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Old February 5th, 2004, 11:24 PM   #1
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Mic's for Woodwind Quintet

I'm shooting a 4 camera live mix of a woodwind quintet performing in front of a live audience. My video switcher and audio mixer (Beheringer 1204 w/phantom power) will be in a separate room about 50' from the performers. The performers will be at floor level (not on a stage or risers) with the audience in front of them.

They will be seated in a open sided square arrangement (2 one side 2 other side and French Horn at rear.
They will be seated like this (performers =0, Mic options other:

.....0
...0 $ 0
...0* *0
......aa
(Sorry if diagram is messed up - the 2 sides should be straight - the muscians will face each other)

The ceilings are too high to hang my two AT-853 RX's. I can't use normal mic stands/booms because they will be in the way of the audience, and in the camera shot. I have access to good Crown boundary mic's or a Shure dynamic omni mic (57B I think)

My options:

a) the two AT-853s slightly above floor level in front of the opening?

*) an AT-853 on the floor pointing toward either side?

$) Shure dead center pointing straight up?

- or 2 boundary mic's located on the carpeted floor (or a piece of plywood ) at either location (a) or (*)?

I'm concerned about the 50' run to the mixer for the dynamic - too long?

Opinions or other thoughts, kind forum members???
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Old February 6th, 2004, 09:30 AM   #2
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Which model of Crown boundary mics do you have and what is their pattern? Even if it's a good pattern for this like cardioid or hypercardioid, I think having to use a suitably large boundary in this case will be too much trouble.
I'd forget about the Shure.
I think your best bet is going to be using the AT853's in a coincident stereo arrangement on a short stand, centered in front of the opening. I'd go for an angle between the mics of between 45 and 60 degrees and the capsules should be mounted very close together but not touching. Usually this is done with one capsule directly above the other. Height of the capsules should be about even with the chests of the seated musicians. These mics are small enough not to interfer with the view and rigging both to a single stand will also help.
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Old February 6th, 2004, 09:55 AM   #3
 
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Can you use studio format overheads coming from BEHIND the musicians, up high enough to stay out of camera range, and to the left/right to keep from distracting the audience and framing the shot? We've got a pair of 12' that work well for this, Atlas makes em', and they can be rented.
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Old February 6th, 2004, 02:38 PM   #4
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Thanks for the suggestions so far - keep em coming!

DSE - I don't have access to heavy duty stands, an although rentable - this is a freebie I'm doing for a friend. I would love to be able to drop the mic's, but the room doesn't allow it.

Jay - x/y low in front of the opening is where I am leaning, got a gusee on how far back from nearest performer. Too far back, good sound balance from the group, but too much audience noise. Too close, the nearest instruments dominate.

Thoughts?
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Old February 6th, 2004, 03:32 PM   #5
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You're correct, the placement forward or backward will have the exact effect you've mentioned. That's why i'd keep the angle between the two capsules narrower than a normal stereo spread. It will lessen the effect of both the audience and the closest players, giving you a little more leeway on placement.
It will of course narrow your stereo image, but for video of a small group, you really don't want it noticeably wide anyway.
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Old February 8th, 2004, 10:40 PM   #6
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Shot it with the AT 853 mics x/y'd about 12" from the floor, about 7' from the quintet. Sound was pretty clean, not much audience noise. Biggest problem was the quintet sometimes over drove my settings.

Basically - it came out pretty good. Thanks to all here who offer suggestions.
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Old February 9th, 2004, 08:49 AM   #7
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You're welcome, glad that it turned out satisfactory.
I know you wanted to keep the mics low, but at 12 inches from the floor it's very lucky there was carpet in place so you didn't have a phasing problem with a floor reflection. You would have heard that I'm sure if it had been a hard surface.
Any time you must get within two feet of a hard boundary, go ahead and place the mic right on the boundary. Use a very thin pad if you need to prevent rattling or vibration, like a small piece of the rubber from a jar opening gripper pad or a thin neoprene mousepad.
If you listen with headphones starting with the mic about 4 feet away from the boundary, as you move the mic closer and closer to the boundary you'll hear the phasing move up the frequency spectrum. If you can't get close enough to totally eliminate the phasing, then you'll either need to move the mic totally away from the boundary or pad several square feet of the boundary with carpet, a blanket or other soft material.
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Old February 9th, 2004, 08:54 AM   #8
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I guess I dd luck out - Even a broken clock is right twice a day! I find that audio is where I need the most information - this is a great forum!
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