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Wedding / Event Videography Techniques
Shooting non-repeatable events: weddings, recitals, plays, performances...


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Old May 15th, 2008, 03:01 PM   #1
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Quick Question

I am not a wedding videographer so I apologize for my ignorance. I use a Canon XH A1 for a variety of different video applications and 90% of the time use the built in microphone and rarely use a lav system but know how to use it to run either XLR or to 1/8.

Equipment:
- 2 tripods
- 1 Steady stick for moving shots
- House audio sytem with mixer
- Canon Xh A1 with XLR and 1/8 input
- Canon cheap miniDV camera

My question is with the setup of the church, the mixer is in the back of the church. I don't have a 2nd audio recording device unless I hook up my cheap DV camera and use for audio only. Not sure how to setup for this.

Option1: Keep the XH A1 on tripod at back of the church feed in audio from mixer via XLR feeds for best possible audio and mount the DV camera at the front of the church for some basic close ups. What I don't like is the best camera then is getting mostly shots from the back and I am missing a great shot of bride coming down the isle, etc but the audio may be much better. The other worry for me with this setup is with the house audio system, I won't be getting much music as the musicians and minister will be mic'd but not the piano, etc.

Option 2: Hook the miniDv camera to the mixer in the back via 1/8 audio with no real adjustment to sound and use the XH A1 mostly towards the front of the church. I would be getting sound through the camera mic on the XH A1 that should be getting equal sound from vocal and music. Seems OK, but I am sure all the audio will sacrifice potentially even with a decent feed from the mixer to the minidv.

Other options, thoughts. I don't have an option of using or purchasing other equipment. They were going to shoot the whole thing with a cheap minidv camera so I am sure what I produce will be better than that but still I would like to do as good of a job as possible.
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Old May 15th, 2008, 03:04 PM   #2
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Can you not have the sound guy just record an audio CD for you and overlay that in the timeline? I did this at a wedding once, but I don't know how common that is, honestly.
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Old May 15th, 2008, 03:09 PM   #3
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sound guy

Well, I will check but basically this is a very small church and the people running the mixer don't really even know how to use it. They didn't realize that they could run a feed off to the camera until I told them, so I am not expecting much. I will ask though.
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Old May 15th, 2008, 03:17 PM   #4
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Well, as they say, audio is half of what you "see", so I would probably hook the DV camera up to the sound board in the back and then pull the rest of the audio from your A1 at the front and get better shots with it.

You definitely don't want to give them a wedding video where they can't hear the pastor. I like option 2.
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Old May 15th, 2008, 03:28 PM   #5
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Agreed. If you can't get the cd, use the smaller one and directly line it in. You won't really be able to mesh that video between the two will you? Might as well use it for the audio.
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Old May 15th, 2008, 03:36 PM   #6
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Alex, I really wouldn't plan on using the video much if at all for the minidv camera. I will probably still record video along with audio of course with it in the event I have a dropout on the HD camera during the event. It wouldn't be pretty but would be better than missing a video of the I-Do or something if all else fails. Sounds like option 2 is the one unless I hear other options I may be missing. I will see if I can get the feed out of the mixer to work with miniDv. I am not sure if it can support both line-mic input depending on what the mixer will be able to send me. I haven't ever fed audio into the little handheld minidv so I will be experimenting.
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Old May 15th, 2008, 07:22 PM   #7
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We've run into situations like this where the sound guys haven't a clue as to sound or what plugs into where. The easiest thing for most people to do at a sound board (when they are clueless) is to find the headphone out...it'll be a mini or 1/4" that you can easily run a direct line into your camera. If a direct line in isn't available you'll want to get the camera as close to a speaker enclosure as possible to record audio. This may not be possible in many cases as the speakers a flown up high and/or you don't have a stand tall enough to raise the camera to a decent level to the speakers. Another idea is add your own set of speakers. Take a set of computer speakers and pop it into the headphone out of the soundboard...set the camera in front of it. Make sure to let the sound guys know that you're recording audio as to not chit chat or do anything that would compromise the audio. I hope that you don't run into this "last resort" type of situation but it's always good to have a plan B-2a.1. Hopin the best for you!
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Old May 16th, 2008, 08:35 PM   #8
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Korey,

How do you find the Steady Stick? I ask because I am being given one by a friend soon, and was just wondering if it helps at all.
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