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Philip Perkins

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Everything posted by Philip Perkins

  1. I looked at these newish lav mics from Shure on their site, and since they are from Shure I bet they work pretty well and sound good. They seem a little big for movie sound buried-lav use--has anyone tried them? I guess to use them with Lectro or other non Shure wirelesses you have to get the microdot versions. The headset mic has these kind of funny-looking adjustment knobs near the earpieces. Even if they sound good I think the folks I use my DPAs with would think they looked a little too techo, like a comm headset.
  2. Many of the advertising VO studios I worked in had A: U87 and B: 416, and often nothing else. The former was for most voices, including non-pros, the latter was for the Big Voice Male voice actors ("One man, one woman, in a world"...etc). In some cases the mixers confided that they liked the 416 partly because their rooms were kind of crappy sounding. The U87 sounded like the people you put in front of it--it has many competitors now. The 416 has a sound that those big voice VO guys really liked, depended on in fact.
  3. Unfortunate choice of name....
  4. It sounds as good as it did back in the day. If you have someone available you trust to check it out and maintain it and the track count works for you then rock on. It's still an amazing machine.
  5. My answer to your question is that lots of small movies don't need 5.1 to make their soundtracks work, but that is not why we do the 5.1 mixes. We do them because the film will hopefully enter the stream of films going to festival and other exhibition venues, and all those places prefer if not demand DCP format files to play. DCP, and theatrical exhibition in general, really wants LCR mixes, at least, if not 5.1. Although many if not most films get mixed to 5.1 (or beyond) first and foremost, with the stereo mix being a downmix from that, there is no reason why you can't go the other way (stereo>5.1) if you know what you are doing. You can do this with an upmix plugin, but you can also do it with just a regular DAW if you have a 5.1 listening setup to monitor with. The sort of 5.1 mix I am talking about for a smallish film might not really have a ".1" LFE track at all (ie nothing blows up in the film), and while you'd send your dialog to the C channel you can just repeat what's in the L and R channels to the Ls and Rs at a lower level, for a gentle "ambientizing" of the music and stereo SFX. One reason to go 5.1>stereo and not the other way around is that you won't have unpleasant surprises re: handoffs between stereo and mono sounds, which don't matter in stereo but are audible in 5.1 since they might be coming from different speakers. If you drive a cheap PT rig here is a tutorial: The cheapest way to get real surround bussing is probably via Reaper, which works quite well.
  6. Philip Perkins


    Too bad about CL12, but as they say, this thing may look like a 688 but it seems to be a whole new animal. The "anything to anywhere in any mix at any level" thing is great, as is having WC and the ability to sister 2 of them together. And all my XL-DVDRAM drives are dead now anyway!
  7. Philip Perkins


    I'll go first: how much?
  8. Were you thinking this would be a stand-alone app, or an add-on to.....which app? If I have a bucket of (very large) picture files (with TC) and another bucket of sound files with TC, your app would sync them up and then output what? Or are you adding the audio to the soundtrack of the picture files? How will you handle sound files of more than 2 channels? Will the location audio metadata be retained in the output files?
  9. Where's the custom holster for the handheld and the backpack for the TX? Come on, guys, finish the job! Oh, and a battery sled for each that holds a few dozen AAs.
  10. LA2A plug in? And you think the RSMs and producers of a show on that level would let audible clipping slide? There are a whole lot of possibly questionable layers of technology between the dubstage and your TV. Maybe suspect them.
  11. Any card I have that records in the manner the OP mentioned goes in the trash. No 2nd chances with digital media.
  12. I too like the sound of the show, and think the sound crew is doing a great job (period wardrobe can be tough). If there was clipping in the production tracks of takes they wanted to use it would have been fixed long before air, by the RSM or by ADR.
  13. I found the learning curve for Reaper very easy, having used several DAWs incl PT for many years prior to starting. I find it much more intuitive, at least for my brain, than PT. In my case I had to learn Reaper under fire, so to speak, and found that the online community and tutorials were very helpful.
  14. When I was talking about back up I meant rolling 2 recorders at once, which I think was the original notion of this thread. Having a backup recorder with you in case your #1 has an issue IS what professionals do, and always has been, 1/4", DAT and file-based machines. Re cameras: most if not all of the film features I worked on DID have a backup body on the camera truck, even if it was mostly a 1-camera shoot. This has been less true with video cameras, but it isn't unheard of (esp if they are using REDs).
  15. At my age the weight of my 82 is a factor, I'm sort of done with it on Hollywood style long-pole walking shots. But if you have a boomist with the muscle and the chops this kind of mic is a great tool. Like some folks I use the CS3e a lot these days, as it is more or less as directional without the weight or the length as my 82, and no proximity effect (helpful on docs). But I do like that "Neumann sound". The 816 still can bring something extra to the party if you can put up with it's very old-school size and weight: the mic does something in the upper-mids that gives the impression of somewhat greater directionality (while having all the traditional shotgun drawbacks as well). But I will admit to hating the overall sound of the thing so I sold mine a very long time ago.
  16. I once had a boom op whose main axe was the Neumann KMR82i, more or less Neumann's version of the 70. He was very very good at his job, and pretty much wanted that mic on the pole no matter what we were doing, including multi-actor indoors scenes--he was that good. Since he got results I went along, mostly. My other boomists, as well as my own efforts on the pole, were less successful with that directional (and large and heavy) mic for the bulk of our work, besides "beach scene" type shots, so it doesn't get used much these days. But a nice thing to have just in case!
  17. All but maybe a couple of issues I've ever had since we moved to file based recording have been due to human error, like a mistake I made, an A2 made, the DIT made or an assistant editor made. The recorders I mostly use record to 2 media, I make sure they are A: approved types with CURRENT firmware, B: are in good shape and don't have lots of miles on them and have been formatted in the recorder that is recording to them, C : I am very careful about doing things like renaming files while rolling, D : don't get too many eggs in any one basket--if you are recording a lot of hours/tracks then use multiple cards and E: NO CARDS SUPPLIED BY CLIENTS WILL BE USED! Only media whose provenance is completely known! Beyond this the problems have been human error, most often someone formatting a card that hasn't been copied off yet. I used to think of the camera audio as a backup, but so many of the cameras I end up around aren't any good for that these days (DSLRs, Alexa Mini).
  18. I'd take your data over what any manufacturer might present, you have a lot of real-world info there. Since your gear works many hours a day day in and out in a somewhat hostile environment, is your question whether the production owes you something for the maintenance of your gear in addition to the rental fees? In a fair world that would be true, but I've never been compensated for that, only for actual damage.
  19. That was a very hi-tech set for that time period: Steadicam, video assist with playback all the time, wireless mics pretty much all the time. One very charming difference between how a big movie was made then vs today: only ONE camera rolling usually....!
  20. All the major makers of equipment we use did some sort of testing before they released a given device, maybe ask them in person or on the phone what their expectations were (I doubt they will put them in writing). Are you talking about non-hubristic sorts of use, just lots and lots of operating hours under varying (but not bad all the time) conditions? I'm sure that the sound gear on "The Deadliest Catch" mostly got pitched at the end of each season, while many of us who do less-intense sorts of work have things last for a very long time. I guess this last sort of wear is what the rental fee is supposedly paying for, as opposed to loss+damage where a piece of gear becomes instantly unusable, possibly unfixably?
  21. Let's see them try that argument out on a rental house. Camera equipment gets somewhat abused, gets visible wear etc, but if you seriously damage it there will be a claim. Normal wear and tear with a wireless TX or a Comtek/IFB RX is gradual loss of finish through wear, connectors wearing, maybe even a little sweat damage to the finish. Dropping (or throwing) one, even if by accident, is NOT normal wear and tear. That is carelessness or hubris, and they get charged for it. Ditto the classic "client drops Comtek where they are and departs" syndrome or my personal fave: "left in the limo": full price, no BS. Lav mics take a beating it is true, but again there is wear that happens over time, esp if used outside and with a lot of tape, and what can happen when an impatient talent quickly un-wires themselves. That too, my friends, is carelessness and hubris, and gets charged for appropriately. Oh, and if you do a "drop-the-mic" with my handheld that mic is now YOUR handheld.
  22. Cool. And that little foam thing is enough windscreen to allow recording in all weather conditions?
  23. For me the right way was the way whoever was handling the pole wanted. When it was me (working alone usually) I mostly used internals, since I was usually wearing a recorder in a harness at the same time. My long-time boom ops (who were not wearing any gear beyond a little monitor box) mostly (but not always) went with external cables--they felt they were quieter and developed fewer issues with repeated extension and retraction of a long pole. But it really is a personal thing, what that boomist is used to etc. (so I had both types with us).
  24. Over the years my boom ops went back and forth about this, esp on long poles. Have you tried them out yourself, esp with a long mic + zep+dog on the end, on a walking shot in a good wind? I generally went with what the boomist wanted unless they were having trouble with it.
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