Recording in camera vs. DAT at DVinfo.net

Go Back   DV Info Net > The Tools of DV and HD Production > All Things Audio

All Things Audio
Everything Audio, from acquisition to postproduction.


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old June 15th, 2005, 02:32 AM   #1
New Boot
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Bangkok, Thailand
Posts: 23
Recording in camera vs. DAT

Hello Sound Gurus:

We're getting ready to shoot a little feature project on DV (XL2 - PAL) and though I am prone to renting a separate DAT rig and recording off-camera, I want to at least explore the virtues, or lack thereof, of recording it straight onto the tape in the camera.

I am always open to being taught the best way.

I bow before your expertise and shall retire to read your comments.

Thanks
David
David L. Fisher is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 15th, 2005, 06:17 AM   #2
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 5,742
Just a couple of thoughts that occur to me, a point in favour of the DAT is the potential ability to record more than 2 tracks of high quality sounds. Most DV cameras can record 2 tracks of 16 bit sound or 4 tracks of lower quality 12 bit sound. Double system sound recording using a multi-track recorder can give you more than just 2 high quality tracks. Recording in camera forces you to mix multiple miked sets on the fly, but keeping the tracks separate in a DAT or a laptop with an audio interface lets you revisit your mix decisions during post. The separate recorder also would give you more options for wild sound. If you're recording a live performance you can keep the recorder rolling even if you have to stop tape in the camera so that you can capture the performance as a unit even though the video consists of multiple shots. The downside of double system is that establishing and maintaining synch is much more fiddly - you need to remember to slate all your shots and unless your camera is sending clock signals to the audio recorder you may need to adjust alignment in post over the course of long'ish scenes if the synch drifts. I'm sure some of the pro's here will have more ideas.
Steve House is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 15th, 2005, 07:53 AM   #3
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: new york, ny
Posts: 121
dats record stereo, just like dv cams. they record 16 bit 48khz pcm audio, just like dv cams. there are other vaiables that effect sound (mic preamps, etc,) relative to cameras, but cheap dats don't perform better than good dv cams. for multitrack you'd need something like the new edirol unit (i believe it's r4.) other multitrack field recorders are really expensive although some people use the desktop hard drive multitrack recorders designed for musicians.

i think the best move would be to send the mics to a good field mixer, like the sound devices mixpre, and then send the line level output from that to the line input on the xl2. (i recommend that mixer so often you'd think i'd get a comission.) it's just a really great mixer for the money, wonderful mic pres, better than those on the xl2. it would let someone monitor levels much better than using the camera, and adjust levels withou having to touch the camera.

Last edited by Nate Ford; June 15th, 2005 at 09:57 AM.
Nate Ford is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 15th, 2005, 11:14 AM   #4
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 5,742
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nate Ford
dats record stereo, just like dv cams. they record 16 bit 48khz pcm audio, just like dv cams. ...snip...
Yes, I was thinking of the multitrack recorders like the Edirol you mentioned.
Steve House is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 20th, 2005, 10:56 PM   #5
New Boot
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Bangkok, Thailand
Posts: 23
I as under the impression that 4-track recording on a XL2 would be 12 bit, rather than the preferred 16 bit

df
David L. Fisher is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 21st, 2005, 04:45 AM   #6
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 5,742
Quote:
Originally Posted by David L. Fisher
I as under the impression that 4-track recording on a XL2 would be 12 bit, rather than the preferred 16 bit

df
It would be. Recording 4 tracks in the XL2 wouls be 32kHz, 12 bit/ But you could record 2+2 by putting two tracks on the XL2 and 2 more on a separate DAT. You could also get hold of a multitrack DAT or use another multitrack recorder, HD recorder or laptop with a quality audio interface, to get multitrack.
Steve House is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 21st, 2005, 05:07 AM   #7
New Boot
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Bangkok, Thailand
Posts: 23
Seems at that point then I'd be just as well off taking the whole thing off-camera and into a DAT then, other than having the other as a back-up of sorts and sync reference. Your thoughts, Steve?
David L. Fisher is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 21st, 2005, 05:56 AM   #8
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 5,742
Quote:
Originally Posted by David L. Fisher
Seems at that point then I'd be just as well off taking the whole thing off-camera and into a DAT then, other than having the other as a back-up of sorts and sync reference. Your thoughts, Steve?
How many mikes are you going to place on the talent? Do you want to record multitrack so you can mix in post or do you have someone who can mix on-the fly as you shoot?

If you're recording dialog with one mike, I can't think of a strong case for the DAT. Use a small portable stereo mixer, put the mike on BOTH channels, and record the mono signal 16 bit 48kHz on both ch1 and ch 2 in the XL2, setting one channel at regular level and the other down about -20dB (that way you're covered against unexpected extremely high levels that could distort). OTOH, if you're recording a musical performance where you want very high quality stereo recording or are planning to use multiple microphones for a live event and doing the mix in post, that's another matter and you might consider recording double system, though DAT is not the only choice or even the best choice. As someone else pointed out the other day, multitrack DAT's are expensive! Laptops with an audio interface and multitrack recording software are coming on strong these days, as are direct to hard drive and flashcard recorders.
Steve House is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 21st, 2005, 06:02 AM   #9
New Boot
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Bangkok, Thailand
Posts: 23
Good points. Maybe I should discuss the setup first instead of asknig you to fly blind.

Its going to be a multi-player piece and I will probably be goign wireless at times on at least two, may up to four people. Short of worrying about them stepping all over each other, then I guess the mixer could bring it all into the field mixer on two channels and we should be okay.

Music? Not much. A few bar scenes, this is Thailand after all, and maybe even some sadarse Karaoke, but I would probably drop that in during post anyway, except for the inept singer part anf I would record that separate. that being bad might work to my advantage :-)

Lot of outdoor stuff on this with traffic no doubt, but that's wht God invented a soudn booth and looping for anyway.
David L. Fisher is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 21st, 2005, 04:57 PM   #10
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 5,742
Quote:
Originally Posted by David L. Fisher
Good points. Maybe I should discuss the setup first instead of asknig you to fly blind.

Its going to be a multi-player piece and I will probably be goign wireless at times on at least two, may up to four people. Short of worrying about them stepping all over each other, then I guess the mixer could bring it all into the field mixer on two channels and we should be okay.

Music? Not much. A few bar scenes, this is Thailand after all, and maybe even some sadarse Karaoke, but I would probably drop that in during post anyway, except for the inept singer part anf I would record that separate. that being bad might work to my advantage :-)

Lot of outdoor stuff on this with traffic no doubt, but that's wht God invented a soudn booth and looping for anyway.
Dialog would usually be in mono in the final program mix anyway so you've got a couple of options. One way would be to get a 4 channel mixer and someone to operate it during the shoot. Mix everything down to one channel during the shoot and feed it to both L & R channels on the camera as described above, one channel on the camera at normal level and the other the same signal about 8 db lower. The sound guy will need to be on his toes, bringing the levels up on the mike that is active at the moment and taking the others down, otherwise you can get some phase problems as sound arrives at more than one live mike at slightly different times on each and then gets mixed. Another solution would be to use mainly channel 1 and 2 on the camera for your first two mikes and get another two as needed on a seperate recorder. Slate your takes and you should be able to synch up the recorder tracks in post. Treat each track, whether from the camera or the recorder as mono and mix dialog from each as needed in post to create the final single dialog track.

Sure you're going to need to have multiple mikes? Why not a single mike on a boom and someone who knows what they're doing to point it from just out of frame? An awful lot of features have been and still will be done that way for the forseeable future, wireless whizbangs or no. <grin>
Steve House is offline   Reply
Reply

DV Info Net refers all where-to-buy and where-to-rent questions exclusively to these trusted full line dealers and rental houses...

Professional Video
(800) 833-4801
Portland, OR

B&H Photo Video
(866) 521-7381
New York, NY

Z.G.C.
(973) 335-4460
Mountain Lakes, NJ

Abel Cine Tech
(888) 700-4416
N.Y. NY & L.A. CA

Precision Camera
(800) 677-1023
Austin, TX

DV Info Net also encourages you to support local businesses and buy from an authorized dealer in your neighborhood.
  You are here: DV Info Net > The Tools of DV and HD Production > All Things Audio

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

 



Google
 

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 06:39 AM.


DV Info Net -- Real Names, Real People, Real Info!
1998-2017 The Digital Video Information Network