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Old March 1st, 2009, 11:13 AM   #1
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connecting lapel mics...

What exactly do you need to use a lapel mic? I mean I understand that the lapel mic transmits the audio, but where does it go, how do you record it? do you need another computer recording the audio, or does it record in another box?


I hope you guys understand what im asking, and help will be appreciated :)
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Old March 1st, 2009, 11:22 AM   #2
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Rishi,
A lapel mic has to be attached or cnnected to some kind of record machine. Some have hardwire outputs like XLR, some are meant to plug into a Radio mic transmitter to be sent to a receiver which connects to some kind of mixer recorder scenario. Your question is too vague to have a full answer. You can record on a computer, audio recorder, video camera or all of the above if you figure out the signal path. In this case a lapel mic is basically no different than any other mic. They all need some kind of recorder unless it is built in which is not usually the case.
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Old March 1st, 2009, 12:31 PM   #3
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Rishi,
A lapel mic has to be attached or cnnected to some kind of record machine. Some have hardwire outputs like XLR, some are meant to plug into a Radio mic transmitter to be sent to a receiver which connects to some kind of mixer recorder scenario. Your question is too vague to have a full answer. You can record on a computer, audio recorder, video camera or all of the above if you figure out the signal path. In this case a lapel mic is basically no different than any other mic. They all need some kind of recorder unless it is built in which is not usually the case.
hmmm if the reciver has an XLR how would i connect it to my computer? i have a DJ mixer (Rane 56) could i use that to connect it to a computer so i can record the audio seperately?

if i was to plug the XLR directly to the camera would it sync the audio automatically wit the video?
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Old March 1st, 2009, 01:34 PM   #4
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The audio can be recorded onto the computer if you have a device that will convert it into a computer input. There are lots of choices in that space. You basically need to match something that your computer has with a device that has XLR on one end and the computer interface on the other. There are PCI cards, FireWire devices, even USB2 devices that do this.

And yes, if your camera has an XLR input, that's a good thing. It will enable you to plug your mic directly into the camera and record sync sound.
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Old March 1st, 2009, 01:50 PM   #5
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The audio can be recorded onto the computer if you have a device that will convert it into a computer input. There are lots of choices in that space. You basically need to match something that your computer has with a device that has XLR on one end and the computer interface on the other. There are PCI cards, FireWire devices, even USB2 devices that do this.

And yes, if your camera has an XLR input, that's a good thing. It will enable you to plug your mic directly into the camera and record sync sound.

um i think i sorta get this, so i need another device to help me connect the reciever to the computer...arent' there mixers or stuff that do that? im confused what i would need
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Old March 1st, 2009, 01:56 PM   #6
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There are some mixers that have FireWire or USB outputs. There are also a few devices that convert XLR to USB such as this one. For more than one mic, a mixer is the obvious choice. If you already have a mixer, or you just need to use one mic, a converter like that one would be a better choice. As stated previously, there are also cards for your computer that do this.
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Old March 1st, 2009, 02:31 PM   #7
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There are some mixers that have FireWire or USB outputs. There are also a few devices that convert XLR to USB such as this one. For more than one mic, a mixer is the obvious choice. If you already have a mixer, or you just need to use one mic, a converter like that one would be a better choice. As stated previously, there are also cards for your computer that do this.
hmmm how about stuff like this?
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Old March 1st, 2009, 04:45 PM   #8
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First thing, we should be clear on what you're asking about. A "lapel mic" or lavalier mic describes a particular type of miniature microphone capsule that can be clipped to a shirt or necktie or hidden in the clothing of the talent. It can be fed to a mixer, a PA system, or directly to a recording device such as an audio recorder, video camera, or computer using a cable (usually XLR) just like any other microphone or the cable can be replaced by a radio transmitter and receiver pair for a wireless link arrangement. In the latter case, the transmitter is concealed on the person wearing the microphone while the receiver output is connected to whatever you want to feed the mic's signal to, plugging it in exactly the same way you'd plug in any other sort of mic if you forgot about the wireless link and just used a simple cable. So before we get into details about cable adapters and all that sort of thing or whether audio syncs in the computer to video, just what is it you want to do exactly? Are you asking about how to shoot video with an external mic of any type other than the one built-in to the camera, are you asking how to use a lavalier mic in general whether cabled or wireless, or are you asking how to hook up the receiver for a wireless lavalier mic kit? What are you trying to record and what are you recording it on? If you're shooting video, where does a computer even come into the picture and why? If you're not recording audio in the camera, where do you want to record it and why do you want to do it that way? If we're going to help properly configure a system, we have to know all the details of what you're trying to accomplish and where you're starting from.
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Old March 1st, 2009, 05:16 PM   #9
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First thing, we should be clear on what you're asking about. A "lapel mic" or lavalier mic describes a particular type of miniature microphone capsule that can be clipped to a shirt or necktie or hidden in the clothing of the talent. It can be fed to a mixer, a PA system, or directly to a recording device such as an audio recorder, video camera, or computer using a cable (usually XLR) just like any other microphone or the cable can be replaced by a radio transmitter and receiver pair for a wireless link arrangement. In the latter case, the transmitter is concealed on the person wearing the microphone while the receiver output is connected to whatever you want to feed the mic's signal to, plugging it in exactly the same way you'd plug in any other sort of mic if you forgot about the wireless link and just used a simple cable. So before we get into details about cable adapters and all that sort of thing or whether audio syncs in the computer to video, just what is it you want to do exactly? Are you asking about how to shoot video with an external mic of any type other than the one built-in to the camera, are you asking how to use a lavalier mic in general whether cabled or wireless, or are you asking how to hook up the receiver for a wireless lavalier mic kit? What are you trying to record and what are you recording it on? If you're shooting video, where does a computer even come into the picture and why? If you're not recording audio in the camera, where do you want to record it and why do you want to do it that way? If we're going to help properly configure a system, we have to know all the details of what you're trying to accomplish and where you're starting from.
okay okay

what im tryin to do is have a cooking show. My video camera died on me recently and for the first test run (before i buy a NEW videocamera) I am mounting my Digital Cameras on few tripods and using that. From past experience I have learnt that using the audio from my digital camera is very very bad so i know i have to record the audio with a different way. this where the computer comes in, i want to record the video from the digital camera still, but the audio i need to be recording it into somwhere so i can put it in final cut later...
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Old March 1st, 2009, 06:10 PM   #10
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Almost any video camera will record audio from an external mic with the quality being fairly good (and better than most TV or computer speakers), assuming that the gain is set roughly right. Recording sound which needs to be in sync to a separate recorder is going to cause you extra work in post.

I am not sure what you are proposing for this test run (recording using the video function on a compact still camera?) but I am not convinced that you will learn much from it. You might be better hiring the type of video camera you are considering buying, and possibly the audio gear, and doing a proper test.
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Old March 1st, 2009, 06:23 PM   #11
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okay okay

what im tryin to do is have a cooking show. My video camera died on me recently and for the first test run (before i buy a NEW videocamera) I am mounting my Digital Cameras on few tripods and using that. From past experience I have learnt that using the audio from my digital camera is very very bad so i know i have to record the audio with a different way. this where the computer comes in, i want to record the video from the digital camera still, but the audio i need to be recording it into somwhere so i can put it in final cut later...
Okay fair enough. You can use a laptop to record, given the appropriate software. You can also elect to record to a dedicated audio recorder. Will it automatically sync to video? Depends on a lot of factors but that's getting ahead of ourselves again. You asked about lavalier mics ... hard cabled or do you need the mobility wireless gives the talent? What other audio will you be recording? Will you need more than one mic live? (If there is more than one person speaking on camera and you're using lavs, each individual needs their own mic.) Will you be booming the scene as well as using using lavs? If you use multiple mics do you want to record them all mixed to a single stereo track in the original or do you want to record each mic to its own track to mix down later in FCP? These questions are leading to deciding whether to use the laptop's internal soundcard and feeding the mic directly to it or whether you need a mixer to handle multiple mics and whether the computer's built-in soundcard can do the job or you'll need an external multichannel interface.
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Old March 1st, 2009, 07:11 PM   #12
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Okay fair enough. You can use a laptop to record, given the appropriate software. You can also elect to record to a dedicated audio recorder. Will it automatically sync to video? Depends on a lot of factors but that's getting ahead of ourselves again. You asked about lavalier mics ... hard cabled or do you need the mobility wireless gives the talent? What other audio will you be recording? Will you need more than one mic live? (If there is more than one person speaking on camera and you're using lavs, each individual needs their own mic.) Will you be booming the scene as well as using using lavs? If you use multiple mics do you want to record them all mixed to a single stereo track in the original or do you want to record each mic to its own track to mix down later in FCP? These questions are leading to deciding whether to use the laptop's internal soundcard and feeding the mic directly to it or whether you need a mixer to handle multiple mics and whether the computer's built-in soundcard can do the job or you'll need an external multichannel interface.
Just goin to use the one lapel mic to do the recording of the voices...also i would want it to be wireless

again i need to know how to hook up the reciever to the Line-In port of my laptop..
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Old March 1st, 2009, 08:55 PM   #13
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Well, it doesn't have to be wireless (expensive and with it's own considerable set of problems.)

You could hook up a wired lav mic to a small recorder like a Zoom or MicroTrack etc and the recorder would be about the size of a cigarette pack and quite easy to stuff in the talent's pocket. It may be a little more tricky to sync up in post, but it would almost certainly be cheaper and less prone to interference etc etc etc than wireless.

Nothing against wireless, it's great when needed, but there are other ways to achieve your objective with probablly less cost and complexity. Again, these are all just tools and techniques and what you use depends on your needs.

And the more we know about your needs the better we can help.
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Old March 2nd, 2009, 12:57 AM   #14
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Well, it doesn't have to be wireless (expensive and with it's own considerable set of problems.)

You could hook up a wired lav mic to a small recorder like a Zoom or MicroTrack etc and the recorder would be about the size of a cigarette pack and quite easy to stuff in the talent's pocket. It may be a little more tricky to sync up in post, but it would almost certainly be cheaper and less prone to interference etc etc etc than wireless.

Nothing against wireless, it's great when needed, but there are other ways to achieve your objective with probablly less cost and complexity. Again, these are all just tools and techniques and what you use depends on your needs.

And the more we know about your needs the better we can help.
Perhaps i am asking too many questions and should be knowledging myself first.. Could you recomend me some articles i can read up on that would answer all my newbie questions about wiring lapel mics?
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Old March 2nd, 2009, 05:24 AM   #15
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Just goin to use the one lapel mic to do the recording of the voices...also i would want it to be wireless

again i need to know how to hook up the reciever to the Line-In port of my laptop..
You said "voices" - plural. If you mean there'll be more than one person on the set speaking, one mic is not going to work. A single lav mic can only record one person at a time properly, the person wearing it. Any other voices around him will not be close enough to picked up properly- you'll hear 'em but they will sound like cr*p.

It depends on the make of the receiver - what wireless unit do you have? The popular Sennheiser G2, for example, has several output cables available - on both of them one end is a 1/8 plug that goes into the receiver itself. The other end is either an XLR male to go to a balanced input or a 1/8 stereo plug that goes to a minijack input. The cable that comes standard with the kit is the 1/8 to 1/8. You'd simply plug it into the input on your laptop. The receiver menu has settings that select whether the out is at mic level or line level. You'd use whichever is appropriate for your setup.
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