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Buttonhole Lavalier Technique


henrirapp
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Rigging a lavalier with the capsule popping out from just behind a button is one of my favorite lav micing techniques. Because the capsule is actually exposed, it has virtually no clothing noise and a much more natural and open sound. This strength also leads to this technique's biggest downside; since the capsule is exposed and has no wind protection so it can easily suffer from wind noise. This makes it really only useful if talent will be indoors the whole time. This is my preferred technique anytime talent is wearing a button down shirt indoors

 

Read Full Article at: https://henrirapp.com/lavalier-technique-buttonhole-rig/

 

DPA-6060-Button-Mount.jpg

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6 hours ago, NickFriedrich said:

look at the article. I think the previewed picture here shows the process of hiding, not the final placement. 

You are correct. But even the final picture would never fly on any show I've worked on. If you can see it at all, it's a no-go.

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For me it’s hit and miss. Sometimes it works sometimes it doesn’t. Like so many times with lav mics. 
Sometimes it does work outdoors, but the again I sometimes get „nose breather“ and then even indoors sitting down won’t work, because these people manage to breath right into the microphone 

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On 3/1/2020 at 2:54 PM, Constantin said:

For me it’s hit and miss. Sometimes it works sometimes it doesn’t. Like so many times with lav mics. 
Sometimes it does work outdoors, but the again I sometimes get „nose breather“ and then even indoors sitting down won’t work, because these people manage to breath right into the microphone 

It’s Omni, turn it upside down!!!

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  • 4 weeks later...
On 2/29/2020 at 10:02 PM, BAB414 said:

If I did what the guy in that picture did, the costumers would look at me like I'm crazy. I get away with B6's behind big buttons, but the mic in that picture is bigger than the button it's hiding behind.

 

On 3/1/2020 at 10:44 AM, BAB414 said:

You are correct. But even the final picture would never fly on any show I've worked on. If you can see it at all, it's a no-go.

 

Yeah, might not be the best technique for narrative productions, unless you are using something like a black lav on a black shirt, etc. I'd say its really more of a technique I employ on documentary productions. Sometime its the best option, sometimes it isn't. Just have to use common sense and your best judgment to when it is appropriate. 

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We used this very technique about 10 years ago for a couple seasons of "Swift Justice With Nancy Grace", however we used a Countryman B6, which fits quite nicely under a button, and we pointed the element down to minimize air blasts.  We secured the mic under the button using "Joe's Sticky Stuff".  Given her outfit (at the time it was similar to the blue Delta flight attendant outfits with the "vests" that they used to wear) and the fact that they continued to heavy starch her shirt, it was the only thing we could come up with that worked.

 

Tom

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  • 2 months later...

The host of the Paramount show "Bar Rescue" has his lav mounted in a shirt button most scenes. Jon Taffer is a hot headed chap from what is seen

on the show and I bet he got annoyed with adjustments or re-takes due to clothing noise on him so it was decided to have it semi-exposed.  It is a very successful show and his mic is almost always visible to the trained eye. And it sounds great.

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NO ONE but motion picture professionals EVER see lav mics placed by competent sound pros.  But I won't say I never got in a fight about it with DPs (almost never camera operators), wardrobe or even the actors themselves.

 

Lav mic'ing is a unique art/science because no matter how long you've been doing it, or your skill level, something that worked "a treat" yesterday may not work at all today.

 

D.

Lav.jpeg

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1 hour ago, Ontariosound said:

The host of the Paramount show "Bar Rescue" has his lav mounted in a shirt button most scenes. Jon Taffer is a hot headed chap from what is seen

on the show and I bet he got annoyed with adjustments or re-takes due to clothing noise on him so it was decided to have it semi-exposed.  It is a very successful show and his mic is almost always visible to the trained eye. And it sounds great.

They don't VFX it out?

18 minutes ago, John Blankenship said:

 

Black lavs matter.

 

...too soon?

 

And on pizza:

Black olives matter

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Bar Rescue is a reality style show. No VFX besides blurring out non-sponsor booze bottles and beer taps.  Everyone laved at all times, terrible lighting

usually but a great way to kill an hour if you are bored these days.  Screaming, crying, fighting, drunk people, bacteria etc etc. 

I have seen COS 11's and B6's in the button on the host's shirt every episode. 

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But you are looking.  My mom isn't.

 

There was a very famous Hollywood mixer (actually in NYC) that you'd know his work, Oscar winner, loads of high-profile pictures who more often than not would put his lavs on in full view.  How he won the argument I'll never know.  But I have looked at his pictures and  yep, there they are.  Sure, he worked with wardrobe, and props and so on; maybe a scrap of material, some paint, and what have you.  But even I, until I knew, didn't see them, even on the "big-screen".  I wasn't looking, the movie interesting enough, actors good enough, shot selection appropriate, didn't need lavs on the close-ups because a $1500 Schoeps sounded better to everyone than a $300 Tram, single camera.  You know?  A quality and crafted way to work.

 

Oops, sounding like an old guy again.  :)

 

D.

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18 hours ago, BAB414 said:

Black olives matter

 

I now feel empowered to mention that I actually first read the subject line of this topic too quickly. I missed the "on" in "Buttonhole." Yes, for real. 😯

 

20 minutes ago, tourtelot said:

But you are looking.  My mom isn't.

 

In my little doc/corp world, the hidden-lav thing is perhaps different. And remember the Pennebaker-Hegedus film Startup.com? Go to 1:24 in the trailer below...and that's not the film's most egregious exposed lav. I remember first seeing that and going, "WTF?" Everyone in the theater told me to shut up and sit down. Normal people didn't notice, or didn't care. The filmmakers got the scenes. OK, I'll stop saying something even more obvious that that lav below.

 

 

 

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My most enjoyable season of Top Chef, is when the new sound sup had white lavs in white chefs coat sticking out of button holes.

It was so nice not to have to force EQ from behind a canvas coat!!!

 

Even the company's owner didn't notice!! I did!!

 

So, I assume next season the Chefs will be placing they're own lavs...................I QUIT!!

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