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Old March 12th, 2008, 06:18 PM   #1
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Please convince me if to sell it

Hi guys. I know this is pretty weird, but i've been debating whether to sell my 702 TC or not.

One side says: sell it, you can go directly to camera or through a mixer and get nice 16bit sound. The negative of that is only 16bits to work with in processing, and generally preamps are better in recorders.

Other side says: you nuts, 24bits has a better dynamic range and more bits for processing. Timecode can be locked with a good camera, 24bit will yield a higher dynamic range and signal to noise ratio. But then again, many features were shot straight into camera and were good enough for the high end productions.

what do you think?
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Old March 12th, 2008, 07:07 PM   #2
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which features?
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Old March 12th, 2008, 08:20 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Sacha Rosen View Post
which features?
i dont understand
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Old March 12th, 2008, 08:31 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Roshdi Alkadri View Post
i dont understand
He is asking which features were shot directly to camera. Honestly, lots of them. It's commensurate with budget. Low budget war docs that have been nominated for Oscars were shot with camera audio. The new "Looking for Osama Bin Ladin" with Morgan Spurlock was shot with audio straight to camera.

The SD device definitely has great audio quality but a lot of the benefit would depend on who was editing, how good the audio post done on a project is, etc. The SD will sound superior to all camcorders that I have ever used but it's two different approaches, Dual system sound is a PITA compared to shooting with the audio ran into camera but it sounds better. It's your and your producers choice which is the right path for you.

Dan
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Old March 12th, 2008, 08:55 PM   #5
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He is asking which features were shot directly to camera. Honestly, lots of them. It's commensurate with budget. Low budget war docs that have been nominated for Oscars were shot with camera audio. The new "Looking for Osama Bin Ladin" with Morgan Spurlock was shot with audio straight to camera.

The SD device definitely has great audio quality but a lot of the benefit would depend on who was editing, how good the audio post done on a project is, etc. The SD will sound superior to all camcorders that I have ever used but it's two different approaches, Dual system sound is a PITA compared to shooting with the audio ran into camera but it sounds better. It's your and your producers choice which is the right path for you.

Dan
i think my main concern is losing that "edge" of not having 24bit files.
when you mean how well the post is, my problem there is that i was told that with 16bit files you end up with "noise" when mixing multiple tracks together.

Does it help when posting to convert all 16bit files into 32bit float?
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Old March 12th, 2008, 10:49 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Roshdi Alkadri View Post
i think my main concern is losing that "edge" of not having 24bit files.
when you mean how well the post is, my problem there is that i was told that with 16bit files you end up with "noise" when mixing multiple tracks together.

Does it help when posting to convert all 16bit files into 32bit float?
Converting your 16 bit files isn't going to do you much.

Roshdi, If I remember, you went from 702T to 702 and back to 702T, and now you're thinking of selling. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe all that happened less than 6 months ago.. This is a good sign that you're not giving enough thought and research before your audio purchases. Don't mean to burn you, just letting you know!

The 702T is a great investment if you know it's going to work itself off when it comes to the productions you work on. I don't know what kind of work you do or the budgets you work with so I can't make any recommendations. With SD gear you can get a pretty good return if you do decide to sell. Remember, if you think ahead you'll be saving yourself some coin.
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Old March 12th, 2008, 11:29 PM   #7
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1. Are you using a mixer? If so, which one? If not, why not?
2. What camera are you using?
3. How many in your crew, or are you alone?
4. What are you shooting, what subject in what kind of circumstance? Are you traveling or local?
5. Does your recording include music or just ambience and voices?
6. How many tracks do you need to record at once?
7. How many mics are you using at once?
8. Are you shooting SD (which PCM audio) or HDV (with compressed audio)
9. What is your final delivery format and for what audience?

It seems that one benefit of recording in 24 bits is the additional headroom, possibly avoiding clipping in unpredictable environmens. However, a good mixer with a limiter will help here.

Upping 16 bit files to 24/32 bit can be beneficial if you are going to do a lot of processing on the files. Otherwise, I don't think it's worth the trouble.
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Old March 13th, 2008, 11:47 AM   #8
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The dynamic range with 16bit is enough for dialog.
Sell the 702T.......to me.
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Old March 13th, 2008, 12:22 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Brooks Harrington View Post
The dynamic range with 16bit is enough for dialog.
Sell the 702T.......to me.
Brooks, it's really more than just dynamic range. A lot of it has to do with the pre-amps on the recording device. None of the video cameras (and that includes the ones the production company rented from Panavision) have pre-amps that sound nearly as good as what you have in the 7xx series. However, that said, doing double recording is a royal pain if you aren't prepared to spend extra time in post working on your project. I always do double recording, but I've been told by several people that they never used the audio I gave them from the Deva. That is simply because they didn't have time to replace the audio. And that is simply a question I can't answer... does he have time to replace audio? If he does, I would argue that there is no comparison between what his camera is going to record and what the 7xx is going to record. However, if he doesn't have time to replace audio in post, or his workflow is handicapped by him doing so, then he should just record directly into the camera.

I'm an audio snob. My job is to give people the best audio I can, for me that means recording on a double-system...and again this has nothing to do with dynamic range, because you're absolutely right if it was simply dynamic range 16-bit audio would be enough, but it's about the whole audio chain.

What he should do should really be based on what his workflow is, and that's not something that we can answer for him. It's how comfortable he is working the way he is. He'll have to figure out that piece. But dynamic range has very little to do with it in this case.

Wayne
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Old March 13th, 2008, 03:44 PM   #10
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16 bit

Hey how about every standard commercially released CD in the world is 16 bit 44.1... 24 bit is ok and technically better. but don't look at that as the one deciding factor.

when have you listened to a CD an thought the sound quality just isn't good because its 16 bit? it is true that 24 gives you better dynamic range, well its more like dynamic resolution is a more accurate term.

but every CD done with PRO Tools prior to the 24 bit stuff, and even after were all recorded in 16bit. Jazz Classical even reference CD's for audiophiles. did those sound bad? .......... not!

bit counting is like choosing a car because one has are more cup holders than the other.

audio data compression is a way different story tho.
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Old March 13th, 2008, 04:20 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Roshdi Alkadri View Post
Does it help when posting to convert all 16bit files into 32bit float?
Not really.

Regards,

Ty Ford
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Old March 13th, 2008, 04:32 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Gerry Gallegos View Post
Hey how about every standard commercially released CD in the world is 16 bit 44.1... 24 bit is ok and technically better. but don't look at that as the one deciding factor.

when have you listened to a CD an thought the sound quality just isn't good because its 16 bit? it is true that 24 gives you better dynamic range, well its more like dynamic resolution is a more accurate term.

but every CD done with PRO Tools prior to the 24 bit stuff, and even after were all recorded in 16bit. Jazz Classical even reference CD's for audiophiles. did those sound bad? .......... not!

bit counting is like choosing a car because one has are more cup holders than the other.

audio data compression is a way different story tho.
Well CDs are a release format. That's different than an acquisition format. And yes, early ADATS and many other digital recording formats were 16-bit, 44.1 or 48. During that time there was considerable unrest among those with good ears that digital wasn't as good as good analog. It wasn't until 24-bit was used that most of that quieted down.

So it's not really just about cup holders. There's valid science behind the difference. And to the Dan who says double record is a PITA, I'm guessing you don't have a dedicated sound person.

Concerning the "features shot" with mic to camera, yes, low budget. I did audio for a trailer a few years back and we shot mics to mixer to camera. When I saw it in the theater, I was very happy with it. Didn't blow me away, but it was very clean.

Let's not confuse mics direct to camera with mics to mixer to camera. A good mixer and person operating it makes a huge difference.

Regards,

Ty Ford
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Old March 13th, 2008, 04:47 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Gerry Gallegos View Post
but every CD done with PRO Tools prior to the 24 bit stuff, and even after were all recorded in 16bit. Jazz Classical even reference CD's for audiophiles. did those sound bad? .......... not!
I'm not a big 24 bit snob, but every studio engineer I have ever worked with insists on 24 bit nowadays. They are normally pretty resistant to fads and gimmicks, but their reasoning is that if you are going to process the signal (mixing, effects), you want the extra resolution... and that actually makes sense to me. If i'm shooting still photos to be delivered at web resolution, I still want to shoot at a much higher rez. Filtering at the larger size then scaling down looks better, and downsampling from 10 megapixel to 1 megapixel certainly looks better than a 1 megapixel native shot.

So I'll agree that some of the bit counting is folly, but that doesnt mean that 24 bit on your source material cant offer you something extra. That extra might not be worth it to you, but that doesn't mean it isnt there.
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Old March 13th, 2008, 06:35 PM   #14
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thanks for all the replies guys. I didnt want to let go of the 702T, but my intrepid engine went on me and its gonna cost $4200 to get it running well again with another engine. Its was a financial thing. I had mixed emotions until today.

I decided that why let go of a powerful tool. The 702T is not just for double system, how about SFX collecting, narration, Location VO. I also rethought about having useful 24bit files allowing for more flexibility in post. I also took advice from your comments about especially the "preamps". No camera preamps can really match a dedicated sound recorder. I also thought about TC coming in handy with future cameras, portability and non tethered operation.

I was just emotional about my engine going as the money was gonna be used for my engagement party im saving for. I like to thank you all for that reassurance of having a good machine and not ignoring the importance of audio.
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Old March 13th, 2008, 06:43 PM   #15
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Roshdi,

I am truly sorry for your loss.

Regards,

Ty Ford
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