Canon DSLR Cameras Forum
Newbie Question - Sound.
Newbie Question - Sound.
by Simon Scott on Jul 21, 2012 at 6:24:44 pm


I'm a pretty decent photographer, so I am familiar with my 5D when shooting stills. I am though, not at all familiar with shooting video and I have been asked to shoot some interviews. I have figured out that I need to add a good quality mike to the camera and perhaps a lookup table to make the video look better. Does anyone have recommendations or equipment that sat on a shelf somewhere that you'd like to sell. I am leaving on the 27th of this month, so I have to move fast !

Thank you.

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Re: Newbie Question - Sound.
by Peter Burger on Jul 22, 2012 at 10:19:11 pm

The internal camera-mic IMHO is of no use other than reference sound.
An often used and often recommended external mic is the Rode Video Mic which will give you decent sound.

The best quality sound you'll only get with external solutions. Advantage: you can position your mics as close as possible to really get the cleanest sound. But you'll have to sync in post.

Very widely used is the Zoom H4N recorder. You can plug in any types of microphones and it has quite good built-in mics as well. I use the Tascam-DR40 which is sort of the direct competitor of the Zoom but a bit less expensive. Sound quality is absolutely comparable.

Found two very informative videos that compare both recorders:


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Re: Newbie Question - Sound.
by Al Bergstein on Jul 22, 2012 at 10:44:45 pm

Simon, I agree with Peter's assessment. If you are on a budget, and can control the interview (it's not just run and gun), then you might buy a wired lavalier. I believe mine came from Sennheiser. Under $150 I think if I remember right. You can get an extension for it cheap, and it will work in under 6' distances just fine. Much farther away and you'll likely need a wireless, which can be much more expensive. I've used both the VideoPro mic from Rode and a longer AT 897 from Audio Technica, but that has some length problems when shooting wide angle. But the longer shotguns are considerably better than the Rode shorties. The 5D and 7D Gain control is horrible and you can't override it. Hopefully the upcoming firmware upgrade from Canon will give us that ability. It will make what is really a useless camera for recording sound into one that will compete with the GH2.

I didn't ask if you had to record the interviewee questions or could just get by with the answers. If you need to record both, you need to buy a recorder to handle the feed, or at least a field mixer.

Maybe hiring a sound guy with gear would be cheaper. If you are in the Pacific NW I'll be glad to work inexpensively for the fun of it (G). I've ended up with a 7D outfit with a series of various lavs, wired and not, various mics, including some sweet Oktavas and the Rode, running through a SD Field mixer and into a Marantz PM661. I find that for interviews this is about as good as needed for most. I hire a sound engineer if I need more than that.