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Rates & other tips when traveling?
On 10/30/2012 at 4:16 PM, MatthewFreedAudio said:
You should be getting a full day pay for travel days. It's not like you can take another gig on those days. You should also charge what is right for gear. The worst they can do is rent from a rental house. Don't give away the farm. Let them know that the show requires XYZ gear and you can provide it (assuming your gear fits the show and you aren't trying to fit the show into your gear) and they can get the gear for X number of dollars. Charge what the rental house would charge for the gear that is needed for the show.
On 10/30/2012 at 5:22 PM, fieldmixer said:
40$ perdiem??? What the hell can you buy with that on the road? Junk food. Insist on 55$-60$. Geez.
On 2/19/2013 at 2:30 PM, matt.kraus said:
Here you can find the GSA per diem rates for destinations in the continental U.S.
The rates are established for federal employees on official travel. It may be a useful tool for comparison.
On 6/26/2017 at 9:11 PM, Mobilemike said:
I would bill just one day, however I would bill from airport to airport and anything that goes over the agreed on 10 or 12 hours is charged as OT.
Justification for your Rate beyond “Market Value”
On 1/18/2017 at 7:14 PM, David Silberberg said:
Producers don't see the many hours of prep time needed to develop your service and the investment in gear and maintaining " readiness" to respond with good service. OTOH we don't see the myriad of problems that producers face in organizing and paying for a shoot.
On 1/18/2017 at 8:35 PM, ProSound said:
The people that hire me know they could save a $100-$200 a day sometimes hiring a less experienced mixer with no extra gear or back ups for some straight forward jobs but they don't because they don't want to risk there reputation over a few hundred bucks. I had a simple corporate interview job this week 5 interviews boom only to camera less then 6 hours. I still got $800/10 for gear and labor. The camera guy that hired me could have used his 416 into the camera directly and made another $800 or hired someone else for $500 all in for the day to make $300 extra but he didn't because he charges a good rate and in addition to providing good sound I was also able to help him set up and also helped keep the client out of his hair while he got set up. I am always his first call on jobs that have the budget for sound. Good sound mixers bring much more to the table then just great sound. Bring more to the table and people will pay you more
Running the Set
On 8/31/2017 at 9:28 PM, old school said:
The way I came up, and I believe it to be the correct way, is the boom op is the quarterback, the mixer and the 3rd/cable are the team players (sorry for the American football analogy). Of course my most valuable mentors were Jeff Wexler and Don Coufal and this is the way they/we worked. When I was a boom op, I made the decisions as to how we were going to do any given shot/scene and the team and I executed that plan. For me today as a mixer, I do it the same way. I wouldn't hire a boom op who couldn't run the set and didn't know film making and all it involves. While I did work with a few Emperor Mixers, it was one and done as everything suffered IMO/ Why? Because the front row is just that, the place where films get made. Not to diminish the mixing gig, a system and it's operation is the mechanical/technical heart of the operation, but the people make it work, not the gear. The unsung MVP is often the 3rd who will swing a boom, do playback, record sfx, fill in for the mixer who's 10/200, many times all in the same day. Just the way I like it. TEAM.
On 9/4/2017 at 7:05 AM, mikewest said:
Let your boom op present solutions to you and then you can input your own ideas
Awkward Sound Loc
On 12/5/2016 at 10:44 PM, mikewest said:
How many times have we suffered this in our lives!!!???
Location are generally chosen for visual/story reasons, low cost and minimum travel.
Sound, well are we on the recce - generally no because it costs!
Press the button and invoice
Accepting gigs beyond your skill level
On 3/21/2012 at 6:12 AM, John Blankenship said:
Here are just a paltry few of the things a professional sound mixer should know:
* What post needs and why
* Boom microphones (which, when, where, and how)
* Mic rigs
* Lavs (which, when, where, and how)
* Lav rigs
* Signal flow
* Level matching
* Impedance (matching and bridging)
* Decibel relationships
* Ohms Law and all its variations
* Masking effect
* Phase relationships
* Phase cancellation
* Comb filtering
* Standing waves
* Room nodes
* Average signals
* Peak signals
* Time code (and all its variations)
* Camera variations and options
* Set protocol
* Craft services location
Then, there's the experience to know how to apply all the above and so much more.
On 3/21/2012 at 2:10 PM, jason porter said:
Knowing the gear tends to reflect a persons passion, knowing how to use it effectively is the important part.
Cinella/Rycote handling noise
On 10/3/2015 at 2:57 PM, John Blankenship said:
No gear surpasses skill.
Advice for a novice
On 6/4/2018 at 4:37 PM, Jay Rose said:
Decent sound is, IMHO, harder than decent picture. If you're trying to learn picture, you can look at the work of the masters and figure out what kind of lenses they used, how they did basic framing and moves, and even -- when you know a bit more -- where the light is coming from. If you're trying to learn pix editing, you can also learn a lot by examining films. Yes, you can learn a lot more by listening to what the masters have said about their art... but at least you can get started on your own.
But our craft is, or should be, largely invisible. Dialog is supposed to sound like we are in the room with the actors... but we never can see where the mics were, how they treated the areas immediately out of the shot, and what was done in post. (After a short while you can distinguish between good booming and good lavs, unless the post is also very good. Then the mics should intercut, and it takes very careful listening to tell them apart.)
So you have to rely on the laws of physics... which don't require more than a grade school education and a sense of reality. Plus the techniques we've developed over the past century of recorded sound, which aren't secret.
Or, at least, that's the thrust of my books.
Shotgun vs. Hyper, deeper dive
On 9/1/2017 at 1:34 PM, Ty Ford said:
Yes. Inside, where you may be dealing with room reflections, closer is quite often better (unless you have a weird reflection problem) and the interference tube is not your friend for that reason.
High temperature lav mic technique
On 7/16/2017 at 10:05 AM, daniel said:
Point mic downwards to avoid ingress of sweat. Thick hair, on head (?) good for hiding mic, on body (?) noisy for mic - resolve with razor and/or something between hair and mic. Piped AC (keep cool, isolate noise).
Mixing a basketball film
On 5/3/2017 at 7:45 PM, RPSharman said:
One thing you can do is have them use a long lens for people talking on the sidelines. Carpet between the lens and the actors and have them fake a ball. It'll never be missed on camera, as you'll be waist up with foreground crosses. Same with other game footage in the BG. Get a foam ball the same size and color as a real basketball. If it's not in focus they won't be able to tell.
Shoe noise is easier to edit around if there's lots of footfalls. It's just noise. Ball bouncing isn't easy to edit around. Passing drills that don't hit the floor are good for background action for practices. That kind of thing.
Fixed plays are a must, so you can judge the amount of noise and make it easy to edit around for both sound and picture. Goes for practices and games.
In terms of people playing basketball and talking, I wired anyone with real talking dialog that was going to have coverage. But if it was just shouting and such as part of the game, then I did't wire. I played perspective. Also, in real life, players don't talk much on the court during play. Only when the ball is out of play. I vampire clipped to the jersey. Waistband. Easy enough.
Production Mix Structure
On 9/16/2017 at 11:15 PM, mikewest said:
Well a boom in a wide shot gives ambience but it does not offer the voice detail that lavs give.
In using a boom for just ambience it should be pointed at the ceiling and certainly away from the actors
so that it picks up clean ambience, not mixed with the lavs but captured on an iso track.
Then the rest is up to post production!
Large blimp vs smaller blimp
On 9/21/2017 at 7:18 PM, Philip Perkins said:
Re bigger zeps for higher winds: yes. The size of the "dead air" zone around the mic capsule does make a diff. Years ago I made a doc in the Alps with a lot of very high wind on high mountains. For normal ambiances etc a small blimp (Lightwave 416 size) served the Neumann RSM 190i just fine. When the wind got really serious then a large Rycote made for that mic was used, to good effect (also on "out the window" micing from cars, trains etc @ speed). That Rycote is pretty large--not a great thing for overhead booming w/ camera re: shadows etc, but the greater size made a big diff in very windy conditions.