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What's Your Microphone?


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#21 Nahton

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Posted 05 March 2010 - 12:09 PM

QUOTE (iceaxe @ Mar 5 2010, 10:37 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Actually I recorded in several locations (not an ideal situation, but there you go): a meeting room at work (where there is the constant sound from the air conditioning), in a friend's kitchen (lots of hard surfaces causing echo sad.gif ), our spare room (switched off my PC before recording).

Has 3 prefixed gain settings (switch on the right hand side) which you can then fine-tune through the control panel when getting a level.
On one occassion when recording I was concerned about road noise outside, but through the headphones I could clearly hear birds twittering! (did I mention that you just plug in headphones directly?) No birds were in sight.

When making Embers I had planned on doing lots of foley sounds, and recording these myself for the first time. In the end it wasn't really necessary and the only sound that I recorded was the rain at the point the girl is inside the greenhouse. That was a very rainy day last November when I opened the front door and just let the H2 record whatever it could hear.

I have no idea how the H2 compares to the other mics you're considering. What I wanted was a mic that didn't sound like a gaming headset (popping, breathing, etc.) and would be super-portable so I could go to my voice actors, set up, record, and do this with minimum fuss.

(BTW. I've never used noise reduction in my sound editor for anything that the H2 has recorded. )


Wow, that puts a lot of concerns to rest. It's great to know you weren't in necessarily ideal conditions when laying down the VO's. As I said before I love the idea of being able to record my own ambiant tracks. I think I'm pretty much decided I am going to purchase the Z2. Thanks for the reply!

#22 squadronfilms

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Posted 05 March 2010 - 04:06 PM

I use this bad boy

My Mic

Its works well for VO work and live action filming.
Paul Firmin-IMDB
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Squadron Films

#23 lucindamc123

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Posted 05 March 2010 - 05:34 PM

QUOTE (squadronfilms @ Mar 5 2010, 04:06 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I use this bad boy

My Mic

Its works well for VO work and live action filming.



And you get beautiful sound too.

#24 Nahton

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Posted 05 March 2010 - 05:52 PM

QUOTE (squadronfilms @ Mar 5 2010, 04:06 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I use this bad boy

My Mic

Its works well for VO work and live action filming.


Hey SF,

I'm just wondering what process you use to get the VO's off the Camcorder and onto your PC. It certainly is an economical option compared to what I am looking at.

Nahton

#25 squadronfilms

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Posted 05 March 2010 - 06:54 PM

QUOTE (Nahton @ Mar 5 2010, 05:52 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Hey SF,

I'm just wondering what process you use to get the VO's off the Camcorder and onto your PC. It certainly is an economical option compared to what I am looking at.

Nahton


I normally just plug the mic direct into my computer but if not I just cature the "fottage" in a editing software and then save the "film" then I load it in Adobie Audtion and rip the audio off.

Failing that you could buy a mini disk recorder and plug it into that and then transfer the sound files to your computer. its a cheap film makers trick for sound.
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Squadron Films

#26 mollyrulz9999

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Posted 08 March 2010 - 06:03 AM

you'll never guess which one I'm using now:
(guess then click here. Or just click here and don't bother guessing)
It's actually not too bad. It comes out pretty clear with little ambient inconveniences rolleyes.gif

I used to use this mic VERY often before ...but it's a disgrace to logitech!
so i changed to the other one.
I'm aiming for a good quality unidirectional mic so that I can point it to my mouth and the sound is only pointing towards my mouth, so there's no stupid noises coming from the side, which can be very inconvenient. Although it probably won't help much since ambient sounds bounce around the room and can hit the mic at the same direction that I'm speaking into (unless I put my mouth up very closely/use my hands to cover the mic and stick my mouth through them, although that would look VERY awkward)

#27 johnnie

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Posted 12 March 2010 - 11:06 AM

Shameless plug alert!

There's an entire chapter dedicated to recording and processing audio in Machinima For Dummies (which is still available from all good retailers, or free to read online).
Johnnie Ingram
Co-Author, Machinima For Dummies

QUOTE (The Overcast @ July 23 2006)

#28 Nahton

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Posted 12 March 2010 - 11:47 AM

QUOTE (johnnie @ Mar 12 2010, 11:06 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Shameless plug alert!

There's an entire chapter dedicated to recording and processing audio in Machinima For Dummies (which is still available from all good retailers, or free to read online).

Thanks Johnnie! Somehow it doesn't seem so shameless if it's free.

#29 iceaxe

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Posted 12 March 2010 - 12:40 PM

QUOTE (johnnie @ Mar 12 2010, 11:06 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Shameless plug alert!

There's an entire chapter dedicated to recording and processing audio in Machinima For Dummies (which is still available from all good retailers, or free to read online).


And a fine read it is too!

#30 apostolos

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Posted 12 March 2010 - 06:25 PM

I use a Behringer B-2 Pro. However, I would like to recommend a M-Audio solution that I found Here it is a really good usb mic and software package. rolleyes.gif

#31 ed

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Posted 12 May 2010 - 08:53 PM

I recently acquired a Zoom H2 and it really is a super little device.

Iceaxe has covered most of the things it can do (it's a standalone digital recorder that can also be used as a USB mic on a PC). It comes with a 1GB SD card, but will take larger cards (there's a list of larger capacity SD cards that are know to work, up to 16GB or 32GB, on the manufacturer's website).

It has four on board mics. The two at the front record a 90^ range, the two at the back 120^. It's possible to record from all at the same time to make a "360^" recording. It's size is somewhere between a mobile phone and a PDA: it'll fit in a shirt pocket. It's a handy device for recording band rehearsals as well as speech. It's also very good for ambient recordings. It has a headphone/line out socket and inputs for an external mic and line in and the really adventurous can get something like a pair of stealth mics from Church Audio and a pre-amp or a battery box to make discreet field recordings.

It's not as sturdy as some other devices (I got a little rubber jacket for mine) but its size and price make it something to consider for anyone looking to dip a toe into the world of digital recorders.

#32 MefuneAkira

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Posted 25 June 2010 - 07:58 PM

QUOTE (iceaxe @ Mar 2 2010, 01:46 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I use a Zoom H2, and I cannot recommend it enough.

It's a condenser mic which records in WAV format directly onto an SD card, or when connected by USB to a computer it's a straightforward USB condenser mic. It will record stereo, or surround sound and is great for recording interviews because it will record front and back of the mic's position.
I have a little mini-tripod that I usually stick it on, but it also comes with an adaptor which lets you stick it onto a mic stand.

The portability is great - it's the size of a compact camera, and runs off batteries in standalone, or you can plug it into the mains (it comes with a power adaptor), or when connected to a PC it uses the power from the USB. I honestly can't tell you how much I love this little recorder.

Two button presses and it starts recording. It has controls to let you set sensitivity and a bunch of other things that I never use. (Has a built in guitar tuner for example). You can pick it up for about £150.

All of the dialogue in Cloud Angel was captured using this. Most of the dialogue in Clockwork too (with the exception of the narrator).

Buy one!



I wanted to post a very big public THANK YOU to IceAxe for recommending the Zoom H2. I finally got the H2 today and I can honestly tell you that not only is the sound quality as good as an expensive condenser mic, but it is a huge multitasker. A fantastic portable condenser mic, a digital recorder, a 4-mic surround sound recorder for creating your own ambiance sounds and a great mic for podcasting right into your PC.

Picked it up for $140 and its worth every penny and more.

Thanks IceAxe!!

#33 Armanus

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Posted 25 June 2010 - 08:34 PM

I've recently bought a Line 6 UX2 USB interface for recording some songs I had written. The nice thing about this is that now I can use the Shure 58 vocal microphone I have. Great sound and really, really clear. No noise. So much better then my headset mic or that p.o.s. Logitech desktop mic I've been using.

#34 iceaxe

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Posted 25 June 2010 - 09:50 PM

QUOTE (MefuneAkira @ Jun 25 2010, 07:58 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Thanks IceAxe!!


Hey, no problem. Over the years I've bought a fair number of gadgets. Very few of them really exceeded my expectations, but the H2 is definitely one of them.

#35 neut

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Posted 29 June 2010 - 08:46 AM

QUOTE (lucindamc123 @ Mar 2 2010, 11:31 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
......and I get too much ambient noise with it and I have tried every combination of settings I can think of.


Hi Lucinda, long time no speak. Can you give me more details of ambient recording, maybe I can help. It would also be useful if you send me an example of what you mean.

There's lots of options for cleaning it up out ther, some costly some not, some simply applying technique.

Let me see if I can help

neut smile.gif

#36 neut

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Posted 29 June 2010 - 09:25 AM

Sorry for the double post.

If you in an environment which has unecessary noise, have a look at this.

http://blogs.oreilly...ocal-booth.html

could be a cheap alternative to having an isolation booth for vocals.

cutting out silence between vocals is useful (or gating) for cleaning up vocals and if your experienceing hiss or low level rumbles then EQuing at the right frequency will help reduce this.

There is a piece of software which is invaluble to anyone recording VO's or anything similar as this is the best I've come accross in cleaning noisy vocals.

http://www.izotope.c...ducts/audio/rx/

I'm fortunate enough to have built a small production studio, with a pretty good set up with regards to recording (protools DAW with good selection of decent mics etc), but talking from experience anyone can get decent enough VO's from most rooms in the house with a basic setup. Good mic placement at the beginning of the recording will eliminate most of the problems occured with voice recording. Try to use good quality cables. If your soundcard is not that well shielded you could try putting ferrite beads on your cables.

http://en.wikipedia....ki/Ferrite_bead

There are loads of tried and failed methods for producing good vocals, but the important thing to remember is get the sound right from the start and don't settle for anything less than something you are truly happy with. I've heard loads of VO's done with the headset type mics for PC's and they are popping and hissing all over the place. if this is all you have to use to record with thats fine, but don't settle for pops and hiss, keep the mic a good distantace from you, don't shout so it distorts horribly (if you have to, move your head back) try to think about how much you use your plosive sounds (B's,P's,T's etc) as these sounds at the beginning of words will cause distortion and uneccesary noises. In the studio I use a pop shield which helps reduce this, people of gotten away with it in the past by wrapping a pair of tights round a metal coathanger and attaching it to a mic stand

http://www.instructa...ade-pop-filter/

Sorry if I'm preaching to the converted, but i love this sort of stuff (which is why I do it for a job lol) and to those of you that may be new to this I hope you find some of it useful, as it can save hours of frustration when you get it right.

neut smile.gif





#37 luxaeternam

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Posted 07 July 2010 - 01:26 PM

Wow Neut, that's a lot of useful information for us to plough through.

As for me, I've been having inconsistent results from my input. The soundcard is a realtek chip which produces good output via my 2.1 speakers, but the recording is somewhat hit and miss so I'm currently testing the use of a terratec USB soundcard for recording (while keeping the output via the chip) and it looks fairly good so far.

smile.gif Lucy
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#38 sgnr76

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Posted 09 December 2010 - 08:49 PM

I use a Shure SM-57 plugged into a M-Audio OMNI preamp feeding a Delta 66 soundcard into Adobe Audition.

In Audition, I use Anteres Microphone Modeler to give my dynamic mic more of a condenser mic feel.

#39 luxaeternam

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Posted 10 December 2010 - 05:15 AM

I got spoiled rotten for my birthday yesterday, and among other things received a Zoom H1 with the accessory pack. I'll be playing with that this weekend.
biggrin.gif
"Les miroirs feraient bien de réfléchir un peu plus avant de renvoyer les images" : Jean Cocteau

#40 lucindamc123

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Posted 10 December 2010 - 05:16 AM

QUOTE (neut @ Jun 29 2010, 02:46 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Hi Lucinda, long time no speak. Can you give me more details of ambient recording, maybe I can help. It would also be useful if you send me an example of what you mean.

There's lots of options for cleaning it up out ther, some costly some not, some simply applying technique.

Let me see if I can help

neut smile.gif



I just now saw this post and this was posted in June. I improved my recording a lot and also learned how to eliminate noise with Adobe Audition by capturing a sample of the noise I wanted eliminated and Audition does a wonderful job, once I learned to take a sample first before reducing the noise. I get some pretty poor recordings from actors and I have even been able to fix those.


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