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David Waelder

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About David Waelder

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    Hero Member
  • Birthday January 1

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    Los Angeles
  • Interested in Sound for Picture
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    Production Mixer

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  1. Have you tried contacting Location Sound Corporation? https://www.locationsound.com/ I think most on this forum already know that Location Sound is the direct descendant of Audio Services but I bring it up for those not acquainted with the history. The name was changed after the employees took over the company from Richard Topham on his retirement. (There was also a conflict with the New York company separately owned by Ron Topham that is too complicated to summarize here.) Anyway, they performed many of the conversions are likely to have any documentation that Harvey Warnke provided. David
  2. I haven't been using Comteks in awhile so I tender advice with a caveat to check with a known source. (e.g. knowledgeable people in a pro audio shop - Trew Audio, Location Sound, The Audio Dept., Pro-Sound, etc.) 1. Comtek receivers output a mono signal. Any headphones with a stereo plug that you connect will give you audio in one side only. You simply need to replace the plug with a mono connector. (Some soldering is necessary.) An alternative workaround is to cut a notch in the plug at the point of the two hot leads with a file and melt some solder into the groove to short the left-right leads. With those little 1/8-inch plugs, that is probably more trouble than it is worth. 2. I don't know how many crystals are available in the PR-72 series (many I would guess) but you could always go on the Comtek website to research this. http://comtek.com But why would you need other crystals unless you need to change frequencies? I've never heard of a crystal wearing out although I suppose it could happen. I have some that must be substantially more than twenty years old and still functional. 3. I don't know about Audio Root headphones but many headphones work well with Comtek receivers. Location Sound sells rebranded Sennheisers for less than $20 each and can supply them with suitable plugs to use with Comteks. I don't think you can get much cheaper. Headphones for this application are considered expendables - Video Village residents sit on them, drop them and generally abuse them. You might want to have a medium good pair for the director but otherwise cheap and serviceable is better. David
  3. Well, the context here is that you are seeking support for an analog recorder that hasn’t been made in about twenty years. Finding a shop that can work on the machine, have an inventory of parts and also provide a warranty for work performed with twenty-year-old parts, is a tall order. But help is available. I’m pretty sure that Trew Audio continues to service Nagra: Trew Audio 2243 N Hollywood Way, Burbank, CA 91505 888-393-3030 323-876-7525 trewaudio.com Also: Location Sound Corp. 10639 Riverside Dr.North Hollywood, CA 91602 818-980-9891 800-228-4429 locationsound.com There is also Dan Dugan in San Francisco area but I don’t have ready contact information. And, the manufacturer continues to offer some support. The audio company, spun off from The Kudelski Company, is Audio Technology Switzerland: https://www.nagraaudio.com/ The company is run by relatives of Stefan Kudelski. David
  4. Parenthetically, this is what Wolfe Seeberg recommended when 24-bit recorders first became available alternatives to 16-bit DAT. He thought that recordists, accustomed to the -8db lineup tone settings of the Nagra, tended to set levels too hot. Recording at lower levels - he urged normal peaks at -30 rather than -20db - allowed ample headroom and softer portions could easily be raised without harm. Of course, there are career liabilities that may come of swimming against the usual practice. David
  5. Sort of. If you use eight channels for individual tracks, there is no track remaining for the mix. But it is possible to record seven tracks plus a Mix track. David
  6. I don't know the answer exactly but I do know that Kudelski was known for using his own specifications for screws and other threaded components. It may be that the threads do not conform to any standard. On the other hand, relatively inexpensive reel nuts made from plastic used to be available. I think they were available from Nagra. David
  7. It is an eight channel recorder. Sometimes it is configured, using its internal mixing capabilities, to record six ISO tracks mixed to two mix tracks. But, it is entirely possible to record eight independent tracks. If memory serves (I'm away from home as I write this) there are only five microphone preamps but they are supplemented by four line inputs. The X-2 version supplements this with additional digital inputs. Details regarding additional capabilities of the X-2 will have to wait until I return home (or someone else addresses the issue) but the Cantar X-1 is assuredly an eight track machine. David
  8. I think Jim's suggestion is on point. I haven't been watching Mrs. Maisel but I've been seeing Mathew Price's name on credits for some time now. Among other things, he was responsible for the sound on The Sopranos. I think he did the whole run of the show. Moreover, I've been noticing audio problems on other shows that seem to come and go depending on what time one views the episode. I had considerable difficulty with some scenes in the recent True Detective episodes, especially with scenes featuring Mahershala Ali as an old man. Then I rewatched the show later viewing the east coast feed and found the sound much cleaner. David
  9. Joe D’Augustine and I have been working to clear out items from Chinhda’s old shop and we have available several brackets to hold Sound Devices 744/702 recorders. For anyone not familiar with Chinhda, he was a machinist and engineer of remarkable skill and ingenuity. He began making specialty carts for Mike Denecke and went on to build carts for many of the top sound mixers. A remembrance of him can be found in the Spring 2018 edition of Production Sound and Video: https://magazine.local695.com/magazine/spring-2018/chinhda The bracket holds a 744/702 series recorder securely. Like all of Chinhda’s products, no modification of the recorder is necessary. One simply opens the wings of the bracket, slides in the recorder and clamps the wings closed. Your sound cart could be turned upside down or even, God forbid, be tumbled down a hillside without the recorder coming loose. The bracket features an open structure that gives free access to the flash media card and to all audio and interface connections. It is machined from aluminum and has an anodized finish. Hardware to secure it to a shelf is included. These brackets are offered at $100 each, a fraction of the original price. Funds received benefit Chinhda's daughter, Kathy. Please review the pictures below. Contact us with orders or questions at: chinhda@sbcglobal.net
  10. Jim Webb, Robert Altman's mixer on Nashville and 3 Women, chose his boom operators carefully and well. Once selected, he would often defer to them on microphone selection. He had particular trust in Chris McLaughlin, his boom operator on All The Presidents Men, and Chris tended to favor the Sennheiser 805/815. The Washington Post set was gigantic, consuming two linked stages, and lit naturalistically from overhead fluorescent lights. Fortunately, due to the heat they generated, the ballasts for all those lights were mounted in a shed outside the stage so there wasn’t a serious problem with hum. Director of Photography Gordon Willis favored up-angle shots that showed all the lights in the ceiling. When Jim asked if it would be OK to boom, Willis held out his hand, casting multiple soft shadows and said, “I don’t care what you do as long as you don’t make any shadows on my set.” Chris boomed the show using his preferred long shotgun for most shots, working primarily from below and flitting in and out of the performers' legs. Jim won the Academy Award for All The Presidents Men. It's remarkable what can be accomplished with skill and command of one's instrument. A profile of Jim Webb can be found on the 695 Quarterly (now Production Sound and Video😞 https://magazine.local695.com/magazine/winter-2014/jim-webb-a-profile David
  11. Hi Izen (Dan?) i’m glad I could contribute a new perspective. I’m a little uncertain where you want to go. At the risk of stating the obvious, liability for damage turns on functionality. An item in active use may suffer blemishes and damage to finish that do not harm performance. That kind of damage would usually (there are exceptions) be considered “wear and tear.” Any damage that degrades performance - preventing a transmitter from sending a stable signal or a lavalier from reproducing sound - is operational damage and requires repair or replacement. The rental client is not normally involved in the issue of how far along the gear may be in its depreciation; if it’s not functional they have a responsibility to repair or replace to restore complete functionality. (And, by the way, your rental agreement should explicitly specify that.) There can be some odd circumstances that require flexibility. It’s not reasonable to demand that the old Bell & Howell camera stuffed into a crash box be replaced with an Arriflex as its nearest modern equivalent. But, in general, rented gear must be restored to full functionality. David
  12. The best professional equipment can easily have a service life measured in decades although the preferred formats can obviously evolve. But there is another measure that ought to be widely recognized. Equipment is normally depreciated on income taxes on either a five year or a seven year schedule. So the service life is at least five years and anything that abbreviates that performance falls outside normal wear and tear. David
  13. I worked with a very similar rig on a commercial project. Instead of an Aaton, the cameraman/director used his Arri SR but it was essentially the same rig. I don’t remember it being particularly heavy but my frame of reference would have been an Eclair NPR. I was not impressed with the quality of the audio but that was a consequence of the on-camera microphone position rather than any operational issue. This would have been about 1976. I do remember it being very cold - Timmons, Ontario in January, about 15-degrees below zero Fahrenheit - and everything worked perfectly. David
  14. About four or five years ago Nagra loaned me a Nagra Seven recorder so I might work up a review. At that point in my career I wasn't doing a lot of actual recording so I arranged for Brendan Beebe to borrow it and report on his experiences. We compared impressions and I wrote up a brief evaluation for the 695 Quarterly (now the Production Sound and Video Magazine). The review is available here: https://magazine.local695.com/magazine/summer-2014/the-nagra-seven As to the cost, well it's hard to justify the cost of many premium products based just on a review of specifications. Ask any Leica enthusiast. David
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