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Old April 4th, 2004, 07:20 PM   #1
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Filming a short, a couple situational ?'s

Ok, I know this question has been in some form about half a million times but i have very specific situations and some cash to spend so:

I need an array of 2-4 mics that can handle the following situations but I'm not sure which way to go. I'm recording directly into a dvx100a. I'd like to get folks opinion of a mid range ($500ea) set and a higher end (up to $1000 ea.) and you can throw in a dream set if I had unlimited cash if you want. I want mics that aren't going to obsolete on me because I'm buying them and I want to grow with them (and thier considered starting assests in a production company business plan:)

Situation 1:
Controlled apartment (kitchen, real live/bouncy). Conversation with minimal, but some, movement (getting up from a table going to get coffee and sitting down again.)

Situation 2:
Bar with extras (ie. unpaid friends), dialogue with 4 people around a table.

Situation 3:
Outdoors at a mill, two people talking, static shot, fair amount of street noise.

Situation 4:
Hand held shots following people walking down the street. They seperate form each other at points into two groups. Its going to be two cameras. Free movement is needed as one scene is quite hectic and I'd like to able to keep a good distance from them. (Handheld shotguns to stay on the groups from a distance?)

All the street shots have to be real portable as we're guerilla shooting those in a not so nice section of Providence. I'd like to stay away from Lavs but could be convinced otherwise. Also, how far away can you be and still get decent sound from a long shotgun? FYI if the street shots are a little flatter (a word I'm using just because I've heard it elsewhere in this forum) than the indoor stuff that's alright. I don't mind if those shots have a more distant, doc feel. Not all outdoor stuff can be that way though. Ahhh, perhaps I've said enough. Well, any help would be apprectiated. i have till august so i can rent and try some of your suggestions, I just have no where to start. Thanks in advance.
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Old April 4th, 2004, 07:52 PM   #2
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I'd probably start with a decent cardiod on a boom and run tests in all those locations. See if you can get reasonable sound.

If one or more locations defeat the cardiod, then I'd start considering small lavs, maybe trams or countrymans with wireless.

Probably going to have to ADR some of the voice tracks in any case so save some money for building or renting a sound booth.
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Old April 5th, 2004, 07:26 AM   #3
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Mike, I also was trying to avoid ADR if I could. I may be stuck on the street scenes but I know in checking out the website and dvd for Charlotte Sometimes that they filmed quite a few scenes recording sound directly into the camera and without ADR in post. The sound seemed alright (in the scene where they are sitting in the car in particular). I know all hollywood productions ADR most dialouge but all indies certainly don't. At least not from what I've read. My only worry is getting these actors together, they're all from the New School in NY and they're doing projects all summer long and I'm going to have them for a couple weeks then they're back in school and trying to schedule time in a sound booth after that is going to be tough. I need to get what need in those weeks that's why I'd spend the money needed on mics and preamps. They're good actors and I don't want to pass them up for people who have more time but less talent.
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Old April 5th, 2004, 10:41 AM   #4
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Something I've been meaning to try is putting lavs and minidiscs on walking actors. It would be a lot cheaper than buying multiple wireless rigs, and they would be much smaller as well. You can get used minidiscs on e-Bay really cheaply these days. I've seen Sony MZ-N707's go for like $50 bucks. You can record for hours on mono, so you could just let the things run all day, and just have the actors huddle every 15 minutes or so and clap the slate. You could easily buy six complete rigs for under $1,000. Used prices are only going to get cheaper when HiMD launches in a few months.
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Old April 5th, 2004, 12:06 PM   #5
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That's a damn good idea. I might have to try that.

I'm still interested on people's opinions of mics in certain price ranges for controlled (most likely on a boom) environments as well. I know there's a very long thread on here that Matt started about short shotguns and i tried writing down some models and looking them up on the net. But the thread went for so long my head was spinning by the end. I think I should print it and read it again. I was just hoping to get a feel for how other people would handle these shooting situations both economically if they had to and their ideal situation. Brands and specific models included. I want to know for my own future projects.
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Old April 5th, 2004, 09:16 PM   #6
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Right off the bat, I would highly suggest the Sanken CS3 medium and the CS1 short shotgun mics. They have the best off-axis rejection (very smooth too) and a very tansparent on-axis sound. They are used for network television and feature films. The CS1 goes for under $800.00.

There are a ton of cardioid mikes out there. The Sennhiser MKH 50 and the Schoeps capsules are very popular, but a little known excellent mic made in New Hampshire is the Earthworks SR69 for around $500.00.

For lav's, my first choices have been the Sanken COS-11s, or Countryman B3 or B6.
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Old April 5th, 2004, 11:16 PM   #7
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I have a question on the Earthworks but I'll start a new thread, so as not to hijack this one.
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Old April 6th, 2004, 08:15 AM   #8
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Where can you buy Schoeps mics? I haven't found pricing for them on any website. I've been on their own website but they don't have prices there (that I noticed anyway). B&H doesn't seem to have them unless I was looking in the wrong place. Am I right in assuming they're pretty expensive?
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Old April 6th, 2004, 09:29 AM   #9
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Scheops mics are highly regarded as the most accurate small diaphragm microphone made. They are more expensive than others like it, but their price has come down in recent years.

They are NOT sold by box house operations like B&H, but by knowlegable, reliable dealers who are known for their customer support.

You can contact me privately for pricing if you wish or look at the schoeps web site for a dealer in your area.
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Old April 7th, 2004, 07:02 AM   #10
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Your needs seem to require a shotgun. You may like to start with the AT835b. It's a decent mic at a decent price. Being a short shotgun means it will work better indoors and for the most part outdoors as well. If at all possible get into a highend shotgun when you can afford it.

I would suggest the better Audio Technica or Sennheiser if you decide on a long shotgun.

Never use lavs alone if you can avoid it. It's best to mix a boom and a lav together.
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Old April 7th, 2004, 11:47 AM   #11
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<<<-- Originally posted by Ian Poirier : Where can you buy Schoeps mics? I haven't found pricing for them on any website. I've been on their own website but they don't have prices there (that I noticed anyway). B&H doesn't seem to have them unless I was looking in the wrong place. Am I right in assuming they're pretty expensive? -->>>

Marty is right. The Schoeps MK41 is absolutely amazing and expensive. they just had a price increase. I paid $1520 Canadian about a month ago (1150 US) and that was before the increase.
The US distributor is Redding Audio
http://www.reddingaudio.com/files/SchoepsPricesApril2004.pdf
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Old April 7th, 2004, 03:03 PM   #12
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$1200 huh? And the MK41 is a what? Cardiod? Shoutgun? I know I read somewhere on another thread that the MK41 (I believe it was the MK41) is a standard on professional hollywood sets. I assume then that it's best suited for boom work on a controlled set? Or would the investment of a couple of these set me up for most situations (indoors & outdoors) so long as I can get reasonably close to the actors and maybe the get a decent long shotgun and some lavs to mix for shots where being that close is impossible? I know there's always ADR for long shots and that's how hollywood does it but I know that won't be practical on my initial projects. Am I making sense?
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Old April 7th, 2004, 03:35 PM   #13
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Are the Schoeps a modular system? Is that $1,200 for the MK41 total, or is it just a module or something?
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Old April 7th, 2004, 03:46 PM   #14
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I think the capsule for $1200 is complete from what I remember at their website but I'm going to look into that when I get out of work. I'm sure Marty could answer that very valid question if he's out there.
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Old April 7th, 2004, 08:18 PM   #15
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The prices went up approx 15% on 1 april. The CMC6U 12-48 volt preamp is $615 list and The MK41 supercardoid capsule is $725

For a better understanding read these two links. The Schoeps link meanders a bit but stay with it, it's worthwhile. The second link discusses the different patterns available. besides sound, the pattern is part of why you pay a premium.

Marty mentioned the Sankens. They are also not cheap but you're paying for the excellent side and rejection characteristics as well as the sound.

http://www.schoeps.de/E/select-guideline.html

http://www.dv.com/features/features_item.jhtml?LookupId=/xml/feature/2003/rose0203

Marty mentioned the Sankens. They are also not cheap but you're paying for the excellent side and rejection characteristics as well as the sound.
http://www.sanken-mic.com/english/index.html

Neither of these brands are sold at your neighborhood big box. Sanken and schoeps rely on smaller more specialized dealers like Trew, Coffey and ATS Communications.

Marty one of our newer members owns ATS, you'd never know it though. People like Marty Atias, Glen Trew and others like to help people without being overly comercialistic.

They're all regulars on RAMPS and RAP ( Rec. Arts. Movies. Production. Sound and Rec. Audio. Pro)

Use the following Google portal to search on several years of advice from the pros in audio production.

http://groups.google.com/groups?hl=en&lr=&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&group=rec.arts.movies.production.sound

Just for giggles type in "schoeps" , "boom mic" , "shotgun" or "hypercardoid" and read for hours.
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