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    Best H4N + Rode-Videomic settings for outdoors dialogue
    #1
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    Hey all,

    I got a new H4N to pair with my Rode Videomic.

    What are the best settings (on both pieces) for this combination when recording dialogue outdoors?

    I've kept notes on each clip and in post, I hear so much background noise.

    Hardware:
    H4N
    Rode Videomic + dead cat

    I want to really "zero in" on the dialogue... Can this be done or is this a post-fix no matter what?


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    #2
    Section Moderator Alex H.'s Avatar
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    Where is the mic mounted, and how are you using it when you record?
    Formerly known as C2V
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    Nobody notices audio... until it's not there.


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    #3
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    I will be using it on a boom pole with the cord secured down the pole and into the H4N that is on my person within a vest.

    At times I may mount it to the boom pole to make seeing the audio levels easier.


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    #4
    Section Moderator Alex H.'s Avatar
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    Okay, that's all future-tense. "I will be using..."

    How have you used this setup so far that you hear too much background noise when you go to edit? "Zeroing in" on the dialog has everything to do with the placement of the mic, and nothing to do with post.
    Formerly known as C2V
    ------------------------------------------------
    Nobody notices audio... until it's not there.


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    #5
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    Sorry,

    I have used it in the same manner (On boom pole and H4N in my vest). Never yet with the H4N mounted on the boom pole.


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    #6
    Section Moderator Alex H.'s Avatar
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    Also, is there any chance that you're recording (and thus listening to files) using both the VideoMic and the H4n's built-in mics?

    Assuming that's not the issue... again, it really has everything to do with placement of the mic, and the angle. You have to get close - within two feet - and the closer the better. Plus, the mic should be overhead and angled down, not pointed straight at the talent. Pointed straight just means that it will pick up everything that is behind the talent.

    http://www.dvxuser.com/V6/showthread...-about-booming

    Last, it's really hard to know exactly what your problem is without hearing anything. Posting a sample of the problematic sound may be helpful.
    Formerly known as C2V
    ------------------------------------------------
    Nobody notices audio... until it's not there.


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    #7
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    I was just going to post that link to that video. In my experience, the Videomic isn't the best for booming unless you really close to the talent. If outdoors, I prefer to at least go with something like a 416.
    David Fisk
    Sales Manager
    K-Tek/M. Klemme Technology Corp.
    dave@ktekbooms.com


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    #8
    Senior Member Sam Mallery's Avatar
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    Like they said, mic positioning is very important, and setting the gain is also very important.

    Settings wise, do this:

    VideoMic: I would have the high pass filter turned on. You do this by pushing the On switch all the way to the top. If shooting outdoors, keep the deadcat on the mic (on top of the foam windscreen, of course).

    H4n: Have it set to record in Stereo mode (not MTR or 4CH). Set it to record 24-bit 48kHz WAV files (have the Stamina switch off). Make sure automatic level setting is turned off, you need to set the gain levels manually. The REC LEVEL [+/-] rocker on the side is as important as the focus ring on a lens. You need to adjust it so that the meters are dancing around -12 (not too hot, and not too low - the sweet spot is -12).

    Keep an eye on your meter as you work (make adjustments on the REC LEVEL rocker when necessary), and keep the mic as close to the speaking person's mouth as possible.


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    #9
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    Thanks so much Alex, Dave, and Sam.

    Sam, those settings adjustments were just the key I was looking for. I will try them when I get home and get an audio file posted asap.

    Alex, I am recording input only and listening to the recordings in Audition.

    Thanks again everyone. Can't wait to try these settings out.

    Any other gleaning settings info, please let me know.


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    #10
    Indie Arms Member Doc Bernard's Avatar
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    If you mount the H4n on the boom pole, be sure to have the right cable so you can monitor what you are recording at the time you are recording. Doing playback after the take is going to seriously slow your production down, and not monitoring is even worse.

    If you have the later model H4n firmware, do yourself the favor of having one channel lower than the other. Me, I try to have one channel as my "normal" and the other about -12db down as a safety. You only need mono for dialogue, and having that safety channel saves a lot of retakes due to audio clipping. You basically want the audio to be as hot as you can without clipping. Having that "safety" track means, if it does clip, you can grab the audio from the other track.

    I call that doing a "high/lo".


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