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Paul F

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  • Location
    Northern California
  • About
    Independent film maker.
  • Interested in Sound for Picture

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  1. I only put the SMA connector on the receivers so that I can either use the whip when in a bag or an LPDA antenna when on the cart. The big advantage of remoting the antenna is to get height, which really improves reception and distance. Another advantage of having the antenna connectorized is that you can take off the antenna for packing, which may or may not be desireable, depending how how you are set up.
  2. Yep, static electricity. Static electricity can be at levels that are not felt or seen. Don't wear shoes or change the shoes you are wearing. There are other cures. In the meantime, while you read up on that, after you sit down, touch something metal on the computer or monitor if you can. Everything is plastic these days so that may not be possible. You need to find a way to discharge yourself before touching the computer. You still get the shock, but the computer does not. The other thing you can do is take your shoes off once you sit down. The shoes are an insulator and they rub on the floor and make a charge. Touching the carpet with your body will discharge the static. Some shoes don't do this. It could be something else, but this is the most-likely.
  3. One note to Iron's comments regarding the F8n; consider the F8 with the software upgrade to save yourself a couple hundred bucks. The F8n has some important improvements, but maybe they are not important to you. Here is a comparison chart from Zoom to see what it's missing. https://zoomcorp.com/media/documents/F8n_vs_F8_ComparisonChart_2.pdf
  4. Put that CSS-5 on ebay and buy another microphone. You should be able to make a tidy profit from what I see on past sales. If you get a good price, you should be able to break even on getting a used Sennheiser MKH-416. Then you will have your first acquisition towards a nice collection of microphones.
  5. "but want to up my game for interviews and field work and passion projects until I am competent enough to work gigs." This is the best sentence in your post. That's exactly the right approach. For a student, I think there is a limit to how far you can go with buy once, cry once. First and foremost, no amount of reading or recommendations will tell you what you need to know. We all have to learn the hard way. What I mean by that is that first-hand experience is priceless compared to reading what others tell you. So, to get that experience, get some used kit and get involved in local, no-budget productions/shorts and do what you are doing. Secondly, pros need pro equipment because it has features that make things go smooth, fast, and are conventionally accepted on set. You don't need that.... yet. Start with a used equipment. Don't waste money on new. You don't have to get the best. You're learning. You won't waste any money on used equipment because you can sell it again, hopefully for nearly the same price. Once you are on a few of these shorts, it will become obvious to you what you need to buy next. You will find the shortcomings of your operation both in quantity and quality. You will determine from your own experience what the next thing to buy will be. But more importantly, you will get the feel of what it takes to be the sound person on set. How long it takes to get set up. What goes wrong. What back ups you need. How to mic for a certain situation. You want to develop that muscle memory of how to be a sound person. And the secret sauce of placing a lav mic. Go read everything you can here about that and watch all the videos on youtube and then do it yourself and find out what that's all about. After you have a a dozen or four of show experience, you'll really get to know what's what and then you'll be ready to buy the good stuff. If you want to go top-notch and go with Sennheiser or Schoeps and other top brands, sure, go ahead. But it certainly isn't necessary starting out. Here is a list of what I would start with: 1 used recorder, 4 channel. Zoom or Sound Devices. Don't get one of the Zooms that are not made for location sound. There are features on the F8 (and F4?) that you will definitely want. 1 used shotgun - which one is not important - find a name brand that has good resale. It doesn't have to be Sennheiser or Schoeps. Just some decent brand. 1 used hypercardioid - which one is not important - again, at least get a reputable brand that is easy to resell when you are ready. 2 - Tram TR-50 or the like. You can get Oscar Sound Tech 801 or 802 for $100. They are TR-50 clones. 2 - wireless systems - The Sony will do fine for now 1 - wind cover for the hypercardiod. Moving a mic on a boom indoors will cause whooshing sounds. You need something to stop that. Foam covers don't always work. I made my own so I don't have a recommendation. 1 - windshield (blimp) for the shotgun - any old no-name brand will work. It won't be great, but it will work. Caution here as I don't know what the resale for no-name blimps is. 1 boom pole. Find something on ebay. Find a K-tek Avalon on ebay 1 microphone holder for the pole for the hypercardioid. Don't get a cheap one that uses rubber bands. What a pain they are. Get one that uses either a lyre or a rubber shock mount. - This kind is what you are looking for. https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1155648-REG/rycote_037340_universal_shotgun_mount_for.html 50' of XLR cable for the boom mic. Save the wireless for the lavs. A bag Headphones Consumables - but that's another topic Good shoes A strong back What you don't need - IEMs, camera hops, timecode slate, timecode generators (just jam the camera to the mixer),
  6. I don't see anything in the documentation that says the BP-TRX has diversity receiver capability, which would mean there would be no reason to use the microphone as an antenna. Besides, you are using the BP-TRX as a transmitter, in which case, it would use only one antenna. RF stuff is so freaky, who knows what the microphone might have to do with it*. Maybe the RF off the antenna is coupling into the mic input better with the Tram. Try coiling it up into a tight coil and see if that effects it. That might indicate if the mic cable is a problem or just a coincidence that it performs better without the Tram. *Larry probably knows, but he can't say anything on this topic.
  7. Welcome to the wild world of 2.4G, the unregulated band that has everything on it but the kitchen sink. There is no way to know what is on that band unless you have a spectrum analyzer and even then, it won't tell you much. Here is just a smattering of what your device is competing with:
  8. I have the 572 - 603Mhz units. Half price is a bit of a misnomer as I bought the 3 units for $145. Due to another inquiry, I found out that they were available, 3 for $86 ($20 ship) a few days ago and today they are available for $116 ($20 ship). So you may be better off buying new. The picture shows a table I made up of the frequencies - 4 banks, 10 channels per bank. Ignore the blue shading.
  9. There are no steps. They have 40 fixed frequencies as explained by Matt.
  10. The limited frequency selection has me leaving it on the shelf. It is not tunable to the full set of Sennheiser frequencies in a given band, but rather, has a limited preset set of frequencies to choose from. Other than that, it's pretty good. I have three I'll sell for half price.
  11. Paul F

    Lav tape

    I saw that on Amazon and wondered if it had the flexibility of the Stickies. I've tried other 3M foam tapes and they are much stiffer than the Stickies. I might give the VHB a try. This has been my experience. But with Rycote having found a product from 3M, I was hoping to find it somewhere. I like the stickies but I also want the same in a size the same as Stick-it.
  12. Paul F

    Lav tape

    I'm resurrecting this thread to ask if anyone; a: Knows what 3M tape Rycote Stickies are made of? I see the 3M mark on the paper, so I'm wondering if I can buy the product in sheet or tape form. b: Knows of a tape that is as sticky as Superstick but has thin foam like the Stickies do. I want to have a double sided tape that is the size of Superstick, but has the foam thickness of Rycote Stickies. Superstick is good, but it is so thin it's hard to manage. I'd like something with a bit of thickness that makes it easier to manage like the Rycote Stickies. I've seen plenty of double sided foam tape. But none of them are as flexible as the Rycote Stickies.
  13. The Tentacles will work with the timecode slates. Is the time code slate just a habit for this client or do they have a real reason to use it? Having the timecode on the picture and audio files seems to make slate timecode obsolete, but I'd like to know what people use if for.
  14. Kevcarlson, here is some information that may help clarify why UHF is professional and 2.4G is amateur: UHF operates in the same frequencies as broadcast television. That spectrum is regulated and carefully administered by the FCC (and similar regulating bodies around the world). It is reserved for only two purposes; broadcasting a TV channel and, on the unused channels, wireless microphones. Nothing else operates in these bands. One has to have brilliant RF engineers on staff to design UHF radios. The power of transmitters is regulated. 2.4G is an un-regulated band. It is completely open to use and abuse by anyone for any reason. Some of the products operating in 2.4G are Cordless phones, baby monitors, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, Garage door openers, Zigbee, wireless speakers, car alarms, some forms of radar, and smart power meters. A device can transmit up to one watt and blow out every other device in this band and it is legal (as far as I can tell). The reason it all works is because of complex spread-spectrum modulation, which has lot's of error correction, but at the cost of delay in transmission. The reason it is so popular is that 1: it's unregulated so anyone can use it. 2: the complex RF design is done by chip manufacturers who have figured out all the complex stuff for product developers so they can buy a chip and away they go. The problem - at any given location, you don't know how much junk is being broadcast on 2.4G. Results are unpredictable. UHF is no panacea as it can have the problem of being crowded by lots of wireless microphones in some dense metro areas.
  15. Johnny, have a look at this conversation and see if it dissipates your concerns about multiple connectors. One of the contributors mentions that in a recording studio (or a post house for that matter), signals can flow through many connectors. https://gearspace.com/board/geekzone/1274814-signal-loss-successive-connections.html
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