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Old November 1st, 2013, 04:43 PM   #1
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Zoom H1 on Auto

Hello, last week I inquired about whether or not I should set my zoom h1 to auto during a wedding ceremony. I was told I should put to auto so that I could pick up the groom which it was placed on, as well as the bride and pastor. I listened to the audio today. The pastor was talking into the mic but my audio was sounded hallow. Luckily I had a zoom plugged into the mixing board, and that audio was fine. Should I have just used the manual setting for the zoom h1 placed on the groom? Thanks in advance. I have another wedding tomorrow Saturday, and do not want the same result.
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Old November 1st, 2013, 04:58 PM   #2
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Re: Zoom H1 on Auto

By hollow, do you mean there's lots of room reverb? That's normal when the mic is not really close to the subject. Getting a desk feed is absolutely the best option where possible, but you still need to mic the groom closely, because the desk feed will not pic up the groom easily (unless your church is one that passes the mic around) and you'd have exactly the same problem.

More than a couple of feet away and audio gets horrible pretty quickly...
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Old November 1st, 2013, 05:06 PM   #3
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Re: Zoom H1 on Auto

I would never count on the grooms H1 to pick up the officiant as well. You really need at least two H1/lav combos, with one on the officiant & one on the groom. That's how I work and find it works great. I never set the H1 to auto, I always use manual and do a sound check before with each person. I normally raise the level on the groom H1 to pick up the bride too. Ideally, I'd have one on the bride also but obviously that's not as easy.
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Old November 1st, 2013, 05:36 PM   #4
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Re: Zoom H1 on Auto

The wedding was outside, so yes it was hallow sounding not due to sound from a church but probably from the speakers. I do plan on getting one more zoom and placing it on the officiant but when I have the money. As for tomorrow shoud I place both mics on groom and officiant, or should I just do what I did before, one on groom and one plugged into the mixer, and have both mics on manual instead of auto on groom?
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Old November 1st, 2013, 05:38 PM   #5
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Re: Zoom H1 on Auto

h1 on the groom and a yamaha cx for the officiant is my setup. both recorders are set to auto. i used to set the levels manually but found officiants vary in speaking levels. sometimes they speak too low and often too loud and it clips.

auto for the groom picks up the bride with a bit of boosting the levels in post.

trying to pick up three voices from one mic/recorder will usually not provide good results.
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Old November 1st, 2013, 06:29 PM   #6
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Re: Zoom H1 on Auto

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff Cook View Post
As for tomorrow shoud I place both mics on groom and officiant, or should I just do what I did before, one on groom and one plugged into the mixer, and have both mics on manual instead of auto on groom?
I would say get as many different audio sources as possible and pick the best one in post. If the officiant is using a mic that goes through a desk, plug-in to the desk when ever possible. Make friends with the person driving the desk because they can make or break your day based on giving you a good feed or a lousy feed.

Mic the groom, mic the officiant as well when ever possible. Mic whoever / wherever is doing any readings if possible and/or these are important to the couple/film.

On some films I end up with 14 tracks of audio mixed from 3 or 4 cameras (mix of stereo ambient and dual mono wireless and shotgun) and then some zooms (mix of H1 and H4n) and Tascan DR-60D. That may sound like overkill but it's save my ass on more than one occasion.

Audio is by far the most under valued part of most film makers arsenal.
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Old November 1st, 2013, 07:09 PM   #7
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Re: Zoom H1 on Auto

Yeah, I plan on by more recorders. I just need some time since I have recently had to pay for all my equipment in the past 5 months. I would like 2 more zooms. Thanks again for the feedback.
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Old November 2nd, 2013, 06:58 AM   #8
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Re: Zoom H1 on Auto

Your problem Jeff - such as it is - is not whether you should have used auto or manual levels but rather the difference in distances from the lav of the 3 participants. Remember the inverse square law applies anyway so thats how auto levels can be of real benefit, but there is a very big difference in clarity as soon as participants are more than a couple of feet from the lav regardless of how you set the levels. The lav wearer - the groom - ought to be crystal clear but the celebrant and the bride much less so. Even so the results ought to be usable if imperfect so long as the three of them are standing close together.

With weddings it can be a good thing to concentrate on what is acceptable to the clients rather than what might be acceptable to an imaginary panel of audio experts. You're lucky in the USA in that you always seem to have access to a venue sound board plus celebrants are always willing to wear lavs. In the UK often we just have to do the best we can - which is maybe why we seem to carry a lot more standalone recorders.

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Old November 2nd, 2013, 07:45 AM   #9
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Re: Zoom H1 on Auto

You can improve the audio a lot in post with some judicious 'sweetening' especially adding some compression. I use a wireless lav mic on the groom which always gives me decent audio from the bride, groom & celebrant. I did an outdoor Handfasting last week & even though it was a bit blustery I still have excellent audio after a bit of tweaking in post.
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