Expert opinion on mics

Discussion in 'Microphones (live or studio)' started by mikejonez, Apr 24, 2005.

  1. mikejonez

    mikejonez Guest

    OK, I'm going to be shooting in a warehouse type location and I get alot of echo. I'm going to use some blankets to fix some of the echo I have been getting. I have been using a shotgun (Cheap) mic but the sound has been really bad. My subjects cannot use lav mics because they are training martial arts. I was told that I should use a Oktava MK-102 mic and hang it as close to the subjects as possible or even 2 mics. My question is do you guys agree with this or should I try another route? What type of mic would you use and why? (Make and model would be great) Thanks in adavance for all the help
  2. anonymous

    anonymous Guests

    Feb 10, 2001
    Well the good news is there are only about 2 or 3 hundred (different mic's) that will work for you.
    The bad news is....
    Well,... there is no bad news :lol:
    I might suggest using a condensor microphone (48V). Most all condensor mic's have a really hot signal, and catch all sorts of sounds that really capture the little things, and make it sound REAL. Or more life like.
    If you use more than one mic, try to place each mic (as close as possible) the same distance from each other. For instance, if the center of the room is 6 feet away from the 1st mic you put up. Try to make sure that the next mic is about the same distance from the center of the room.
  3. John Stafford

    John Stafford Well-Known Member

    Oct 1, 2004
    Avoid Oktava like the plague unless you buy from somewhere like the Sound Room that tests the mics they sell, or else try before you buy. Their quality control is atrocious.

    John Stafford
  4. impro

    impro Guest

    get the new rode shotgun...
  5. JoeH

    JoeH Well-Known Member

    Jun 22, 2004
    Philadelphia, PA/ Greenville, DE
    Home Page:
    Get the best location sound you can get, including a lot of "Room tone".

    Boom pole mics above the actors may help if you can keep them up and out of the shot, but it sounds like a pretty busy shoot....

    But brace youself for the fact that you'll probably have to do some ADR in post.
  6. mikejonez

    mikejonez Guest

    What brands and models of mics should I look at for these situations? I'm VERY NEW to this so forgive me for the dumb questions. I just want to have a good idea where to start. Thanks again
  7. TeddyG

    TeddyG Well-Known Member

    Jan 20, 2005
    What some are hinting at is that no matter what mics- even the best - you may be stuck with recreating at least some of the most important, absolutely neccessary "dialogue", etc., in a studio, later(ADR), for best, maybe even useable at all, results?(This is how it's done for movies and TV as it's considered highly unlikely that even they - the experts - will get it right, on location or set - though, sometimes they do!)

    Still, get a recording of the overall "room sound", echo and all - with no close-to-the-mic talking going on(Or very little and mostly not descernible), AND WITH and WITHOUT any "crowd" - to use later to "fill-in" the room sound under your "replacement" voices/effects - at least several minutes which can be "looped" and stuck-in the mix where needed.

    Other than that, TRY to "get it"(The actual sound of the event/dialogue/action/whatever), anyway. Some(All?) of it may be good enough, depending on how "good" is "good" - for you?

    What mics? Really is hard to say..? Set up a nice omni(All around) mic somewhere in the room and just let it on. One close to the action, one farther back would be better, etc, etc, etc... to mix in what you need later - this can get v-e-r-y complex!(Don't go too far with this...). Also - at the same time - try a shotgun on a long pole for catching the "close-up" stuff. Which shotgun? The most expensive one you can afford, I suppose. Unfortunately a really good(Tight pattern)shotgun takes a really good, experienced operator(The really good boom stands themselves cost thousands!)... Maybe almost any 'ol dynamic(SM-57?) clamped/taped to a l-o-n-g telescoping pole(From the hardware store) would do? Not an omni, but not too directional, either - you want to be sure to get it all, without missing anything critical or getting to much "room" - tough job...

    My choices, for you? An AKG C414B ULS(In omni mode, OR whatever pattern works best for YOU!), or another condenser capable of omni and other patterns, for the "overall" and, on a pole(For you to "aim"), a Shure SM-57 - or similar "semi-long-range" mic(An AKG C1000s would work well here), NOT a "close-talking" mic, like the SM58 and NOT a tight pattern shotgun either... Maybe hang another 57 over the "action spot"?

    Sounds like an interesting challenge... I hope you will tell US how to do this well, at some later point...

    Teddy G.
  8. TeddyG

    TeddyG Well-Known Member

    Jan 20, 2005
    The goal of the "room" mic(s), is to "capture" the sound of the room itself, along with any crowd noise, chatter, etc., during the event. This can be run at a nice level - not too high - want to avoid overmod here(Going into the red on the meters during the loudest times) if at all possible. These recorded sounds may be usable, later, to "fill-in" places where the "main" sound would be unacceptable(Doors slamming, people swearing, etc.), or you want to accentuate the mood... Of course, you'll want to get some "quieter" room sound to tape, likely well before the event start.

    Your "close-up" mic's purpose is to be at as soft a level, as restrictive in what it picks up as possible, so it just picks up the participants(Though at a good level just the same -- see, it is tricky!) while trying to avoid also capturing the room noises, echo, etc. In leu of, or in addition too a boom mic, one could, for instance, set up a "perimeter" of mics, around the "stage" area, pre-aimed at the anticipated center(s) of the action, recording each on a different channel and "mixing" in the one(s) that has gotten the best sound at the moment(s) in question - later. Of course, hanging a mic(s) over the action stage, as you said, can be fine. You want a mic that does NOT pick up behind(In this case above), itself, so it captures as little as possible off the ceiling. Again, an SM-57-type should do well here and be rather inexpensive and rugged as anything to boot.

    Easiest? The sound person could put on a pair of headphones and aim your one mic(Wouldn't a wireless mic be nice here?) at the action from the best point(s) possible, through the entire taping, hoping just to do the best you can. A shotgun mic here(Any mic can be made "wireless", though it's easiest with a dynamic mic like the SM-57) could be best and this is where the "pole" idea comes in handy. Some have used v-e-r-y long fishing poles - really! Like 20 feet long!

    By the way, professional video cameras sometimes have very good shotgun mics? If your's don't now, they can! Maybe look around the web and see what other camera operators(Like news camera operators) - who often must "get" whatever sound gets got, with their single, on camera mic, use?

    ADR can be costly, difficult and "cheesey", if not done right. Try to do the best you can, on-site and "live with it"...

    Hardest part of all of this is trying not to be obtrusive and disturbing both participants and audience - unless this is JUST for taping?

    Whatever you do, just don't be terribly disapointed if it doesn't come out perfectlythe first time or 10, this is very difficult stuff to master... On the other hand, if it does come out perfectly, hang a shingle and start working for the movies!

  9. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    Jul 2, 2002
    77 Sunset Lane.
    (This was in this thread but was edited out when the mod had to do a topic split to remove a "troll post")

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