Recording the few and far between.
You read Videomaker every month and you've read this column before. You know the smart video producer always uses external microphones and the highest quality music and sound effects to create the best video possible. But what happens when the lines blur a bit? What if your next project calls for a telephone interview or audio from some ancient source such as a phonograph record? You remember them don't you? Big black discs with a tiny hole in the middle and funny, circular grooves, right? Well, don't worry: This month's Sound Advice is all about recording from odd sources and how to get the best possible sound.
Before you jump into your first recording of that artesian yak horn, there are some basic tools required to record from odd sound sources. Your best friend is your camcorder. It is portable, it runs on batteries and, hopefully, it also has a microphone input. Internally, the input will have a preamp and, of course, the camcorder ultimately functions as a digital tape recorder. The fact that it also records video is merely incidental, for our purposes.
You'll need a way to connect your external gear to the microphone jack. If you already use balanced microphones, you probably have everything you need. If not, a trip to Radio Shack is in order or check the ads in the back of this magazine. You'll find unique audio adapters from Beachtek, Studio 1 and others that include microphone and line level inputs, volume controls and an attached cable to connect to your camera. Although these items are slightly more expensive than a bag of adapters, they are also more flexible and offer you greater creative control.
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