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Old April 10th, 2009, 02:05 PM   #1
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Fixing audio of mic set next to neck

I shot something a while ago that involved interviews with several different people and one of those interviewees wore a leather coat over a sleeveless black dress. The coat seemed to be making too much noise as she talked so we had her just wear the dress. But then we had no where good to attach the lav mic (only way to I had to attach is alligator clip). So I put it on the collar right next to her neck.

Well it turned out she had kind of a loud voice and while the audio was clear, it's way to "close" sounding compared to the other interviewees. What can I do in post to try and make her voice sound more like the rest?

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Old April 10th, 2009, 02:27 PM   #2
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without having the time to look at your video ( am uploading a huge file ATM) I would say you have too much bass freq. on that voice. So first thing I would do is bring up an equalizer and lower the bass frequencies of her voice ( around 500 Hz?) then you could try to raise the high frequencies if there are any ....other than that I wouldnt know.
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Old April 10th, 2009, 02:32 PM   #3
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Hard to say without seeing the audio wave form, but here's a guess: she sounds overmodulated and kind of over-compressed. If the waveform is clipped, you might try a clip repair tool such as found in Adobe Audition or Sony SoundForge 9 to repair the clipped parts. Then you might normalize down -3 or -6 dB and see if it helps. Then you might add a little reverb -- subtly, not an echo!--to try to match the resonance of the other speakers.

Or, if you have a second sound track from an on-camera mike (always a good idea) you might blend a little of that track to pick up a little more "distance" and room ambience to accomplish this. It may help to eq down whatever parts of the spectrum are too hot, probably in the 2k range, thus boosting the 200-700hz range a little, since the other speakers seem to have good resonance in the lower vocal range. (Often better to eq down what's too hot than to boost what is too low when you're balancing, but it's a judgment call.) Of course, I'm just guessing with my ears, take a look at the waveform and audio spectrum and compare that to several of the other women and perhaps you will be able to spot the problem areas....best wishes! / Battle Vaughan /miamiherald.com video team

PS Interesting, Hanno hears too much bass and I hear overmod in the highs....this is why you need quantitative info, like the waveform and spectrum..../bv

Last edited by Battle Vaughan; April 10th, 2009 at 02:35 PM. Reason: addendum
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Old April 10th, 2009, 02:51 PM   #4
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You will need to duplicate the audio on a seperate channel, suppress the higher voice on channel one then on the duplicate channel two do the same with the lower voice. You will end up with one voice on channel one and the other on channel two. Then adjust the levels to match.

Next time when you record use the left channel for one voice and the right channel for the second and montior both with headphones and a meter. Then your adjustments will be alot easier in post.
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Old April 10th, 2009, 02:51 PM   #5
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I am assuming more bass from the proximity effect and the closeness to the neck. Since I also do interviews and sometimes have a hard time with partners wearing t shirts, I know the result: too much bass because the lavalier sort of sticks close to the throat ...
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Old April 10th, 2009, 02:59 PM   #6
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I've been playing around a little with the equalizers in my montors and found that rolling off the bass a couple of dB below 500 Hz and boosting the highs a couple of dB above 3 kHz made it a bit more natural sounding.
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Old April 10th, 2009, 03:43 PM   #7
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Rule #1 of interviews is always shoot with a hypercardioid/shotgun overhead BESIDES the lav, precisely for the reason you are going through. Choice is always a great thing to have in the edit bay.

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