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Recording Audio in camera

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Mike Thomas
Recording Audio in camera
on Feb 7, 2011 at 3:49:33 am

I'm trying to work out how I'm going to shoot my next ultra-low budget movie. Question: Would it be practical if I didn't hire a sound recordist but instead only used a boom pole operator, sending the audio directly into the camera and leaving the camera's audio recording monitoring on "auto"? I plan to buy a Panasonic af 100 for the camera. Ideally having a separate sound guy would be best...but is what I'm suggesting an exceptable alternative? The camera has XLR inputs for audio but would it be safe to rely on the camera to record the audio properly without "supervision"?


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Chris Tompkins
Re: Recording Audio in camera
on Feb 7, 2011 at 1:21:35 pm

We've all done budget shoots and had to record audio as well as run cam.
Yes, you can do it.

However, DO NOT use AUTO on your cam audio settings.
This will not yield the best results.
Take 30 sec. to set levels with ea. scene. Monitor you audio levels as you record.

Have someone show you if you don't know how.
If the cam is new to you, Practice, test, test.

Chris Tompkins
Video Atlanta LLC


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Ty Ford
Re: Recording Audio in camera
on Feb 7, 2011 at 2:40:27 pm

DISCLAIMER: I'm one of the Cow Audio Professional Forum moderators.

Practical? Please define practical.

There are a number of good reasons for using a mixer (and a competent operator).

1. They let you vary volumes without shaking the camera or getting in the way of the camera op.
2. You may need to do that a lot with some people. I ride gain even if one person is talking if their voice fades on the end of each line. You can only do this in a relatively quiet environment, otherwise you bring up the ambient noise.
3. Mixer preamps (good ones) sound better than camera preamps.
4. Good mixers have input transformers that scrape off RF before it get into your audio.
5. Good mixers have limiters that allow you to record hotter, keeping your audio further above the noise floor without distorting.
6. Good mixers have EQ that lets you roll of LF HVAC noise before it gets into your audio.
7. Good mixers have mulitple outputs so you can feed more than one camera, or separate recorder simultaneously.
8. Good mixers make your sound better. If they didn't pros wouldn't use them.

You don't mention a competent boom operator. A big budget film team frequently is comprised of three people. A recordist/mixer, a boom op and a utility person. If the mic isn't pointed the right way, how well you record doesn't really matter.

Is it an exceptable alternative? (sic) Are you planning to put the camera on sticks, sit auto and have the action happen in front of it with no camera motion?

Back to your question. CAN you do it? Sure. What will you get? Who knows?

Bottom Line: As long as you're your own client, do anything you want.

Regards,

Ty Ford

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





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ernesto Quintero
Re: Recording Audio in camera
on May 18, 2011 at 4:14:40 am

Tring to record Audio into my brand new Panasonic AF 100. Can anybody tell me why I can't?


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Ty Ford
Re: Recording Audio in camera
on May 18, 2011 at 11:15:13 am

Hello Ernesto and welcome to the Cow Field Production Forum.

You'll have to give us a lot more information about what you're doing.

Regards,

Ty Ford

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





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ernesto Quintero
Re: recording Audio in camera
on May 18, 2011 at 2:22:06 pm

We figured it out. When you dial in the frame rate it automatically cancels out audio and you have to record audio externally....but the LCD indicates that you are recording audio, which makes it confusing. It's an issue thats been addressed by panasonic with they're new firmware....thanks for responding....


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