nov 1, 2013 at 4:30:13 am

I've used the E6 and they will help. You might consider directional hand held mikes as well or even use voice overs.

You could hang some moving blankets on the mesh racks with some clamps. And you could try to hang more muslin behind the camera (D) using a back ground support

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/buy/Background-Supports/ci/1396/N/4037060742

Mac Pro, macbook pro, Imacs (i7); Camcorders: Panasonic AG-HPX170/AG-HPX250P, Canon HV30/40, Sony Z7U, VX2000, PD170; FCP 6 certified; write professionally for a variety of media; teach video production in L.A.


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Steve Kownacki
Re: Looking For Direction
on Oct 25, 2013 at 2:59:02 am

The first thing you could do is shoot your video during a non-production/manufacturing shift or on a weekend. Agree with the headset mic too.

Steve





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John Fishback
Re: Looking For Direction
on Oct 26, 2013 at 2:34:07 pm

All good suggestions above. I don't know where you're located, but we've rented space at a local office rental facility and even a local hotel. If you gang up enough videos to shoot a full day, the cost isn't that great. Is there a conference, meeting or training room somewhere in your space that might be used?

John

MacPro 8-core 2.8GHz, 16 GB RAM, OS 10.8.4, QT10.1, Kona 3, Dual Cinema 23, ATI Radeon HD 5870, 24" TV-Logic Monitor, ATTO ExpressSAS R380 RAID Adapter, PDE enclosure with 8-drive 6TB RAID 5
FCS 3 (FCP 7.0.3, Motion 4.0.3, Comp 3.5.3, DVDSP 4.2.2, Color 1.5.3)
FCP-X 10.0.9, Motion 5.0.7, Compressor 4.0.7

Pro Tools HD 10 w SYNC IO & 192 Digital I/O, Yamaha DM1000, Millennia Media HV-3C, Neumann U87, Schoeps Mk41 mics, Genelec DSP Monitors, Prima CDQ120 ISDN


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