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Old July 31st, 2003, 08:40 AM   #1
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What audio system for interviews?

Hello there,
got a brand new XL1s and got stuck on audio right away.
My purpose is doing inteviews. They will be indoor and outdoor. I will mostly work alone or will have a partner making the questions (holding a vocal mic) to the interviewed. Will inteview mostly one or two (max three) persons at a time. If 2 o 3, then will definitely be indoor. Have to get all the sound equipment.

Questions:
1) do i really have to go xlr (buying the adaptor) or can i skip that attaching directly to the rca plugs (audio1 and audio2)?
2) it seems to me that what i need for my purpose is lav and shotgun (best if camcorder mounted when i'm alone). Is that right ?
3) I don't mind having microphone wires in the documentary: are there wireline lavaliers?
4) found a good review of the Azden SGM-2X(http://www.lafcpug.org/review_shotgun_mic.html). Any suggestion?
5) Can anyone make some brand name and models ?
Thanx
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Old July 31st, 2003, 08:50 AM   #2
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A wireless system with clip on mics would probably be best, if you can afford it. The clip on microphones which I have worked with use some type of DC to power them (usually provided by the transmitter packs), and thus usually won't work wired. Im sure there is such a thing out there though.

I highly recommend that you get at least the MA-100 XLR adapter/shoulder pad. This will give you many more options, including balanced XLR inputs. This is important for certain types of microphones. If I had to do an interview ( I have), I would use at least one QUALITY shotgun mic. In order to avoid handling noises, mount it on a mic stand, and calibrate it for the person getting interviewd. For the interviewer, a second shotgun mic could be used. I would recommend keeping the microphones out of frame. This is one way to do it, yet gets difficult if you are doing multiple camera shoots, or are engaging in complex lighting. As I said, wireless clip ons is the way to go, but I personally prefer the quality gained by using a good shotgun. Good luck.


OH, forgot to mention; I use a couple of Audio Technica 835b shotguns for much of my work. I like the price, and the quality. Next thing up is a Sennheiser ME66.
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Old August 1st, 2003, 08:08 AM   #3
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Thank you Josh.
I think i will spend my audio budget this way:
- MA200 xlr adaptor
- Sennheiser EW-122P Wireless UHF Lav Mic Kit
- Sennheiser K6 + ME66
- A plain wired vocal microphone
- a shotgun stand

Any suggestione for the vocal mic?

I was just wondering why canon pulls out a top of the line video camera with rca audio system when all the world goes xlr...maybe to be able to sell the ma100/200

ciao
stefano
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Old August 1st, 2003, 08:23 AM   #4
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I have had good experiences with the Shure SM-58. It is a standard in the music industry. Be aware, it is NOT a shotgun mic so noise rejection to the sides is not on that level. It is however used for rock concerts, speakers at podiums, and even voice recording and some sports broadcasts. I personally would just use another shotgun with a pistol grip instead of a vocal microphone. Thataway, you have excellent noiserejection and sound quality. If you have BBC world and watch "Simpsons World" such a setup is frequently used. I like your choices, but Im not a fan of the MA-200. If you are using all four audio channels, you might as well go for an external mixer/recorder. You will get better sound quality (better than the 12-bit audio mode). You can use the MA-100 for two wireless mics, and run the shotguns/vocal into your mixer. Anyway you do it, be sure to tailor your audio kit to your specific needs. Hope this helped.
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Old August 1st, 2003, 09:38 AM   #5
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Yes Josh, your posts are a good help to me. But you just opened an interesting new scenario that makes me ask more questions.

The shotgun with pistol grip sounds great! I don't watch BBC but I guess this is a good choice when filming a guy with a mic in his hand doing an interview to someone else. right?

If I have 2 wireless lav connected to an MA-100 and i have a shotgun connected to a mixer, where is the mixer connected to ?

Ciao, Stefano.
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Old August 1st, 2003, 09:45 AM   #6
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You can hook a mixer into any recorder. Most people go for Dat, MiniDisc, or their camera (one input then). You could even go and hook your wireless mics into a mixer, and then route out to your camera. If you will be frequently (key word there) doing four track recording I suggest you get a good portable mixer/recorder setup. The audio will be unparalelled. The Ma-200 is used mainly for inputting multiple audio tracks for reference since 12 bit audio is the max the XL can do.

This link to B & H will show you what a pistol grip looks like:

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh2/controller/home?O=productlist&A=details&Q=&sku=271673&is=REG

That should give you an idea what it would look like for your interviewer holding one. I prefer that type of setup opposed to that of most vocal mics since the pistol grip provides shock isolation, and the typically used shotgun mic gives excellent side noise rejection. Hope this helps.
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Old August 1st, 2003, 10:25 AM   #7
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So I could go:
- MA-100
- Sennheiser EW-122P Wireless UHF Lav Mic Kit
- Sennheiser K6 + ME66 + pistol grip + stand
- a mixer

can you suggest a good portable mixer/recorder setup (budget in line with the stuff above) ?

if i plug the mixer to a DAT, then i have to sync audio and video. Can i plug the mixer to my XL1s when attaching an MA-100 at the same time? If the MA-100 uses audio1 i should still have audio2 for the mixer is that right?

hope i didn't make too many questions.

thank you anyway.
Stefano
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