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Old January 13th, 2004, 06:12 AM   #1
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Audio upgrades, a newbie needs some advice

First off, I'd be using this equipment to make independent films, mostly. Okay, well for the last 3 years I've been using an audio-technica ATR55 mic that I got from Best Buy for like 50 bucks. Now I've decided to upgrade to something....a lot better.

I've been looking at the Sennheiser ME66 shotgun mic for about a year now, and I think I'm finally going to get it. BHPhoto.com has it for only $379 right now, and in the past it's been a lot higher. Anyhow... I'd like some advice on what sort of accessories should I get.

Right off the bat I'll be getting some XLR cables and a Beachtek Adapter, because the me66 would probably be too 'hot' alone with my Sony DCR-TRV11 handycam, right? (Not to get off topic, but I'll be getting a pro cam in Fall 2004 which will have XLR plug-ins, so I'll likely just sell my beachtek on eBay at that point).

Anyhow, I also want to get a shockmount and boom pole. Does anyone have any recommendations? The mic is enough money as it is...plus the beachtek, so I don't want to spend too much more. I was thinking around the neighborhood of $200 and below total.

So....help me out! I'll take advice on any of the above, I just want to make sure I'm making some good decisions here. :) Thanks
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Old January 13th, 2004, 03:46 PM   #2
 
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The ME won't be too hot, no. But the Beachtek will make it a lot easier to control. For the price, if you can find a dealer that stocks both, go check out the AT 897. Brand new, sounds awesome with better rejection/side-rear.
ZZSounds has the ME cheaper, http://www.zzounds.com/item--SENME66 at 179.00
I'd still spend the extra cash and buy an 897. Stronger too, and has power built in. No cable. I'll have some comparison samples of various shotguns up in a week or so. We did a session comparing 4 shotguns under 800.00 for a magazine article. The 897 came out on top out of the 4. Again, it's a little higher cost. 370.00 retail, around 279.00 street. http://www.bayviewproaudio.com/at_at897.html
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Old January 14th, 2004, 08:48 PM   #3
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In the other threads people discuss using a Oktava MC012 with hypercardioid capsule instead of a shotgun.

In your case the Oktava would have the benefit of being short (it's around 4") so it won't be unwieldy on your camera. I don't think it will pick up as much wind noise too, so you won't have to spend as much on a windscreen. I'm not sure if the Oktava will work though. It needs phantom power (like from the Beachtek DXA-6) and it might need more amplification (<-- not sure).

Hmm I just read that you want a boom pole too. Some people use a painter's pole as the pole since they're lightweight. The AT8415 shockmount (I may have messed up the model number) is $55ish from B&H and recommended for a DIY boom. You may not need the beachtek in this case if you can get a mixer. However, you probably want a battery-power mixer and you need to check whether or not your mic needs phantom power and whether or not your mixer will deliver the right phantom power (12v or 48v).
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Old January 14th, 2004, 11:05 PM   #4
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"ZZSounds has the ME cheaper, http://www.zzounds.com/item--SENME66 at 179.00"

The K6 preamp which you must have to run the ME66 is another $210. It's $380 for the kit at B&H.

I have a sneaky feeling that the AT897 is an alright mic.
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Old January 15th, 2004, 01:04 AM   #5
 
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As soon as I return from NAMM and Videomaker, I'll post the MP3's of the different mics. You'll love the little 897. I was surprised. It sounds like a much more expensive shotgun.
The Oktava is really nice for what it is. Physically and with magnetic modeling, it can't 'reach' as far as a much longer mic can but it will do a decent enough job. Very rich when close in. It's a great voice over mic too.
Well kept secret of V/O guys is to use a shotgun for V/O
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