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About nickreich

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  • Birthday January 1

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    I do Sound For Picture and Location Recording - primarily for projects involving Theatre, Live Performance or Live Speaking events. Projects range from full-length films of Theatre and Opera shows, through to EPK/TVC shoots, Documentary and Streaming.

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  1. Hi PJ, while my own console in Australia is an 01v96 which I use with SD970s via dante as you describe, I did use a QL-1 on a job in LA with rented gear last year. Location Sound provided the rig. I found it quite fine to use for the work I do, but could see the fact it has digital input gain adjustment (in 1dB steps) could be an issue for recordists who are used to adjusting input gain over the top of dialog. The stepping might be audible. It's quite a bit taller than an 01v96, but not as tall as a Digico SD11, which I also use a lot. Other than that, I liked it, the big screen is good to use. Sounds nice and clean.
  2. Poly files are certainly more editor-friendly in normal production situations - only one file per take. Most of my work, however, is very large track count (64 or 128 tracks) and sometimes takes of 90 mins length in concert filming, and in that case Poly BWAVs have a few problems. Firstly, it's still considered wise to limit file sized to 4GB maximum, and on a 64 track recorder like a Sound Devices 970, that means the recorder will automatically split your take into a new file every 7 minutes or so. These seamlessly re-join, but freak out post people who are not used to it. Secondly, the available apps that might be used to extract/split out specific tracks - so you can give a mix track only to the picture editor, for example, only work up to 32 tracks (including Wave Agent - even though Sound Devices make one of the three available 64 channel recorders) . You can dump a 64 Poly BWAV into ProTools and it will split the tracks out, but that isn't quick and simple enough for end-of-day location use really. I don't know what would happen if an assistant editor tried importing a 64-track BWAV into an Avid or FCP. Thirdly, unless your recorder pads out tracks that aren't record-armed, each Poly BWAV take could have a different number of included tracks, and dropping them into Pro Tools can be a little more thought-intensive for an edit assistant as regards getting all the material on the right tracks. For normal 8-16 track film shoots though, Poly's are nowadays more accepted and less susceptible to post losing tracks.
  3. Well, I use QLab for this. Easy to make cues from one or many source files and drag them around in the cue list stack, it's way deeper than it looks at first glance, it's the predominant playback system in Theatre nowadays. Not a timeline like a DAW. It's also quite possible to make ProTools stop-and-recue from clip to clip using a MIDI Track sending via an IAC driver to Keyboard Maestro to convert a specific MIDI note to a spacebar-tab message if you really need to use a DAW. That will work with any DAW (ie Reaper) that can do MIDI.
  4. the Rode iXLR should be perfect for this. looks like a typical plug-on transmitter, except it has a Lightning cable to feed the iPhone, and an onboard headphone amp with direct feed from the mic.
  5. As Ambient explained to me last year...with Blue ACN series lockits, if you are in ACN mode, the slave lockits will kind of tune themselves in real time to the master unit in a set (but only for the time they are being used). Therefore tuning a set of lockits before a project is less important (even if some of them are hired in, and may have been tuned to a different reference), but Ambient still suggest tuning each one to a known reference (i.e. GPS or one of the Lockits) every year or so, which makes each pack need to 'deviate' less using ACN.
  6. Here's their reply to my thread on the Tentacle forum. They gave the same reply to the OP from this thread we are in now, in his similar thread on the Tentacle forum. Doing a bit of a web trawl about this question, the only posts I could find where people specifically had trouble with a Tentacle being used to BOTH TC lock and Genlock an Alexa Mini, it would appear the users were unaware that Tentacles do not automatically change their TC Framerate when they are jammed (from a Sound Recorder, for instance) and they were subsequently sending TC at 25fps into a camera who's framerate (project timebase) was set to 23.976. They had jammed from a recorder set to 23.976 so they thought they were good to go. They needed to manually set Tentacle Framerate using one of their control apps. This mismatch is likely to cause the facility of 'tuning' the camera's internal clock to the sync timing implied by the incoming timecode (which is how Arri and several Audio Interface manufacturers do this one cable TC and Sync trick) to fail miserably - no matter if the source was an Ambient, Denecke, Tentacle, or Mozegear product. Interestingly Tentacle still think there will be a one-frame offset with the camera genlocking off timecode, it'll just be more stable as regards Drift over a longer time. This suggests it's actually caused by the processing time inside the camera of the TC data (not uncommon). They just recommend setting an offset in the camera as a matter of course. My regular clients don't question static offsets, even of several frames. Drift, on the other hand, given they're usually editing in a 'Multicam' workflow and cutting to music, is a big issue.
  7. In the case of the Amira, you have both options available, a dedicated tri-level sync (genlock) input or you can set it to sync from the TC input. Ambient recommend the latter, actually. I have certainly done this on Alexa Minis and Amiras on a 2 week shoot with up to 11 cameras using a mixture of Ambient ACL204s and Tiny Lockits, with no reported problems. Several other one-day one or two cam concert shoots with ACL204s only. I recently asked in another post here if anyone had done it with Tentacles, with no positive replies, but Tentacle themselves say they have. I've noticed that it does confuse ACs that they have to set this up in two different menus.
  8. you don't need to mod the Alexa Mini's SDI 2 connector to be a separate Tri Level Sync input to achieve this - like the other Arris, you can choose the TC Input as the Sync source in the Sensor menu - in which case it Clocks/Syncs/Genlocks (whatever you want to call it) off the incoming TC feed from your Lock Box as well as getting the TC time from it. It might not be quite stable enough for a 3D rig (which is what they offer the SDI connector mod for) but should be fine for the purpose being discussed here.
  9. Hi Csaba, do you have the camera set to Sync to the TC connector (in the Sensor menu) as well as reading external Timecode in Regen mode?
  10. I'm talking about Tri-Level Sync, actually clocking the camera as opposed to just jamming TC. On many cameras, this requires a separate Sync or Genlock feed in from a suitably equipped Lockit box. On Arri cameras, they can be set to Sync (as well as accept external TC in Regen mode) from the one incoming LTC feed. This is done in the Sensor menu from memory, separate to setting the TC to Jam or Regen. On the Amira you can source the Sync signal from either a dedicated BNC or from the TC in BNC. This is how I work with Ambient Lockits on Arris, the purpose of sync is to keep the camera in time with the audio recorder over long takes, not just when the TC was stamped. I'm wanting to know if anyones doing that with a Tentacle. As it takes over as the camera's 'clock' it's a bit more unforgiving than just reading external TC.
  11. As Alexas, Alexa Minis and Amiras can Genlock or sync from the incoming timecode stream, they can be genlocked to a Tentacle Sync box just as they would any other brand. I'm wondering if anyone has experience doing this successfully as I have a gimbal cam operator who'd prefer one, but a client who's a little unsure of the tiny Tentacles, and I have no direct experience with syncing from it. We can't get the cameras in advance for a meaningful test. These are long-take concert recordings where sync is required to reduce TC drift.
  12. Easy answer is there's good Theatre Sound people in LA, maybe the venue can suggest someone (or provide them). However, as a Musical Theatre veteran who's learned a lot from Henchman's posts here and on other forums as I moved into Sound for Picture, here's a few ideas. A little 99 seat warehouse theatre space is probably the hardest place to pull off a Musical - too small for a PA, too big to not have a PA. Oddly, the Pantages would be easier! What you'll get away with is very dependant on the installed sound system in the venue, in particular the positioning of the speakers. I've done lots of 'boutique' musicals in spaces like that - with reinforced songs / un-amplified dialog as you are suggesting. The trick is to keep a lid on the songs so the jump back and forth isn't too jarring for the audience who are used to more dynamically-controlled entertainment. If the music is from an offstage live source (or playback), making the primary source of the music some speakers upstage of the action, rather than the speakers that are being used for Vocal reinforcement can help the audience with separation and intelligibility, which can be hard in the smaller spaces, as well as providing the cast with music foldback as in sub-200 seaters, they invariably want more music than the Audience needs. If the band's onstage, with a drum kit or Brass....good luck! Mounting the transmitters is just like the Film world - as they will probably be moving vigorously (if not dancing) Neopax-type belts are best, just using the belt clip on a pack onto the costume is guaranteed to end up with dangling transmitter syndrome. The technique for mounting the mics themselves in Theatre is wholly different to Film for very good reasons - Gain before Feedback, and the lack of Post! Chest mounting positions, over or under the costume, put the mic too far from the mouth for the direct level to have a good margin of safety over the level the mic hears from the PA. Once those two levels approach a 1:1 ratio - you have feedback. Secondly, in Post you can easily adjust EQ and Level to allow for head turns, in live mixing, not so much. For this reason, in Professional Theatre, the mics are almost always head-mounted. The choice is then between Headset-style mics (like the DPA Dfine series) or normal Lavs (like DPA 4061). The headset type gets the mic closer to the mouth, so can give a slight improvement in Gain before Feedback, and a little more forward sound. They are also dead easy for a performer to self-dress, if you can't afford a backstage sound person (the Theatre equivalent of a Boom Op - a vital crew member). The normal Lavs are best mounted through the hair, on the forehead - or if the actor is wearing hats ever, over the ear, where the sideburn would be on a male. They can be pretty discreet if mounted by someone who knows what they are doing, though there are simpler techniques used by the Education and Amateur community (search for 'Halo Mount'). If you can get someone experienced even for the first rehearsal to work out mic dressing separately from your FOH mixer (you??), it'll be money well spent. They can teach the Cast or a dresser what to do if required. The choice of Lav can also make life easier or harder. Lavs with a fixed high Boost (like Cos-11s) don't work as well in this application as the DPAs or Sennheiser MKE-1s (both without the high-boost optional cap). Especially if over the ear - don't be shocked by the amount of EQ you'll need on channels - probably more than you're used to in Film. Hope that helps - all the best for the show!
  13. For Dialog I'd use QLab (or Show Cue System on Windows), however if you want to use ProTools I have a Keyboard Maestro shortcut set up to <stop and re-cue to the top of the next region> that achieves a similar result. I use it for multitrack music playbacks where a conductor has to 'cut and restart' through a vamp of unknown length. You need Keyboard Maestro, of course, though there are others like QuickKeys that'll do the same thing. The shortcut (assigned to a spare function key) is: - type <SPACE> (stops playback of previous clip) - type <TAB> (moves cursor to start of next region - Tab to Transient should be off and Insertion Follow Playback has to be on) - Mouseclick on Play Button position with <OPTN> modifier (Prime For Playback - gives you a faster start on large track counts) If there's a gap between clips, you need to have passed the end of the previous clip for this to work, otherwise you need to double-tap. You then press the Space Bar to play again. I have played with using Keyboard Maestro's ability to trigger macros from MIDI (coming off a Midi Track in the ProTools session) to automate this re-cueing, but it wasn't quick enough to react in half a bar of music or less reliably - might be fine for conversation sides though.
  14. That's terrific Take, nice to see you're still working on it.
  15. Ha! Filming Theatre shows is my core business. If it's a Musical, they might have the 30 wireless for the PA already, but if they can't afford an assistant for half a day, they certainly can't afford the Post sound editing & mixing on that! If it's a Play, you can get quite reasonable coverage from a few well-placed mics, but well-placed puts them in the shot or casting shadows, so you can't win. Sounds like they're unfamiliar with the subject matter.