Sound for Documentary, Part 2: What is it and why is it so important?

WaterSpire-by-likeablerodent-from-Flikr

What are the basics we need to understand as documentary media makers in order to become better sound recordists, editors, and designers? To put it in one sentence, sound is vibrations in air that touch us. I believe the intimacy of touch has something to do with why there’s such a strong connection between our emotions and sound.

Sound for documentary, Part 1: Eight fundamental concepts

Jaws-Promo-Materails

The first in a series of posts presenting practical techniques and a guide to the tools for recording and editing sound for video documentary that will help you improve your work whether you are a beginning or intermediate video documentary maker.

Spaces Speak, Are you listening?

spaces-speak

In their book, Spaces Speak, Are You Listening?: Experiencing Aural Architecture (MIT Press, 2007) Barry Blesser and Linda-Ruth Salter remind us that we experience spaces not only through visual perception but also through our auditory perception. They explore auditory spatial awareness (experiencing space by attentive listening) from a variety of perspectives: cultural, architectural, physical, sociological, […]

Four under $300 audio recorders for double-system sound

ZoomH2

With the rising tide of small cameras shooting spectacular HD video suitable for documentary work, along with D-SLRs like the Canon 5D Mark II and the Canon 7D whose images rival much more expensive (and heavy) cameras, I’ve observed a spectacular rise in gorgeous video, but good sound is not something that seems to go […]

Using both channels (an audio channel is a terrible thing to waste)

Practically every camcorder records two channels of audio, which allows you to record in stereo (Left/Right) or two discrete channels (1/2). Lately I’ve been using the Sennheiser Evolution G2 wireless a lot and it started to bother me that I was only recording one channel from the wireless reciever into the 3.5mm stereo plug on […]

19th Annual Pro Video Show March 20-21, 2009 in Dedham, Massachusetts

Media Gear

The Camera Company‘s 19th Annual Pro Video Show, an annual Boston-area gathering that includes a show floor and a variety of demos and seminars of interest to media makers, will take place this year on Friday and Saturday, March 20-21, 2009 at the Dedham Holiday Inn Hotel & Conference Center (directions). This is a good […]

Beyerdynamic velour pads: new life for Sony MDR-7506 or V6 headphones

Sony MDR7506

For many years I’ve been using two pairs of Sony MDR-7506 headphones (one lives in my camera kit and the second lives in my sound kit) and the original plastic ear pads had started to fall apart. These are outstanding headphones for monitoring audio, however, the pads are their achilles heel. You can order replacement […]

Practical Sound Recording and Editing Techniques For Better Video

NME Presentation

Here are some resources associated with my session, “Practical Sound Recording and Editing Techniques For Better Video” recently given at the 4th Annual New Media Expo held in Las Vegas. Presentation Slides Here’s a copy of my presentation slides, available in two flavors. Sound-Better-Video-4NME.pdf A PDF of the presentation slides (34MB). Sound-Better-Video-4NME-Notes.pdf A PDF of […]