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Old June 28th, 2011, 05:29 PM   #1
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Audio Setup - Opinions and/or Advice Please!

Hey all,
I wanted to share our current audio setup with people here and get some feedback, because while I've been somewhat pleased with our results this year, I feel like the audio that we get is just "ok".

Our equipment:
2 Panasonic HMC150s
2 Wireless Lav Sets (Sennheiser G2 and G3)
Rode NTG2 Shotgun

Most of our weddings are in churches, with a pastor/priest, and some sort of readings usually. A couple are outdoors, although we haven't had one with the new equipment yet. So far this year, our setup has been this:

Camera A - Audio Input 1 Wireless Lav on the Groom, Audio Input 2 to internal camera mic

Camera B - Audio Input 1 - Rode Shotgun made wireless via the other sennnheiser transmitter/receiver, mounted on a small mic stand close to and pointed at the general "area of action", Audio Input 2 to internal camera mic

Now I know this is not perfect, so I am open to opinions on how to better make use of what we have...but right now, the things I like about this setup are....The bride and groom are both picked up very well with the one lav on the groom....and the wireless Rode mic allows us to get a more ambient audio source close to the action without us needing to get right in there. Also allows to get decent audio without any camera and tripod noise and/or photographers' shutter noise right by my camera.

The things I don't like about this setup...Not sure what to do about the readings! I mean I can only point this shotgun mic one way, and it always seems like the readings we just have to really amp up the on camera mics to get them...so far they have turned out I would say mediocre at best. And the other thing we struggle with is the preacher...who (especially at catholic weddings) makes his sermon while moving around a lot, so if he's facing the Rode he's really loud, and if he's not, he's quieter.

Any other suggestions on how you would use the equipment we have?? Also suggestions on an outdoor setup would be appreciated if you have them too....we have a furry windscreen (the rode one...not sure exactly what it's called) for the shotgun.

Thanks!
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Old June 28th, 2011, 05:51 PM   #2
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Re: Audio Setup - Opinions and/or Advice Please!

Hi Katie,
Why not have the Rode and a lav mike on your 'A' camera which will record both channels quite well where the action is... and save your other lav mike for the person doing the readings/singing together with your on-board mike on the other channel to get the ambient noises.

Or purchase a DVR for the speeches/singer and keep your audio set-up. But I think I would have the Rode on my 'A' camera for the action and as a 'back-up' in case something goes wrong with the lav.

Just my two bobs worth.

Your furry windscreen would be a 'deadcat'
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Old June 28th, 2011, 06:44 PM   #3
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Re: Audio Setup - Opinions and/or Advice Please!

Putting the Rode on one of the cameras is one option we were considering, then using the other wireless lav to mic the lectern or podium where the readers would be.

Camera A is usually on a stationary tripod, either in a balcony or far back to get wide shots. Camera B usually starts somewhere mid-aisle and then moves around based on where things are happening. Knowing this, which camera would you suggest the Rode on?? Because a balcony seems too far away for it to be effective, and the moving camera of 'B' seems like the audio would be useless moving from place to place, adjusting tripod/monopod as we go...

I've thought about a DVR, read a lot about iRivers, but those are discontinued right? Any particular one you would recommend? Do they record with their own internal mic, or do you hook a mic up to them or what?
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Old June 28th, 2011, 07:02 PM   #4
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Re: Audio Setup - Opinions and/or Advice Please!

My set-up is to have my 'A' camera up close where the action is and stays with the B & G... thats the one I would put the Rode and the lav mike on. My 'B" camera is back to get the wide shots.. shots of the bride going down the aisle from behind and the processional leaving and other mainly wide shots, I have this camera with lav for the speeches and or choir/singer.
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Old June 28th, 2011, 07:14 PM   #5
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Re: Audio Setup - Opinions and/or Advice Please!

What I have on my A-Cam is a dual channel radio mic and a Rode mic too!! I made a simple switching box that sits on the cold shoe that allows either the groom's mic and the lectern mic to feed into Channel's 1 and 2 (both wireless) OR I can switch from the lectern transmitter (which is often not needed after the readings!!) to the Rode mic....it's useful having 3 channels if I need them.

My B-Cam has a Rode on it plus a 3rd radio mic which I try to have on the priest wherever practical, but especially in our big Cathederal where everything is marble and the echo is terrible from the house system!!

The standard for DVR's seems to be Zoom now not iRiver ..however here they are as pricey as a radio mic!!!

Chris
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Old June 28th, 2011, 10:24 PM   #6
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Re: Audio Setup - Opinions and/or Advice Please!

I use the AT1821 dual channel receiver but even before that I ran 2 receivers. One mic on the groom of course one on the pulpit (lectern) where the readers read from and the priest or pastor usually do the Gospel from some even do the homily from there. I kill the mic on my A camera because the dual channel reciever is running both mics, one to channel 1, one to channel two. My B and or C camera runs an AT897 which normally wouldn't work all that we;; inside but the only thing I use it for is the music which is generally close and loud enough that the 897 works quite well. BTW I am running different cameras than you but the principle is the same. I can monitor both lavs and set the levels on my B/C cams while the music is playing before the wedding starts.I've cut my post audio worktime in half and as they say, time is money.
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Old June 29th, 2011, 12:24 AM   #7
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Re: Audio Setup - Opinions and/or Advice Please!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Katie Fasel View Post
Hey all,
I wanted to share our current audio setup with people here and get some feedback, because while I've been somewhat pleased with our results this year, I feel like the audio that we get is just "ok".

Our equipment:
2 Panasonic HMC150s
2 Wireless Lav Sets (Sennheiser G2 and G3)
Rode NTG2 Shotgun

Most of our weddings are in churches, with a pastor/priest, and some sort of readings usually. A couple are outdoors, although we haven't had one with the new equipment yet. So far this year, our setup has been this:

Camera A - Audio Input 1 Wireless Lav on the Groom, Audio Input 2 to internal camera mic

Camera B - Audio Input 1 - Rode Shotgun made wireless via the other sennnheiser transmitter/receiver, mounted on a small mic stand close to and pointed at the general "area of action", Audio Input 2 to internal camera mic

Now I know this is not perfect, so I am open to opinions on how to better make use of what we have...but right now, the things I like about this setup are....The bride and groom are both picked up very well with the one lav on the groom....and the wireless Rode mic allows us to get a more ambient audio source close to the action without us needing to get right in there. Also allows to get decent audio without any camera and tripod noise and/or photographers' shutter noise right by my camera.

The things I don't like about this setup...Not sure what to do about the readings! I mean I can only point this shotgun mic one way, and it always seems like the readings we just have to really amp up the on camera mics to get them...so far they have turned out I would say mediocre at best. And the other thing we struggle with is the preacher...who (especially at catholic weddings) makes his sermon while moving around a lot, so if he's facing the Rode he's really loud, and if he's not, he's quieter.

Any other suggestions on how you would use the equipment we have?? Also suggestions on an outdoor setup would be appreciated if you have them too....we have a furry windscreen (the rode one...not sure exactly what it's called) for the shotgun.

Thanks!
hey there, i run a 3 camera setup, i use the following setup when using 2 or 3 camera's and even with a single camera shoot (which is very rare).

at the wedding: -
Camera 1 - Rode NTG2/3 Microphone on input 1, Wireless Sony kit on input 2 (wireless on groom)
Camera 2 - Rode NTG2/3 Microphone on input 1, Wireless Sony kit on input 2 (wireless on the priest)
A Zoom External H4 or H4n Recorder with a Microphone on Channel 1 which will capture the room noise and a Sony wireless kit on channel 2 where the readers will read from.
at the recpetion: -
Camera 1 - Rode NTG2/3 Microphone on input 1, Wireless Sony kit on input 2 (Audio Dj/System) Line out
Camera 2 - Rode NTG2/3 Microphone on input 1, Wireless Sony kit on input 2 (Audio Dj/System) Line out
A Zoom External H4 or H4n Recorder with a Microphone on Channel 1 which will capture the room noise and a Sony wireless kit from the Dj/System via the Line out
i use a 4 port amp to connect all the gear so the line output can be spilt.

good luck...
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Old June 29th, 2011, 05:57 AM   #8
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Re: Audio Setup - Opinions and/or Advice Please!

The Zoom H1 DVRs are simple, small, cheap & produce very good quality audio with the built-in microphones. With the accessory pack that includes a foam windshield & a little tripod they are about $130/99. That price includes a 2GB micro-SD card. One great feature I like is that operation is really simple so instead of ploughing through layers of menus it has slider switches to e.g. select between recording MP3 or WAV. It operates for about ten hours on a single AA battery. We have several & just pop them down wherever they are needed.
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Old June 29th, 2011, 09:35 AM   #9
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Re: Audio Setup - Opinions and/or Advice Please!

The Zoom H1s are piquing my interest. Nigel, do you ever have any interference whatsoever with any surrounding electronics or mics? I assume as a stand alone object that doesn't send any signals anywhere, you wouldn't but just thought I would check.

So my thought is I would get one of these and just set it on the lectern where the readigns would be...or for an outdoor wedding, if there is a mic stand where readings will be held, attach it to that...does that sound reasonable? Also useful for toasts at a reception perhaps, if we set it on the table in front of the speakers...assuming they speak from behind a table...
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Old June 29th, 2011, 10:15 AM   #10
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Re: Audio Setup - Opinions and/or Advice Please!

We have never had any interference on the H1s. They are standalone though & the downside is that you cannot monitor like you can with wireless going into a camcorder. They work quite well on a lectern or similar but beware those speakers who look from side to side as they speak or even worse who wander about. For these there is no substitute for a lav mic but you can plug one into the H1 anyway.
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Old June 29th, 2011, 10:33 AM   #11
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Re: Audio Setup - Opinions and/or Advice Please!

Thanks so much for input, it's been very helpful!
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Old July 6th, 2011, 09:37 AM   #12
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Re: Audio Setup - Opinions and/or Advice Please!

Nigel...went out and bought a zoom last week and used it for two weddings this past weekend...so far i am LOVING what I am hearing. what a great easy and inexpensive way to supplement my mics. Thanks for the advice...I may end up getting another one!
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Old July 6th, 2011, 09:47 AM   #13
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Re: Audio Setup - Opinions and/or Advice Please!

I'm liking the H1's as well, but the SD card doors are fragile. If they come off - as has happened with one of mine - the cards can accidentally be popped out all too easily :- (

I've switched my SD cards to 8gb and taped over the card doors (8gb on the basis that they are unlikely to fill up and need swapping out on one day). I now use the H1's as card readers without removing the cards at all. BTW the tape I used is the furry half of sticky velcro - it seemed to do the best job :-)

Pete
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Old July 6th, 2011, 03:29 PM   #14
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Re: Audio Setup - Opinions and/or Advice Please!

have never removed the cards from the H1s. I didn't realise until I got them that in fact they use micro-SD cards so the regular SD cards that I ordered were no use. On the bright side they are supplied with 2GB micro-SD cards which is easily enough space for recording at least one wedding.
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Old July 7th, 2011, 02:23 PM   #15
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Re: Audio Setup - Opinions and/or Advice Please!

I guess I'm coming to the conversation a little late, but if you're looking for another digital recorder, you may want to consider the Tascam DR-2D. The feature that makes this stand out is that it records two tracks, one at whatever level you set it at, and one at 12 db lower. This is extremely handy when you're micing multiple people or sources that fluctuate in volume. If the main track clips, you can bring in the quieter track for the clipped parts.
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