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Old May 27th, 2008, 02:51 PM   #1
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Handheld?

I've got two Rode shotguns, and a number of Giant Squid lavs (all wired) but from what I've read it seems for some situations a hand held mic - perhaps one that can also go on a mic stand - is needed.

What are the characterisistics of such a mic as compared to shotguns? How can they be handled and not need a shock mount?.
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Old May 27th, 2008, 02:57 PM   #2
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Hi there

You hand hold a shotgun.. (can be done with care) and you'll most likely get loads of handling noise... grip it tight and it's can be ok..

But chose a mic like the Sennheiser e835 dynamic and you can pass it around and the handling noise is minimal... if I'm doing run and gun and have to hand off a mic to do Vox pop stuff then a dynamic hand held gives good results even in a noisy arena. Just make sure its close enough to their mouths..
cheers
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Old May 27th, 2008, 03:25 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Renton Maclachlan View Post
I've got two Rode shotguns, and a number of Giant Squid lavs (all wired) but from what I've read it seems for some situations a hand held mic - perhaps one that can also go on a mic stand - is needed.

What are the characterisistics of such a mic as compared to shotguns? How can they be handled and not need a shock mount?.
A number of the better "stick mics" designed for news reporting are dynamic mics which are studier due to the nature of their mechanism and they often have internal shock mounting to further supress handling noise. Since they are normally used within a few inches of the speaker's mouth their lower sensitivity isn't so much a problem.
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Old May 27th, 2008, 03:58 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Renton Maclachlan View Post
... What are the characterisistics of such a mic as compared to shotguns? How can they be handled and not need a shock mount?.
Usually:
1. They are dynamic (moving coil) mics rather than condenser mics.
2. As such, they are much less sensitive than condenser mics.
3. They don't need to be powered
4. They are cardioid or omnidirectional in their pickup pattern.
5. You can get a very good one a lot cheaper than you can get a very good condenser mic. The ultra rugged Shure SM57 and SM58 are staples of the industry and cost only $99 US (B&H).
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Old May 28th, 2008, 12:38 AM   #5
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Thanks so much guys. Very helpful.
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Old May 28th, 2008, 12:55 AM   #6
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Electro Voice RE50, AKG 230 and Shure SM63 are examples of ENG reporter handheld mics. They are dynamic omnis, because that construction gives less handling noise, make them less susceptible to wind noise and have no proximity effect (with cardioids the bass level varies depending on the distance from mouth).

Shure SM57 and SM58 are stage/vocal/instrument cardioids, not designed for ENG/reporter/video work.

Last edited by Petri Kaipiainen; May 28th, 2008 at 03:53 AM.
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Old May 28th, 2008, 03:18 AM   #7
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Thanks Petri. What does ENG stand for? What sort of wiring connectors do these mics use? I presume they could be/can be plugged into a video camera with a minijack. Or into a recorder like an iRiver 890 or Zoom H2.
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Old May 28th, 2008, 03:53 AM   #8
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XLR at the mic, can be plugged to minijack with the proper cable. Being dynamic no phantom powering is needed.

I have the AKG 230, strong and solid mic for what it is designed for. EV RE50 seems to be the most popular of these.

ENG = Electronic News Gathering (TV news...)
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Old May 28th, 2008, 05:35 AM   #9
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What does this look like? I'm an amatuer who likes getting reasonable but relative cheap gear. It wouldn't have a lot of use. It is obviously a lot cheaper than the AKG D230.

http://www.globalmediapro.com/do/product/1136
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Old May 28th, 2008, 06:04 AM   #10
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I haven't ever heard of that brand. It's probably some generic Chinese made microphone that people get to brand themselves. This isn't always a bad thing, but you have no idea until you buy it what it sounds like. It certainly is cheap ($37 USD), and for that price I'd be tempted to try it out. But it's possible that you're simply burning $37 USD with no hope of getting decent sound out of it.

Honestly, I'm not sure what you're going to get for the price with that microphone.

Wayne
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Old May 29th, 2008, 07:42 AM   #11
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Wow, this is a common question right now. Lots of folk doing handheld mic. I've already posted this reply but I thought I'd jump in the mix with a great mic for this kind of work. EV 635.

Inexpensive
Super durable
good sound
respected in the industry

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...amic_Omni.html
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Old June 3rd, 2008, 06:03 AM   #12
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Perhaps a dumb question.

Why would you use a handheld mic, as opposed to some other sort?
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Old June 3rd, 2008, 07:31 AM   #13
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Mics designed to be handheld usually have good isolation so you have less handling noise.

The EV re50 is pretty much industry standard and the 635 is right there as well. Audio Technica and Sennheiser also make very good handhelds. I don't have the models in front of me right now.

Regards,

Ty Ford
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Old June 3rd, 2008, 01:56 PM   #14
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Just one further note to promote a clearer understanding....

The whole point of a stick mic is that you want to record something (the voice) while SUPRESSING something else (any background sound.)

So you start with a mic that's relatively insensitive. (a dynamic vs a condenser, for example) and then shove it VERY close to the source.

The result is that you record a LOT of the voice, and hardly any of the background sound.

Which is precisely what you want for recording interviews in a sound field you can't control. (on a public street, for example)

You've probably seen this technique at work with reporters doing field reports - even standing out in EXTREME weather situations.

Even tho the wind, rain and thunder is undoubtedly LOUD. Even those sounds can't compete with the level of a trained voice hitting a properly designed stick mic from 1 inch away.

Result - good recording.

As with ALL microphones, it's understanding the characteristics of the microphone - then employing the right mic techniques to bring out the benefits of those characteristics.

Hanging an EV RE-50, or a 635, or a Beyer M58 (all very good ENG stick mics) 7 feet over the heads of a group of actors in a stage play would yield very POOR recording results. Cuz that's not what those particular mics are designed to do. Just like holding a condenser lavillier 1 inch from your mouth and trying to use it like a stick mic fails as well.

It's TOO sensitive to breath, and may have so much sensitivity that it enhances background noise rather than rejecting it. A lav is also typically designed to be clipped close to a big mass like a human body which more or less rejects 180 degrees of the sound field.

As always, the bottom line is that there are so many different types of mics precisely because there are so many different types of recording conditions and circumstances that need to be addressed.

Hope this helps.
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Old June 3rd, 2008, 02:54 PM   #15
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Thanks. Very helpful.
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