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    Senior Member ahalpert's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by James0b57 View Post
    I felt the Zoom F series was better for a working audio person, but for a simple recorder, the mixpre3 makes a better camera person's companion. The Mixepre 3 is even lightweight enough to mount to the camera, but featured enough to get through essential tasks.
    Have you seen the f6? That thing is dinky! I have one and I love it and could totally mount on top of camera. But I've only mounted below (it comes with gear to do so). The only problem is that I only understand about 33% of its functionality. I need to get on that...


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    Quote Originally Posted by puredrifting View Post
    I think it can be but go read the threads over on JW Sound, I see a LOT of guys not working at all this year or working very little. The problem is that a lot of dumb
    producers/clients, esepcially in the mid level to lower end are seeing gimmicks like 32-bit floating point and actually writing sound mixers out of the budget, thinking that
    they can get away with an inexperienced PA type using the miracle new technology to hang mics on people and boom because "it's impossible to set the wrong levels". Between
    Dugan, automix, 32-but FP audio, all of these technologies are great but are largely aimed at shrinking or eliminating the sound department to a point. Not on higher budget
    projects but in the mid to low level, you know, where the bulk of production gets done, the technology definitely is aimed at reducing and paring down the crew positions.

    That's the thing, it's just like when higher ISO cameras started becoming popular, dumb producers and clients took that as a sign that they could stop budgeting for 5-10 tons and could
    rent a high ISO camera and just a very small or modest G&L package instead of the big stuff. They cut the amount of gaffers and grips too and rented faster lenses. Shortsighted neophytes
    will always try to replace talented crew positions with cheap technology, that's what producers do but the end result usually suffers.

    Film < Digital Cinema
    Tungsten/HMI < LED of every flavor and type
    Stuntmen and women < digital stunts
    Green screen and compositing for photorealistic digital > real sets, practical effects, optical composites
    Armorers with real guns, blanks, squibs < rubber guns and digital muzzle flashes and hits
    And soon, professional sound mixers with professional sound gear < 32-bit FP audio and other technologies that make recording sound a more passive, lower skill job

    They still have problem solving, bending and tricking physics, microphone selection and placement but how long until producers listen to what a lower skill person
    can do in ideal conditions with inexpensive, highly capable gear and just basically start making wholesale cuts to sound mixing teams. Not because it's smart or
    good business, but because the producers know just enough to be dangerous?
    I'm honestly not at all worried about 32bit audio in the slightest.

    If we were going from 16bit to 32bit, then sure, that would be a concern for our jobs as life has just become suddenly heaps easier for the mixer which lowers the skill level.

    But 24bit already offers plenty of spare headroom, it is hard to screw that up badly unless you're totally incompetent. And 32bits doesn't do anything new that dual level recording with 24bit didn't already do and that has been around for a long time.

    For me, the greater long term concern for the future in the coming decades is how post production is becoming increasingly more and more powerful. The tools they've already got at hand for audio post are absolutely incredible!

    The problem for production sound mixers is that as post technology gets better and better, the minimum standard of what needs to be recorded will slip down ever lower because they'll be able to "fix it up in post" (as much as we laugh at the phrase "fix it in post", it is true and happens). Why spend the big $$$$ on a mixer who gives you 99% perfect audio if for pennies on the dollar you can get someone who gets audio which is 50% ok-ish but computing power has got so strong that there are techniques now to recover 90% of the audio?

    The increasingly sophisticated audio post techniques pose a greater threat to my career's future than cheap equipment from Zoom / Deity / etc

    Another problem is perhaps the audience expectations/standards will slip as well, as we've experienced during the COVID19 pandemic. How much utterly terrible sh*t audio have you heard on the tv from mobile phone (or laptops) streaming/recordings lately? Much much more during 2020 than ever before!

    Quote Originally Posted by ahalpert View Post
    Have you seen the f6? That thing is dinky! I have one and I love it and could totally mount on top of camera. But I've only mounted below (it comes with gear to do so). The only problem is that I only understand about 33% of its functionality. I need to get on that...
    It is a dinky little thing, Zoom has been following the trend of MixPre series by bringing out their F6. And sadly they've discontinued the F4, rather than updating the F4, or bringing out another new professional orientated recorder like the Zoom F8. (the F8n was a nice update, but relatively minor)
    Last edited by IronFilm; 11-30-2020 at 03:19 AM.
    Am a Sound Recordist in New Zealand: http://ironfilm.co.nz/sound/
    Follow my vlog and adventures in sound: https://www.youtube.com/c/SoundSpeeding


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    Quote Originally Posted by ozmorphasis View Post
    That's actually more than anything else because soundies protect each other. They refer their colleagues for gigs all the time, but if a young and up-n-coming recordist goes and accepts a job for BS rates, watch how fast that same circle will be calling him/her up to read them the riot act. You can get chewed out a couple of times, but if it persists, you're out of the circle. Not getting calls. In other words, they help maintain their rates and protect each other.

    Shooters don't do this and arguably they CAN'T do this quite like the audio guys.

    Very few people get into audio just because they either have a rich uncle (yay, I'll pick up a Monstro and now want experience shooting and will charge nothing), or because of "the democratization of gear."

    Shooters, on the other hand come into this from all angles. Capable cameras are cheap. The allure is MUCH more universal than capturing audio. The audio equivalent is like making beats. Everyone with garageband can practice building up the backing track for a friend to rap over, even if it's crap. Everyone can get an affordable camera and make "cinematic" short content of whatever they like (skating, travel, etc). How many people actually WANT to go hold a boom pole, lav up several people, and mix audio for picture? It's not a huge scene. More of a niche interest.

    So yeah. I just hired a recordist and a 2nd camera op for the same gig. I definitely paid the recordist more. That's the market. He also brought way more gear, way more experience, and needed way less handholding.
    Am glad you appreciate that we (the sound mixers) often bring along far more gear than anybody else! Too often I'm on indie shoots and I've got there far far more sound gear than the camera dept has, wish more producers realize this when they dream up their crazy imaginary rates to offer to crew. (and this is why labour rate and the gear package have to be quoted for separately)


    Quote Originally Posted by ozmorphasis View Post
    Yes, absolutely. However, the point is that the 2nd cam op who wasn't paid as well will go on to be the main guy on a project and will still get paid the same that I paid him to be the 2nd cam because he/she is willing to do it and because there is no one telling him/her not to do it. The audio guy doesn't need to do that because of all of those reasons that I mentioned. Not just because he's half of the production. Those other factors are a big part of it. It's not just a question of how important the role is. Composers are an incredibly important role in film/TV, but they too are a field with no protection, no union, no banding together to keep rates where they should be, and thus a race to the bottom. And in that case as well, the cost of entry (equipment) is easy and the interest (lots of kids want to be the next Hans Zimmer) is widespread, so everyone in a producer role gets used to the idea that the labor can come cheap. You don't see that with a boom op.
    Another problem with composers is their competition / alternative employment choices are grim.

    Music is one of the few fields which is even tougher to make a career out of than the film industry!!

    Thus no wonder that many aspiring musicians (of which there are zillions) look to composing as an an avenue to make a few dollars.
    (plus arguably being a composer for a film is more "glamorous" than being the production sound mixer, just look at who gets the higher billing when the credits scroll!)
    Am a Sound Recordist in New Zealand: http://ironfilm.co.nz/sound/
    Follow my vlog and adventures in sound: https://www.youtube.com/c/SoundSpeeding


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    Quote Originally Posted by James0b57 View Post
    I felt the Zoom F series was better for a working audio person, but for a simple recorder, the mixpre3 makes a better camera person's companion. The Mixepre 3 is even lightweight enough to mount to the camera, but featured enough to get through essential tasks.
    I do agree about that, for all my negativity about the MixPre series (although they're greatly improved since the initial MixPre release, with with all their firmware releases and the Gen2 series), if you're looking at it not from the perspective of what is the best first recorder for an aspiring sound mixer, but for a videographer/cameraman then the MixPre3/6 is a great choice!
    Am a Sound Recordist in New Zealand: http://ironfilm.co.nz/sound/
    Follow my vlog and adventures in sound: https://www.youtube.com/c/SoundSpeeding


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    Quote Originally Posted by ahalpert View Post
    Have you seen the f6? That thing is dinky! I have one and I love it and could totally mount on top of camera. But I've only mounted below (it comes with gear to do so). The only problem is that I only understand about 33% of its functionality. I need to get on that...
    Yeah, I was talking about the F4 and F8.


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    The Mix Pre 3 is great, I just really wish I hadn't bought mine a month before they released the v2.0 with 32-bit float (which, for half-deaf cameraman, is a MUCH safer proposition)!

    Given my sound gear only comes out of the house a few times a year, it's not the end of the world. But still, for a hearing-impaired guy, running sound is scary - and 32-bit float seems like safe harbour.


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    Quote Originally Posted by James0b57 View Post
    Yeah, I was talking about the F4 and F8.
    Oh gotcha I dont know those well. I think the pre-amps are the same in the f6 though. And the f6 has 32 bit float. and, of course, 6 inputs


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    Quote Originally Posted by andykwilkinson View Post
    I (still) have a Canon C100 and the Sony FS5. The handle on the C100 is (for me anyway) really a great feature of the camera, it just feels so comfortable. I also like that it's adjustable in terms of position and (of course) removable. It's a bit more awkward than the FS5 side handle to adjust in position - but at least once it's fixed it's rock solid...the handle on my (and I think all) FS5 has a bit of play in it. However, the FS5 handle is really easy and very quick to adjust and has a few more controls on it - and they are more or less right where I'd want them. It does feel a bit cheap and plasticky, but hey, it's a Sony, what do you expect. I am really hoping that the FX6 handle does NOT have the play that the FS5 has - don't think I've seen anyone mention this in the review videos I've seen. It's a pretty noticeable "feature" on the FS5 so I'm hoping this means they have sorted it. I also believe the (awkward to plug/unplug) 2.5mm jack on the short lead on the FS5 handle has been replaced with a more sturdy 3.5mm jack and I think the FX6 may have (even) more controls on the handle - would need to check that last statement though.
    The FX6 side handle has a bit of play. It's at least similar to the FS5, possibly the same. It felt a bit less wobbly but that might have been just because it was a new camera. I noticed the slight weight increase, also the fact that it is a bit wider maybe makes it feel slightly less balanced holding it by the side handle. It's a very small difference though. I think it looks pretty cool (What's wrong with 80s VCRs?) but I didn't really like the feel of the body - it has a grainy texture that makes it feel more plasticky than the FS5. Again, trivial. I spent most of my time with the camera repeatedly pressing focus mag and marvelling at the pristine zoomed in image (compared to the FS5). It's so good you could even use it for focusing!

    Peaking seemed improved - I didn't test accuracy but it looks more subtle and refined. What else? Oh the replacement for the 'select' wheel is excellent. It's in a much better place on the body and it's very clicky, fast and precise.

    Tried an FX9 loupe and it didn't fit properly. The latch works and it stays on but it seems like the moulded plastic on the LCD is different from on the FX9 so it doesn't sit flush with the frame. Unless we were doing something wrong. Also it seemed too heavy for the LCD mount, perhaps the FX9 mount is stiffer. On the FX6 it kept rotating away from me.


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    Useful info. Thanks Andy9. The LCD screen on the FS5 is Cr@p (especially when zoomed in on Focus Mag) so it's great to hear you can actually use the FX6 one for help with focussing too!


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    Quote Originally Posted by alaskacameradude View Post
    One reviewer showed exactly this. He put on a
    super 35 lens and used clear image zoom to lose
    the vignetting. But if you are just shooting in HD,
    you can just switch the FX6 to super 35 mode.
    It will do HD in Super 35 it’s only 4K where you
    must use the ‘clear image zoom’ hack.
    Thanks. Anyone got a link to that video please?


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