Brilliant advice so far! I


Brilliant advice so far!

In addition to what I said earlier, I’ll echo the thoughts here that “the field monitor is your friend”.

On most shoots, I’ve actually used my laptop as a field monitor. I’ll use the camera’s DV out to feed into the laptop. While the camera operatori is shooting, I can watch his shot at the PC, and because I’m a freakin’ genius (LOL!), I bring a hard drive with me to capture the footage to as it’s happening. This also saves me from importing that tape later on (though on a multi-cam shoot you’ll either need several laptops/firestore units/solid state media, or you just have to import the other footage later on).

As was mentioned, don’t stop after every shot to review footage. And I know I’m sounding redundant, but redundantly build in redundant redundancies. More cameras, more audio, more power.

I’ll go ahead and mention this, though it can be a bear to pull off. If your audio stinks, but the video seems fine, another option is to overdub the audio tracks. Bring your talent back into your studio, and rerecord their voices while they speak in sync with a monitor showing the footage from the shoot. You’ll want to have a BIG display for this (At least 30″) since the talent is trying to sync up with their lips on the video. You might also want headphones and a mixer where you can give the talent some audio from the original shoot along with their mic feed. You will also need to get some room ambience from the original shoot to fill behind the voices, and foley for the final mix if there are any sound fx needs. This option is a LOT OF WORK, and if you don’t get it exactly right, it can sound awful. For example, I just saw a febreeze commercial a few days ago where they overdubbed the tracks of two of the characters. It was painful to watch. The non-overdubbed voices had a normal room ambience behind them, and the two overdubbed ones were clearly in a studio setting. My eyes see them in a bedroom, but my ears hear them in a sound studio. My brain gets confused, and it caused me distress. I was doing audio for a few years before I owned my first pro camera, and even I would only do this as a last resort. It truly is best to get clean audio at the source if you can.

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