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Electric car issue


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I work on the World Rallycross Championship as soundman and this weekend had an interesting diversion.  The job is fairly simple, a robust SQN (no time to turnaround separate audio files etc) plugged into a camera for VT stuff, couple of radio mics, press conferences, supplying wireless mics for other crew, etc.  Nothing remarkable but there's a lot to do each weekend.

 

This weekend we had a fully electric rallycross car make it's debut on the track, doing passenger laps.  Our presenter was one of those passengers, so in addition to a bunch of Gopros and track cameras covering it, I volunteered to try to get some driver/passenger audio in the car.  Budgets are such that I don't include personal recorders in the kit, so I put the SQN in the back (only place with any room) of the car, strapped it to the roll cage, and used it to feed a Tascam DR-70D which is something I chucked into the kit as a general purpose recorder that people could use to grab audio of "whatever".  I did all this in the morning, knowing the car would be out a few hours later.  I had other stuff to do in the meantime.  The only place in the car I could put the SQN was on top of the car's 2 invertors, which I'm told are about 400V.  The Tascam was on top of the SQN, about the height of the SQN from the invertors.

 

Anyhow, the car duly made its way onto the circuit and I went over to mic the presenter (Lectro radio).  There was hardly any time, so I didn't mic the driver, I just checked everything was set, pushed record, locked the controls on the Tascam and let them go.  The team was getting a bit anxious for the car to get moving, as track time was limited.

 

When I checked later on, the DR-70D had recorded 4 2-second-long files of nothing.  One file had a quick burst of static.  That was it.  It wasn't a critical issue, nobody was bothered (it was a last minute decision to try to get something), and the Gopros picked up his shouting and screaming anyway (this thing is a rocketship).  It's a social media piece so not on the main broadcast.

 

The Tascam has never done that before, so I can only assume it was the car's electrical systems that caused it to fail.  I haven't tested it since the job, it's in a flight case now on it's way to South Africa so it'll be a few weeks before I can.

 

Anyone had a similar experience in an electric car?

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