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Old June 4th, 2008, 06:23 PM   #31
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$149 at B&H?
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/cont....y=0&Go=submit

CHEAP!!!! I think I need to get one! Thanks, Ty.
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Old June 4th, 2008, 07:45 PM   #32
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Audio help on documentary

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Standing View Post
I agree wholeheartedly that a good script and a good performer are the top priorities.

For the script, I'd say keep it simple and straightforward. I'm very much of the "less is more" school of thought when it comes to voiceover. As for finding talent, do you have a community, college or public radio station near you? If so, ask around, or put up a flyer asking for help. Many of those old-school disc jockeys and news announcers have great voices and are comfortable reading into a microphone. If you're lucky, maybe you can even borrow their studio to do the recording, especially if it's a nonprofit/educational kind of documentary.

As for the recording environment, if you can't find an actual recording studio, there are other options. What you're looking for is a room that's as close to acoustically "dead," with no echoes, as you can find. Small carpeted libraries with lots of books on the shelves are great, since the irregularly shaped books act as natural acoustic baffles. A while ago, Douglas Spotted Eagle had an online tutorial about how to make a recording box out of foamcore and acoustical foam. I'm sure you could Google it and find it.

Remember to get the microphone close to your talent. A cheap mike 1.5-2 feet away from the talent, in a room with no echoes, will ALWAYS sound better than an expensive mike 3-6 feet away in a hard, echoey room.

If you are looking to invest in some equipment to help you, I have a couple of ideas:

1. Audio Technica makes a very good large diaphragm microphone, the AT2020, that does a nice job for about $99. You'll need some kind of preamp or mixer and a recorder, or if you have a camera with XLR inputs and phantom power, you can probably record right into the camera and be O.K. AT just came out with a USB version of the same mike [ http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...CONDENSER.html ]
which might be just the ticket for your needs.

2. I recently picked up a Zoom H4 compact flash recorder for under $200. I'm really impressed with the quality of the built-in mikes. I've recorded some radio documentaries with this unit, and would have no hesitation using it for voiceover work as well.

One last thought: check out "Producing Great Sound for Digital Video" by Jay Rose (Focal Press). It's a great primer on all things audio, including some good, practical, low budget suggestions for voiceover production.
Thanks Brian, some good practical ideas here. Script: I'll take your advice and limit VO to short intro at beginning. I want pictures to tell the story. My years of writing copy will assure a simple, concise script. Talent: Since this is a low budget non-profit project, I'm the talent. Again, years of making presentations with mics to large groups will help. Equipment: I have GL2 with XLR input, a good condenser mic W/long cable, and a walk-in clothes closet. Did find the Audio Technica a low cost possibility.

Ed

Last edited by Ed Space; June 4th, 2008 at 07:47 PM. Reason: forgot title
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Old June 4th, 2008, 10:50 PM   #33
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It pulls phantom power from the USB port? That's pretty cool.
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Old June 5th, 2008, 04:13 AM   #34
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Me too me too!
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Old June 6th, 2008, 03:07 PM   #35
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Audio help on documentary

Quote:
Originally Posted by Marco Leavitt View Post
It pulls phantom power from the USB port? That's pretty cool.
If I read it right, the condenser mic must be powered. No?

Ed
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Old June 6th, 2008, 03:19 PM   #36
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Condenser mics need to be powered, yes.
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Old June 6th, 2008, 06:57 PM   #37
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Originally Posted by Marco Leavitt View Post
Condenser mics need to be powered, yes.
Thought so. Thanks for confirming Marco.

Ed
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