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Hardware Thread, camcorders in Technical; Change of plan, if you had a lot of money to spend, say a grand or so to attempt to ...
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    mrbios's Avatar
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    Change of plan, if you had a lot of money to spend, say a grand or so to attempt to do a professional level of recording for shows etc what would you go for?

    Over the years (MANY years) the music teacher here has put on 100s of shows, the recording for every single one has been shoddy at best, you can barely here whats going on, the chances of you recognising a particular person without knowing who they are beforehand is highly unlikely etc. So i'm trying to put it to them to buy a proper piece of kit to use for years to come, rather than spending 200 on another piece of crap that'll do nothing to improve the current situation.

    EDIT: oh and the recording would be from the back of the hall so would need to pick up clear sound from an echoing envionment (don't even know if that's possible) and a good picture in low and bright light

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    Quote Originally Posted by mrbios View Post
    attempt to do a professional level of recording for shows

    <SNIP>

    EDIT: oh and the recording would be from the back of the hall so would need to pick up clear sound from an echoing envionment (don't even know if that's possible) and a good picture in low and bright light
    Not going to happen. You need to get the mics in the right place, which is near the action. Probably a stereo pair located on the centre line of the auditorium, maybe hung, but not too near lighting cables. Unless you do at least this, it WILL sound shabby. In an (more) ideal world you'd use close mics and mix down to a stereo feed to the camera, but that opens whole fresh cans of worms.

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    mrbios's Avatar
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    In that case we'll scrap the idea of improving the main hall recordings because it'd cost too much, but we still wish to improve the recordings they do in classrooms where they go up one by one and either sing or play an instrument etc

    I guess the best way to improve this would be to have a microphone attached to a camera with the cameras internal mic switched off? Any recommendations on what camera to buy with an external mic port for this and a decent quality microphone for the job?

    EDIT: what im looking at now is decent microphones, specific for requirement (one specific to instruments and one specific to vocals) but once you have good quality from those i guess unless we had a camera with XLR connections there would need to be something in between?
    Last edited by mrbios; 8th November 2010 at 12:42 PM.

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    Andrew_C's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mrbios View Post
    would be to have a microphone attached to a camera with the cameras internal mic switched off?

    unless we had a camera with XLR connections there would need to be something in between?
    Perhaps the mic on a stand nearer the performer would be better. You wouldn't necessarily need kit in between the mic and the camera, a simple adaptor may suffice. However if you go for a condenser mic, you will need to provide "phantom power". Some cameras may provide this as a feature (probably "Pro" only), an in line brick type power supply is available, or a mixer. The downside is that as with laptop power supplies, running the camera off the mains, and other mains kit CAN induce audio interference. Sometimes, maybe, if you are unlucky...

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    mrbios's Avatar
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    phantom power from the likes of a preamp such as this one: M-Audio Audio Buddy | The Production Room ?

    I love the whole pro audio thing but do i don't understand any it at all!

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    Most condenser mics for camcorders have a battery built in somewhere. I've got one of these BeachTek DXA-2T Universal Camcorder Adapter I connect one channel to a shotgun mic. and the other to a radio mic. mounted in front of the stage. I then balance levels using the Beachtek. It's about as good as you can get without live feeds from sound systems and loads of mics and wires but still needs a lot of fine tuning in post.

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    I dont think you will find a voice/instrument specific microphone .. Most come in 2 flavours ... Uni directional or Omni directional Uni tends to be for voice/single instrument Omni is for recording a wide sound source such as a choir etc.
    For multiple mikes use a mixing desk such as

    Behringer XENYX 502 Mixing Desk Mixing Console on eBay (end time 19-Nov-10 15:05:18 GMT)
    Thats 5 in 1 out to the camera or whatever you are using to capture the audio track.

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