Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Sound Check

By Michael Guncheon Published in Videography
SONY HDR-XR200V and SONY WIRELESS?MICROPHONE ECM-HW2.  Sony’s HDR-XR200V HD camcorder, like most HD camcorders, has a stereo microphone built in; but it also features Sony’s Active Interface Shoe, which allows you to add accessories like the Wireless Microphone ECM-HW2. The microphone’s 300-foot wireless range provides a lot of flexibility for recording sound close to the source, even if you and your camera are at a distance. Both the mic and the receiver unit are equipped with headphone jacks, too
SONY HDR-XR200V and SONY WIRELESS?MICROPHONE ECM-HW2. Sony’s HDR-XR200V HD camcorder, like most HD camcorders, has a stereo microphone built in; but it also features Sony’s Active Interface Shoe, which allows you to add accessories like the Wireless Microphone ECM-HW2. The microphone’s 300-foot wireless range provides a lot of flexibility for recording sound close to the source, even if you and your camera are at a distance. Both the mic and the receiver unit are equipped with headphone jacks, too
D-SLR VIDEO + SOUND Several D-SLRs now offer HD video capture, but they don’t all approach sound in the same way. The new Canon EOS Rebel T1i (above) has a built-in microphone, but no option for an external mic. The EOS Rebel T1i’s more advanced sibling, the EOS 5D Mark II, has both an internal mic as well as the option to connect an external microphone.

Before you run out to buy a microphone, do some homework about your camcorder. What type of connector does the external mic jack use? Most likely it’s a 1?8-inch mini. Is it mono or stereo? This is just as important as the connector size. Connecting a mono plug into a stereo jack will give you problems.

Your camcorder may have a hot-shoe (similar to an external flash attachment on a still camera) that allows you to mount an external microphone onto the camcorder.

The hot-shoe also has electrical contacts to pass audio from the mic to the camcorder. Unfortunately, there’s no universal standard for this accessory shoe, so verify that the external microphone will work with your specific camera.

While I usually joke that the audio is the squeaky part of the picture, in reality, it can be just as important as the moving image. TV stations know that they’re less likely to lose viewers if they have “technical difficulties” involving loss of picture with the sound intact, than if they lose the sound but not the picture. While your audience may be captive, they’ll appreciate your attention to the sound in your movies.

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