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Old April 27th, 2006, 02:14 AM   #1
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Microphones with Panasonic DVC30

Just received the Panasonic AG-DVC30. I want to replace the on-board mic and also improve the audio in my filming in general. First, what kind of mic would be good to mount on the camera and give a nice general pickup sound?

Secondly, I already have a decent wireless mic, so I don't think I need a shotgun mic. Is this accurate? From what I've researched early on (and the well of audio information is apparently bottomless) a shotgun provides what my wireless lav does, and so doesn't seem absolutely necessary right now.

I'm planning on doing interviews in the field and sit-downs indoors, which I think would be covered by the wireless lav mic. I also hope to record bands and possibly news events, as well as two people talking to each other indoors and out, where neither the on-board stock mic nor the wireless lav would work well, I think.

I realize that I might just need several mics, a general mic (type?) and a shotgun and maybe instrument mics (type) to record bands. But believe I should start with a good general mic to replace the on-board mic.

Thoughts appreciated.
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Old April 27th, 2006, 02:26 AM   #2
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I should also mention

I should also mention that I'm wondering if unbalanced microphones would be okay, or whether I should bite the bullet and go with an XLR setup.
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Old April 27th, 2006, 08:02 AM   #3
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You ask what would be a good mic to mount on the camera and record good sound. Unfortunately there ain't no such a critter. For high quality sound like you hear on network TV, the microphone needs to be close to the subject no matter what kind of microphone it is. For dialog, the mic needs to be within a couple of feet of the speaker - preferrable 8-18 inches and that's just not a good place to also place the camera. You might get away with a mic on camera for a band but just barely - again, good camera positions for pleasing images are rarely where you'd put the microphones for optimum sound recording. For all practical purposes, on-camera mics are used for scratch tracks to aid in lining up separately recorded "real" audio in post, general ambience recording, and run-and-gun newsgathering where getting something, anything, is better than missing the shot.

Unbalanced mics are fine for short cable runs, a couple of feet or so, unless you are in a very electrically noisy environment. Balanced mics give you better immunity from noise and allow you much, much longer cable runs. While there's no technical reason a professional quality mic *has* to be balanced, most of them are, and so having an adapter like the Beachtek opens up a far wider range of high quality mics to choose from.
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Old April 27th, 2006, 03:23 PM   #4
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Thanks, Steve. You pretty much answered all my questions. Much appreciated.
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