View Full Version : How to record my sound?


Filmmaker516
03-21-2008, 11:09 PM
Hi all, sorry this is gonna be short and simple but I'll try and be clear. I have my Three-Chip camera (Panasonic PV-GS320) and the picture is amazing but it has no mic input. How would you suggest getting the best possibly quality dialog that won't break the bank here?

Right now, I see two options:

1. An external field recorder with good mic(s).

or

2. ADR.


What route would you suggest I go for ease of use and best bang for meh buck???


Thanks in advance,
Steve :cool:

John@Bophe
03-22-2008, 12:11 AM
This is the order I would probably look at --

1. Any secondary DV camera WITH a mic input could be used to capture sound. And you might actually get a good cutaway video clip in the process.
2. Sony MiniDisc recorder, or other such similar device.
3. ADR

Remember to take into account if your mic input on the recording device is stereo or mono (typically stereo) -- and then compare that to how your mic is capturing audio (typically mono). We've used an adapter that splits the mono channel into stereo when plugging into the camera. Otherwise, your sound mixer will have to remove the one channel of dead static noise in post.

Filmmaker516
03-22-2008, 07:29 AM
Okay, thank you- I'll probably look into a minidisc recorder. Any idea what mic to buy???

Sorry, I know I'm a n00b when it comes to sound.

Thanks,
Steve

John@Bophe
03-22-2008, 08:57 AM
There are plenty of choices based on your budget. First option should be a shotgun mic. These can run from $50 to the thousands, again depending on your budget. I'm not really an audio guy, so I don't have a specific brand to suggest. You could try using the SEARCH option to look for other "shotgun mic" threads in the forum.

clive
03-22-2008, 09:40 AM
Minidisc is good because you can pick the recorders up for next to nothing... but have you figured out your audio workflow?

How are you going to get your recorded sound into your NLE? Which means as MP3's WAV's AIFF's or via some connection.

As you've already bought a camera without audio connections, don't make the same mistake with your audio system.

I've used mini-disc for all kinds of things over the years... but I've got a minidisc deck in my hi-fi rack that links optically to my audio CD writer.

directorik
03-22-2008, 10:47 AM
As John mentioned, what you're looking for is a good shotgun mic.
That in itself is a generic term that means any long barreled mic.
You want a good condenser (externally powered) mic with a “lobar”
pick up pattern to put on your boom pole. Lobar pick up means the
mic focuses its audio pick up to a narrow area. This is why you
want to use a boom pole to get the mic as close the the actor as
possible - you’ll get clean dialogue tracks with less ambient noise.

http://www.sennheiserusa.com/newsite/
Sennheiser is the mic most used by professional sound recordists.
They are expensive and worth it. Check out the ME-66 and the ME-67.
The MKH60 is the best if you can afford it.

http://www.audio-technica.com/
Audio-Technica is cheaper. Check out the AT835B. It’s a workable
mic, a little muddy and not as directional as it should be. The AT835ST
is a good mic for the price, but it, too, sounds a bit muddy - the
vocals don’t sound crisp enough for me.

http://www.azdencorp.com/
I’ve never used Azden mic’s. They’re inexpensive and I don’t hear
too many good things about them, but if that's all you can afford
it's MUCH better than using the camera mic.

A good mic is an investment. It will last longer than
your camera - why skimp? A great place to check
prices and purchase is B&H Photohttp://www.bhphotovideo.com/

Filmmaker516
03-22-2008, 11:30 AM
thank you guys, just ONE more question:

What is a good Minidisc recorder that is (preferably) pretty cheap?

John@Bophe
03-22-2008, 03:55 PM
thank you guys, just ONE more question:

What is a good Minidisc recorder that is (preferably) pretty cheap?

Sony is the minidisc standard.

spinner
03-22-2008, 04:02 PM
Filmmaker516,

Pardon me for being dense please, but I have a secondary camera, very much like the one you have. It looks almost exactly like yours. I am not even sure if they make my camera anymore, it won't even come up on B&H (panasonic gs65)

Mine does have an audio input. Are you sure yours doesn't? I know it took me alittle while to figure out how to get the focus on mine to work. I am embarrassed to say I had to take it back to the store to figure that out. My DVX I understand and my small camera I couldn't make work. :blush:

Anyway, the mic input on mine is on the right hand side under a little rubber tab, did you look there? I don't say this to condescend. I just know that when I was looking at my small camera, I felt like an idiot once I found out how to do it....:rolleyes:

Its easy when you know how....plus, I get to laugh at myself...

-- spinner :cool:

Filmmaker516
03-22-2008, 04:03 PM
yes, i'm sure there is no mic input. look at it on B&H. but thank you for that tidbit spinner.

but what i mean is I'm having trouble finding what kind you are talking about. if you could give maybe a model number/ just model that would be much appreciated.

(can i get a good one with usb out to my comp. and mic in for under $100?)

spinner
03-22-2008, 04:10 PM
Well, I figure that if you can't find it on B&H, you can't find it. My PV-GS65 Panasonic will not come up on B&H at all. I use it mostly to import footage into my edit system.

However, if you need a good shotgun mic, look on B&H and put AudioTechnica shotgun mic. You should be able to find one in your price range....

(really, I am of at least average intelligence, but about my little camera? D'OH!) :D

EDIT: I just noticed that Clive suggested the AudioTechnica AT835, that is the one I have right now...

-- spinner :cool:

clive
03-22-2008, 04:15 PM
DIT: I just noticed that Clive suggested the AudioTechnica AT835, that is the one I have right now...

It's the one indie recommended to me and I bought. Can't take credit for that one. LOL

Pardon me for being dense please, but I have a secondary camera, very much like the one you have. It looks almost exactly like yours. I am not even sure if they make my camera anymore, it won't even come up on B&H (panasonic gs65)

Mine does have an audio input. Are you sure yours doesn't?

I checked the specs, because I had a very similar camera for a while, which did have audio in via the headphone socket (?)

This camera doesn't even have audio out, let alone audio in... I've no idea why Panasonic thought that was a good idea... except that audio in is a function consumers don't use and this is a consumer camcorder.

spinner
03-22-2008, 04:45 PM
This camera doesn't even have audio out, let alone audio in... I've no idea why Panasonic thought that was a good idea... except that audio in is a function consumers don't use and this is a consumer camcorder.

...someone should have been fired for that one :lol: How could they think that was a good idea?

My camera has an 'av' for headphones, a mic input and a UBS port all in the same tab. The firewire port is on the other side. I guess I lucked out on that one.

I was looking around at the Seinnheiser site. Do you know if the AT835 is comparable to anything they have? I assume the Seinnheisers are better quality and I found one that cost about what my AudioTechnica did. I didn't expect to find that...

-- spinner :cool:

Filmmaker516
03-23-2008, 08:01 AM
does anyone know if i can get a good one of these with mic input and the ability to put the audio then into my NLE either as WAV or MP3????

for under $150

clive
03-23-2008, 09:09 AM
This is $199.. you'll need to spend a little extra on SD cards and you'll also need a Beachtek adapter to go from XLR to mini-jack... but if that works this might be worth looking at:

http://www.samsontech.com/products/productpage.cfm?prodID=1916 (http://www.samsontech.com/products/productpage.cfm?prodID=1916)

http://www.audiogear.com/cgi-bin/shopper.cgi?key=ZOOMH2&preadd=action

Will Vincent
03-23-2008, 01:14 PM
There are three problems that come to mind with external recording.

First, is obviously figuring out how to get the audio into your NLE, then you'll have to sync it to the video (though matching up to the audio the camera's internal mic captured makes that easier) and finally, it won't stay in sync indefinitely...

Since the recorder isn't synced to the camera, there will be a slight skew between the two, though digital is pretty rock solid after 20-30 minutes your audio would drift. For a narrative type film that won't be an issue. If you were recording a longer seminar or something though you'd want to be sure you had some B roll to cut away to occassionally to resync your audio and video.

Another option you may not have considered is a laptop. You'll still want to get a beachtek adapter so you have good clean audio coming in, but you should be able to make use of the laptop's mic jack along with a beachtek adapter and record your audio using a free audio application like audacity (http://audacity.sourceforge.net/). The benefits here should be fairly obvious. You'll get high quality audio without the need for much additional gear, it will already be on the computer, so you just have to add it to your NLE as an asset when you're ready to start editing, and you won't need to stock up on SD cards or other media to store your audio on, since you'll likely have plenty of room on the laptop's hard drive. Recording in a wav format at 44.1k, you get roughly 1 hour for every 600MB (slightly more space is required for 48k recording). Worst case scenario you could burn some of the resulting files off to CD and remove them from the hard drive occasionally to free up additional space.

Filmmaker516
03-24-2008, 07:31 AM
thanks clive i think i might look into that h2-

anybody ever used one?

clive
03-24-2008, 01:39 PM
The laptop is a great idea... but, you will need a preamp between the microphone and the laptop. There just isn't enough signal otherwise and although it is possible to boost the gain, you also boost the noise.

I'm just not going to get into a discussion about preamps here, because it's a never ending debate... you'll never find two sound guys who can agree about preamps.

I really like Audio Hijack Pro as a recording option, mainly because it gives me all of the effects from all my other audio software in one place.

Will Vincent
03-24-2008, 02:06 PM
The laptop is a great idea... but, you will need a preamp between the microphone and the laptop. There just isn't enough signal otherwise and although it is possible to boost the gain, you also boost the noise.

Alright, so a PreAmp (http://www.musiciansfriend.com/product/ART-Tube-MP-Studio-Mic-Preamp?sku=180581), Beacktek, and a laptop. ;)

Unless that Beachtek DXA-6vu has a preamp in it, but I think it's just got phantom power, not a preamp.

clive
03-24-2008, 03:57 PM
It varies from model to model...some have a preamp, some have phantom power and some have neither.

Even more than with video I find audio requires both intensive reading of the manuals on all equipment... and testing of the workflow. After thirteen years studio experience, nine years field experience and an almost obsessive interest in 3D sound modeling, I still get caught out by both equipment and situations. In fact, I caught out on an equipment, preamp issue just last week! LOL

I know it's really, really obvious... but, I suppose it's worth mentioning that if you separate the audio and video you'll need to slate each shot.