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Shooting non-repeatable events: weddings, recitals, plays, performances...

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Old December 6th, 2016, 11:42 PM   #1
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Multiple lapel lav mics & interference

I'm shooting an wedding coming up and the client has indicated that the DJ will be putting a lav mic on the speaker to amplify him (and am unsure if it's a wireless unit).

I want to put my own lav mic on the speaker as well in order to have my own dedicated audio (since I am responsible for capturing it and have no control over the sound company's audio feed). My lav mic is not wireless, it just plugs into an H1 recorder unit which goes in his pocket.

My question is, will there be any possible interference between the two lapel mics on the speaker for any reason?

Thanks for any insight anyone can offer.

Cheers,
Eric
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Old December 7th, 2016, 12:38 AM   #2
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Re: Multiple lapel lav mics & interference

I've done this a few times for corporate events and not had any interference. As long as your lapel mic is of good quality, I can't see any risk.
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Old December 7th, 2016, 01:45 AM   #3
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Re: Multiple lapel lav mics & interference

If the DJ's lav is wireless (which is probably is) there's always the potential it's a no-name transmitter that just spews RF all over the place. There could be some interference whereby your mic's cable is acting as an antenna for all the high-power RF and it bleeds into your recording.

If the DJ's transmitter is of any decent quality (Azden, Shure, EV, Sennheiser, AT) then this won't be a problem.
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Old December 7th, 2016, 02:04 AM   #4
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Re: Multiple lapel lav mics & interference

Thanks guys,

My main concern is getting screeching coming out over the monitor speakers, but I suppose since the recorder isn't broadcasting, and only recording into the unit, there should not be any interference problems.
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Old December 7th, 2016, 02:08 AM   #5
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Re: Multiple lapel lav mics & interference

Oh, you were worried about feedback. It's literally impossible for your mic to cause feedback. You might have a slight echo in your recording though since the DJ's speakers will be picked up somewhat by your mic.
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Old December 7th, 2016, 11:15 AM   #6
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Re: Multiple lapel lav mics & interference

Try to get a hold of you DJ in advance, ask him about his wireless system. Ask him if he does a frequency scan on-site, or if he can give you the frequency he'll be using on the day of the shoot. If your system and the DJ's are on the same frequency, it's going to make all sorts of trouble. Make sure you can choose your own frequency (and ideally, run a freq. scan when you arrive to look for a clear channel).

Have a backup plan. Pocket recorders with a wired lav are nearly impervious to interference, and might be a better option. Many people in the wedding industry are moving away from wireless entirely. Look at the Zoom H1, or the tiny Tascam DR10c. Add your own lav and you don't have to worry about the DJ at all.

The second backup that I always incorporate is to take an output straight from the DJ's system. Throwing a lav on a speaker isn't ideal for a number of reasons, but almost every DJ board has RCA/XLR/TRS outputs. If you have the right adapters and recorders, then you should strongly consider doing this at every event. The problem is, if you rely on that as your only audio source and the DJ's system has issues, then you record the same crap that they are outputting to the audience. So your own lav is your first, best option.

Study up on mic placement, and wind noise prevention. The best lav in the world will not help you when the breeze picks up and distorts your signal. Best of luck.
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Old December 15th, 2016, 05:15 PM   #7
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Re: Multiple lapel lav mics & interference

My last 2 of 3 weddings were outdoors where the DJ mic'd the minister with a wireless mic.

I also had a wireless mic.

The first one, I didn't know until things were rolling, because I had mic'd everyone up first. Absolutely horrendous static and cut outs from the PA speakers during the ceremony. My audio came out fine though on the DR40s.

The second one, we tested both systems (I ran 3 wireless, he ran 1). Left them on for quite a while early on in the day, no issues. During ceremony, cutouts like crazy on PA. My audio was fine.
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Old December 19th, 2016, 07:17 PM   #8
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Re: Multiple lapel lav mics & interference

Anyone wireless unit will have its frequency on the base. You can easily check and see if there is a conflict.
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Old January 1st, 2017, 06:26 PM   #9
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Re: Multiple lapel lav mics & interference

Over the years, I've become a tad jaded looking at the 'onsite' wireless gear the same way I look at other people's sweet tea, an annoyance at best. I ran into a guy last year, a 'DJ' that had no idea what his wireless frequency was and he wasn't going to pull his rack apart to find out. Needless to say, his frequency ate my lavs for lunch. I give this example, because it really is the worst case scenerio.

Most of your DJ's will know their frequency. You could always call ahead and ask. I did that on the above example too, ugg, and the venue had no idea. So do you best due diligence.

When I attend a rehearsal, I walk straight to the sound board and start looking for wireless gear. Ultimately it'll be left up to you since I've run into many 'sound people' who had no clue there was a frequency.
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Old January 2nd, 2017, 12:39 AM   #10
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Re: Multiple lapel lav mics & interference

The answer is to use the modern 2.4GHz frequency hopping shared spectrum wireless devises not UHF systems. Manufacturers like Sennheiser now provide these as an option but there are some dirt cheap models available that some of us are already using & the quality is incredible for the price & there is no worry about interference. https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/...?ie=UTF8&psc=1
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Old January 2nd, 2017, 06:21 AM   #11
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Re: Multiple lapel lav mics & interference

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nigel Barker View Post
The answer is to use the modern 2.4GHz frequency hopping shared spectrum wireless devises not UHF systems. Manufacturers like Sennheiser now provide these as an option but there are some dirt cheap models available that some of us are already using & the quality is incredible for the price & there is no worry about interference. https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/...?ie=UTF8&psc=1
+1 for the Boya system that Nigel linked to here. You won't get the range of the Senheisers and more expensive kit, but for short range work such as weddings, they are excellent. I have a couple of sets that I use and have never had interference or dropout even in theatre environments with other wireless users. They also have the bonus of an output level control, headphone monitoring on the receiver and an integrated talk back circuit if you need to talk to the talent.

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