Know Enough to be Confused 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 September 18th, 2010, 09:56 PM   #1
Major Player
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Nashville, TN.
Posts: 581
Know Enough to be Confused

axim - attempted solution

1. Get the mic off the camera (5D mk2). - So I use a 20 ft wired connector to place the mic near talent.
2. Don't use wired connection due to the great possibility of noise pickup. - So I place the mic (RODE SVM) back on the camera.
3. wireless lavs - then someone said they will fail when you least expect it....
4. Plug into the sound board for concerts - so bought XLR to 1/8" wire and then learned that sound board does not equal full recording of all sounds needed

If I have a mixer, does that solve the problem of wired connections and noise? Any way to buy shielded cabling for mic to camera connection? Or do i need Zooms with lavs connected to them?
__________________
Nashville TN using Canon 5D MK3, Canon 550D, RODE SVM mic, 70-200 f2.8L II IS, 24-105 f4L IS, 50 and 85 f/1.8, Vegas Pro 11, Zoom H4n, Blackbird, Lilliput Monitor, Lightroom
Harry Simpson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 18th, 2010, 11:14 PM   #2
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Tucson AZ
Posts: 2,207
Hi Harry

I think a lot of your issues and conundrums arise because you're trying to do commercial work with sort of consumer gear. Commercial/Pro mic's have XLR connectors and pro recorders/cameras/mixers, etc also have balanced XLR and balanced XLR cables are designed to minimize noise - even for really long runs (1000 feet or more, anyone?)

So if you're going to run cables long distances, you want them to be XLR and that implies a system from mic to camera (or at least mixer) that is XLR based.

Of the options you mentioned lavs into something like a Zoom (might be some better options) doesn't sound like a bad idea for dialogue. But if you're also recording music, you'll need some other type of mic/stereo pair and they'll still need to be at the end of somewhat longish cable runs if you record on camera.

What comes to mind is something like a Sony PCM-D50 - I think it's pretty much the best recording quality you'll get in it's class. Mics are much better than you would expect for the price and limiter is really good. I'd look at the Sony before even thinking about the Zoom. Only problem I had with my Sony was how to mount it in a mic shock mount, but I had someone make a little plug the same diameter as my mics and woth a 1/4-20 stub sticking out. It screws to the tripod socket on the Sony and fits into a regular shock mount on a mic stand.

Leave your SVM on camera for a synch track.

Just a thought
Jim Andrada is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 19th, 2010, 02:48 AM   #3
Major Player
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Adelaide, South Australia
Posts: 463
Hire a sound guy and let him get good sound to your camera, he will have the mics, knowledge and techniques to save you huge headaches.
Locally producers are just waking up to the idea of get it right on the shoot and it will save you a massive amount of time and $$$ trying to fix the problems in post production.
Brian P. Reynolds is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 19th, 2010, 06:32 AM   #4
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 5,742
Quote:
Originally Posted by Harry Simpson View Post
axim - attempted solution

1. Get the mic off the camera (5D mk2). - So I use a 20 ft wired connector to place the mic near talent.
2. Don't use wired connection due to the great possibility of noise pickup. - So I place the mic (RODE SVM) back on the camera.
3. wireless lavs - then someone said they will fail when you least expect it....
4. Plug into the sound board for concerts - so bought XLR to 1/8" wire and then learned that sound board does not equal full recording of all sounds needed

If I have a mixer, does that solve the problem of wired connections and noise? Any way to buy shielded cabling for mic to camera connection? Or do i need Zooms with lavs connected to them?
What exactly are you shooting? There's no single solution that will give primo results for dialog, concerts, and interviews interchangeably. For the concerts, what KIND of concerts and in what kind of venue? How many options will you have in terms of micing, running cables, etc ... ie, are you there just as a member of the audience or are you there in some sort of offical capacity and have "crew" access? Plugging into the venue PA soundboard might be a viable option when recording a solo vocalist / acoustic guitarist in concert, for example, but is not likely to help much if you're shooting a rock band in a club venue. Broadcast concerts are fully mic'ed for recording, usually with every instrument and vocalist on their own individual mics, with the venue PA picking up splits from some of those mics for their own needs - tune in to something like Austin City Limits on PBS and note all the mics in use - just look at all the mics around the drum kit, for example ... for the venue PA or in a club without being mic'ed for recording, probably none of those drum kit mics would be there as the drums would carry to the audience without the need for amplification. If you take a feed off the board, you're going to be dependent on 'bleed' into the live mics to pick up instruments that are not mic'ed. Couple that with the fact that the PA will have delays and equalization for the room inserted, and probably constant gain riding as well, and it's going to be hard to get good results from it.

It's likely the cable you have now is shielded, that's not the issue. Balanced (XLR) connection uses two centre conductors plus shield, wired in a specific way (actually more correctly the circuits at each end that the cable is plugged into are wired in a specific way) so that noise making it onto the signal conductors gets cancelled out, while an unbalanced cable is wired differently. A stereo cable, like used for the SVM, also has two centre conductors plus shield but the wiring of the circuits at the source and destination devices, and thus the function of the conductors in the cable, is different.

Lavs don't need to be wireless. It's the wireless part that is the weakest (and expensive) link in the chain. If the talent is stationary, such as in the typical interview situation, a hard-wired lav would be favoured over wireless. A wired lav on your talent, going back to a mixer at the camera or separate recording device, would work just fine. Another approach would be a hypercardioid mic boomed as close as possible, above and in front of the talent, held just out of frame. While booming is often considered to give better quality than lavs, if the talent is 'squirmy' and you don't have a boom operator to continually adjust the mic position to track his movement, the lav might give overall better results. An awful lot of broadcast sitdown interviews are done with hard-wired lavs.

Your own mixer would go a long way to improving the noise issue as most would expect balanced inputs from XLR mics. Just as important, it gives you much more control of the whole recording process. If you want to record in camera, even something like the JuicedLink 'adapter', really a mini-mixer, that takes balanced XLR mics and feeds the mix into an unbalanced stereo mic level input would be a big help. I think of something like the CX231 or CX431 as being a basic piece of kit, even if you also have a full-blown, full-featured mixer at your disposal. Something to look for in a full-fledged mixer is an adjustable output level so you can feed either the mic level input on your camera or a line level input on a different camera or other recorder. Some mixers have this (ex. SD 442, SD 302) but others (ex. SD MixPre) do not and would require pads to bring their line level outputs down to properly feed a consumer tape level or mic level input. Of course, using a mixer also assumes you have a) the mics to use with it; and b) access that allows you to position those mics properly. - just the mixer by itself won't do much.
__________________
Good news, Cousins! This week's chocolate ration is 15 grams!

Last edited by Steve House; September 19th, 2010 at 07:15 AM.
Steve House is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 19th, 2010, 10:03 AM   #5
Major Player
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Nashville, TN.
Posts: 581
Thanks for the great input!

I think the idea that the video can rival PRO systems pulled me in - the audio I know needs a lot of careful attention

Types of events:
***Concert - Rock***
RODE SVM on camera with AGC turned on worked well
***Concert - Acoustic***
Was going to run a wired 1/8 20 ft to RODE SVM on stand near talent
***Interview - 2 person***
Wired 1/8 20 ft on boom with RODE SVM mic set so left was interviewer and right was talent
Turn off AGC anf set levels a little low and the sound was very good and clean
All the concern about noise now haqs made me leary of trying this again though.
***Interview/Commercial = 1 person stationary***
Recently filmed with AGC on and RODE SVM on camera and of course had the crappy AGC noise during silent periods but it cleaned up ok in post.

If I were to get the JuicedLink DT454 with the XLR inputs, Could I use my 1/8 connector to 2-XLR cord to plug the 1/8 into the RODE and the XLR into the juice link? The take the output from the JL to the camera via a short 1/8 to 1/8 cord? Or do i need the whole wired mic with XLR connections?

I really appreciate your input ---- thank you so much
__________________
Nashville TN using Canon 5D MK3, Canon 550D, RODE SVM mic, 70-200 f2.8L II IS, 24-105 f4L IS, 50 and 85 f/1.8, Vegas Pro 11, Zoom H4n, Blackbird, Lilliput Monitor, Lightroom
Harry Simpson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 19th, 2010, 10:49 AM   #6
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 5,742
Quote:
Originally Posted by Harry Simpson View Post
...
If I were to get the JuicedLink DT454 with the XLR inputs, Could I use my 1/8 connector to 2-XLR cord to plug the 1/8 into the RODE and the XLR into the juice link? The take the output from the JL to the camera via a short 1/8 to 1/8 cord? Or do i need the whole wired mic with XLR connections?

..
You could but there's no need - feeding the SVM into the Juiced's XLR inputs via an adapter wouldn't do anything for you. The Juiced already has a 1/8 stereo input - mic inputs 3 & 4 - that you can plug either just the mic or the mic through an extension into. It's not using an XLR input per se that gets you the noise immunity, it's the whole package of using a balanced output mic connected to an XLR cable connected to a balanced input that does the job. Since the SVM is an unbalanced output, the whole system still be unbalanced even if you do use your 1/8 to 2-XLR cable to feed the XLR inputs instead of the 1/8 input. But the Juiced also allows you to interface with a wide array of more professional balanced mics, including those that require phantom mic power.
__________________
Good news, Cousins! This week's chocolate ration is 15 grams!
Steve House is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 19th, 2010, 01:44 PM   #7
Major Player
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Nashville, TN.
Posts: 581
I was thinking that was prob the case Steve. So I need a JuicedLink and new balanced mics with XLR connectores to connect to the Juiced Link. But what about the connector from the JL to the camera which is 1/8 to 1/8 connector?

say to record an acoustic concert with a three people all playing instruments and the singing....

I'm getting the felling the RODE SVM would only be good for louder rock music recording where you literally are recording the out put from the venue's speakers.

mic a two person interview would need two wired balanced XLR lavs correct?
__________________
Nashville TN using Canon 5D MK3, Canon 550D, RODE SVM mic, 70-200 f2.8L II IS, 24-105 f4L IS, 50 and 85 f/1.8, Vegas Pro 11, Zoom H4n, Blackbird, Lilliput Monitor, Lightroom
Harry Simpson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 19th, 2010, 02:12 PM   #8
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 5,742
Quote:
Originally Posted by Harry Simpson View Post
I was thinking that was prob the case Steve. So I need a JuicedLink and new balanced mics with XLR connectores to connect to the Juiced Link. But what about the connector from the JL to the camera which is 1/8 to 1/8 connector?

say to record an acoustic concert with a three people all playing instruments and the singing....

I'm getting the felling the RODE SVM would only be good for louder rock music recording where you literally are recording the out put from the venue's speakers.

mic a two person interview would need two wired balanced XLR lavs correct?
JL to camera would indeed be 1/8 tp 1/8, typically a few inches in length so there's minimal danger of noise pickup.

For an acoustic concert with three vocalists each playing instruments, arguably the best way to do it would be 6 mics, micing each vocal and each instrumentseparately, all into a multi-track mixer and recorder arrangement. This might be where a tie-in to the venue board might work out - depends on a lot of things. Plan B would be a stereo pair on the stage lip.

For a 2 person interview, hardwired lav on each, thru the Juice and keeping them on separate channels (one to left, the other right) until post.
__________________
Good news, Cousins! This week's chocolate ration is 15 grams!
Steve House is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 19th, 2010, 02:22 PM   #9
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Tucson AZ
Posts: 2,207
Thinking about what Steve said I think a lot of it boils down to budget.

But regardless of budget, I think number one priority would be to get the mic off camera for everything - except as an aid in synching up. It's pretty fundamental that optimum camera position and optimum mic position are almost never the same.

Even for shooting a stationary speaker the camera will be further away than the mic should be - getting closer than 6 or 8 feet with the camera will result in a distorted image with the 24 - 105 lens (I have it and I love it for stills - don't have the mkII) but even at that distance most mics will pick up a lot of "air" in the sound - not much richness, particularly in an uncontrolled space.

One way around this would be something like the Sony PCM-D50 or a Zoom but I think the Sony is a lot better, This is also not optimal for every situation but it will be a really big step up from the SVM (on or off camera I think) and it isn't horribly expensive. That's why I suggest it as the first step. And even if you go for a more elaborate kit, the Sony makes a great backup.

Next step up would be to embrace the XLR based system - this will mean a bigger financial hit, but it will be upgradeable and even starting with modestly priced gear can give very nice results. No need to become an equipment freak on day one. Mid level gear skillfully used can be a fine starting point. The downside of this is price and complexity. I think that even using mid level gear you can spend in the ballpark of what your camera cost. And you will have a lot more work to set it all up - ie maybe a couple of lavs for the speakers and a reasonable stereo pair for music, and maybe a hyper. And of course a small recorder. And maybe a mixer. This is where you'll start to wish for a sound guy.

Of course - if you want to go for broke, it's no trick at all to spend several times what your camera (with lenses) cost - this is where a sound guy really does start to make sense financially as well as logistically.

Lots to think about!
Jim Andrada 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 01:59 PM.


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