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Old October 5th, 2012, 02:09 AM   #1
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Need to record a church choir

I have a wedding to film on Saturday (6th Octoboer - tomorrow, yes).

This is the first time I need to record a church choir. We do not have vows from where I'm from so I only use H4n and EW100 wireless mic for the priest.

Here is a picture of the church, the choir should be at the benches on the right.

http://shrani.si/f/1P/KL/3YrDh9G9/church.jpg

I don't know if the benches will be moved and they will stand closer to the wall on the right or if they will stand between the benches and the podium/stage.

I only have access to another H4 and:

Sennheiser ME66

Sennheiser ME62

And I also have a Rode VideoMic Pro which is usually on my 5D2 most of the time.

Can the above mics be of any help?

Many thanks
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Old October 5th, 2012, 06:42 AM   #2
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Re: Need to record a church choir

A shotgun like the ME66 will not be a good choice for a spread-out source like a choir unless you're trying to pick out a single soloist standing in front of the group. It's pattern is just too tight for a group like that. The VideoMic suffers the same limitation. The ME62 is an omni and would be a possible choice mounted on a mic stand a few feet in front of the choir. It would have a smoother pickup of the entire group but since it is sensitive to sound from all directions it will also pick up audience coughs, room reflections, etc, The optimum option in the Sennheiser series would be the one you don't have - the ME64 cardioid. A hemispheric shaped pattern like that can pick up the whole choir smoothly but is less sensitive to sound coming from behind it so there wouldn't be as much room intruding.
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Old October 5th, 2012, 10:19 AM   #3
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Re: Need to record a church choir

Of the options you have, it sounds like using the internal mics on your second H4 is probably the best option. Find a spot in front of the choir where you get a nice blend and place it there.

Have fun!

Rob
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Old October 5th, 2012, 12:54 PM   #4
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Re: Need to record a church choir

I'm with Rob, with what you have, the H4n's internal mics are your best bet. Stick on a mic stand (with a shock mount) in front of and and slightly above the choir pointing towards the center of the group. Optimum positioning is a guessing game unless you can do a sound check. On a separate recorder (or track) you could put your omni pointing at the audience for ambient, applause, ect. .. if needed.
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Old October 9th, 2012, 11:57 PM   #5
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Re: Need to record a church choir

What does a shock mount that would isolate an H4n look like? I'd be interested for my H4n, but have never seen one. I appreciate the choir suggestions here, as I have to record a choir too. Thanks to all.
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Old October 10th, 2012, 01:32 AM   #6
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Re: Need to record a church choir

the coincident stereo mics on these recorders are ideal for recording choirs in stereo. Key to success is height, so you can look down slightly - a boom stand on full height will do the trick. As for isolation, three foam pads gaffe red to the stand feet will usually suffice. The room is a bit lopsided for a perfect result, but these compact recorders were designed originally to do this kind of recording! You'll probably find that the parallel walls will not give the choir the right 'lift' so some subtle reverb may help sweeten it up.

Stereo recording of real acoustic ensembles always sounds so good compared with using these devices on music groups with some amplified sources and a PA.
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Old October 10th, 2012, 12:25 PM   #7
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Re: Need to record a church choir

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brett Delmage View Post
What does a shock mount that would isolate an H4n look like?
The 1/4"-20 stand mount adapter that comes with the Zoom H2.. fits in a SM57/58 sized mic's shock mount nicely. For instance the Shure A55M works great... don't know about the other Zoom recorders having the stand mount adapter but most Zooms and other PARs have the 1/4"-20 threaded insert. The stand mount adapter is nothing more than tapered plastic piece the shape of a H/H mic body with a 1/4"-20 stud at the larger end.
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Old October 11th, 2012, 06:08 AM   #8
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Re: Need to record a church choir

There's also a solution from Rycote: Portable Recorder Audio Kit » Rycote

You can also buy the various bits and pieces individually. I have the Rycote for my Tascam DR-40, and it does a great job of reducing handling noise.
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Old October 11th, 2012, 02:16 PM   #9
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Re: Need to record a church choir

I use a RODE SM3 Shockmount tilted vertically on a mic stand along with the plastic handle thingy which comes with the H4N. Works fine on a static setup and I had all the bits already.

Not sure that I would want to use that if I was going to be moving about though, as the H4N is quite heavy and the plastic cone/thingy tends to shoogle downwards on the shock mount and can end up grounding on the SM3.
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Old October 16th, 2012, 08:44 PM   #10
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Re: Need to record a church choir

Why not simply use the lighter weight Zoom H2n. It's mikes are the same as in the H4, costs less, and sound excellent in these situations for XY stereo recording.

As you are recording directly into itself the lack of XLR I/Ps are not an issue. - I am surprised that the H2N is not used more widely. I find it an excellent little device.

RonC.
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