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Bruce Watson
telephone interview
on Apr 21, 2015 at 11:04:59 pm

My wife is sometimes asked for interviews by radio stations and journalists. Most of the radio stations more or less insist on a land line. I don't know why, but would like to know -- anyone?

Back to the point, I want to cancel my land line and just have cell phones for me and my wife. What can I do on my end to improve the audio going into a cell phone that will help the radio station on the other end of the call make a good clean intelligible recording of my wife's voice?

She's using an iPhone. I've got some audio equipment around (I do some classical and acoustic recording, some dialog work (I've got an MKH416 and an AT4053b for booming, MixPre-D, OST 802 lav mics, etc.), and I'm not adverse to buying more if it'll help her, within a fairly limited budget since there's not a lot of money in this (as in, none).


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Richard Crowley
Re: telephone interview
on Apr 21, 2015 at 11:47:04 pm
Last Edited By Richard Crowley on Apr 22, 2015 at 12:02:05 am

A land line is virtually always cleaner and more reliable than any cell connection. And a traditional telephone gets the microphone closer to her mouth as well.

How good is your cell reception at home? Are there rooms where the signal is better ("more bars")? It would be good to know if there are things like using the best room to improve your cell connection.

Does she have a headset or earbuds with a microphone? There are Bluetooth headsets with microphone that sound reasonably good. For example Logitech H800.

Can you use Skype or some internet/VOIP service? Cell phone connection is pretty much at the bottom of the quality list.


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Peter Groom
Re: telephone interview
on Apr 22, 2015 at 2:02:22 pm

I agree. Phones are ALWAYS horrible a,d cell phones even worse.
Google IpDTL. This would sit on your broadband connection and give high quality audio that the stations would love you for.
Peter

Post Production Dubbing Mixer


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Bruce Watson
Re: telephone interview
on Apr 22, 2015 at 7:55:31 pm

[Peter Groom] "Google IpDTL. This would sit on your broadband connection and give high quality audio that the stations would love you for."

This is a possibility. $15/month, use it or not, is somewhat steep. At that level there's not a lot to be gained by loosing the land line. Hmmmm....

And it requires the other end to also be running IpDTL. So is this like a standard? IOW, is it relatively common that radio and TV stations are using IpDTL?

This is an odd thing for me to get my head around since I've never done any broadcast engineering. I've always been on the outside, not the inside. And I'm trying to make it easier on the guy on the inside, who's job I've never done. So I want to help, just don't know how. Sigh...


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Bruce Watson
Re: telephone interview
on Apr 22, 2015 at 7:43:54 pm

Cell reception here is pretty good. Nearest tower is maybe half a mile away and reasonably tall. No rooms are better than any other really. I'll look at the Logitech H800 for her cellphone.

She can use Skype and/or VOIP from her computer also. But the question is still how to make it "broadcast friendly". Maybe a nice LDC into a USB interface? Is there any VOIP software that might be considered something of a standard for broadcast use? I've seen people using Skype for some of this. Anything get wider acceptance? Better quality? Or is Skype used simply because of lowest common denominator?


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Peter Groom
Re: telephone interview
on Apr 23, 2015 at 7:37:56 am

Ipdtl isnt a standard (With IP solutions I very much doubt if 1 standard will ever emerge), but certainally here in the UK it is growing fast as a replacement for ISDN VO lines, and along with 1 or 2 others will likely become as near a standard as well get.
I think at 15 a month its as near to free as youll get in the broadcasting world, and its bIG plus is it sounds like they ran a mic cable from the studio and not god awful phone connections, which peresonally i switch off whenever someone is put to air on the phone now.
Speak to the broadcasters you deal with most often and find out if they want this. They drive it not the contributor.
Peter

Post Production Dubbing Mixer


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Ty Ford
Re: telephone interview
on Apr 23, 2015 at 9:15:38 pm
Last Edited By Ty Ford on Apr 23, 2015 at 9:20:10 pm

Hello Bruce and Welcome to the Cow Audio Forum.

Sad to say, land lines are not always better than cell phones. I've been producing a half hour radio interview program for four years and while hard land line USUALLY sounds best, it doesn't always.

Some land lines are really fiber optic bundles and have undergone significant data compression.

We record the conversations over SKYPE at the highest level possible with Call Recorder. The files are sent to me for editing mixing and NR. I rely HEAVILY on RX3 noise reduction as well as EQ, compression and limiting to make the person on the other end of the phone sound as good as possible. Sometimes it's stunningly OK, other times it's a PITA.

Try to have the luxury of time to try a different phone or simply a different call back on the same phone to try and chance your way into a better connection.

Regards,

Ty Ford
Cow Audio Forum Leader

You can hear what I'm doing by listening to the shows we have archived on Paul's site. http://www/paulchristomd.com

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


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Bruce Watson
Re: telephone interview
on Apr 24, 2015 at 6:50:37 pm

[Ty Ford] "We record the conversations over SKYPE at the highest level possible with Call Recorder. The files are sent to me for editing mixing and NR. I rely HEAVILY on RX3 noise reduction as well as EQ, compression and limiting to make the person on the other end of the phone sound as good as possible. Sometimes it's stunningly OK, other times it's a PITA."

I understand more or less what you have to do on your end. Some of what you've written about this is why I'm asking my question: I'm just trying to make your job easier.

I was sort of hoping that there might be some way to coax better audio out of an iPhone. Something like a better app that would record a larger frequency range, less compression, etc. coupled with a decent head-worn mic maybe. Heck, I'll mount a TLM170 on a desk stand with a pop shield if that'll help.

But if I can't get better audio out of a smartphone, would Skype take advantage of the better mic coming into the computer on a USB interface? Worth doing, or am I just wasting my time?


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Ty Ford
Re: telephone interview
on Apr 24, 2015 at 11:44:52 pm

Hard to say. Every SKYPE call we do sounds different. Some are quite good (for phone audio) others are pretty nasty.

I don't know if having a Neumann front end would help you going into a iPhone. During the phone conversation, I'm guessing the bandwidth limiting of the connection would compromise and quality that a studio mic might provide. I find a Plantronics .628 USB headphone and mic work pretty well but it doesn't sound like a studio mic.

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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Peter Groom
Re: telephone interview
on Apr 25, 2015 at 6:57:20 am

Hi Ty
I agree.
ANY electornics path is only ever as good as its weakest link, be it a hifi at home, a factories manufacturing process, or an audio chain.
Putting a high end studio mic into a lo spec signal path is 100% pointless as you wont hear what youre paying for in the neumann.
Peter

Post Production Dubbing Mixer


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