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Old March 29th, 2006, 01:30 PM   #1
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wind noise...

I have shot outdoor footage for many years and I'm always astounded that those hearty reporters on The Weather Channel who cover hurricanes (usually tethered to a vehicle or lampost and leaning at severe angles against or with the winds) get better than decent audio with what appear to be "simple" hand held mics in hundred-plus winds. I see no special add-ons for the most part, (other than foam screens), and wind-noise seems secondary to the spoken report...as it should be.
I have searched this forum for solutions to the wind noise problems with lav mics and while enclosures, (blimps), work well enough on boom poles, they are clearly unusable in the lav applications where diminutive size is the point.
And, for me, there seem few options short of placing the talent in the proper position to minimize noise (sometimes this is an option, but rarely), and using small (and, as far as I can tell, nearly useless), foam screens on the mics. For my shoots, it is impossible to "wait" for calm as the events in nature are usually uncooperative and never read the script.
What kinds of equipment brands and techniques do the audio gurus use to minimize or eliminate wind noise on acquisition?
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Old March 29th, 2006, 02:13 PM   #2
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An option worth exploring might be the Micro Cat
http://remoteaudio.com/micro-cat.htm

Or reading some techniques in the Jay Rose book "Producing Great Sound for Digital Video" http://dplay.com/book/index.html

Also consider Rycote's windjammer as well as their Undercovers and Overcovers for mounting lavs under and over clothing
http://www.rycote.com/products/mics/index.asp
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Old March 29th, 2006, 02:17 PM   #3
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There are miniature furry covers for lavs, but they are more visible, slightly larger than most foam screens.
If you use an omni lav, with a small furry, and position the mic for some protection by the clothing or body, and use a steep and carefully adjusted bass roll-off, you should get worthwhile results.
On a side note, you can change a cardioid lav into an omni by placing some gaffer's tape over the interference holes. It's these holes that produce the cardioid effect and are also responsible for higher wind noise.
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Old March 30th, 2006, 12:49 AM   #4
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There is a substantial difference mechanically between the "simple" hand mic and a lav. The typical news hand mic is a dynamic, and has internal pop filtering plus the external wind screen.

The dynamic diaphram is *much* heavier and thicker than what you'll find in any condensor mic, which includes (almost) all lavs. All condensor mics are very sensitive to air movement.

So, do what the hurricane reporters do - use a dynamic mic!

For lavs, you need to do much, much more to isolate the lav from wind, including the suggestions above. As Jay mentioned, many engineers routinely bury a lav under a shirt, using gaffer's tape. The mic (and cable) need to be tacked to the shirt pretty firmly to isolate them from handling noise, there are some posts in this forum about the technique.
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