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About tsmyles

  • Birthday November 11

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    I'm a sound recordist/recording director/audio supervisor... whatever they're calling us these days.

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  1. I'm sure the wave has passed but here goes: In 1999 I was using Schoeps MK41 or Sennheiser 416 (T power) ...and still use them 99%of the time. My radios were Cetek Vega fixed Travellers (4 of them) and 2 Audio Limited RM2000s (you had your choice of 2 frequencies, wow!) with TRAMS. Mixer (still use) Sonosax SX-S 6 channel. Recorders 2 Stellavox SP8s with stereo headstacks - fed by external TC generator (custom modded Deneke TC box). Either on my cart (which I still use 25 years later - nice design job, Tony), one of the first flight case based carts...now it seems heavier than hell but I carried everything but the kitchen sink in the 2 stacked cases (see my webpage) or using one of the Stellavoxes with the Audio Limiteds for "bag based" recording.
  2. Hi Mat, There is transformer isolation between the walkie and program audio inputs. Also, in my new version you can switch the walkie audio to left, right or both ears.
  3. - A review of the Smyles Comm-biner by Chris Devlin - with thanks to Nathan Parkinson and the folks at Wendy's Broadcast Services in Manchester, England. I was excited to try out the Smyles 'comm-biner' as more and more often I was finding it problematic to juggle monitoring the production sound being sent from the mixing desk alongside the radio communications from the walkie-talkie system used by production, without being lumbered with a weight of cables and two sets of headphones. As a boom op or sound assistant working on set, the main attraction of the small, light silver box is that you can use whatever style headphones you prefer, whether it be a set of HD25s or a little mono earpiece, to listen into both transmissions instead of having to swap earpieces or having a different earpiece for each system. This minimises the gubbings around your neck and attached to your belt, which is a massive plus when working in small, cramped locations and still provides you with the ability to transmit messages out using the W/T’s covert microphone. It’s a simple idea and just as simple to use. As the two inputs are ‘combined’, there is no need for various switches on the box which could be accidentally knocked, the only switching system included is a choice between receiving the signal in stereo or mono and this takes a jewellery screwdriver to operate, so there’s no risk of it being accidentally altered. It’s operation is straightforward enough that you could happily distribute the ‘comm-biner’ boxes amongst other departments, such as ADs or script supervisors, who may need to monitor production sound as well as being in the loop on the walkie-talkie system. Also, I was pleased to find no discernable loss of quality or level in either system once they had been run through the ‘comm-biner’. However, as the box only combines the two systems, it still means that you are carrying two receivers (your W/T and production sound) and as a result, two sets of cable going from each into the ‘comm-biner’. It is here that the greatest weakness of the system lies. As I found, working in quite small locations, the excess cables will have a tendency to get caught on things and damaged and then the system goes down. I wouldn’t necessarily consider this a negative against the ‘comm-biner’ itself, more a general risk that comes with operating two receiving systems and that it can be protected quite easily by fitting and securing the ‘comm-biner’, both receivers and their respectivecables into a pouch or something similar. This may sound cumbersome but it will certainly protect the cables and connections. As someone operating on set, the benefit of being able to monitor everything through one earpiece certainly makes up for having another pouch on the belt.
  4. tsmyles

    The Comm-biner in action

    Various shots of the Smyles Comm-biner on the set.
  5. Nice redesign Adam. I'll be looking into the new bag soon!
  6. On the set of Bachelor In Paradise with Gabe Schller, Doc Barrow, Daniel Kuffel and Tony Smyles (.... why didn't someone TELL me my hair looked like this???) Thanks guys for supporting the Smyles Comm-biner! For those who asked about a modified version.... stand by!
  7. An update on my Comm-biner that I didn't think of initially: Our new show runner asked me about the Comm-biner. He has to listen to 2 walkies (shooters/audio on 1 channel and producers on another) and the surveillance tubes were driving him nuts... plus he has his own IEMs, like me. I made up a custom y cable and connected the Comm-biner "backwards" (walkie audio into the PGM input) so now he can use his IEMs to monitor crew in one ear and producers in the other (he says the intelligibility is much better, of course)... and he can plug an R1 IFB into the "WT" input and also get the audio in mono. He bought one and is crazy about it!.... of course, I am sitting next to him, so maybe he thought he had to say that....... But there's a variation on the application.
  8. The Location Sound link has changed to http://www.locationsound.com/tony-smyles-comm-biner-walkie-audio-interface-1854 The Professional Sound link is http://www.pro-sound.com/Merchant2/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Product_Code=SSMYLESCOMM&Store_Code=PSS The Trew Audio link is http://www.trewaudio.com/consignment/mixer_acc/
  9. That works... unless you need all 8 ins on the 788, as I often do.
  10. So... kind of like an RTS headset (XLR, if memory serves me correctly). I'll have to look into that as an option.
  11. Hey Phillip, You can check with Val at Location Sound. He's sent out a couple of units to evaluate. Also Rich Topham, Jr at Professional Sound in New York (who will also be selling them) loaned 2 out to a couple of reality guys (...or was going to). I had one of my floor audio mixers on "Hardcore Pawn" try out the prototype and he liked it.
  12. Are you thinking about a headset with mic, like an aviation headset? Because my unit does have the standard clip on mic with switch. Something like a headset with boom would be do-able but I'd probably make up a custon cable for that.
  13. The page just went up. I caught one typo right off the bat. Now that we're wrapped, I'll have to sit down and read it carefully.
  14. The WT audio is only heard in the headphones. There's no "backward bleed" if that's what you mean (?). When you're off cans you unplug the WT mini plug from the Comm-biner and just plug it into the regular transducer and curly tube that's included.
  15. I noticed a while ago but forgot to email you the question, last time I used FreqFinder (under ios6 on an iPad) the TV station location/signal strength info was gone again. I know we did talk about this a while back when it first disappeared. I remember you said it was just straight info from the FCC database but I did find it helpful to know which freqs I should probably avoid. Thoughts?
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