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Old September 30th, 2012, 05:58 PM   #1
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What Wireless Lav Mic Should I Get?

I am going to be shooting a motivational speaker at schools across the country and i want to put a lav mic on him and i will be about 100 feet away maybe 150 feet at the most.

I want a wireless lav mic that will not make static noises and pickup interference. Some VHF and UHF systems do that. I once had a Audio Technica wireless mic and it was fine, shure was fine too. I also had another one that made a bunch of noise.

So any recommendations?

Thanks
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Old September 30th, 2012, 07:46 PM   #2
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Re: What Wireless Lav Mic Should I Get?

Depends on the budget. Traxcom or Lectro digital would be a great choice. After that, I personally like my Audio Technic 1821 dual channel but they also have single channel kits. Then of course there's Sennheiser G3's which a lot of folks around here use.
Traxcom and Lectros being at the top of cost, AT and Senn are less. In the case of AT and Senn, you might also want to look into something other than the stock mic. I use Countryman EMWs but the B3 or B6's or the Sanken, or the Sennheiser MKE? could work out great as well. I questioned the Senny mic only because I don't remember the exact model number.
Obviously stay away from VHF and anything over 700mhz if used in the USA.
Money constraints will be the big dictator I think.

All systems can pick up interference and floor noise to somedegree if the conditions are right. Traxcom and Lectro generally have less floor noise than the AT and Senn units but conditions dictate. Clear scan for frequency and be aware of cell phones (especially Blackberry's) AC noise, other wireless devices that are close to the transmitter or receiver can all cause problems no matter what unit you use.
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Last edited by Don Bloom; September 30th, 2012 at 07:49 PM. Reason: forgot to add
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Old September 30th, 2012, 08:01 PM   #3
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Re: What Wireless Lav Mic Should I Get?

Perhaps Mr. Bloom meant Zaxcom. Your question is not answerable without a budget figure.

And remember that you are typically not REQUIRED to place the receiver far away. You could place it on stage close to the subject.
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Old September 30th, 2012, 09:20 PM   #4
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Re: What Wireless Lav Mic Should I Get?

will this get the job done?

http://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B00006I523/ref=mp_s_a_1?pi=SL75&qid=1349087182&sr=8-1

Last edited by Corey Benoit; October 1st, 2012 at 05:29 AM.
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Old September 30th, 2012, 11:04 PM   #5
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Re: What Wireless Lav Mic Should I Get?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Corey Benoit View Post
will this get the job done?
This what? Did you mean to include a URL or reference to something?
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Old October 1st, 2012, 05:28 AM   #6
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Re: What Wireless Lav Mic Should I Get?

Sorry this is the link.


http://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B00006I523/ref=mp_s_a_1?pi=SL75&qid=1349087182&sr=8-1
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Old October 1st, 2012, 06:30 AM   #7
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Re: What Wireless Lav Mic Should I Get?

Richard,
Yes I did but I continued to mis-spell. I believe I was up past my bedtime ;-)

Corey,
I beleive the unit you are linking to is one of the cheapest units available which has one 1 frequency, no clear scan and no possible adjustments. Will it do the job? Yes! Will it do the job as you originally described? IMO, No.

However it is your job, your client and of course your money. You know what you can afford so you have to buy what you can afford.
Perhaps you could look into renting a better unit for a couple of days?
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Old October 1st, 2012, 08:04 AM   #8
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Re: What Wireless Lav Mic Should I Get?

Hello Corey,

There are no guarantees with wireless mics. It's not plug and play.

To comment on some other thoughts put forth.

VHF is not, by itself, worse than UHF. The VHF band got filled up and the industry migrated to UHF. In a number of situations, that left VHF more open with less interference.

The mic you mention - the first link worked fine for me, btw - only operates on one frequency. If there's something else on that frequency you're gong to have trouble unless you can put the receiver really close to the transmitter and cable back to the camera or mixer. Even then, in some cases, you can have problems.

If you're in one geographical area, you can look up the spectrum use. I have a couple of links for that on my location audio page. Ty Ford Location Audio

Be aware that even if a TV station says it's channel 2, for example, it may not be transmitting on that frequency. In Baltimore, "Channel 2" ended up on channel 38 after NTSC was dissolved. They were allowed to keep "Channel 2" because it was part on their long time identity, but the frequencies of channel 2 are actually relatively open.

If your professional work is tarting to demand better audio, maybe it's time to find a partner who has that covered. I work that way with half a dozen shooters here in Baltimore. I usually do more than just audio. Sometimes I run a second camera, help light or grip, whatever.

One of the biggest mistakes you can make is to try to make a One Man Band work in a situation where it doesn't. The cry of "I don't have the budget" falls on deaf ears when you try and fail. What really happened in that situation is you underbid because you didn't understand the job.

Regards,

Ty Ford

Regards,

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Old October 1st, 2012, 10:40 AM   #9
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Re: What Wireless Lav Mic Should I Get?

You could always use a recorder such as Zoom?? or Taskman and sink in post. That way you can be sure of no interference.
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Old October 1st, 2012, 01:17 PM   #10
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Re: What Wireless Lav Mic Should I Get?

"You could always use a recorder such as Zoom?? or Taskman and sink in post. That way you can be sure of no interference."

Yes, but you wouldn't be sure of sync, especially with long sections.

Work with his/her once to see how explosive he/she gets so you know where to set the gain on your wireless transmitter input. Then put the receiver up near or on the stage and cable back to whatever you're grabbing audio with.

Test it all first and be ready to ask them to surrender their cell phone. I've had smart phones knock wireless reception down to a foot or less.

To keep other cell sounds out of your recording, try audio cables withe Neutrik EMC connectors on at least one end.

Regards,

Ty Ford
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Old October 1st, 2012, 02:15 PM   #11
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Re: What Wireless Lav Mic Should I Get?

I do theatrical work a great deal, and some people insist on putting their receiver rack at the rear of the auditorium next to the mixer. Operating at the end of the range is NOT good for reliability. I have Sennheisers, and some of Mr Bloom's systems. At the rear of the auditorium, you can have somebody on stage hold a mic or pack in their hand and have a full strength signal. They can take a step to the left and vanish!

The only safe way is to get receivers and their aerials close to the transmitters - it improves reliability loads! Others try the receivers at the back, and run out RF cables. VHF works great, UHF works ok-ish, but 2.4GHz only works well with very low loss cable - that is very rigid and awkward.

Put the receive end local to the transmitters, use proper aerial systems and cross your fingers.
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Old October 1st, 2012, 03:12 PM   #12
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Re: What Wireless Lav Mic Should I Get?

This is not a UHF wireless mic but a VHF one. It will have a much shorter range, less quality, and be more prone to interference than a UHF unit.

I have three different UHF wireless lav systems;

1. Sennheisier G3 with lav and XLR plugin module - Excellent system. Never any problems with it.

2. Sony (I think it is UMP or UWP?) lav and XLR plugin module - Also an excellent system. I like the sturdy consstruction and ease of changing out batteries. Place it just below the sennheiser in quality but very close.

3. Azden - dual channel 320 system. My first wireless mic purchase. Was happy with it until getting the Sennehiser and Sony systems and found out how much better they were.

The Sennheiser is a great system for around $600-$700 for the lav only setup. The Sony is priced around the same but if you look enough you may find a great sale. If you don't find the Sony on sale and the price is about the same as the Sennheiser G3 I would go with the Sennheiser. Two or three years ago I found a major retailer with the Sony lav system on sale for about $470. It was a steal at that price. I later bought the XLR plugin module off of ebay for about $125.
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Old October 2nd, 2012, 12:30 PM   #13
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Re: What Wireless Lav Mic Should I Get?

What's the xlr plugin module? I have a h4n recorder and it has combo jacks.
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Old October 2nd, 2012, 01:25 PM   #14
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Re: What Wireless Lav Mic Should I Get?

The XLR plug-in module (aka, by some as a butt plug transmitter) is usually for making a dynamic H/H mic wireless. It's occasionally used on a boom mounted mic, but must supply Phantom Power for condensers.
Just because a system is VHS, does not make it inferior to a UHF. Pros and Cons to both.... however the AT PRO88 is likely cheap hobbyist grade gear..
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Old October 4th, 2012, 07:12 AM   #15
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Re: What Wireless Lav Mic Should I Get?

I was thinking on renting this unit. Will this unit work well and is it better than the one i posted above?

Rent Sennheiser G2 Wireless Lapel Mic
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