Urgent Help: Advice Recording a Choir (16 Members) in a Cathedral 9 Second Echo - Page 7 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 8th, 2015, 01:24 AM   #91
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: LOWESTOFT - UK
Posts: 2,125
Re: Urgent Help: Advice Recording a Choir (16 Members) in a Cathedral 9 Second Echo

For choirs, or for me more commonly, the ensemble in theatre stuff, you need to reinforce the basic stuff. Phones, most importantly, but also simple stuff like ignoring the cameras. Many of my subjects are performers and they've been trained to spot a camera lens at 50m and go into pose mode. Moving cameras seem to trigger this. They spot the movement, and follow it with their eyes. Choirs and other non-performer groups find the moving cameras interesting/scary/invasive.

Gary mentioned the endings, and this needs explaining to them for both sound and picture. What do you need them to do when they finish? Hold still or relax, or lower heads or .... What? Sound just wants silence. Turning into a sudden rabble at the end by looking around, shuffling, dropping shoulders, holding up or lowering down their sheets, if they have them to read from. It could simply be stay still and keep looking at the choirmaster. They just need to remain 'a choir'. Could be good fun!
Paul R Johnson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 8th, 2015, 03:11 PM   #92
Major Player
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Liverpool
Posts: 495
Re: Urgent Help: Advice Recording a Choir (16 Members) in a Cathedral 9 Second Echo

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Andrada View Post
Hi Craig - congratulations on getting them to find someone.

Anyhow, just want to wish you the best of luck with this and please please please don't give up on audio - I think it's actually more fun than the video part. Good gear is quite expensive BUT you can use it for decades unlike the cameras.

Please post a link to the result if you can - by now I think we'd all like to actually see/hear the result.

(By the way re the idea of a higher fixed camera angle I was thinking of mounting it on a tall tripod or even on a ladder (or a tall light stand.) Since it will be locked off you don't have to stand behind it except to set it up.)

Best
Thanks Jim! Yeah, I quickly realised that audio equipment is a worthy investment, which is why the only lav mics I've owned are 11Ds and the only shotgun I've owned is a 416p. From my research, they seemed like the best buys for what they do, though I'm sure there are more high end equivalents that I am unaware of. That said, I can only invest what it is worth to me as a business that's directly aimed at weddings. However, if I can begin to understand more about audio, then I'll be able to venture into some audio gigs with a bit of luck. I feel like a kid again, as I would play 'soccer', rugby, cricket, and take part in swimming and athletics... I was never able to really focus on one sport, because I loved them all. In later life, it's become similar with photography, videography and maybe eventually, the study of sound engineering. I'm sure it's hard to become an expert in all, and video will always remain top of the list (from what I can tell), but it's a great privilege to be in a position to enter a field that requires such a heavy investment. I'm blessed to have had the opportunity to do these things, and to have been able to stay at home whilst I built up my equipment.

Hahaha by now, you'd probably want my small earnings, you've certainly put the time in to help me, which I'm hugely grateful for! :)

Thanks Jim! My current camera ideas include the possibility of a high stand... does it prove to be a better shot than using a lower angle, which exposes the ceiling?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steven Digges View Post
I have been following Craig's work in the wedding/event forum. He has already displayed much talent for artistic video acquisition. He knows how to shoot quite well. Far beyond his honest request for audio support going into this difficult record. Now that he has proper audio support I am sure his finished film will please the client and may surprise many of you. It is always refreshing when a rookie asks legitimate questions and is responsive to the support he gets in a thoughtful way. I don't think he is here to cry help once, not check back in, and go away, like so many others do. He is genuinely trying to learn from the inquiries he makes.

Kind Regards,

Steve
Thanks Steve! Appreciate comments like these... they're amazing when they come from experienced professionals. I know that I'm a newbie coming in and trying to take on everything, and soak up everything, and therefore, I'm also mightily aware of the gaps in the knowledge that I will have in places, even if I've managed to pull off some decent work in the process.

Today, my friend who I mentioned earlier in the thread, has offered to take me to meet an audio engineer next week to learn some of the basics. Really kind of him. I'm hoping that it comes to fruition, and then I can continue to learn as much as possible.

As for the video, it'll certainly be posted in all its glory or shame or wherever it falls in between.

I'm sure that I'll learn a lot from the experience, and I'll learn new things to try for next time, should I get another opportunity. Ultimately, it's a really exciting project and I'm really thankful to everyone here for giving me some tips and tricks to help me along the way! The clamp arrived for my GoPro today, and my clapper will arrive tomorrow. I'll be ready.

In the meantime, I'll post on Thursday evening to let you know how things have gone! :) Thanks again!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Andrada View Post
+1 on everything you said - so many people start a thread and then vanish into thin air.
Thanks Jim!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul R Johnson View Post
For choirs, or for me more commonly, the ensemble in theatre stuff, you need to reinforce the basic stuff. Phones, most importantly, but also simple stuff like ignoring the cameras. Many of my subjects are performers and they've been trained to spot a camera lens at 50m and go into pose mode. Moving cameras seem to trigger this. They spot the movement, and follow it with their eyes. Choirs and other non-performer groups find the moving cameras interesting/scary/invasive.

Gary mentioned the endings, and this needs explaining to them for both sound and picture. What do you need them to do when they finish? Hold still or relax, or lower heads or .... What? Sound just wants silence. Turning into a sudden rabble at the end by looking around, shuffling, dropping shoulders, holding up or lowering down their sheets, if they have them to read from. It could simply be stay still and keep looking at the choirmaster. They just need to remain 'a choir'. Could be good fun!
Thanks for these tips, Paul. Invaluable. I'll be sure to mention these things today, and on the day of the shoot (Thursday).

I feel ready. I just need to get in and do my best!

Thanks everyone!!!
Craig McKenna is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 8th, 2015, 04:11 PM   #93
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Tucson AZ
Posts: 2,207
Re: Urgent Help: Advice Recording a Choir (16 Members) in a Cathedral 9 Second Echo

Hi Craig

Part of the reasoning for higher viewpoint is that if the mic stand is between the camera and the conductor, the higher the camera the less obtrusive the mics will be - they won't loom as large as if the camera were looking up at them so to speak - and if everything works out the mic in the shot might even be lower than the (apparent) head of the conductor

But maybe most important is that if the singers have music folders a low camera angle will probably make it hard to see their faces, or make the front folks completely block the rear folks. And even if they don't have folders, looking up peoples' noses is not the greatest idea:<))

Generally if you watch televised concerts, the cameras are looking down onto the orchestra - makes it much easier to see the folks on the back benches so to speak. The "Royal Box" in an opera house is usually above the stage so the "king" can look down on the performers and if it's good enough for royalty it's good enough for us, right? (Just sort of teasing - sorry!) The main point is that audiences are used to a higher viewpoint for televised events.

And if you have a couple of "floor" cams it gives you a different viewpoint to play off against the higher camera.

Just my opinion of course. I only do concert band and orchestral stuff with the occasional quintet or soloist tossed in and for a soloist or group of two or three I'd tend to be more "lens to eye" I guess. Maybe standing height camera and sitting height performer.
Jim Andrada is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 8th, 2015, 04:55 PM   #94
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Camas, WA, USA
Posts: 5,513
Re: Urgent Help: Advice Recording a Choir (16 Members) in a Cathedral 9 Second Echo

Quote:
Originally Posted by Craig McKenna View Post
Thanks Jim! Yeah, I quickly realised that audio equipment is a worthy investment, which is why the only lav mics I've owned are 11Ds and the only shotgun I've owned is a 416p...
Great choices!

I know it's water under the bridge, but you might reconsider having wanted to avoid renting. I hate burning money with rentals too, but this job seemed like the perfect candidate: you want great equipment, but don't envision adding "recording in a cathedral" to your line card. It's these one-off jobs where renting really makes sense.

An alternate approach is buying and later selling on the used market. If you have the capital, you can essentially rent for the price of shipping and might even make a little profit, if you buy low & sell high. But this is riskier as you can't always rely on the right equipment at the right price at the right time.

On the third hand, you might legitimately want to add a pair of cardioid mics to your kit for x-y recording. This can be especially useful for recording ambient sound to put under b-roll or for Foley recording. Personally, I'm impressed with the Rode NT1-A for this purpose...

People mentioned the Shure 57/58 earlier as a classic mic, but also agreed that it's not right for this job. These mics are really built for high SPLs and don't deliver extended highs or lows. They're perfect for aiming at a Marshall stack or being held up to one's teeth, but as dynamic mics, they don't deliver a strong, clean signal for faint audio.

The NT1-A, on the other hand, delivers extremely low self-noise and a reasonably hot signal for not a ton of cash. So why buy a more expensive mic? For better high-SPL handling and a sweeter EQ. It just doesn't have that boutique sound. But if you're indoors and want to record somebody rolling dice, it gives you a cardioid pattern and a clean signal. One generally EQ's the snot out of stuff like this anyway, so boutique doesn't really matter. Want the signal to pan naturally? Record it with a stereo pair, rather than panning with a knob.

Back to the cathedral, a pair of NT1-As would be big, bulky and silver. They won't give you a boutique sound right out of the box. But they'd give a credible result, given good placement. (Though as mentioned, good placement is the most critical element and rarely comes from luck alone.) Which brings us full circle to renting or the used market. A pair of cardioids can be a useful tools in an audio kit, but owning a pair of boutique cardioids could be difficult to justify, unless they fit a business plan.

There are other high-value large diaphragm condenser mics out there. The NT1-A is nice because its simple design leads to low noise and low cost. Be aware that more complexity with multiple diaphragms and multiple patterns increases self noise, so a higher price doesn't always mean higher quality. Then again, more money can get you a better response and cleaner headroom too.

All in all, I'm glad to learn that they're hiring an audio person. Excellent! And this gives you some time to reflect on what else you might want in your equipment case and when renting (or using the used market as a de facto rental source) might make sense. As they say, the only thing a director needs to own is a telephone. Everything else can be rented. :)
__________________
Jon Fairhurst
Jon Fairhurst is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 8th, 2015, 09:25 PM   #95
Trustee
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Phoenix, AZ
Posts: 1,682
Re: Urgent Help: Advice Recording a Choir (16 Members) in a Cathedral 9 Second Echo

Jon, +1 on the Rode NT1A. I love mine! I kept it in the edit bay for the first couple of years as a dedicated large diaphragm VO mic. What a mistake, as I learned how to take advantage of its sensitivity it now goes on set with me all the time for many different uses. It is definitely one of my go to mics when the situation is right. And Rode guarantees their mics for ten years and stands behind it. I have had it 8 years and Rode just put a new diaphragm in it free of charge.

Steve
__________________
www.CorporateShow.com
Been at this so long I'm rounding my years of experience down...not up!

Last edited by Steven Digges; September 8th, 2015 at 09:45 PM. Reason: SP
Steven Digges is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 9th, 2015, 01:03 AM   #96
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Camas, WA, USA
Posts: 5,513
Re: Urgent Help: Advice Recording a Choir (16 Members) in a Cathedral 9 Second Echo

When I bought my NT1A, I figured that it was a temporary thing. I needed a studio vocal mic and it fit my budget. I'd eventually need to upgrade... except I didn't. It's clean signal makes it a keeper. And I don't have a good enough recording space and paying singers to justify a high dollar upgrade.

As it turns out, I'm probably more "temporary" than my mic. :)
__________________
Jon Fairhurst
Jon Fairhurst is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 9th, 2015, 01:22 AM   #97
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: LOWESTOFT - UK
Posts: 2,125
Re: Urgent Help: Advice Recording a Choir (16 Members) in a Cathedral 9 Second Echo

Living in a part of the country without decent roads was always my excuse for not renting, and in my forty year career, avoided it in the main, WASTING huge amounts of money. I've lost count of the kit I bought for one off projects that I'm now storing and sits around unused. I could hire it out but am reluctant. My accountant says I'm mad. Audio and video gear just sitting around, some of it now ancient. I thought I had a betacam sitting around somewhere, and found two! I remember buying it second hand for a single project, then putting it on a shelf in the store. I used a portable production unit for some shows in 2005 and that hasn't been touched since then, a bargain Vinten camera crane it's huge and mega heavy. I do not want to sell it, because one day a project will appear that I can use it for. I am stupid. This need to buy rather than hire has cost me dearly over the years , but I still do it. I'm looking at a flight case with two very weird LED fixtures I bought for a project in April. They're useless for general use, and I have no idea why I didn't just hire some in.

I think it's just a cultural thing, the need to collect interesting kit. Hire is sensible, and cost effective, but just not 'yours'. Totally daft!
Paul R Johnson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 9th, 2015, 12:12 PM   #98
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Camas, WA, USA
Posts: 5,513
Re: Urgent Help: Advice Recording a Choir (16 Members) in a Cathedral 9 Second Echo

Paul, I totally understand your thinking. There's always that moment after finishing a shoot with a rental where you realize that you need to return the thing on Monday morning. My head, the corners of my mouth and my shoulders all drop a couple of inches when that thought hits me.

I understand gear lust too as I've owned a Lotus Turbo Esprit for 25 years. I don't drive it all that often, but it's "mine". (Based on your location, you could more easily hire a vintage Lotus than a Schoeps.)

And I totally relate to the feeling of wasting money on a rental. That's money that goes for gear that you don't get to call "yours".

But if the logistics aren't bad and there's a special one-off opportunity that deserves top kit, renting can make it possible. I find it oddly liberating, but only after I really give myself permission to burn that cash.
__________________
Jon Fairhurst
Jon Fairhurst is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 9th, 2015, 03:44 PM   #99
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: LOWESTOFT - UK
Posts: 2,125
Re: Urgent Help: Advice Recording a Choir (16 Members) in a Cathedral 9 Second Echo

ha! Based on my location, I could pop in to Lotus - only about 30 miles away!

Based on this thread, I had a good hunt around the store today, and found another camera - A Sony with attached Hi-8 back end, a beta sp portable, a DAT recorder, a set of 3 redheads and a green screen kit! I'd not missed them at all - crazy!
Paul R Johnson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 9th, 2015, 04:12 PM   #100
Major Player
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Liverpool
Posts: 495
Re: Urgent Help: Advice Recording a Choir (16 Members) in a Cathedral 9 Second Echo

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Andrada View Post
Hi Craig

Part of the reasoning for higher viewpoint is that if the mic stand is between the camera and the conductor, the higher the camera the less obtrusive the mics will be - they won't loom as large as if the camera were looking up at them so to speak - and if everything works out the mic in the shot might even be lower than the (apparent) head of the conductor

But maybe most important is that if the singers have music folders a low camera angle will probably make it hard to see their faces, or make the front folks completely block the rear folks. And even if they don't have folders, looking up peoples' noses is not the greatest idea:<))

Generally if you watch televised concerts, the cameras are looking down onto the orchestra - makes it much easier to see the folks on the back benches so to speak. The "Royal Box" in an opera house is usually above the stage so the "king" can look down on the performers and if it's good enough for royalty it's good enough for us, right? (Just sort of teasing - sorry!) The main point is that audiences are used to a higher viewpoint for televised events.

And if you have a couple of "floor" cams it gives you a different viewpoint to play off against the higher camera.
Great tip, Jim. I'll definitely have at least one high angle - probably two - and a low angle (on a slider - I don't care if they can see up someone's nose - I want to show off that ceiling! :) Then I'll have the GoPro on the stand. The two angles from above/ can be in 4K. The low angle can be standard 1080p and be moved to keep the interest of the viewer. If I decide to go against a low angle, I'll position it at head height on a tripod with the slider and create some interest there... but to be honest, I want to find some great foreground details and try to make the whole venue more extravagent.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Andrada View Post
Just my opinion of course. I only do concert band and orchestral stuff with the occasional quintet or soloist tossed in and for a soloist or group of two or three I'd tend to be more "lens to eye" I guess. Maybe standing height camera and sitting height performer.
I'll consider all of these things tomorrow... thanks for taking me through your thought process... I will do the best I can, and will report what happens tomorrow evening!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon Fairhurst View Post
Great choices!

I know it's water under the bridge, but you might reconsider having wanted to avoid renting. I hate burning money with rentals too, but this job seemed like the perfect candidate: you want great equipment, but don't envision adding "recording in a cathedral" to your line card. It's these one-off jobs where renting really makes sense.

An alternate approach is buying and later selling on the used market. If you have the capital, you can essentially rent for the price of shipping and might even make a little profit, if you buy low & sell high. But this is riskier as you can't always rely on the right equipment at the right price at the right time.

On the third hand, you might legitimately want to add a pair of cardioid mics to your kit for x-y recording. This can be especially useful for recording ambient sound to put under b-roll or for Foley recording. Personally, I'm impressed with the Rode NT1-A for this purpose...

People mentioned the Shure 57/58 earlier as a classic mic, but also agreed that it's not right for this job. These mics are really built for high SPLs and don't deliver extended highs or lows. They're perfect for aiming at a Marshall stack or being held up to one's teeth, but as dynamic mics, they don't deliver a strong, clean signal for faint audio.

The NT1-A, on the other hand, delivers extremely low self-noise and a reasonably hot signal for not a ton of cash. So why buy a more expensive mic? For better high-SPL handling and a sweeter EQ. It just doesn't have that boutique sound. But if you're indoors and want to record somebody rolling dice, it gives you a cardioid pattern and a clean signal. One generally EQ's the snot out of stuff like this anyway, so boutique doesn't really matter. Want the signal to pan naturally? Record it with a stereo pair, rather than panning with a knob.

Back to the cathedral, a pair of NT1-As would be big, bulky and silver. They won't give you a boutique sound right out of the box. But they'd give a credible result, given good placement. (Though as mentioned, good placement is the most critical element and rarely comes from luck alone.) Which brings us full circle to renting or the used market. A pair of cardioids can be a useful tools in an audio kit, but owning a pair of boutique cardioids could be difficult to justify, unless they fit a business plan.

There are other high-value large diaphragm condenser mics out there. The NT1-A is nice because its simple design leads to low noise and low cost. Be aware that more complexity with multiple diaphragms and multiple patterns increases self noise, so a higher price doesn't always mean higher quality. Then again, more money can get you a better response and cleaner headroom too.

All in all, I'm glad to learn that they're hiring an audio person. Excellent! And this gives you some time to reflect on what else you might want in your equipment case and when renting (or using the used market as a de facto rental source) might make sense. As they say, the only thing a director needs to own is a telephone. Everything else can be rented. :)
So how does one learn where the best position is within a given location? Is it purely down to testing different areas whilst monitoring the 'phones? Or is there a way to calculate it given the structure of a building?

I love the last two sentences of your post! Definitely resonates with me. Your whole post is incredibly informative, so I'm going to wait until a later date to read it all whilst Googling the terms and learning each term as well as I can.

In the meantime, I must continue to work and prepare for the shoot tomorrow. I'm really excited about it, but I want to do the best job that I can at the same time.

Thank you again to everyone who has posted. You made my weekend, and helped to make this shoot much easier with your advice.

Many thanks and kind regards,

Craig
Craig McKenna is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 9th, 2015, 10:54 PM   #101
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Tucson AZ
Posts: 2,207
Re: Urgent Help: Advice Recording a Choir (16 Members) in a Cathedral 9 Second Echo

Re showing off the ceiling - One idea is an "establishing shot" starting at perhaps the entrance really wide and zooming in on the stage area. Dollying in of course would be better but we need to be realistic - although a slow short forward slider move fading into a closer shot of the stage area (with or without the performers) often works.

Or start vertical with the ceiling filling the frame and tilt down/zoom to a shot of the stage area. Or just use a still shot of the ceiling and fade your title in over it and then fade to your forward slider shot, or take a 3D panorama of the space with a still camera and animate the camera moves in a 3D package, - or or or.....

Somehow I have a dim recollection of a 90 degree tilt from an old Metropolitan Opera show where they started with an up view of the famous chandelier.

Just ideas that are probably worth what I'm charging for then. Above all, have fun.
Jim Andrada is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 10th, 2015, 01:55 PM   #102
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Camas, WA, USA
Posts: 5,513
Re: Urgent Help: Advice Recording a Choir (16 Members) in a Cathedral 9 Second Echo

Quote:
Originally Posted by Craig McKenna View Post
So how does one learn where the best position is within a given location? Is it purely down to testing different areas whilst monitoring the 'phones? Or is there a way to calculate it given the structure of a building?
I don't have expertise at that level, but it's more of an art than a science. There are some guidelines, like not recording mid-way between the front and back wall due to cancellation issues, but it really comes down to the experience and ears of an expert audio engineer.

Headphones, unfortunately, don't provide a representative soundstage. In a big budget production, you'd have a OB truck on site:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Outside_broadcasting
The mobile production control room (PCR) is known as a "production truck", "scanner" (a BBC term), "mobile unit", "remote truck", "live truck", "OB van" or "live eye".

OB trucks have small audio studios, including a treated room, stereo/surround monitoring, a mixing console, and an operator. That allows you to hear the isolated signals with speakers in space.

Headphones are more for basic quality checks. You can listen for signal presence, unwanted sounds, noise, hum, clipping, and rough levels. Bleed from the environment, isolation of L&R sources, close proximity, and no bass feel limit them as monitors for fine mixes.

That's why experience is so valuable. If a person has recorded in that space before, they will have a known-good solution that they can simply set up. If they've recorded in similar spaces, they'll have a nice starting point in mind. With golden-eared experience, they'll be able to walk around an unfamiliar space and listen for a good placement point before they've taken a mic out of its case.

And yes, actually doing this is beyond my level of expertise. I'm like a sports enthusiast who knows all the fine points in theory but who lacks the natural talent and expertise to do it at a pro level on the field. :)
__________________
Jon Fairhurst
Jon Fairhurst is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 10th, 2015, 02:32 PM   #103
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: LOWESTOFT - UK
Posts: 2,125
Re: Urgent Help: Advice Recording a Choir (16 Members) in a Cathedral 9 Second Echo

I agree - speakers are a necessity for this kind of environment if the positional choices are going to work. In reality, you walk into the space, clap your hands and the first light goes on in your head. It's not just the RT60 that matters, it's the arrival of the first reflection. This can be quite destructive sometimes. So one huge space is quite nice to work in, but oddly another huge space with a different shape might just be a mess. You can then assess the distance between the source(s) and the mic array, and consider what you want it to sound like. Getting the mics higher, so they look down, can remove some of the reflections from surfaces behind the source. If you are using cleverer mic techniques than simple X/Y, you could be using crossed pairs of figure 8's, the old fashioned Blumlein pairs - but this emphasises the space behind, and in some spaces, this is pretty destructive rather than nice.

You also need to consider the choir itself. If they are a pro choir, then their internal balance is already adjusted, but amateur choirs often have more enthusiasm than quality - and there always seems somebody who needs to be shifted from front row to back row, to get their component quieter - this needs a bit of people management to stop it being awkward. A good choirmaster can keep the balance spot on, a less good one allows the sections, probably SATB in a mixed choir, to get a bit out of control. If this is the case, then instead of X/Y, maybe 4 channels would be my way of doing it and then blend them back in the studio. Not a perfect solution for a good choir, but better on a poorer one. 4 mics of course looks much worse!

So the way it would normally work is you walk into a rehearsal, and have a listen, then you consider the space, and probably have your mic position nailed to maybe ten feet or so. Then it's a case of best guess first, and have a listen on speakers. Adjust mics and repeat a few times till you are happy. In general, I tend to use my ears, and have a wander around un till I find the sweet spot, then stick the mics there.

If you took in a proper analyser and spent ages producing a detailed plot of the space, it wouldn't really help much. Sure - you'd identify the arrival times, the noise floor, the background sounds, and on an impulse test, you's be able to measure the individual bounce backs and decays. It would warn you of major problems, but a clap of the hands is usually quite good enough.

One last comment - are the choir singing solo, or with a piano, organ or orchestra? If they are singing to a track, this will take quite a bit of planning too, to stop it getting into the mix, and of course if it is a track, you are also into multitrack territory.
Paul R Johnson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 10th, 2015, 03:29 PM   #104
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Camas, WA, USA
Posts: 5,513
Re: Urgent Help: Advice Recording a Choir (16 Members) in a Cathedral 9 Second Echo

Paul, great point about the hand clap. You don't have to buy or rent it, and you'll never forget to bring it along. :)

I would imagine that with an assistant (or whomever is handy), it would be best to have them clap from the source position while you listen from the mic position. That way you hear the interaction between the source and first reflection. That said, a mic-location hand clap should still tell you about the frequency response and flutter at that location: does the bass cancel or build up? and do you get a series of slap-backs?
__________________
Jon Fairhurst
Jon Fairhurst is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 10th, 2015, 06:35 PM   #105
Major Player
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Liverpool
Posts: 495
Re: Urgent Help: Advice Recording a Choir (16 Members) in a Cathedral 9 Second Echo

I'd love to write a detailed reply to everyone - thanks for your responses - but I have to get to work.

The shoot went well. The audio engineer knew everything that he was doing, and set up the mid-side mic in front of the choir, then he had two at the back for ambient and two in the front (somewhere) for additional audio. He had a problem with Logic Pro X - didn't recognise his audio sources, so we had to wait for another audio engineer to arrive for it all to work, but work it did.

I had the AX100 high in the middle, looking down in 4K. The GH4 on the right hand side of the aisle at head height in 4K on a wide. Then I had the GH3 with a 24mm equivalent lens on a slider for a nice ground shot... then I had the GoPro in front of the conductor. Unfortunately, it's so wide it's picked up other equipment - and the two audio engineers! But you live and you learn, I guess... I still think the angle will add a lot to the film, rather than leave people thinking about the negatives. I got b-roll of Mary in the cathedral, as well as shots from outside the venue. I tried tilts from the ceiling to the choir and other things... the audio engineer thinks it'll be a few days before the edit is finished, but we'll see how it turns out. He had speakers, and to my ears, it sounded great when he played it back at the end.

I'm exhausted. I'll try to post up how it all went on Saturday, as I am busy all day tomorrow.

Thank you again to everyone who helped me to succeed with this project... it's been quite a journey - from no shoot a week ago, to shooting my first choir five to six days later! :)

I am looking forward to posting it, and hopefully you will all think it's good enough for a first try. I can already see plenty of little tweaks I would have made... but it's my first time, so I should just be happy that I did the job.

Thanks again!

Craig

P.s. I will reply to everyone soon!
Craig McKenna 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 12:29 AM.


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