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Old July 26th, 2012, 01:38 PM   #1
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Recording Speeches

Hi,

I am trying to find the best solution to record speeches; a microphone will be passed to several family members on the day so I can't set them all up with a Mic. I currently use a Zoom H1 on a Mini Tripod but it captures way too much background noise.

The family members will each walk onto the stage and take over the microphone. I am recording using my rode microphone but that is not clear enough for me as again that captures too much background noise. Can anybody suggest any good tips?

Thank You.
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Old July 26th, 2012, 02:11 PM   #2
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Re: Recording Speeches

Why not do a line from the soundboard into your digital recorder?
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Old July 26th, 2012, 02:47 PM   #3
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Re: Recording Speeches

The venue uses a Mic synched up to a hifi and I am not sure on how old it is. I would hate to get there and find out there is an issue. I would like to be prepared myself just in case.
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Old July 26th, 2012, 03:04 PM   #4
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Re: Recording Speeches

I was going to post a similair question. The venue's microphone is hooked up to an old system, that's hard wired to the house speakers, and no other output...

Therefore, and correct me if i'm wrong, i'm thinking of duct taping a Lav mic to the houses mic, via Sennheiser wireless. Fortunately, the transmitter will be at the podium. In your case, since the mic is being passed around, you'd have to duct tape both lav and transmitter to the houses microphone..

Another option (and i've done this before), is to set a mic at the speaker with a mic stand, and capture the speakers' audio..
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Old July 26th, 2012, 03:37 PM   #5
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Re: Recording Speeches

if the mic is hard wired you can get an xlr splitter, send one end of the split where it currently connects and the other lead to your recorder. i have done this and it works well IF the speakers remember to turn on the mic and keep it near to them when speaking.

i also have taken a small recorder like an iriver with a lav mic plugged in. gaff tape the lavaliere element near the top of the house microphone, place the recorder in a small black pouch and gaff tape it near the base of the microphone.
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Old July 26th, 2012, 03:46 PM   #6
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Re: Recording Speeches

I believe in redundancy... if it's a wireless, there's gotta be a receiver somewhere. Usually the receiver has an unbalanced out. I've had good luck with that. I would also clip a lapel.Mic to the speaker grill running into the recorder. And maybe an ambient backup to that. :)
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Old July 26th, 2012, 04:45 PM   #7
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Re: Recording Speeches

Dont trust the venue set up, that route is fraught with problems. Your need complete control over the audio, and the only way to get that is to use your own, tried and tested audio equipment. Easiest method would be to tape a radio mic to the house mic, and control the levels on your camera. Other than that get your Zoom right in there with the speakers, dont be afraid to get in there and move it in front of each of the speakers, they will understand , and if you have a couple of cameras running, just cut to the B cam when you move the mic. Not a lot you can do about the ambient background noise, thats all a part of weddings.
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Old July 26th, 2012, 07:38 PM   #8
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Re: Recording Speeches

I always do much the same thing...with the house mic but also try to force them (nicely) to do all the speeches from one position...if there is a lectern, then place a mic stand there and simply tape your lav mic and transmitter to the mic holder and you will get consistent audio. The only problem taping a lav mic to the house mic IF it's going to be handheld is that some people will talk close and some will hold it far away! On a mic stand it's usually a better bet. If there is a lectern involved I will often just tape the mic to the top of the lectern.

Your other option of course is to use a boundary mic...they work very well on hard surfaces but just make sure they are not too close to the speaker so notes, papers and such can't be placed on top of them!!

Chris
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Old July 26th, 2012, 07:48 PM   #9
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Re: Recording Speeches

I usually go visit the venue one day before to check where to get an output for my sennheiser RF transmitter/H1.

1. If a wireless mic is used then tune in to the same freq.
2. If hardwired mic is used I would check for an output either from the house PA or use loop out from the speaker if an active speaker is use.
3. You can also use a small mixer as a xlr splitter and run the mic cable in and output to the PA and you.
4. Last option is placing your mic/H1 near a speaker.

A bag full of different kind of adaptors and cables is a must to have.
I prefer to use my sennheiser rf transmitter because then I can constantly monitor the audio and optimize the level.
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Old July 26th, 2012, 08:22 PM   #10
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Re: Recording Speeches

I normally get in touch with the DJ or venue a few days or weeks before the wedding to get all the info I need for my audio setup. I also let my couple know what my requirements are beforehand so they'd normally arrange things to help me do my job properly.

I try as much as possible to avoid having to show up on the day of the wedding and start figuring things out at the last minute. It leaves room for all sorts of unexpected surprises that could easily be avoided by simply making a bit of effort and doing my homework.

I go with the mentality that my clients pay me a fair amount for my service and expect me to do a good job. I can't let a crappy audio setup ruin the quality of my work and then having to explain it to my couple later on. By talking to the DJ, venue, church, etc. before the event, if I find out that there's something that will not work out too well, I can address it right away.

Not only does it allow me to do my job properly on the day of, my couples also appreciate the fact that I am very involved in the planning process and it makes them feel safe to know that they are in good hands because everything is already taken care of so they don't need to worry about all the technical problems that could happen.

Obviously, this doesn't mean there won't be any surprises at all. But it sure helps lower the risks.
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Old July 26th, 2012, 09:12 PM   #11
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Re: Recording Speeches

Hi Long

I have never yet trusted a DJ!! They don't seem to be very technical when it comes to providing feeds PLUS they have control of your feed so if they hit the wrong slider to bring in the music you have no audio!

It's fine if they provide a decent feed (I still trust theatre sound techs!!) but wedding DJ's are a little unreliable!! I would still rather have my own lav and transmitter on the lectern or table and if a feed is available then run it into your other XLR channel....BTW: DJ's are highly unlikely to have XLR cables so make sure you have your own 1/8" and 1/4" and XLR plug to grab the feed back into your cam XLR's

Chris
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Old July 26th, 2012, 09:23 PM   #12
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Re: Recording Speeches

For social events I never plug into the board. Even with DJs that I've worked with for years, I use my tried and true system of a Sennheiser E604 drum mic and my wireless plugin transmitter going back to my camera as well as my Blueline hypercaroid. This way I get 2 channels and IF the person speaking holds the mic out to one side or another or at their belt line I still have the hyper to help the sound along. While that might not be as good as the 2 channel it will get the job done.
When the DJ lines the bridal party up for introductions I go out there with him and explain to the people doing the toasts they have to hold the mic like an ice cream cone, about chin level. Normally around here it's the maid or matron of honor, the best man or men (sometimes there are 2) sometimes one or both of the fathers and once in a while the bride and groom. They hold the mic properly about 75% of the time. Oh well, I'm usually within about 10 feet of the people speaking so it works most of the time.
The DJ gives the speaker a wireless mic going thru his system, we don't depend on the house system. They generally suck bad. the mics are a SM58 type so holding it close is vital and the DJs, for the most part, keep their finger on the slider just in case.
I've been using this system for years and so far, it's been working well.
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Old July 26th, 2012, 10:26 PM   #13
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Re: Recording Speeches

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Harding View Post
Hi Long

I have never yet trusted a DJ!! They don't seem to be very technical when it comes to providing feeds PLUS they have control of your feed so if they hit the wrong slider to bring in the music you have no audio!

It's fine if they provide a decent feed (I still trust theatre sound techs!!) but wedding DJ's are a little unreliable!! I would still rather have my own lav and transmitter on the lectern or table and if a feed is available then run it into your other XLR channel....BTW: DJ's are highly unlikely to have XLR cables so make sure you have your own 1/8" and 1/4" and XLR plug to grab the feed back into your cam XLR's

Chris
Hi Chris,

I never rely on only one feed. But a good cooperation from the DJ is a must. Most DJ's I work with understand what I need so we make sure the sound check is done properly and once we have an optimal level, they don't go around changing anything after that. I would still monitor it once in a while but because I have more than 1 source, I'm usually safe for my edits.

What I normally do:

- XLR splitters to share the DJ's microphone input ports; I make his microphone feed my recorder and his board at the same time - Most DJ's use more than 1 microphone, I would do that for each of his MIC IN port.

- DJ output (I get what comes out of his board)

- Speaker output port

- Lav mic taped to the podium's microphone
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Old July 30th, 2012, 04:16 AM   #14
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Re: Recording Speeches

I have spoken to the DJ, he said he has a phono out and my zoom h1 has a line in which the site says , this jack accepts stereo line-level inputs to be used in capturing audio from cassette decks, record players and other analog sources.

Would I be able to capture from his deck as I am not to familiar with audio and what connectors I would need?

Thanks
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Old July 30th, 2012, 04:29 AM   #15
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Re: Recording Speeches

You should probably be OK with the a line-in to the Zoom H1. However you are then totally relying on that one feed. I always try & get a feed off the PA because if it works OK then it is lovely & clear although a bit flat & lacking in ambience & audience which need to be added back. You can never have too much backup audio so I clip a little Yamaha C24 somewhere near a loudspeaker. If there is a lectern I clip another C24 to that. With all speakers at a table just standing up from their chairs to deliver the speech I have used a wireless mic on the table & just moved the wireless mic along.

Undoubtedly the best sound is to use a wireless lav mic for each speaker but as I only have two this is but a bit too disruptive to have to leap up & down & swap over the mics. If there are not too many speakers then a C24 with a lav mic for each speaker set up & running before the speeches start might be the best compromise.
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