Boompole procedures and techniques at
DV Info Net

Go Back   DV Info Net > The Tools of DV and HD Production > All Things Audio

All Things Audio
Everything Audio, from acquisition to postproduction.

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old March 12th, 2005, 09:17 PM   #1
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Makati, Metro Manila
Posts: 2,706
Images: 32
Boompole procedures and techniques

So what are your standard boompole procedures and techniques?

I know generally you're just pointing at the sound source, but what other things do you do to make sure you get the sound you want.

For example, if I'm booming downward, I push the mic forward in the shockmount so the weight of the mic naturally points it downward, or I push it backward into the shockmount if I'm booming up towards the sound source.
Michael Wisniewski is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 13th, 2005, 01:57 AM   #2
Inner Circle
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Toronto, Canada
Posts: 4,750
Cable management:
For equipment I have access to, the XLR cables have cable ties on them. I use the cable tie to secure the XLR cable at the mic-end of the boom pole. You could also do a strain relief thing there too. The rest of the cable is not too hard to wrap around the boom pole. The women's ponytail elastics with the two balls on them can also work in a similar fashion.

Have a carabiner or cable tie/pigtail thingie at the waist to hold excess cable.


I try to get good aim at the mouth so dialogue doesn't sound weird/colored. Listen on headphones and hear the changes at the mic gets off-axis from the sound source. The amount of off-axis coloration gets worse with cheaper mics.

For scenes with two people, I just aim in the middle. The alternative route is to point the mic before the next actor delivers his/her line. This works as long as the boom op knows all the cues and there's no overlapping dialogue. For actors who are close together I can't really hear the difference between the pointing method versus the 'middle' method.

You could adjust the distance/angle for the two speakers to balance out their levels.

For medium close-ups, you might not want to back off a little with the mic to get proper audio perspective for the scene (a little more reverb to fit the shot).

When booming actors, I try to be slightly in front of them so the head doesn't block some of the sound. This is when booming from above.

Make sure you hold it comfortably and relax your shoulder muscles as much as possible. Appleboxes (or anything else you can stand on) rock for gaining height so you can hold the boom across your chest, or rest it on your head.
Glenn Chan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 14th, 2005, 08:11 PM   #3
New Boot
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: California
Posts: 21
Stay away from flourescent lights bceause they will give you a buzz. Don't forget to work out them arms of yours because it can get pretty heavy when your holding it for long periods of time. You better be in great shape if you want good sound. :)
Steven Chow is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 14th, 2005, 09:43 PM   #4
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Posts: 6,810
I'm not a soundguy, but I have worked alongside too many to count. The single thing I see NOT happening on most "indie" or low budget shoots is getting the mike close enough. A good boom man will try to get as close as possible, often riding the frame line to achieve his results. Communication between the camera and boom operators is encouraged and crucial--they are not there to bone each other! If you are booming, check the monitor to see what the framing is going to be and bring that sucker down as close as possible. If you are operating, let the boom guy know if you intend to do something other than standard framing so he doesn't blow the shot by dipping in.

I have just seen too many low budget shoots with a guy in headphones standing somewhere near the set, boom slung casually over his shoulders and the mike pointing roughly towards the action (and heard the results...)

Oh yes, and if you are shooting with two cameras, be aware that a wide master and a closeup may be convenient to shoot simultaneously, but they can't both be properly boomed. Keeping roughly in the rule of "two's", i.e. the difference in focal lengths between the two cameras is no more than a factor of 2x, and the sound should be fine.
Charles Papert
Charles Papert is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 14th, 2005, 11:20 PM   #5
Regular Crew
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: los angeles, ca
Posts: 76
I found this site to be helpful.
John Harvey is offline   Reply

DV Info Net refers all where-to-buy and where-to-rent questions exclusively to these trusted full line dealers and rental houses...

B&H Photo Video
(866) 521-7381
New York, NY USA

Scan Computers Int. Ltd.
+44 0871-472-4747
Bolton, Lancashire UK

DV Info Net also encourages you to support local businesses and buy from an authorized dealer in your neighborhood.
  You are here: DV Info Net > The Tools of DV and HD Production > All Things Audio

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 03:19 AM.

DV Info Net -- Real Names, Real People, Real Info!
1998-2024 The Digital Video Information Network