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What would be the best way to get good audience laughter without the other background noise
man, that’s almost like asking how do I get good tire squeal recorded without getting the sound of the engine…. it’s a tough question.
You don’t. You can rig a Omni-mic over the audience but it will still be an ‘ambience’ track because you’ll get every chair scrape, butt-scratch and everything else including the comedian. Another method would be to mic the audience from the comedian’s perspective. You’ll get somewhat less background ambience, but you’ll trade it for more comedian noise. You’re only other solutions are drastic; use pre-recorded laugh tracks or put the entire audience in a soundbooth (no drinks or waiters allowed!) Good luck trying to get the last one done!