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Hi all!

I've been roped in at the very last minute (this morning!) to do the sound for a lo/no film, and have been supplied with an Edirol R-44 recorder. This was pretty daunting as I'm quite new to production sound (only boomed twice before) and was lumbered with trying to figure out the operation of this recorder 10min before shooting!

Anyway, I managed to get it working and finished the 1st day shooting and am very impressed with this recorder (I've only used the Fostex FR2-LE before). However, I found it nigh on impossible to read the levels on the screen outdoors in natural light. So I set the gain levels when "blocking" with one hand and the other hand holding the boom in the general direction of the action. I set the gain to be sure there was no clipping and I believe was averaging around -20dB (when I could see the meter). I was also using headphones and it sounded ok. My question to the seasoned professionals is what sound levels do you generally aim to record to on film production shoots; running,footsteps and dialogue (indoors & outdoors)? And do you keep the same level gain for the different takes for consistency? Also, when recording atmos, I was wondering if you keep the same level gain you have been using when recording takes, or do you up the gain for a better sound-to-noise ratio?

Does anyone have any hints/tips on workflow with Edirol R-44 aswell?

Any thoughts or answers will be gratefully appreciated! Many thanks!!

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2 Answers

Block with one hand? Why don't you just use 2" paper tape and create yourself a 'hood' for the LCD screen?

You should be fine around -20 dBFS as long as you're recording 48/24bit. They'll have to bring that up in post. I tend to record a bit hotter just out of habit in the video world.

I also wouldn't worry recording footsteps and running WITH dialogue. You actually want to deaden that stuff.

I'd try and keep the level you recorded the room tone at the same level.

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Yup looks like a taped hood is the way to go, worked a treat thanks! –  El Capiton Fonze Mar 17 '11 at 23:42
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I tried one of those machines when recording a theater play. As far as I remember it has some sort of LED light built-in no? Isn't that enough? Otherwise tape or whaever diy solution you can come up with should be enough.

Like Eqtion Audio said, usually you try to record dialogue and not so much ambience/action (that is usually added in post production).

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