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


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Old August 13th, 2004, 05:48 PM   #1
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STICKY STYLE Mic techniques for a wedding Thorough plz help build the FAQ

Alrighty, planned to wait before posting this, didn't want to flood the board with multiple questions... (the music licensing post)

Trying to consolidate concise answers and specific questions related to micing a wedding gig for the benefit of everyone....

Some people don't use lavs, some people don't do receptions, etc.... this will hopefully, with the help of everyone turn into a nice FAQ for all phases of Micing a wedding
I'm a newbie, so don't have anything but there are 3 posts, now 4 posted here in relation to micing... fragmented, just trying to pile together.

----Of course this is long a horrid... but not as long and horrid as searching through the archives and finding archived, fragmented posts, or as horrid as repeating oneself, over and over for same quesiton :) EDIT :)

Thank you everyone!

Things have been skipped or forgotten, so just post... will update this TOP HALF HERE at least once a week.

INPUT NEEDED HERE for following

1.)Podium Micing ...................................................................
a.)If you mic the podium, what type of mic do you have setup there? Where do you run it's input?
b.)Do you have it so people don't adjust it?

2.)Levels / volume .................................................................
a.)How/when do you set levels on various mics, if you have somone riding gain/limiter used please input this info.
b.)If you use only 1 lav for groom/bride/priest... same thing
c.)limiters?

3.)Vows micing .....................................................................
1.)What is your setup (not mic brands, just setup, lavs/shotguns, prep, guidance)
2.)If using lavs on bride, where do you put her transmitter?

Ie: "I'm joe schmoe, and have only 1 lav /1 cam mount receiver, so i mount the lav on the bride, because she speaks soft, and the groom booms... " or "im ike mike, and i put my one lav on the groom/filter bass" or i'm jo do, and when i'm up close filming the vows, i just use a shotgun, when the bride/groom turn and leave, i have to follow them ... etc.

Miguel Lombana

Pin the lav on the groom(or anyone) and remind him that he's live so that he doesn't say something embarassing


-----Mike Rehmus
I use a Senn on the groom and a MD recorder on the officiant as a backup.

-----Don Bloom

I used to try to mic the officiant but it got to be too much of a hassle so now it's the groom and 1 more on the readers podium mic. just as an insurance mic for the readers. That one goes to my 2nd camera.


-----Nathan Gifford

You can get by with one mic on bride/groom. I usually mount it on the groom since he is wearing black and that makes it easier to hide. Instruct the bride and groom to speak somewhat towards the mic, which is usually not problem since they are spending a lot of time looking at each other anyway.



4.)If you don't use lavs..... how do you do it? .......................

5.)What do you do for the reception?
a.)-toasts, first dance, general reception footage/sound
b.)-if you have 2 lavs, just keep on bride and groom?
c.)-or disregard lavs, just get ambient w/shotgun
d.)-uses of a wireless / wired handheld passed around
e.)-or what do you do? hehe


6.)On my dual vhf set... GREAT quality.. but the lav cord from transmitter to mic itself can cause hash noise unless little movement, or a perfect wiring.... hmmmm
do the uhf's have this same issue? or are the lines better insulated?

7.)What about windy places?!!??

(TRY THIS YOURSELF, don't put all eggs in one basket)


Miguel Lombana

I suggest that if you're shooting in a very windy place, take a 2nd mic (handheld) and run in into mic 2, record the entire ceremony with that mic clipped to your tripod, let it pick up the wind noise and the wireless lav will pick up the groom.

You ask why would you want wind noise on the recording, simple if you take that 2nd mic track and reverse the phase of it(IN POST), you will now have the wind noise on track 2 180 degress in reverse of the wind noise on track 1. If you recall high school algebra, a negative and a positive equals a negative so your wind noise will be null. We used to use this on TV shoots in large stadiums where we placed 10 to 20 mics on the crowd, we'd reverse the phase of all odd mics so that the noise of all those mics would be cut in half.



8.)Watch out!!!!!! PITFALLS

  • potentially.... using only a shotgun may result in harsh, unsaveable ECHOS some use shotguns with success, but always do proper prior planning

  • Go to the rehearsal

  • Bob Harotunian
    We also use a mini-disk recorder for capturing ambient sounds or musicians and vocalists.

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Old August 23rd, 2004, 06:53 PM   #2
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INPUT NEEDED HERE for following:
ARE THE MIC SIGNALS GOING TO A CLOSED SYSTEM (CAMERA OR RECORDING DEVICE) OR TO A PUBLIC ADDRESS SYSTEM AS WELL? VERY IMPORTANT QUESTION. I WILL ADDRESS A CLOSED SYSTEM.
1.)Podium Micing ...................................................................
a.)If you mic the podium, what type of mic do you have setup there? Where do you run it's input? CORRECTLY MICING A PODIUM MEANS USING TWO IDENTICAL DIRECTIONAL MICROPHONES POSITIONED AT 45 DEGREES TO ONE ANOTHER. THIS PROVIDES EVEN AND WIDE COVERAGE OF THE PODIUM AREA.
b.)Do you have it so people don't adjust it? YOU CAN'T KEEP PEOPLE FROM GRBBING A MIC AND ADJUSTING IT FOR WHAT THEY THINK IS BETTER. TWO MICS MAKE THE PROCESS APPEAR MORE DIFFICULT, SO THE MICS ARE USUALLY LEFT ALONE. IF ANY OF YOUR MICS HAVE ON/OFF SWITCHES, TAPE OVER THEM SO THEY CAN'T BE TURNED OFF.

2.)Levels / volume .................................................................
a.)How/when do you set levels on various mics, if you have somone riding gain/limiter used please input this info. PRE-SET LEVELS DURING SET-UP SO ANY SUBSEQUENT ADJUSTMENTS ARE SLIGHT. DON'T USE COMPRESSON LIMITERS UNLESS YOU HAVE HAD CONSIDERABLE PRACICE...BUT WHY USE THEM IN A CLOSED SYSTEM? THEY ARE DESIGNED FOR USE WITH PA SYSTEMS.
b.)If you use only 1 lav for groom/bride/priest... same thing
c.)limiters? USE AT LEAST TWO MICS (GROOM & OFFICIATE). USE AS MANY AS POSSIBLE (MY OPINION). USING A SEPARATE RECORDING DEVICE (LIKE AMINI-DISC) HAS PROVED EXTREMELY BENEFICIAL TO SOME VIDEOGRAPHERS).

3.)Vows micing .....................................................................
1.)What is your setup (not mic brands, just setup, lavs/shotguns, prep, guidance) LAV WIRELESS (RF) MICS ON OFFICIATE, BRIDE (IF WILLING) AND GROOM). FLOOR HAND HELD RF FOR FAMILY/FRIEND COMMENTARY DURING CEREMONY. FLOOR HAND LELD RF ON BOOM STAND FOR MUSICIANS. AMBIENT MIC AT BACK OF HOUSE FOR GENERAL HOUSE SOUNDS. ALL MICS RUN INTO MULTI-CHANNEL AUDIO MIXER, THEN FED TO ONE OR TWO CAMERAS BY MOST EFFICIENT METHOD.
2.)If using lavs on bride, where do you put her transmitter? IF YOU ARE A MALE VIDEOGRAPHER, YOU DON'T PUT THE TRANSMITTER ANYWHERE. YOU DISCUSS THE ISSUE WITH THE BRIDE AND HER BRIDESMAIDS AND LET THEM PLACE IT. IT DEPENDS UPON THE WEDDING DRESS DESIGN. AT THE SMALL OF THE BACK BEHIND A BOW IS ONE PLACE. INSIDE THE DRESS ANOTHER. THE MIC ITSELF IS BEST PLACED JUST ABOVE ARMPIT LEVEL ON THE LEFT SIDE (SO IT IS NOT VISIBLE FROM THE AUDIENCE.)
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Old September 4th, 2004, 05:58 PM   #3
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just want to add

I just want to add. A quick and easy way to mic people for weddings is to have the wireless mics already attached to a black(groom or minister) or white(bride) elastic belts, and have them strap it on under the dress or tux. Its made wiring people at the last two weddings ive done, easy and fast. Btw- I personally mic the groom and minister with wireless OMNI mics(senn evolution ew500), and key/crossfade in post for the right volume levels. Ive never had a problem with audio when done this way, even when the bride is talking very quiet. I would NEVER use a shot gun or similar mic for a wedding unless I was using a boom pole.

John
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Old September 4th, 2004, 07:10 PM   #4
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Re: just want to add

<<<-- Originally posted by John DeLuca : I just want to add. A quick and easy way to mic people for weddings is to have the wireless mics already attached to a black(groom or minister) or white(bride) elastic belts, and have them strap it on under the dress or tux. Its made wiring people at the last two weddings ive done, easy and fast. Btw- I personally mic the groom and minister with wireless OMNI mics(senn evolution ew500), and key/crossfade in post for the right volume levels. Ive never had a problem with audio when done this way, even when the bride is talking very quiet. I would NEVER use a shot gun or similar mic for a wedding unless I was using a boom pole.

John -->>>
Great idea on the elastic belts for attaching wireless mics!

Omni vs directional lapel mics: If I am shooting indoors I will favor omni directional lapel mics. This is because there is either no PA system in use or the PA system is the house system, which is usually very well balanced. Should the house system suck, I insure my mics are not connected to it, nor do I get any audio feeds from that system. Most of my outdoor shoots are also amplified for wedding guests to hear the vows so I defer to directional lapel mics. The reason is to minimize feedback issues from the PA system.
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