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Ian Berman

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    ianjb.com

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  • Location
    New York
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    Production sound mixer, post engineer, interactive audio for games & music
  • Interested in Sound for Picture
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  1. Gotham told me last month they were expecting some inventory in February.
  2. Looks like it will be available in USA... https://twitter.com/GothamSound/status/1473326456000462848 https://tentaclesync.com/beta
  3. I often use two Mikrousi pro’s — with the jecklin disk being my sound bag — and I think it really sounds incredible, as long as you’re not dealing with a lot of wind or quiet sounds! I believe they are just custom clippy’s. I have unfortunately not heard my recordings in a large theater or on a surround system (someday!). I would also be curious to know more about playback in such an environment. Perhaps comparing a sort of quadrant jecklin disk to other surround format recordings would be a fun experiment. A bit off topic, but I have experienced issues with mono compatibility. One day I was listening to one of my mixes on AirPods Pro with spatial audio turned on, and encountered severe phasing issues. I assume this is because the spatial audio algorithm sums a stereo mix to mono and uses hrtf’s to playback with head rotation factored in. IMO they should not have this feature for stereo mixes!
  4. Here's a photo of my mp10 in the junior x. Totally fine for my needs, but I rarely go over 4 channels of wireless. There's an audioroot bds in there, g3 hop in the right exterior pocket, and comtek on the left exterior pocket. eSMART secured on the bottom flap, below the recorder. I pretty much don't use the front pocket unless I need a couple extra g3 rx's in a pinch. Would feel pretty slick with an mcr54 where that g3 is for 6 channels of wireless in this small of a bag. I don't have a real problem accessing the knob on the right, but I have small fingers. Using a harness can get in the way a bit, but it's a minor annoyance. Generally, I do take numbers & scene names with the knob, and renaming tracks with the wingman app. I've also zip-tied it to the bottom of the bag, in addition to velcro, which helps with rigidity. Hirose port is straight output (not RA) and there's enough space for it, including the eSMART. If you have a 3-4SR setup, a big base-station comtek transmitter, antenna distro, etc. I can see a larger bag being useful. I'm just a bit obsessive with keeping my kit as small as possible -- helpful for many situations in nyc. Hopefully this gives you some perspective!
  5. In the YouTube comments on a new raycom video they added on that it’s claimed 10h @ 50mw with NiMH. That’s pretty impressive, imo! Really curious about this location tracking feature. I wonder how accurate it will be in practice. Also records in 32 bit according to their website.
  6. Better off depends on your use case I guess! I happened to already have a 4097 on order, and a sennheiser locking 1/8" microdot adapter lying around, so it was a no brainer for me. Plus the included lavs are fine if you're just giving it to a friend. I personally wouldn't want to use a mp3 in any of the situations I mentioned beforehand, it makes less sense in plant situations, but I do kind of want a mp3 or 6 for recording ambiences. Maybe next year! PS. someone in another thread just posted they are adding iOS monitoring, which may make your decision a little easier! FWIW I have a mp10ii and don't love the noise assist algorithm. As you mention, routing possibilities are somewhat limited so I just keep the noise assist on the MixL channel when recording mono sources, and disable it when recording anything in stereo. I find that it only really works indoors with mics that are very close to the subject's mouth, like a well-placed lav or a 50 on a tight frame, and I rarely use anything over -5db. I think it's most useful in interview situations where you know there's not going to be a proper post-production sound/RX pass, which, to be fair, is exactly what they advertise it for. Will keep an eye out for ya, I'm in Ridgewood!
  7. I bought two of these with a few intended use cases: - I recorded an F1 car several weeks ago, and had to rent a couple PDR's and 4062's for interior plant mics. Bringing over a tentacle to jam sync the PDR after every new location & power cycle was a pain. Track E's fit right in with my existing timecode workflow and I wouldn't have to physically jam sync anything. 32 bit is a great use case for situations like this with extreme dynamic range and where I can't be physically present (although the PDR at minimum gain with the -18db safety track worked just fine, too). - Plants with the 4097, as you mentioned before. Every now and then, I get put into a car bag drop scenario with a minimal amount of prep time, and this would be the easy solution. - Mounting a 4097 on a film camera during verité or experimental style shoots. A lot of the DP's I work with mainly shoot on 16mm cameras and love stealing shots between setups. I've learned to be on my toes and rarely miss something they've ran off for, but I imagine a nice camera mounted mic synced to my bag's timecode could give post another good option. - Handing them to friends who want to record dialogue for a no-budget personal project, if I am unavailable or if they're traveling. I already did this, and a friend with no background in audio or film produced excellent recordings by simply clipping the included lav mic to each subject's collar. A huge improvement over the usual H4n or NTG2 amateur solution, especially for two person interviews, and laypeople are comfortable with using the phone app without any instruction by me on how to set levels etc. Getting a synced multi-mic interview recording without a mixer or external timecode device is a huge plus.
  8. Reviving this thread because I have a similar gig coming up in a few weeks. Long lens, stealth street interview sort of thing. Talent will be rigged with a cos11, and I need another mic facing outwards to pick up conversations with passers-by. I bought a Rode Pin Mic and am considering also using a 4097 with a windkiller painted to match and sewn into the folds of the costume. Costume will be a robe type thing. Hairline mic is not an option, and handheld prop is likely not either. Wondering if I should be trying anything else (maybe a 4080 rather than 4097, but I don't own that already..). I am pushing for a prep day to try everything out, so hopefully I will be able to try a few things and report back on what worked best. Open to suggestions. Thanks!
  9. I just rented an ADX5D and 2x ADX1m system for a gig last weekend, comparing it primarily to my Lectro SRc/SMDWB system. Here are my thoughts: Basics: -- ADX1m is not much different in size from a SMDWB, aside from lacking an antenna. -- Range was about equal to the Lectro systems with both systems set to their "medium" tx power (50mw & 10mw). I ran a few tests at home using 2 channels each placed in different spots and they each performed about the same, every time. I was primarily testing in an indoor environment where I was going through walls as I went further away, and did not do a line of sight test or use shark fins. -- Wireless reliability on whips was about the same When using it on a doc style shoot this weekend, I noticed the odd signal drop at shorter ranges, when "signal strength" was still 2-3 dots. I have also noticed similar behavior on my Lectros. Not a major issue, but not really an upgrade, either. -- Battery life was about the same on SMDWB's using rechargable NiMH batteries and the ADX1m's (~6-6.5h). However, Lectros have the option of using Lithiums, which nearly doubles their runtime. -- The digital system obviously sounded a bit better, but Lectros are plenty sufficient for broadcast already. Neither supports phantom power for boom use. -- The ADX5D's power consumption is about double that of the SRc, at ~4.3W compared to the SRc's ~2.2W. Measured at ~16V using my Audioroot distro. -- I liked the OLED screen, color LED lights, and menus on the Shure system quite a lot. It's all very slick and definitely has a cool factor. They do take a bit of getting used to at first, and there are a lot of menus that most users probably won't ever have to use. In comparison, the Lectro menus are much simpler and thus can be faster to operate. -- In general the Lectro system seems more resilient to dust, both tx and rx, but only time can tell, really. ShowLink impressions: -- ShowLink seemed to have a usable range of about 30-40ft indoors. While I was testing range, I experienced a bug where settings were not applied to the transmitter and the SL signal graph was not updating on either device. Importantly, I never lost audio signal to the transmitter. Both the rx and tx simply stayed on the old frequency when I manually selected a new frequency on the ADX5d. This was my primary point of concern for a remote control system, but experiencing a software bug right away still made me nervous. -- I don't really know what I would use ShowLink for. It's primary usefulness for me seems to be to change frequencies, which I rarely do after my initial scan in the morning, even when running around NYC. The automatic interference detection system is nice, but not something I personally find that I'm lacking, especially on low channel count bag jobs. -- ShowLink lacks a control of tx output power, tx locking controls, or a real "sleep" mode which conserves battery. Sleep mode on Lectros is something I use most days and helps me keep a pair of rechargables going all day under tough outfits. Unfortunately on the Shure system, you will need to swap batteries every 6 hours, period. I'm hopeful that this functionality can be added in a software update. Unanswered questions: -- Gain staging was rather confusing since there is no gain adjustment on the transmitter. I ended up cranking the output level on the receiver, which can go quite high, before feeding it into my MixPre10 at line level. I'm not sure whether the better approach would be to leave the ADX5D's output gain at 0db and gain up on the MixPre, rather than gaining up on the receiver and going in at roughly the same level as my SRc outputs at +6. The Shure receiver had several dozen db's of gain on the receiver side, which seemed clean enough to me. -- Some options on the ADX5D were a bit unclear. For example, they split up the receiver's options menu into 3 groups -- general settings (as the manual states, settings which apply to both channels), ch 1 and ch2, (settings for individual channels). However, when you do a group scan on one channel, and one channel switches to a different group, it presumably must also set a new frequency on the other channel in order to match the group. So then why is a group scan under the individual channel menus and not the general menu? Things like this would probably become more clear with repeated use. Conclusions: For me, the Axient digital system looks and feels extremely high tech, and has some killer features like dual transmit and interference detection, which I can see being useful in contexts I don't often find myself in. For the sort of low channel count (<6) bag work that I do, it has some rather basic drawbacks. Namely, a remote tx sleep option & significantly higher rx power consumption. But mainly, the ADX1m isn't much more versatile than the SMDWB, and there are significantly fewer options in the Shure wireless ecosystem (no SM, no SSM...). It also costs significantly more, has either the same or far worse battery life, and you need to buy the Shure proprietary batteries and charger, adding to the cost and space taken by the system. HOWEVER, if you're working with high channel count wireless systems & using a mixer which can support AES input, Axient digital starts to look a heck of a lot more appealing, especially if you have a sound utility to manage things like battery swaps & ShowLink access points. I can understand why these things are used so much on a stage or in a stadium, and I can imagine they're great for things like reality, too. I would be curious to hear anyone else's impressions of using the Axient system in the field, particularly for bag work, and if I missed something important or got anything incorrectly!
  10. Interesting to hear you say that. I had the same takeaway, and it's not the first time I've thought this about a Hans Zimmer film. Dunkirk particularly comes to mind -- I felt that a lot of the visuals and tension building would have been more resonant by using less score rather than the constant, extremely loud tick-tick-tick score gluing each scene together. For whatever reason, I didn't have the same complaint about Blade Runner 2049; the music kind of melded with the atmosphere at points and the movie's pacing felt much slower to me. I'm surprised there weren't more scenes like this in Dune. I will say I LOVED the larger-than-life drum fill which was the main theme I think -- I was really wowed when it played during the intro montage of the film, and I believe it also played during the credits. What I don't really have patience for is the constant, overpowering use of score during every scene throughout the movie. It's probably effective for most audiences to keep tension high and emotions flowing. For me, perhaps influenced by being a location & post sound person, I very much believe in the use of quieter, longer scenes, lengthy takes, the use of atmosphere and layered ambiences to build emotion rather than being so heavily reliant on score. Many of my favorite films have very minimal scores. In other words, I'm one of the curmudgeons who comes out of every big-budget sci-fi movie wishing it was a little more like 2001... My takeaway of the film is completely different than most of the reviews I read on letterboxd, for instance, which often seem to joke about the movie being a bunch of "slow" scenes of spaceships taking off and landing. I didn't find anything in the movie slow. I thought it was so completely, thoroughly stuffed with short scenes, fast edits, constant score; it felt overflowing with things, very much contrasting with the ascetic production design & sets. It made me wish the book had been split into a trilogy so more scenes, and the sound, had room to breathe. Mark Mangini & Rob Bartlett are obviously legends, and I had no complaints with the actual sfx of the movie. I'm still watching the video you linked -- their discussion of the sound design of "the voice" is really awesome, especially in reference to worldizing and de-syncing the sub bass channel, adjusting atmospheres, etc. Thanks for sharing. I particularly loved the use of reverbs throughout the movie in addition to the big-ticket effects. Lastly, I saw Dune in an IMAX laser projection theater in New York City and definitely wish I went to a Dolby theater. The soundsystem sounded fine to my ears, but it was far too loud in IMAX, and most of the surrounds seemed to just be coming from my left since I was sitting mid-left in the theater, but such is life. I know the loudness is part of the IMAX experience -- it's not for me. This video makes me want to watch it again in atmos.
  11. Do you mean the windkiller product or the piece-a-fur as mentioned previously in the thread?
  12. Has anyone compared the bubblebee windkiller to the rycote option? Which one do you prefer for outdoor use? https://www.bubblebeeindustries.com/products/windkiller-se-dpa-4097
  13. Yes, looking forward to hearing your thoughts on the system and hopeful they will come out with a more compact and interoperable charging solution in the future. If Wisycom doesn't announce new transmitters in the next few months I will probably just go with the axient and deal with the charging stuff somehow.
  14. I was pretty set on purchasing an ADX5D with a few ADX1/m transmitters in the next few months until I looked at the discussion about charging options in that facebook group linked above. Wow! I can't think of something so silly that is such a dealbreaker for me. I mainly do one-man, non-union run & gun and commercial work. I live in nyc and thus have to be able to take my full gear package with me on foot. The idea that I would have to lug around two different types of proprietary chargers, the SBC240 and an SBC210, for slightly different sized proprietary batteries is comically unusable for my style of work. And the fact that I would have to spend nearly 2 grand on both of them + backups is a very tough pill to swallow. I suppose I can leave the chargers at home for day jobs and just carry a bunch of extra batteries, but it is a lot of money for the chargers when nearly every other tx just uses AA's. It's quite odd that they don't have a portable charger to go along with the ADX1M and ADX5D!
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