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Outdoor recording, only me

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Scott Hopkins
Outdoor recording, only me
on Jul 26, 2017 at 4:05:31 pm

Hello I am recording outdoor interviews about 5 feet from subject with camera zoom H5. I'm using Laos and then I shot gun mounted on the camera 1 feet foot high and 8 inches to the left. I tried my Sennheiser 8060 but it really gets too much noise and not enough voice. At that distance. I cannot use a boom pole or a C stand to hold it because I'm out in the field is there another mic that would work better? Any suggestions ? The lav is good but I'd like two good sound channels. Especially if the lav picks up a rustle.


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Richard Crowley
Re: Outdoor recording, only me
on Jul 27, 2017 at 3:49:00 am

Five feet is way too far for ANY shotgun to operate effectively. You cannot expect decent dialog at that distance no matter what microphone you are using. If you want decent shotgun performance expect to hang the mic at 18-24 inches (450-600mm) from the subject's mouth.

Assuming "Laos" was supposed to be "lavs"? Else, what is a "Laos"?

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Recording audio without metering and monitoring is exactly like framing and focusing without looking at the viewfinder.


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Bruce Watson
Re: Outdoor recording, only me
on Jul 27, 2017 at 1:18:51 pm

[Scott Hopkins] "...recording outdoor interviews about 5 feet from subject..."
[Scott Hopkins] "my Sennheiser 8060 but it really gets too much noise and not enough voice."

Yep, it would. Because it's not close enough or positioned well enough to pick up more voice and less noise. The optimum position for the camera is seldom the correct position for the mic. Which means that on-camera mics are almost always out of position, which results in less than poor sound quality.

Said another way, it's not the mic, it's the position of the mic. If you want less noise and more voice, you have to get the mic closer to the voice. It really is just that simple.

If getting your 8060 positioned correctly really is out of the question, my advice is to sell it and put the money toward either high quality lavalier mics or earset mics.


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Scott Hopkins
Re: Outdoor recording, only me
on Jul 27, 2017 at 5:22:05 pm

Thanks for the feedback yes you got it.
It was meant to be lavs not Laos.
(Although Maybe that is why I'm getting Laos-ey sound. )
I will stick with my good lav, but still wonder how all those ENG camera operators get by with a shotgun mounted right next to the lens. Thanks again for the feedback!


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Bruce Watson
Re: Outdoor recording, only me
on Jul 27, 2017 at 9:40:32 pm

[Scott Hopkins] "I will stick with my good lav, but still wonder how all those ENG camera operators get by with a shotgun mounted right next to the lens."

In my local news market there are three main players (ABC, CBS, NBC affiliates). They all tend to clip lavs on the people they interview as "set pieces" (reporter not in the frame). When the reporter is doing an active interview they all tend to use exactly one mic, which is the EV RE50N/D-B that the talent operates. Great sounding mic that is as reliable as the day is long. On the few times I've been in Europe I've noticed that they all use Sennheiser MD42s for that same duty. Both excellent reporter mics.

I've not heard a local news broadcast using a camera mounted mic. Ever. Well, at least in the last ten years or so, when I started actively listening for it. It's a distinctive sound, hard to miss. But all I've heard is lavs and stick mics from the small units.

They do use boom mounted shotguns for big public events like School Board meetings and other "crowd" stuff and pressers, but when I've been a spectator at these things the crews always had boom ops. For the one-man-band things, a reporter typically sets up a tripod, drops their camera on it, then steps out in front and either uses a lav or a stick mic.


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Scott Hopkins
Re: Outdoor recording, only me
on Jul 28, 2017 at 1:17:06 am

Hello Bruce thanks for This information.
It really clears up at my misconceptions and explains a lot. Cheers!


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Scott Hopkins
Re: Outdoor recording, only me
on Jul 28, 2017 at 1:31:23 am

Oops more typos. Hope my thanks were not too short for such an in depth and informative post. I really appreciate the info and now no more typos and less Laos-ey sound. Thanks again.


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Simon Billington
Re: Outdoor recording, only me
on Jul 31, 2017 at 10:24:14 am

Yeah lab is usually the way in these cases.

You could always record both so you can mix in a little of the shotgun (environmental mic) in with the lav in post production so it has a bit of ambience to it. Both mics will have to remain a fixed distance apart for this too work. Not easy if you're roaming. Then you just need to align the phases before you make your cut.


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Brian Reynolds
Re: Outdoor recording, only me
on Jul 31, 2017 at 10:28:21 pm

As a guide..... if the talent can't reach out and touch the mic......Its to far away.


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