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Topic: Microphone Reccomendations....

Greetings:

I'm gearing up for a photo project that will take me to the High Arctic for almost a year. So with that in mind, I've been adding to not just my photo gear. But also adding (audio) capabilities that will allow me to capture audio while at the top of the world.

I've just received a Edirol R-09 recorder and now need to purchase some type of mic to marry with it. I purchased the Edirol because folks say the quality is quit good and it is small... Small is a big thing for me as moving around the north is hard enough so packing gear becomes a very big issue.

The plan is to use the audio tracks as part of slideshows as I follow science teams who are dealing with Climate change issues effecting the north. These teams will be looking at everything from the  bottom of the ocean to the top of the atmosphere. So we will be dealing with dive teams, wales, polar bears, ice issues and everything in between. The hope is to gather the sounds that accompany this type of work....

So if anyone can recomend a Mic for this  adventure.... I would be grateful.

Thanks

Doug

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Re: Microphone Reccomendations....

What will the wind conditions be like?

Also, what's your budget roughly?

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Re: Microphone Reccomendations....

joeweiss wrote:

What will the wind conditions be like?

Also, what's your budget roughly?

Hi joe:
Thanks for the move and for asking the (right) questions....

Most of the sound work will be done outdoors and wind could very well be a factor. The Arctic is know to always have some type of wind... somedays harder than others...

As for the budget.... I'm not sure I have one. But I'm sure the folks who are paying the bills will not feel that a few hundred $$ are a big deal. Considering that my travel budget is ten's of thousands.

Thanks

Doug

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Re: Microphone Reccomendations....

I'd look at a short shotgun mic with a softie wind screen.  I think the extra "focus" of the shotgun mic will help outdoors.

Here's a shotgun I like:
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/3 … enser.html

And here's the softie:
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/2 … oftie.html

I know it looks silly, but the softie windscreen will make all the difference ...

That's my two cents.

-joe

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Re: Microphone Reccomendations....

joeweiss wrote:

I'd look at a short shotgun mic with a softie wind screen.  I think the extra "focus" of the shotgun mic will help outdoors.

Here's a shotgun I like:
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/3 … enser.html

And here's the softie:
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/2 … oftie.html

I know it looks silly, but the softie windscreen will make all the difference ...

That's my two cents.

-joe

Hi Joe:

Do you have any recomendations for something a little smaller?

this thing is almost a ft. long and I don't know where I would put it.

thanks

Doug

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Re: Microphone Reccomendations....

Nothing smaller in terms of a shotgun mic.

You could go with an omni mic, which is roughly half the size.

RE-50 N/D-B
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1 … namic.html
-or-
EV 635 N/D-B (this thing is tiny)
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/7 … _Omni.html

Both of these are mono omni mics, and require you to be very close to your subjects.  The RE-50 has a built in windscreen which is very nice (and the mic can double as a hammer if you're in a jam).

Another option would be one of the Sony Stereo mics ...

I've used this one and liked it quite a bit:
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1 … enser.html

-joe

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Re: Microphone Reccomendations....

Whatever mic you choose, the wind and the chill must be kept away from it. Otherwise, you either have only wind noise or nothing at all on tape, because the mic's electronic components freezed over.

Therefore, you might want to consider using a serious windshield on a pistol grip like the things this company is selling:
http://koalawindsocks.com/

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Re: Microphone Reccomendations....

Audio-Technica appears to have released a new short (7") shotgun mic, the AT-875. B&H lists it for $196.

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/4 … otgun.html

I have not seen it or used it, but it seems intriguing and I'd be interested in seeing any reviews of it.

Kevin

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Re: Microphone Reccomendations....

kevinw wrote:

Audio-Technica appears to have released a new short (7") shotgun mic, the AT-875. B&H lists it for $196.

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/4 … otgun.html

I have not seen it or used it, but it seems intriguing and I'd be interested in seeing any reviews of it.

Kevin

Thanks Kevin:

I looked real quick but could not find any reviews on this mic.... Is it so new that no one has one yet?

Also I wonder if it would work on my Edirol R-09?

I need to buy something quit soon and will not have the ability to put this off much longer.... Darn I wished this was easier!!!

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Re: Microphone Reccomendations....

Two other options you might consider:

In a shotgun mic,  I haven't seen anyone mention the Audio-Technica ATR55. It's a dual-pattern mic, switchable from "wide" to "shotgun" and it's about $80. It was marketed as an affordable improvement over a camcorder's built-in mic. I haven't used it, but have heard recommendations for it over on sportsshooter.com. B&H currently has it in stock, though it's not something they usually carry so there are no returns. I'm sure you can find other vendors where this wouldn't be an issue.

If small, cheap and good is a priority, there's been very positive reviews at multimediashooter.com and a mindymcadams.com for the Nady SP-5 or SP-4C. These are omni-directional mics (like Joe said, you need to keep them close for good quality), but they're around $10 if you buy a three-pack from someplace like musiciansfriend.com. Think of it as a cheap way to make sure you never have to rely on the built-in mic or your recorder, even if the elements ruin your preferred mic.

Good luck. Let us know how it goes, and post the results.

Kevin

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Re: Microphone Reccomendations....

There are a couple advantages of mics like the Nady SP-5:  They produce good sound, they are inexpensive, and they do not require battery power (from what I can tell, anyway).  Here is a link to a review on multimediashooter.com that Kevin mentioned:
http://www.multimediashooter.com/wp/?p=175
http://www.multimediashooter.com/wp/?p=319

Most shotgun mics like the ATR55 (which I have, and like) use a AA battery which is not likely to last long under Arctic conditions.  You could get the three-mic deal for about $30 so two can be out of the cold at all times and you can rotate them while keeping the Edirol under your coat.  Definitely get some foam windscreens, and seriously getting some Rycote Softies or Smoothies:
http://www.rycote.com/

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Re: Microphone Reccomendations....

Here's some sound samples using a few various mics at http://www.slottweak.com/camcorder.htm# … e%20Tests:

The cheap Nady I listened to sounded flat to me and I decided I wouldn't be happy with it.

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Re: Microphone Reccomendations....

joeweiss wrote:

N

Another option would be one of the Sony Stereo mics ...

I've used this one and liked it quite a bit:
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1 … enser.html

-joe

Joe, thanks for the pointer on this mic.  The B&H photo shows it with a cable that is XLR to mini; have you used that cable with the mic?  This intrigues me because I have a stereo mic but the cable is a cable that splits into left and right XLR jacks, which function quite well of course, but can be a hassle, especially if I'm trying to use it with my Microtrack 24/96 (which then requires more adapters for the 1/4 Microtrack plug-ins).