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-   -   XH-A1 Best Mic Set Up - Safari Shoot (https://www.dvinfo.net/forum/all-things-audio/87933-xh-a1-best-mic-set-up-safari-shoot.html)

Gareth Trezise March 2nd, 2007 04:20 AM

XH-A1 Best Mic Set Up - Safari Shoot
Need some advice please from those of you that know a lot more about recording audio than I do. With Safari in the past I have made do with the onboard mic on a Canon XL1 and the majority of time was pleased with it.

I have now moved on to the XH-A1 and want to pay a little more attention to sound when I'm back out on the African plains again next month. I have an ME66 which I thought would be good for getting sound of the close up action eg lions eating their kill but I'm unsure how well the ME66 would capture general ambient sound at the same time. At first I thought the onboard mic would take care of that but I know that gets disabled when you plug in a mic to one of the XLR inputs.

I was thinking one of the following options might do. What do you think?

1) Record the close up action with the ME66 attached to the XH-A1 & have another microphone operated by someone else either on a boom, pistol grip or maybe just on the hotshoe? I need suggestions for which microphone.

2) Record general ambient sound afterwards with the onboard mic?

Any suggestions would be much appreciated.



Larry Vaughn March 2nd, 2007 08:44 AM

2 mics
I have your setup and use the ME66 with a Rycote Softie and a Senneheiser shock mount on the hot shoe.

Since your potential sound guy isn't going to be out of the safari mobile when there are lions around (I wouldn't if I was him) you could do the same. How close can you safely get to the feeding?

You can use the mic mount on the camera with a less directional mic to pick up background sound. O rings around a smaller diameter mic will hold it in place with the existing mic mount.

I've been reading about nature photographers that use parabolic microphones to pickup sound over long distances. That would require someone to hold and aim the dish.

Looking forward to read what the experts would do.

Tim Gray March 2nd, 2007 09:50 AM

I don't know what kind of safari this is, but durable mics like the Sennheiser MKH series are good bets.

One thing you can do is go mid/side. Get either a good hyper or shotgun (MKH 50/60) and pair it with a figure 8 mic (MKH 30). Then you always have your reach with the shotgun for you main/mono sound, and you can add ambience in whenever necessary with the fig 8 mic. When you mix the 2 channels in post correctly, you get fully mono compatible stereo sound, with the added advantage of the soundfield being centered on wherever you point your mid (shotgun) mic.

This technique also makes for a more compact stereo array than tradition stereo mics. I believe Sanken might make an all in one mid/side shotgun mic. I know Sennheiser does (MKH 418) but it usually doesn't get the greatest reviews - the side component is a bit noisy.

Gareth Trezise March 4th, 2007 02:58 AM

XH-A1 Best Mic Set Up - Safari Shoot
Thanks Larry & Tim for your reply.

Larry - Probably somewhere between 12/18 feet away from lions but every situation is different, could be closer might be slightly further away.

Tim - Those microphones sound very good but unfortunately outside my budget. I have the ME66 & was hoping that would be good enough for the kind of distance suggested above. As far as a second microphone for a more general ambient sound recording I would say I have a budget between 200/300


Peter Rhalter March 4th, 2007 09:53 PM


Originally Posted by Gareth Trezise (Post 635562)
As far as a second microphone for a more general ambient sound recording I would say I have a budget between 200/300


Do you want to record the ambient sound at the same time as the lions are eating, or can it be recorded separately and mixed later? If you want to record ambient simultaneously with the feeding, then a mid-side configuration makes a lot of sense. The Emesser figure-eight (http://www.ambientaudio.com/products/tiny.html) and the AKG Blue Line ck94 (http://www.akg.com/site/products/pow...nguage,EN.html) might be of interest. Neither is as quiet as a MKH30, but they cost a lot less, too.

If you are recording ambient sound to be mixed in later, how about a Rode NT4 stereo mic? I think that will be in your price range, too.

Best wishes,

Jason Strongfield March 5th, 2007 10:46 AM

audio technica AT4071a. Its a long reach shotgun, perfect for your application.

Charles Hurley March 6th, 2007 12:44 AM

If you want to get the best usage of the ME66, which seems to be your goal, get it up on a pole out of the vehicle. Those mics are super hot and not all that directional, all you'll hear is vehicle unless the car is off. You might look into an ME67 capsule for the k6 power supply. It's much more directional and about $250 for just the capsule, sounds pretty good too for such an inexpensive mic. Recorded a feature with one and didn't hear a single complaint, which I took to be a compliment. Good Luck.

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