Throughout the production of my two coursework pieces, I used a wide range of sound recording equipment in order to produce the best sounding piece of work possible. All of the equipment I used is listed below as follows:
Audio Technica AT 897 – MINI BOOM MIC
We used this microphone for both of our assessments. It is a directional mini boom microphone which was ideal for the work we had to carry out, this is mainly due to the versatility and portability of the mic, meaning it could be easily transported for recording in various locations as well as being suitable in a fixed studio environment.
Being a directional microphone meant it was ideal for recording speech and specific sounds, as it picks up most of its sound from the tip of the microphone. As opposed to an omnidirectional mic which is more suitable for recording atmos because of its ability to pick up sound from all directions with equal sensitivity.
The Fostex field recorder was used extensively throughout the production of Assignment 1 , as it is a simple way of recording sound clips from a single channel and adjusting recording levels. We used headphones with the Fostex so we could listen to the raw sound the microphone picked up and allowed us to adjust the levels accordingly.
Within Assignment 2 we used a different field recorder, this is because two microphones were required for the task and therefore we needed a field recorder that could handle multiple channels at once. We chose the Roland for this reason and because it was easy to set up in a studio environment.
Pro Tools is our primary editing software for sound recording, It allowed us to match the audio up to the video recording and seamlessly stitch the files together, as well as fine-tune and tweak the sound files accordingly.
For our second assignment, me and my team were tasked with creating a short digital video documentary entitled The Next Big Thing in which we would have to interview a band/artist and demonstrate the capture and synchronisation of dialogue. We would do this by recording the interview using two microphones and a video camera, and then go on to edit the footage and the audio in ProTools.
Before we were able to shoot anything, we first had to produce a planning document stating what we were going to, when we were going to do it and how we were going to do it. Within the document we also had to assign roles to every member of the team so we could all focus on one key element individually. For example I was tasked with operating the camera for the interview, which would involve me making sure the two subjects are centred correctly within the frame and that the boom mics are out of shot. We also selected Olivia to take the role of the interviewer as she is the most articulate within the team and has a good clear voice, which is essential for any presenter/interviewer. In addition to this we had to note down any health and safety risks which could be prevalent during recording such as trip hazards and risk of electrocution. We decided up and coming singer/songwriter Josh Dell would be the subject for our interview, so we had to prepare numerous questions to ask him. We were not sure how he was going to respond to the questions, for example it was possible he would only give short one-word answers. So we had to come up with more questions than we though would be needed, 25 in total. After our planning document was approved, it was time to head into the studio.
In the recording studio, we set up two directional mini boom microphones on boom pole stands, each one facing one chair each and angled at each person’s chest to ensure the sound is picked up from the best angle, and plugged them in to a multi-channel field recorder where we did a quick sound check to adjust the levels of the microphones. Meanwhile I set up the camera and framed the shot to make sure both of the subjects were centred and in focus and the microphones were out of shot, gave the signal to the sound technician to start recording and then started recording on the camera.
When we had finished conducting the interview, we uploaded the video and audio files to ProTools and started to synchronise the two together, this was a relatively easy process as we used a clapper at the beginning of each recording, so we simply had to match up the audio spikes and then it was perfectly in sync with the video. Because of this there was minimal editing involved and because we had adjusted the audio levels correctly during production, there was no need to tweak them. Thus the interview had been a success and I believe me and my team were successful in achieving the aims of the assignment.
To view the finished project, please click the following link:
For our first assignment, we were tasked with producing a sound dub for a 2-3 minute long film clip of our choice. In which me and my team would have to choose a clip, listen and identify every single sound featured in the sequence, and then remove all the sound using ProTools and them re-record all of the audio featured in the clip.
Me and my team then decided to meet up to choose and discuss what video clip we would use for the assignment. After much discussion and deliberation we decided to settle on the opening sequence of a short film called Bear by Nash Edgerton
(https://youtu.be/CKeooK0zfeU?t=30s). This is because of the vast array of household sounds featured in the clip could be easily replicated, and meant we would not have to worry about external factors affecting the recording process as we would be primarily be recording indoors. After deciding on a clip, the next task we had to do was to re-watch the clip multiple times and note down every single sound clip we heard so we knew specifically which sounds we had to replicate.
After writing out an extensive plan of sounds to be recorded, we collected all the equipment and got started. We decided on two main locations for locations, one which was outdoor and one which was indoor. However, we only needed one sound for our outdoor shoot which consisted of bird sounds and cars going past, of which would only be used for 5 seconds at the end of the clip. We recorded the majority of the sounds within a
household environment to replicate the one used originally in the clip so we could reproduce them more accurately. However, one thing we could have improved upon is examining our main clip more thoroughly, as we later discovered that there was a few more sounds in the clip we had not picked up on. So a second recording session was required to record those sounds and re-record other sounds that did not sound correct or did not match up with the clip.
Editing was by far the longest process of the assignment, as we had to stitch every single file we had recorded and match it up to the clip using ProTools, the process was however made a lot easier by labelling every file and managing the files accordingly within our parent folders for maximum efficiency. As we edited, we discovered that some of the audio files were a little bit too quiet so we had to adjust the audio level in post production. This could have been easily avoided if we had correctly adjusted the levels during the recording process. Despite this, I believe that me and my team managed to create a successful sound dub and met all the requirements needed for completion of the assignment.
Click the following link to view the completed project.