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Old July 18th, 2010, 11:56 PM   #1
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Lavalier Wireless System recommendation: G3 or 1821?

Hi everyone!!

Yes, I know this questions has been asked a few times. And I did my search and found these posts:


Best Lavalier Wireless set/system?
Best Lavalier Wireless set/system?


Sennheiser G2/G3 or Audio-Technica ATW-182X
Sennheiser G2/G3 or Audio-Technica ATW-182X


Looking for wireless lav solution for under $1500
Looking for wireless lav solution for under $1500


I read them all and found them very informative, but it is time for me to make a decision and before I buy a wireless system, I would like to get your recommendation on which of this two kits is better in your opinion.

Let me explain you the situation first:
I have a Panasonic HMC-150, I am planning o making a short movie for next year's 'The Door Post' contest, which I need to start shooting in the next months. I have no experience whatsoever with sound. I know I can get a boom mic, but the intent of this post is only to find out which wireless system I should buy. There are only two actors on the entire short.

Because of my limited budget, I came to the conclusion that even though I would love a Lectrosonics 400 series, it is way out of my budget. Due of my some how extensive internet research, I came up with these two systems as the 'finalist' for the purchase.

Our friends of B&H have the following options:

Audio-Technica ATW-1821D Deluxe Kit - Includes: ATW-1821 Dual Bodypack Wireless Microphone System, ATW-1802 Plug-In Transmitter, Two AT-899CW Lavalier Microphones, ENG Microphone, Case and Accessories
Audio-Technica ATW-1821D Deluxe Kit - B&H Photo Video

Sennheiser EW 100 G3 Series Dual Deluxe Kit (B / 626 - 668 MHz )
Sennheiser EW 100 G3 Series Dual Deluxe Kit (B / 626 - 668 MHz )

I am just NOT sure which one to get?

They also have another G3 kit, with a different set of mics:
Sennheiser EW 100 G3 Series Dual Basic Kit (B / 626 - 668 MHz) -

Something else I am not sure if I understand is about the frequencies. The G3 kit, comes as A and B flavors. The link I sent is kit B (626 - 668 MHz), but they also have a kit A (A / 516 - 558 MHz ). I live in Hartford, VT and the closes largest city is Burlington, VT. Does it make any difference which one I get?

I would really appreciate your input and opinions on which one to get and why.

Thanks very much to you all!!

Ben
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Old July 19th, 2010, 03:24 PM   #2
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I've had experience with only the Senn G3 system. For my purposes, it has been reliable, and has worked flawlessly.

The frequency range that you should obtain can be found by going to this site:

Find Available Frequencies
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Old July 19th, 2010, 08:36 PM   #3
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Thank you Vic Owen

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vic Owen View Post
I've had experience with only the Senn G3 system. For my purposes, it has been reliable, and has worked flawlessly.

The frequency range that you should obtain can be found by going to this site:

Find Available Frequencies
Hi Vic,

Hey, thanks very much for sharing your experience. I had no idea about that website. That was very helpful thank you again!

Best Regards!
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Old July 19th, 2010, 10:11 PM   #4
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I've been using the AT almost since the day it came out and it has performed flawlessly. Regardless of whether I'm using 2 bodypaks or 2 plugins it works great. I like the fact that it is only the one receiver where as the Senny is 2 receivers, but they are a bit smaller than the AT unit so I guess it balances out. My vote is for the AT unit but then I'm a bit prejudiced.
Either way I'm sure you'll be happy but do look at how you would mount 2 receivers before you take the plunge.
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Old July 24th, 2010, 02:30 PM   #5
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Thanks Don,

Quote:
Originally Posted by Don Bloom View Post
I've been using the AT almost since the day it came out and it has performed flawlessly. Regardless of whether I'm using 2 bodypaks or 2 plugins it works great. I like the fact that it is only the one receiver where as the Senny is 2 receivers, but they are a bit smaller than the AT unit so I guess it balances out. My vote is for the AT unit but then I'm a bit prejudiced.
Either way I'm sure you'll be happy but do look at how you would mount 2 receivers before you take the plunge.
Hey, Thank you for you input, I really appreciate it.
This is what I got so far about each kit:
1821 deluxe kit:
Dual receiver is a plus. It is, since you can also mix both channels if you want to. That is a plus, but the down side is that if it breaks, you are our of both receivers.
I read over here and at BH that the built is a bit 'plasticky'.

G3 deluxe kit:
It seems to come with a bit better mics. Two TR50s. I am not sure how 'better' they are in comparison with the AT-899 that comes with the 1821 kit, but people using the TR50s seems to be quite happy.
The G3, I believe it was released on a later date. Therefor 'newer' technology.
It is hard to tell by the pictures, but it 'looks' like the G3 has a bit better quality built.

So, If it wasn't for the dual receiver that comes with the 1821, I was going to probably go with the G3 kit.

But to this date, I am still not sure which kit to purchase. I am going to read a bit more here in DVinfo and try to make a decision soon.

Again Don, thanks very much for you time!!


Ben Tolosa
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Old July 26th, 2010, 04:27 AM   #6
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Ben... I wouldn't worry about the use of plastics in the ATW-1800 system. For one thing, plastic doesn't corrode. And it doesn't dent.

My bodypacks have fared very well in the few years that I've used them. No problems at all.

FYI, plastics are used in bulletproof glass, and a wide variety of safety gear. In fact, Pelican cases are made of the stuff.
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Old July 28th, 2010, 05:48 PM   #7
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Here is a thread with helpful info on the 1821, including a review by noted Audio Guy - Ty Ford.

Reports of noticeable noise floor in ATW 1800 wireless system


I have heard that there is some noise with the 1800 series. I wanted it to be the unit for me, but I went with Sennheiser G3, since it's rare that I need dual wireless. I have a G2 unit that I employ when I need 2 wireless units, and I have no complaints. Especially when paired with the Sanken COS11d lav mic. A wonderful wonderful mic.
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Old July 29th, 2010, 01:02 PM   #8
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I also shoot with a HMC-150 camera, and use Sennheiser G2 packs for my lav mics. The standard Sennheiser lav that comes with the G3 kit is an ok mic, but not great. The TRAM TR50 lav is a very good general purpose mic, that is quite effective in picking up the speaker with little room noise if you mount the mic inwards toward the vampire-clip.

I also own a Sanken COS-11x lav mic, which has fantastic sound ( very much like a good quality condenser pencil mic ) but picks up everything in the room, so I don't use it very often.

The Sennheiser MKE-2 Gold is another great sounding lav mic, that is quite directional, so positioned properly you won't record much room noise.

Also, you may want to consider buying a small digital recorder like the Olympus LS-10 / LS-11 which runs for days on 2 AA batteries, it can use your Sennheiser G3 wired lav mics, and has a much higher dynamic range than the HMC-150 does. ( HMC-150 dynamic range is about 60 dB, while the Olympus is about 75 dB, so you can get much quieter sounding recordings if the room is very good ) You can clip the Olympus recorder on to the belt of your actor, or hide it in a pocket of their jacket.

Also, consider buying a good field mixer with good limiters to feed the sound to your HMC-150. I use the Sound Devices MixPre mixer, which has amazing sound, very good pre-amps, a very loud headphone amp, and will run all day on 2 AA batteries. A mixer is extremely useful for your boom op, so they can properly judge the sound they are recording via a good pair of headphones like the industry standard Sony 7506 model.

Lastly, consider buying a good quality hypercardioid pencil condenser mic for your boom op to use when recording indoors. ( most shotgun mics under $1,000 are not good indoors, as they will pick up as much sound from behind the mic as they do in front of the mic ) My favorite indoor condenser mic is the Audio Technica 4053B mic, which has a very full rich sound, and will not pick up much room noise when used indoors.
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Old August 1st, 2010, 08:17 AM   #9
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I will miss my AKG

I have a G2 system in the 600mhz range and a PR81/PT81 in the 700mhz range.
Sadly I have to stop using the AKG and even worse AKG has not replaced a set similar in the approved Bands.
The G2 is just an OK mic system. Is the G3 an improvement?
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Old August 1st, 2010, 02:08 PM   #10
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The G2 & G3 both have the same mic (ME2), but they are great little wireless systems. The G3 is an improvement as it upgrades to using passive diversity. I purchased a Sanken COS11d lav to go with it, and it sounds very nice.
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Old August 1st, 2010, 05:48 PM   #11
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I said this before in other threads, but the G2/3's GUI displays more info, specifically gain meters and easier freg. scans then the AT. Both systems have they're pros and cons.
I wonder if Sennheiser considering making an 'affordable' dual channel receiver.
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Old August 21st, 2010, 10:13 PM   #12
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Hi Dean,

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dean Sensui View Post
Ben... I wouldn't worry about the use of plastics in the ATW-1800 system. For one thing, plastic doesn't corrode. And it doesn't dent.

My bodypacks have fared very well in the few years that I've used them. No problems at all.

FYI, plastics are used in bulletproof glass, and a wide variety of safety gear. In fact, Pelican cases are made of the stuff.
Hey, well thank you for the info!
I am going to take a pick of those Sanken COS-11x to see how much they cost.
You know, I am still undecided... !@#!#%$

But this information is definitely helping me :)

I'll take your word on the AT plastic.

Thanks very much!
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Old August 22nd, 2010, 12:07 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chad Johnson View Post
Here is a thread with helpful info on the 1821, including a review by noted Audio Guy - Ty Ford.

Reports of noticeable noise floor in ATW 1800 wireless system


I have heard that there is some noise with the 1800 series. I wanted it to be the unit for me, but I went with Sennheiser G3, since it's rare that I need dual wireless. I have a G2 unit that I employ when I need 2 wireless units, and I have no complaints. Especially when paired with the Sanken COS11d lav mic. A wonderful wonderful mic.
Chad,

Well, thanks very much for the info. I read Ty's review on the 1800's and it was great to know.

I'll check the cost of those Sanken COS11s

Thanks again!!
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Old August 22nd, 2010, 12:20 AM   #14
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Love my g2 and g3 wireless lavs. Solid, reliable and sound great.
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Old August 22nd, 2010, 02:06 AM   #15
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Thanks Guy

Quote:
Originally Posted by Guy McLoughlin View Post
I also shoot with a HMC-150 camera, and use Sennheiser G2 packs for my lav mics. The standard Sennheiser lav that comes with the G3 kit is an ok mic, but not great. The TRAM TR50 lav is a very good general purpose mic, that is quite effective in picking up the speaker with little room noise if you mount the mic inwards toward the vampire-clip.

I also own a Sanken COS-11x lav mic, which has fantastic sound ( very much like a good quality condenser pencil mic ) but picks up everything in the room, so I don't use it very often.

The Sennheiser MKE-2 Gold is another great sounding lav mic, that is quite directional, so positioned properly you won't record much room noise.

Also, you may want to consider buying a small digital recorder like the Olympus LS-10 / LS-11 which runs for days on 2 AA batteries, it can use your Sennheiser G3 wired lav mics, and has a much higher dynamic range than the HMC-150 does. ( HMC-150 dynamic range is about 60 dB, while the Olympus is about 75 dB, so you can get much quieter sounding recordings if the room is very good ) You can clip the Olympus recorder on to the belt of your actor, or hide it in a pocket of their jacket.

Also, consider buying a good field mixer with good limiters to feed the sound to your HMC-150. I use the Sound Devices MixPre mixer, which has amazing sound, very good pre-amps, a very loud headphone amp, and will run all day on 2 AA batteries. A mixer is extremely useful for your boom op, so they can properly judge the sound they are recording via a good pair of headphones like the industry standard Sony 7506 model.

Lastly, consider buying a good quality hypercardioid pencil condenser mic for your boom op to use when recording indoors. ( most shotgun mics under $1,000 are not good indoors, as they will pick up as much sound from behind the mic as they do in front of the mic ) My favorite indoor condenser mic is the Audio Technica 4053B mic, which has a very full rich sound, and will not pick up much room noise when used indoors.
Guy,

Hey thank you very much for all this info. I am also considering getting a Canon 7D, so that LS-10 might be good as well. I will check that Sound Devices MixPre mixer as well.

I really appreciate you took the time to answer with all of this input.

The very best to you!!
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