View Full Version : daily rate for soundguy


mrak1979
09-20-2009, 03:21 PM
hi there. I'm writing to ask if you guys know the baseline avg cost per day of hiring a competent sound guy. What is the avg. and what is the lowest minimum rate that you've guys seen?

thanx

directorik
09-20-2009, 03:30 PM
I will assume you are asking about a location mixer and
not post audio. Here in Los Angeles you can get a good
mixer with his own equipment for as low as $200/day.
Add another $100 for a good boom op.

That's really low, but they are out there.

mrak1979
09-20-2009, 03:43 PM
For a simple scene, can location mixer double up as boom op also?

directorik
09-20-2009, 04:17 PM
Some do. Some do not.

The rate isn't contingent on how simple or complicated
the scene is. The day rate is usually set based on
experience and equipment owned and the physical packing
up, transporting, setting up, packing up, transporting and
maintaining of the equipment. So even a simple six hour
shoot involving two actors in one location is the same rate
as a full 10 hour day with several actors and locations.

But even that is up for negotiation. In the freelance, non-union
world here in L.A. green talks. You might very well find a
mixer/boom op who is willing to work a simple scene for much
less. Or you may not find anyone willing to work for less than
their usual rate.

indietalk
09-20-2009, 04:31 PM
Ask your sound mixer if he/she can handle it.

Since you're in LA I won't comment on rates, but about the same rik posted.

CDCosta
09-20-2009, 06:58 PM
Rates in NYC are usually around $200/day with gear. I've seen some really low like $125/day.

The professional mixer i know makes $750/day.

mrak1979
09-20-2009, 07:11 PM
thanx for all your advice... I'm actually looking for someone local in SF bay area.

M1chae1
09-21-2009, 04:27 PM
Those are all base union (pro) rates...in other words, you can find a guy with his own equipment, and get him for free (we do). Just so you know...they are out there.

Crew that don't work movies full and hold a 9-5 (like most of us still do) are in it to build their resume, and expand their horizon and skill...many feel lucky they are working on a competent set, and will work pro bono or for very little.

Often times, we don't have an external sound guy. We have a boom op that plugs directly into the camera. Sound horrible? Nope...the sound turns out just fine every time. (example: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t5yBfouKhXw).

KevinDeKimpe
05-15-2013, 03:22 AM
Those are all base union (pro) rates...in other words, you can find a guy with his own equipment, and get him for free (we do). Just so you know...they are out there.

Crew that don't work movies full and hold a 9-5 (like most of us still do) are in it to build their resume, and expand their horizon and skill...many feel lucky they are working on a competent set, and will work pro bono or for very little.

Often times, we don't have an external sound guy. We have a boom op that plugs directly into the camera. Sound horrible? Nope...the sound turns out just fine every time. (example: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t5yBfouKhXw).

P.A.s on major shoots get paid $200. If you get a boom op for free he's either a great friend, or you're going to have terrible audio.


Politics aside, An all in one Sound Mixer / boom op with their own Equipment should get $250 at least for an indie, $500 if it's commercial.
Great and accurate file naming, great sounding audio, and someone's who's not shy to speak up about a bad recording will save you tons of money and time in the end.

Someone with A 702T Sound Device is necessary. This machine has great sounding pre amps to give you that high quality, crispy sound, and is an industry standard.

As far as a budget, having an H264 is a decent sound mic pre.

However, Going straight into the cam will get a sound like M1chae1's link above. Airy, fuzzy, light digital distortion, but better than nothing.

Here's an example of a good sound guy with a sound device.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BhjKqdqcUMk