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


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Old July 29th, 2006, 09:53 PM   #1
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newbie looking for sound advice.

Hi all I have been reading through these forums for a couple weeks now and have found a ton of useful information. This is my first post and I'm not sure if it should be here or in the audio section but here it goes.
I am starting to do videos in my spare time. I have done a couple of weddings in the past (friends and family kind of stuff) using a borrowed vx2000 and my canon zr85 and zr200. I think I am pretty good with Final cut studio and can figure out most stuff on the editing side. I just took the plunge and bought a GL2 and am hoping to get more serious about filming. For one of the weddings I did I was lucky enough to know the sound guy at the church and he let me tap in to the sound system for the church using one of the 1 chip canon cameras, so all I had to do was sync up the audio and I was good to go. Another one was an outdoor country wedding and the audio was a pain using the on camera mics.
My question is where to start with audio. I have some minimal experiance working with sound equipment. I have worked in the sound booth at a couple churches in the past and have helped a friend with his band many times so I understand connections and cabling.
I guess what I am looking for is some advice on what equipment I need to get decent sound for a wedding. I am thinking at least one lav. and a shotgun mic. But can I connect both to my GL2 or do I need a mixer or what? Do I need to get an XLR adapter or can just use a splitter into the mic port on the camera? I would like to be able to get both voices and ambient sound. (from what I've read I think you can do 2 mono channels on one tape and just split them in Final cut is this right?)
What would you recomend? I am on a budget (probably something less than $500usd)

Thanks in advance.
Jason
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Old July 30th, 2006, 12:49 AM   #2
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Jason,

What you need is a wireless lav mic and receiver, a decent shotgun mic, and a Beachtek adapter that will accept the XLR connections from the mics (on separate channels) and plug into the mini jack on your camera. You'll also need a shotgun mic mount that uses the hotshoe on top of the GL2 (if you plan on using the mic on top of the camera--if not, you'll need a wireless shotgun transmitter and another wireless receiver).

Coicindence of all coincidences, I just happen to be selling my Beachtek-DXA-6 and my Audio-Technica 835b shotgun mic. I posted links below to where I bought them last year. They retail for about $500 combined. I'll sell them to you for $350 + $15 for shipping. That gives you $150 toward your wireless purchase (the Sennheiser G2 Evolution series is great) (and so is Guy over at dvcreators.com).

Whatever you decide, good luck. Of course, there are other options. Some probably cheaper. But this stuff is good bang for your buck. You don't want quality to suffer.


BeachTek DXA-6 Dual Phantom Powered XLR Adapter $250

http://www.dvcreators.net/products/beachtek.html


Audio-Technica 835b 1 239.00

http://www.samys.com/product.php?ItemNo=AUDIAT835B


Sennheiser Evolution G2 Wireless Lavalier System $500

http://dvestore.com/products/sound.html

Hot shoe mount $30
http://www.zotzdigital.com/item.php?pid=280&cid=187
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Old July 30th, 2006, 05:51 AM   #3
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Something like a Beachtech DXA-4P ($170) would work too. However, it wouldn't have phantom power like Jeff's DXA-6. Phantom power is something you'll want some day when you want to add a mic or two. The Rode Video Mic is a nice shotgun that doesn't require phantom power and operates off a 9 volt battery that will run it for like a hundreds of hours.

I had some trouble with the Beach. My audio left and right audio channels were getting mixed. I heard the fix for this is to set the Beach to Stereo rather than mono and Final Cut should be able to give you two channels to work with. Looking forward to trying that my self.

The G2 Evolution wireless is awewome at about $500. Before I got one of those, I used an iRiver 799 with a Giant Squid Mic. It works well at about $150. However, it's nicer to be able to monitor the sound and have it go direct to tape, so G2 is great and something you should really try to acquire.

Jeff mentioned a hotshoe mount. There is a Cool-Lux and one made by NRG. I have both. Strangely enough, not may devices want to fit on the NRG. Maybe I just got a defective one, but the Cool-Lux does well.
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Old July 30th, 2006, 07:07 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Routt
...
I had some trouble with the Beach. My audio left and right audio channels were getting mixed. I heard the fix for this is to set the Beach to Stereo rather than mono and Final Cut should be able to give you two channels to work with. Looking forward to trying that my self.

T....
Setting the Stereo/Mono switch to mono on the Beach will mix signals on the two inputs and send the mix equally to both left and right channels in the camera. With only one mic plugged in, setting the switch to mono gives you the ability to record "dual mono" with the same signal on both channels (remember to turn down the pot on the unused input). If your camera has the ability to set audio gain separately for each channel, this is a distinct advantage because you can pull down the gain on one channel 8 to 12 db lower than the other as an insurance policy over sound fluctuating from very high to very low levels. In post you use whichever track is better from shot to shot and can replace segments that might have clipped in the high level track with the same sounds from the low level track.
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Old July 31st, 2006, 12:29 AM   #5
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Thanks for all your advice. I think I have an idea in part what I'm looking for. As Foe awirelesslav.What to you think about Azden?I have read mixed reviews of there stuff.
I found a setup at B&H (http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/cont...ughType=search) and I am wondering if this is any good. I would really like to get the Sennheiser G2 but my wallet just can't take it right now. Also I think this setup comes with a 1/8" plug and not an XLR plug. Will I take a hit on quality using an adapter or am I already taking a hit going with the Azden in the first place?
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Old July 31st, 2006, 03:56 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason Matthews
Thanks for all your advice. I think I have an idea in part what I'm looking for. As Foe awirelesslav.What to you think about Azden?I have read mixed reviews of there stuff.
I found a setup at B&H (http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/cont...ughType=search) and I am wondering if this is any good. I would really like to get the Sennheiser G2 but my wallet just can't take it right now. Also I think this setup comes with a 1/8" plug and not an XLR plug. Will I take a hit on quality using an adapter or am I already taking a hit going with the Azden in the first place?
Very few people have been happy with Azdens and they don't have a very good reputation. Sony, Audio-Technica, and Sennheiser are generally considered a better value.
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