View Single Post
Old 12-19-2017, 09:26 PM   #10
Basic Member
Join Date: Apr 2017
Location: Earth
Posts: 26
Originally Posted by AcousticAl View Post
Yes. Balanced (three conductors: positive, negative, ground) can run longer distances without added noise or risk of RF interference. Unbalanced (two conductors: positive, negative+ground) can only run a few feet before there’s a risk of added noise floor and increased risk of picking up RF bleed.
Good to know; this is very helpful. Thanks.
So, RF interference affects (long) unbalanced cables & not long balanced cables. Otherwise, all other factors being equal, there is no difference in sound quality between balanced & unbalanced cables?

Originally Posted by AcousticAl View Post
For walk-and-talks, that’s a very different beast and hard-wired lavs (even a hard-wired handheld) are impractical. This is where wireless systems with lavs come in. Or, if you want to simplify things, one wireless handheld in the host’s hand... but that constricts movement a bit.
Is this because during a walk-and-talk interview the wireless receiver operator can effectively monitor the sound (gain, mic placement, etc.) while both interviewer & interviewee have freedom of movement (within transmission range of course), making wireless the ideal choice in this scenario?

Originally Posted by AcousticAl View Post
...Under most circumstances, an omnidirectional interview mic is also going to be helpful as it is a little more forgiving if the mic accidentally tilts off-axis.
Yeah, I've also got an omni handheld on the wish list for this very reason.

Originally Posted by AcousticAl View Post
A good sound kit has lavs termiated for XLR connection for running wired direct to the mixer/recorder/camera, and lavs terminated for wireless transmitters (which can vary based on the wireless system used). If the interview is seated and the sound person is going for wired lavs, the XLR-terminated lavs allow the cables to run across the studio or location without issue. If the interview is a walk-and-talk, the sound person is probably going to go wireless: the lav is terminated for 1/8” (3.5mm), or TA3F (mini-XLR), or 4-pin Lemo, or _____... whichever matches the wireless transmitter used. The wireless receiver will connect to the mixer’s XLR inputs.
I get what you're saying about some mixers/recorders/cameras having XLR input jacks & some wireless transmitters having input 1/8” (3.5mm) jacks, and that there are different lav connectors for each. And what the sound person is going to use depends on the scenario.

Originally Posted by AcousticAl View Post
The first rule of thumb is, “Whenever able, use a cable.” When everyone is seated for a locked-down interview, wired lavs on both host and guest are a great way to go.
Nice, now that I can remember!
Let's see if I've got it. Reasons for the axiom: “Whenever able, use a cable”
1. Wired means not worrying about dropping a wireless connection signal - as opposed to wireless in a big city environment for example,
2. Sound person can better monitor the situation (eg. battery life of recorder v. battery life of wireless transmitter).
I have certainly grokked -both from this thread & from personal field experience- that sound quality depends largely on choosing the right tool in the right scenario & that that is most important above all for getting the best sound.
Let's try another hypothetical:
A film is being made that will include both locked-down interviews & walk-and-talk interviews. For the locked down interviews, sound person is using pro audio brand lavs plugged via an XLR connector into a balanced input into a pro audio brand mixer. For the walk-and-talk interviews, it's the countryside & there is no RF interference, the sound person is using a pro audio brand wireless system with the same brand & model lav as used with the aforementioned mixer, only this lav has a 1/8” (3.5mm) connector because it is being plugged into a pro audio brand wireless transmitter that accepts 1/8” (3.5mm). As both these environments & input devices are distinct, this sound person understands that the audio from each of these recordings will sound different. However, the sound person would like to know if the sound quality from the unbalanced wire is diminished in comparison to the sound quality from the balanced wire, resulting in potentially inconsistent quality audio in the film.

Last edited by Lox-StoryConnective; 12-19-2017 at 10:15 PM.
Lox-StoryConnective is offline   Reply With Quote