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Old June 9th, 2004, 04:36 PM   #1
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Recording a phone interview -and- lav mic question

Hey all...

Im stuck with a problem. I have someone I need to interview, but I have to do it over the phone. Im going to take their voice and put it over a video project im working on. I know absolutley NOTHING about audio. Could anyone help me out with a way that is relatively cheap but will produce clean audio for my video?

Another question,

Im doing another interview, this time on camera. I am thinking about purchasing this lav mic here

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=20332&item=3819305906&rd=1

Will this work well enough? I am on a very low budget.

Thanks for any help.
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Old June 10th, 2004, 09:43 AM   #2
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http://www.proteron.com/wiretap.php
http://www.voicecallcentral.com/callcorder.htm
http://www.modemspy.com/en/index.php

The above 3 links have software that you can install to your PC or Mac to use it's internal modem as a telephone recorder. I have used MODEMSPY and can attest that it works fairly well.

Each should do a nice job, just understand that your quality is limited to the grade of the line which typically is very limited bandwidth or about 300hz to 3khz. For voice that is just about perfect but you're still going to have a "PHONE SOUND".

The big boys such as radio stations etc use boxes purchased from companies like Broadcast Supply West BSWUSA.com which are hybird phone/mic preamps. These units sit on the transmission end not your end and will take a feed from a mic mixer and pump it down 3 to 6 phone lines under the premise that each line transports a portion of the audio increasing the dynamic range.

Stick with the products that I pointed out to you above, one of them should work for you and just set the default quality to be the best it can be even if it's more than the true dynamic range of the line.

As for the wireless kit, not bad, AT makes nice stuff, just one suggestion, for that amount you can purchase a wired lav about 100% higher quality than the element they are using on that wireless unit, you might consider that for now and then go wireless later. If you have a SAMASH Music or a pro audio shop in your area, it might benefit you to go there and check out a few lav kits, check them out, listen to them and compare.

If you have any more questions, just feel free to ask, we'll get you through this.

Miguel
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Old June 10th, 2004, 03:50 PM   #3
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Miguel,

Thank you very much!

I will get one of those programs and try it out tonight. I dont mind if it still sounds like its on the phone, the effect might be good actually. Just as long as its clear so people can understand everything.

As for the audio, I guess a wired kit would work. I realized most of its going to be used for interviews sitting down, were it wont matter if theres a wire. There are some shots were the person will be moving around, but I think a well hidden longer cable can fix that.

I dont have a SamAsh near by, but there is a Guitar Center and various other music stores. Can you reccomend any mics? I have XLR inputs on my camera. I only have a budget of about $200 right now though.

How about this one?

http://www.musiciansfriend.com/srs7/sid=040610135254204210049163552556/g=rec/search/detail/base_pid/270413/

Thanks again.
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Old June 10th, 2004, 10:25 PM   #4
 
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Modemspy is a great tool. Don't use it very often, but when I needed it, it was recommended to me by a friend/forum guy, and I've found it to be terrific.
I too, like AT wireless' products. They are solid, reasonably priced, and dependable.
Wired is almost always better than wireless, just less convenient. More dependable in all situations though.
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Old June 10th, 2004, 11:05 PM   #5
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<<<-- Originally posted by Aaron Banks : Miguel,

Thank you very much!

I dont have a SamAsh near by, but there is a Guitar Center and various other music stores. Can you reccomend any mics? I have XLR inputs on my camera. I only have a budget of about $200 right now though.

Thanks again. -->>>

Head over to GC and ask to speak to a pro sound guru or recording studio guy. Tell them you need a pro lav, I'm partial to Audio Technica but see what they have, try them out in the sound room, listen to the tonal qualities, listen to the dynamics. Make sure that you get something that will work with a battery and doesn't require external power!

Let us know how you do... MIGUEL
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Old June 19th, 2004, 10:27 AM   #6
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You can find some basic info about phone patching at www.audiotheater.com/phone/phone.html
There are newer digitral hybrids available since this article was written.
(I must update it soon.)


A number of pros use a "stringer" at the remote location to record the subject's side of the interview, then match that back with the interviewers recording.

(Stringer= a contract recordist that shows up, records the gig and ships the media.) Depending on the town, this can be relitively cheap for a short interview.

Of course, this is usually for radio, not video, but would provide better than phone quality audio. Add a picture of the subject in your edit.
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Old June 19th, 2004, 01:29 PM   #7
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If you have the money you can rent an ISDN studio on both ends and get studio quality sound.

2- For your project, phone quality sound might be more appropriate?
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