srizvi1

Recording Stand up / Stand-up comedy - Best Minidisc Solution?

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Hey guys,

I'm very new to the minidisc world, but know that I finally need to stop putting off this purchase. In addition to my own stand up comedy, I'm going to be recording other comedians around the DC area with my Sony HD Camera (HC1). And as great as the built in mic is, I really would like a better audio solution. I've heard that the minidisc is the way to go so that's what I'd like to do.

I thought I'd come to you guys to see if anyone can give me some input. Any other advice on microphone selection, etc. would be very much preferred.

I do plan to improve my mic on my camera with a shotgun mic (Rode Videomic is the recommendation on the sonyhdvinfo.com forums), and I was thinking maybe sometime soon I could get a little fancy and mix the audios with the minidisc being focused on the comedian and the camera-mic on the audience? I don't know. i'm thinking out loud here and have no idea what I'm talking about.

Any advice would be appreciated.

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IMHO, a shotugn is WAY too directional for an audience mic. you would be better off with an OMNI for the audience, or at most a cardioid. If you want to get audience reaction, you want it all, not just the one guy in seat 13, row 45. :)

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You might want to switch your plan: use the shotgun mic for the comedian and an omni for the audience.

The shotgun picks up very narrowly what is directly in front of it, to isolate a specific source. The omnis pick up all around, for realism.

Can you get a signal out of your stage mic from the sound mixer? That would give you a very clear recording of yourself, to be mixed with (omni) audience reaction.

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Hey, thanks for getting me started guys.

Maybe I'll switch the plan around and use the minidisc connected to an omni mic to get good, clean crowd sound. I'll leave this set up in the middle of the room, or maybe towards the back?

I didn't pay attention fully to how a shotgun mic is directional. A shotgun mic might be something I leave at home then when recording comedy shows because though the camera's on the comedian, the sound is coming from the speakers which are scattered around. So if that's the case, wouldn't the mic not help?

I asked some questions about using minidisc with our cameras in the sonyhdvinfo.com forum and one of the moderators gave me some good advice I thought was worth putting in here (a little of it goes off the minidisc topic, but I think its helpful):

From doughie of Sonyhdvinfo.com:

RH910 should work well. Put in pocket of the comedian, lav him uo with an omni lav (wired= on his stenum area. Be careful to do it do it's not getting hit by rustling clothing.

Sadly IRiver no longer make the 700'series and 800series recorders which were very small flash recorders and worked well with Giant Squid mics (or almost any mic) for this sort of thing.

Alternative is to give him a wireless radio mic something like RE05 (dynamic), Sennheiser MD46(dynamic=, or Rode NT3 (condenser)(NT3 may be the best for this purpose) and maybe even something like the Rode S1. (condenser)

PLug on a Sennheiser SKP100 plugon transmitter and it'll send the signal to a Sennheiser G2 Evolution receiver. THe Sennheiser package ew100 G2 includes all of this (apart from RE050, MD46, or NT3 or S1 or maybe SM57=:

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/con...u=324227&is=REG

Example of a Sennheiser MD46 + SKP100 plugon transmitter is :

http://www.dvcreators.net/products/...rame2_r1_c1.jpg

An example of Rode NT3 on an SKP100 is this:

http://dvestore.com/theatre/index.html#

CLick the link on left saying "NAB 2005 - Final Cut Pro 5 - Jerry Hoffman'

this is sourced from http://dvestore.com/theatre/index.html# where there are also other useful samples.

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No, the DS70P is not worth $100. You can get a better mic for $100, including some SoundProfessionals models.

The further back you put the omni mic--or even better, a pair of omni mics separated by six inches like your ears--the more diffuse the sound will be. Put the omnis where you'd like to be sitting--picking up some of the comedian, some of the audience.

The wireless thing might work, but I'll bet it's expensive, and the batteries in the transmitter and receiver, not to mention possible interference, are just more things that can go wrong. A small mic connected to a recorder in the comedian's pocket is a nice idea--just make sure he turns it on.

The sound of the performer is going through a soundboard if it's going through a PA. Get the mic sound out of that directly: into line-in on the minidisc, or into your video, or even into a laptop computer with a line-in jack (you can download Audacity, a free recording program, from Downloads on the upper left here).

Synching the performance with the applause will take some time. You might want to make some sharp noise--a handclap, a loud microphone tap--that will give you a spike on the waveform you're going to edit, so you can align multiple sources to mix. Same function as those clapper boards they use making movies.

Edited by A440

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Thanks for the tutorial A440.

My purchase list now starts with the RH1, and then a pair of omni mics for the crowd.

Any recommendations for a good omni mic?

can I use both mics into the same minidisc recorder? or am I looking to need two minidisc recorders for each mic?

I'll skip the expensive, complicated wireless set up that was suggested in the sonyhdvinfo.com forum for now.

The mic connected to the comedian with the recorder in the pocket seems like a good idea, but it'll probalby require another minidisc recorder so maybe that's not the best option for now.

I know the line-out to minidisc from soundboard is ideal, but I've yet to come across an easy soundboard setup that I could just get a line out from. So that's why I'm trying to come up with workarounds.

From what you've said, I think I'll try to do the following (let me know if I'm on the right track):

2 omni mics and (I hope) one minidisc recorder in the crowd, as far back as possible, separated by 6 inches.

If I ever have a line out off a soundboard, I'll take that right into the into my laptop and record with Audacity. (I have that on home PC, but I hope there's a version for apple OS X).

What if I invest in the beachtek dxa-4p?

Here's a link to the product:

http://beachtek.com/dxa4.html

and some discussion of it in action:

http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/archive/index.php/t-16882.html

If I was to get this, I'm thinking I could use the beachtek and two mics to focus on the crowd, and use the minidisc to focus on the comedian - either by directly mic-ing him up, or pulling the sound off the soundboard.

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The mic jack of a minidisc is stereo. A pair of omni mics (like Sound Professionals' BMC-2, which will be fine for your purposes--get clips for them) is connected to one stereo plug that feeds them to the left and right channel. So no, you don't need another MD unit.

Audacity does have a Mac version.

http://audacity.sourceforge.net/download/

Don't over-complicate your setup. Your ideal would be to mix low levels of the audience, recorded omni, with the cleanest possible recording of the comic--preferably through his own mic, or through some directional mic. (Directional mics are generally called cardioid, as in cardiac. Imagine a heart shape with a mic at the pointed end--or hypercardioid, a narrower pattern, or shotgun, picking up narrowly straight ahead.) If you were a recording engineer, you'd send both the comic's mic and the audience mics onto multiple tracks into your recorder (which could be a laptop) and mix them together later.

I don't know anything about that Beachtek mixer. It appears that it mixes two sources together to go into the camera. What you really need is three: stereo ambience from the audience, mono from the comic. Conceivably you could take the comic in one channel, audience in the other, and mix them together to mono, directly on to your video. But you don't want comic on the right, audience on the left.

Frankly, here's what I would do for starters if I were you. Shoot the video with the camera's built-in mic or the accessory mic mentioned in this review.

http://www.luminous-landscape.com/reviews/.../sony-hc1.shtml

Put a quiet friend at the best seat in the house, where she can hear the comic clearly, with the omni mics elevated overhead--on a tripod or long pole or something, away from the audience conversations--running into the MD. Or put the omni mics on a pole attached above the soundboard, running into the MD.

Since comedy clubs are nearly as loud a rock clubs these days, you should probably get a $50 battery module like this one--

http://www.microphonemadness.com/products/mmcbmminminc.htm

and run Mic--battery module-Line-in. The battery module gives a little power to the mics, making them respond better and boosting a loud signal enough for Line-in. Recording through Line-in also raises the threshold enough to eliminate some of the quieter, distracting room noises.

That's my basic setup for recording concerts. Applause is loud and crisp; music is as clear as the sound system makes it. You might just be able to use the MD audience recording by itself if the comic is audible enough.

Basically, your Beachtek in action forum suggests the same thing:

"I've found that High Quality microphones positioned at the location of the sound engineer, or somewhere within the audience will work best if you can't mix the audio yourself."

If not, you need to figure out some way of getting the comic's mic directly, and do a mix afterward--or see if the audio from the camera gives you some clarity from the comic.

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Thanks for all your help A440. This thread will serve as my blueprint.

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alright.. after two months of diddly-daddlying, I'm ready to jump on this.

A440, I think this post is more directed at you since you've been actively helping me so much.

bhphotovideo.com has got it for $319, and soundprofessionals.com has got it for $328. But since I need that sp-bcm-2 microphone, I'm just going to get from soundprofessionals. plus, I saw something on their site saying to call in if I found a better price so maybe I can get them to match it.

I'll make sure that I get the sp-bcm-2's with the clips. I'm going to get a nice tripod, a Sony one that has recording controls on its handle, so I'm going to take my two old crappy tripods and place them in the middle towards the back of the crowd - I just hope the show organizers don't get mad whenever I do this cause it might be a little distracting.

I wanted to get everything in one shot, The mic amplifier you pointed to, is there something like this available from soundprofessionals.com?

Let me know when you get a chance so I can place this order. I'll be sure to let you know how this all turns out.

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Sound Professionals' battery module is this one:

http://www.soundprofessionals.com/cgi-bin/.../item/SP-SPSB-2

It looks a little bigger than the Mic Madness one, but it might be better because it gives more power to the mics, 12V instead of 9, and it's obviously compatible with SoundPros' own mics.

Sound Professionals has a 30 day return policy (for things returned in new condition), so try everything out and make sure it's working in your situation.

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Thanks A440. I'm going to get the 24" cable then unless you suggest otherwise. Ordering today.

If there's anything else I need besides the MD recorder, the SP-CM2-2 (with clips), and this battery mic module, let me know.

Shahryar

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I don't know if you want to have all that cable hanging around. The mic already has four feet of cable. Me, I think of the battery module as an attachment to the unit--one foot of cable is plenty, and I wouldn't even care if it were shorter. But it's not a big deal regardless.

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Everybody in this thread (most importantly A440), I have a confession to make:

We got into heavy discussion on purchasing a minidisc to record stand up back in 2006, but shortly after, I kind of fell off the recording horse and buying the minidisc slipped from my list of priorities. However, I'm back into the recording scene now and know that I have to make the minidisc purchase.

Anyway, I'm definitely ready to get that minidisc so I was wondering if there were any final suggestions that may have changed in the past 6 months since we last talked.

I still want to go with Soundprofessionals.net for buying everything which is:

The actual MD Recorder (with the suggested upgraded stereo microphones):

SONY-MZ-RH1 SONY MZ-RH1, MZRH1 - NOW IN STOCK - FREE MICROPHONE INCLUDED (SELECT IN DROP-DOWN BOX) - $69 RETAIL VALUE! PC AND MAC COMPATIBLE HIMD/MP3 MINIDISC RECORDER Include SP-BMC-2 Omnidirectional Stereo Microphones with clips (Save $20); No extra blank discs (one is included in recorder package); No external battery pack; No hard case; No extended warranty $357.00 $357.00

Your Total is $357.00

And the battery mic module:

SP-SPSB-2

SOUND PROFESSIONALS SUPER MINI BATTERY MODULE. MADE IN USA.

6 inch output cable; No extra batteries; Standard 2 year Warranty (no charge)

I'm going to see if I can get soundprofessionals.net to match the MZ-RH1 price of minidisco.com which is $299

http://www.minidisco.com/Sony-MZ-RH1?gclid...CFSbUgAod_XLnxg

Let's see if it works. Thanks again guys. And just wanted to let you know that your efforts won't go down in vain.

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I have gotten very good speech audio with the BMC-2 into mic-in and also, putting it close to the person speaking, through a battery module and line-in. Whether you even need a battery module will depend on how loud things get. But you'll probably save enough on shipping everything together that if you don't need the battery module you can send it back within the 30 days.

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The main plan I have right now is to use the minidisc to get crowd sound. I'm going to set it towards the crowd, right in the middle and do the recordings there. So if you think this extra battery thing will help me do a better job of getting that sound, then I'll trust you on it and pick it up. I'm hoping to use a mic in from the sound system for the actual comedian, or (next purchase) a cardoid mic on my camera. Right now, the built in mic isn't the ideal sound solution.

Down the road though, I'd like to take advantage of my minidisc to use for sound in a short film that I want to complete over the next few months. I'm hoping to browse the forums a little bit to see how exactly people are using their minidisc for this.

Thank you again for all your help.

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The main plan I have right now is to use the minidisc to get crowd sound. I'm going to set it towards the crowd, right in the middle and do the recordings there.

You'll probably want to use the battery module in that situation, recording mic-->Battery Module-->Line-in, using Manual Volume at about 20/30. (The good thing about the RH1 is that you can set that once and use it all the time.) They're omni mics, so it won't make a huge amount of difference which way you point them, but if you point them toward the stage you will still get plenty of audience sound. The applause is the most lifelike sound I get on my concert recordings, and that's the setup I'm using. You could also experiment just going mic-->Mic-in, but I would expect that it would be too loud.

As for your eventual sound project, with any hi-fi recording device whether it's a minidisc, computer, flash recorder, etc., the key is microphone quality and microphone placement.

One tricky thing with minidisc will be to sync the sound with the image and/or sound from your camera--something that's easier when it's all together on one recording.

You know those clapper boards they use when they announce Take One! Action! Something like that--or a handclap, or a fingersnap--will provide a nice crisp spike on the audio waveform that can help you sync up.

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Ok, so then the battery module is a definite go. No problem. I have 56 minutes left on this auction. God I hope this goes through without a hitch.

I'm familiar with the clapper thing for the audio sync up and will be sure to do that with the recordings (on both stand up and my future short film project).

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Ok, sweet, everything worked out.

I finally purchased the minidisc recorder today (9 months after first asking about it) and I guess its a glitch in their shopping cart software because I was still able to save $20 on the headphones because I had already added the minidisc recorder to the cart w/ the microphone before I asked for the discount.

I had been emailing back and forth with the sales guy over at soundprofessionals.com though and he's a cool guy so I told him that I was still able to save the $20 even though he said they wouldn't honor the price drop on the microphone anymore. Hopefully he'll let me keep the money because of my honesty.

I got the battery module too.

Now I need to find another 3 pack of minidiscs and I'll be set (my assumption is that each minidisc holds about an hour of Hi-MD sound). I'm totally new to minidisc.

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Alright, there was a little delay in getting the minidisc to me, but its all done now. I'm not sure how soon my first event is going to be that I'll record, but I'll keep this thread updated. Thank you to Rich (the admin) from moving this thread from "find your minidisc" to Live Recordings as it has turned into a very nice tutorial on recording stand up and similar events. I'll keep this thread updated with my findings.

A440 - I just shot you a pm asking your opinion on some lavs (we had discussed this option earlier). I probably won't use the lavs specifically for recording stand up, but I know it'll come in handy for other things.

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so I finally got around to using my new Sony MZ-RH1 to record some stand up comedy events alongside my camera (Sony HC1). I thought I'd post the links to the files here for everyone to check out.

Here's the video file of which I will be posting audio files below. It's a Quicktime 7 vid (you need Quicktime 7 to play, not just any version of Quicktime):

(smaller version * 3.7mb) www.r1c.com/samples/shahryar-320x176-deinterlaced-letterbox.mov

(larger version * 9.9mb) www.r1c.com/samples/shahryar-480x264-letterbox-deinterlaced.mov

The clip is of a short segment from my own performance that night. I messed up on the recording and didn't zoom out enough right before I went up. As a result, the top of my head is a little cut off. But the set went good so I'm going to keep using this video until I get a better one with a similar response.

Here are the sound exports from the built in mic of the camera and my minidisc recorder:

(19,508 KB) www.r1c.com/samples/shahryar-imovie-export.wav

(17,391 KB) www.r1c.com/samples/shahryar-minidisc-audacity.wav

The minidisc is definitely not as loud as what the built in mic got, but does sound richer. I need to figure out how to do recording volume stuff. Shouldn't be too hard, I just need to read the manual.

Edited by srizvi1

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The minidisc is definitely not as loud as what the built in mic got, but does sound richer. I need to figure out how to do recording volume stuff. Shouldn't be too hard, I just need to read the manual.

I noticed that the crowd was louder than you (on the MD file), which means that the mic wasnt close enough to the stage, If you want perfect audio of yur voice , put the MD in a pocket and use a Lapel mic ,then mix that audio with the stereo feild audio from the Camera , in iMovie(Im on a macbook) Just import the audio track as an extra or background track , lower the level (or raise,)of the Video track to matck the MD track then export the mix.

Good routine that was pretty funny . " 5 Tape VHS changer " ROTF

Couldnt have the whole vid could I ?

Edited by Guitarfxr

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I noticed that the crowd was louder than you (on the MD file), which means that the mic wasnt close enough to the stage, If you want perfect audio of yur voice , put the MD in a pocket and use a Lapel mic ,then mix that audio with the stereo feild audio from the Camera , in iMovie(Im on a macbook) Just import the audio track as an extra or background track , lower the level (or raise,)of the Video track to matck the MD track then export the mix.

Good routine that was pretty funny . " 5 Tape VHS changer " ROTF

Couldnt have the whole vid could I ?

Actually, since these are from open mics, I'd rather put up the bits and pieces that went well. The set as a whole was ok. How about we make a deal and you keep checking back on this thread for more vids and sound samples, and I'll keep exposing more and more of my routine :rolleyes:

I'll also put up other samples from other comics in case no one here thinks I'm funny.

I think yuo're right about mixing being the key here, but I think the lapel mic might not be as good an option as taking the sound out directly from the speakerbox thing the mic's connected to - right? I'll use the built in mic's sound to mix.

Although by going with this option, I feel like my omni mics and battery modules will go to waste. I dont know, let me start trial and erroring a few things. I'd love to get some more input.

Also, I know this is a bit off topic, but I'm heading to NYC tomorrow morning and really wanted to hit up the B&H Photo Video store to buy some sound equipment for this short film skit that I'm going to work on for the next couple weeks. It's a mock documentary thing which will involve scenes of indoors and outdoors, one person in the shot, many people in the shot... So I guess it'll have a lot of different types of Audio needed.

This specific thread has mainly been about recording stand up, but knowing I'm armed with just a Sony MZ-RH1 minidisc recorder, anyone have any suggestions on what else I should get for audio recording? I'm thinking boom mic, boom pole with the sound going into the minidisc, and then getting a Rode stereovideomic to get the ambient sound to mix in. Anyone want to give me any ideas for sound recording on a short film centering around a minidisc recorder?

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Actually, since these are from open mics, I'd rather put up the bits and pieces that went well. The set as a whole was ok. How about we make a deal and you keep checking back on this thread for more vids and sound samples, and I'll keep exposing more and more of my routine :rolleyes:

I'll also put up other samples from other comics in case no one here thinks I'm funny.

I think yuo're right about mixing being the key here, but I think the lapel mic might not be as good an option as taking the sound out directly from the speakerbox thing the mic's connected to - right? I'll use the built in mic's sound to mix.

Although by going with this option, I feel like my omni mics and battery modules will go to waste. I dont know, let me start trial and erroring a few things. I'd love to get some more input.

Also, I know this is a bit off topic, but I'm heading to NYC tomorrow morning and really wanted to hit up the B&H Photo Video store to buy some sound equipment for this short film skit that I'm going to work on for the next couple weeks. It's a mock documentary thing which will involve scenes of indoors and outdoors, one person in the shot, many people in the shot... So I guess it'll have a lot of different types of Audio needed.

This specific thread has mainly been about recording stand up, but knowing I'm armed with just a Sony MZ-RH1 minidisc recorder, anyone have any suggestions on what else I should get for audio recording? I'm thinking boom mic, boom pole with the sound going into the minidisc, and then getting a Rode stereovideomic to get the ambient sound to mix in. Anyone want to give me any ideas for sound recording on a short film centering around a minidisc recorder?

The Audio Technica AT- 822 ,I just luv this mic , and I have tried a lot of mics , but its a perfect match for the MD

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The Audio Technica AT- 822 ,I just luv this mic , and I have tried a lot of mics , but its a perfect match for the MD

So buy this mic from bhphotovideo? (http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/controller/home?O=Search&A=details&Q=&sku=68194&is=REG&addedTroughType=search )

And get a boompole for it, and connect it to the minidisc?

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So buy this mic from bhphotovideo? (http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/controller/home?O=Search&A=details&Q=&sku=68194&is=REG&addedTroughType=search )

And get a boompole for it, and connect it to the minidisc?

Call them and have them order it before you get there, and you will need an 1/8 stereo extension cable (headphone cable extension)

because the supplied cable might be a little short . Here is what is sounds like on an MD withe a Barouque Quintet

http://forums.minidisc.org/index.php?act=A...ost&id=2313

Here is what it sounds like withe big taiko drums ( Of course you have to drastically change the settings)

http://forums.minidisc.org/index.php?act=A...ost&id=2315

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