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I'm currently researching for an upcoming project in which I'll be using a wireless setup for the first time (transmitting from bag to camera). I've read a couple of similar posts on wireless setups and most people are recommending Zaxcom or Lectrosonics so I've already had a look at their products and will try to go with one of them. SD card backup recording on the Zaxcoms is a good safeguard against any pottential drop-outs.

The documentary is about a comedy festival in Morocco and we'll be following a French comedian (the main subject of the doc) during his time at the festival. We'll be doing quite a lot of filming out and about, hence the need of freedom between camera and soundman. I'll be mixing on an SD442 with a boom mic and wireless lavs, then wirelessly transmitting the mix to the camera.

My main questions are:

  • Do any of you guys have experience in this type of setup? Can you breakdown how you'd go about setting up?

  • Are there any obvious problems I could run into?

  • Is there any way to use one device that can both receive the signal from the lav and transmit the output from the mixer or will I need separate receivers and transmitters?

Thanks in advance.

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Great question. I wish I could help but I don't know much about the subject. I'm curious as to what the best setup is myself if ever I am in a similar position. –  Utopia Mar 31 '11 at 18:17
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3 Answers 3

Hi i have had some experience in wireless which i thought i should share. I mixed on a Rolls MX422 with a boom and Lapels..i had taken one output from my mixer and hooked it up with a sennheiser EW100 bodypack transmitter which was on my mixer bag with an XLRF to EP cable..and put the reciever on the camera this gave me some independace as to where i could be on feild..

but i must warn you..keep an eye on the batteries of the transmitter because if it gets weak it gives you a very annoying radio disturbance.. this also happens if your too far away from the camera or if your transmitter and reciever are not in healthy distance of each other

the MX422 gives me two outputs..so the one's used up for camera.. and the other i took straight into my Zoom H4N..to have a copy of my own..

Hope this helps :) cheers

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Depending on the camera you are using, there are quite a few options available to you.

How about getting mounted receivers on the cameras. Depending on brand and type, Lectrosonics has a couple of options to help you mount the receivers on the camera, and even use the v-mount battery.

If I had the option of using a recorder like the SD552 or SD744, I would have the boom transmitted to 1 receiver on the camera, and the another on the recorder. Put a -10dB pad on the receiver on the camera, because you won't be able to affect this with the mixer, but let it be a safe recording which will give you the option of using if the recording on your mixer distorts due to unforeseen circumstances.

The wireless mics can be transmitted to the recorder and you can send the mixed audio into the other receiver on the camera. If you were using a SD744, you could then still record the 3 tracks separately.


Boom -> Wireless Transmitter -> 1. Receiver on Camera Input 1 (-10dB pad on input level) -> 2. Receiver on Recorder Input 1 (normal levels)

Wireless Mic 1 & 2 -> Receiver on Recorder Input 2 -> Receiver on Recorder Input 3 = Mixed signal -> Wireless Transmitter -> Receiver on Camera Input 2

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@Tak, having done some boom work, I must say that I'm a huge fan of the wireless boom idea. Makes the boom itself a smidge heavier, but it's not a huge deal. +1 –  g.a.harry Apr 1 '11 at 18:52
    
@g.a.harry oh yeah! I admit it sounds a tad thinner when using a wireless boom, but it's negligible. The added ease of moving around without getting tangled up in cables makes it definitely worthwhile. –  takuya Apr 2 '11 at 2:04
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Hello,    Here's one method I've used. I have a SD 744T recorder and 552 mixer. For an untethered setup I record everything to discrete tracks and the camera records audio with camera mic. The audio and video is synced in post with Pluraleyes. Camera audio is used only for sync. See link: http://www.singularsoftware.com/pluraleyes.html

Don't forget to match date and time in the recorder and camera. Very helpful in post. 

  My 744 double records, SD and internal harddrive and my 552 also has a 2 channel recorder. I haven't gone over 4 channels yet.  I also have in my kit a Comtek IFB  system that allows me to send audio to three IFB receivers.    This setup eliminates the wireless link between mixer and camera therefore improving the quality of your sound and you have control over the mix in post with the discrete tracks.

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I cannot be sure that the camera's on-board mic will pick up all that I will be capturing, plus the shoot will often be in places with a lot of ambient crowd noise. I cannot risk using plural eyes, plus I will have a very short period of time to mix the doc after, therefore I'd like to record the audio straight to camera. Even if I were to use timecode, this would still need to be wirelessly communicated between camera and bag, –  Colin Hunter Apr 1 '11 at 7:38
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