On Location: First Live Instagram to Space Station

This job had many moving parts to it will very little prep time and only one chance to get it right. With two different IFB lines being routed via mission control along with everything going through the Instagram application I wasn’t 100%  sure how it would work but thankfully it all worked well. The biggest issue was gain stage control which is why Will is speaking loud as we couldn’t get a good level into the phone using an external mic. Enjoy !

On Location: Daily Show Space Force

One of my specialities is fast pace quick turn around productions. This shoot for The Daily Show was airing about 12 hours after we filmed it, Production requested a Stereo Mix track to both cameras and timecode boxes to keep everything in sync along with transcription upload at wrap. The shoot went well and they were able to use my mix track to save time. So if you need to be perfect the first time with no second takes give me a call.

Equipment used Sound Devices 633, Lectrosonics SMV/ SRC , Cos 11 lav mics , RE-50 Stick Mic and Mozegear timecode boxes.

Tech Tip: K-Tek K-SPT Shoe Plate Mount

One of the biggest challenges is mounting equipment to cameras as they get smaller and smaller. for years I have used these Ktek Hot Shoe Plates. They are well built out of aluminum and allow velcro to stick to them very well. I can attach wireless, timecode boxes and any other things. Available for around $40.00 at your local camera or audio retailer kspt

Recent Job: Billy Graham Funeral

Working for NBC News for many years has afforded me a front row seat at many events some good and some bad. This past week I had a front row seat to the week leading up to Billy Grahams’ funeral including his son Franklin Grahams’ first interview after his fathers passing. The whole Graham Family and organization were gracious and kind during our time with them.

When working live on high profile interviews there is no room for error and things must be right the first time every time. The best way to make sure we have no audio issues is to hard wire everything. In this case a hardwired Sanken Cos-11  with a Schoeps Mini CMIT over top for back up and a hardwired Audio Implements ear piece. Photo below shows me getting Franklin all set up before we went live. I had Comtek IFB which are wireless for me to listen in on the IFB feed and for our producers IMG_9384

Eneloop Pro AAA ( Black Label)

I have been an avid user of rechargeable AA and 9V for many years however with so few things needing AAA I haven’t taken the rechargeable plunge. However recently in an effort to be more green I have recently added some Eneloop Pro AAA for our Mozegear sync boxes and head lamps. We decided to go with the Eneloop Pro which have been flawless the last 3 months. They also have very low self discharge and have been lasting just as long or longer as there alkaline brothers. They have been a great addition to our package

Protecting yourself and your gear from the weather

Nothing is worse than shooting in the rain, snow or sleet. But like the Post Office we must deliver. Here is how I protect my gear:

I own a Motu Sound Slick which is a large poncho well made with a clear area allow you to see your bag to mix it works well but is large and hard to carry around. But it works well and I have been in gail force winds with heavy rain and wind, and it kept me and my gear dry it also allows you to protect your boompole as well. , however if time permits I like to add a 2nd level of protection.

I usually wear a rain suit under my sound poncho or just the rain suit pants since your legs can still get damp. It will also help keep you warm in cold wet weather.

If the weather looks clear for the day I will leave all the rain gear at home. I always keep a $0.99 emergency poncho inside my sound bag in the event of an unexpected shower I can cover myself quickly.  With this rain gear you and your gear should stay dry!!!!

Sound Supervisor or Audio Supervisor: What does it mean?

I got an email from someone asking what a Sound Supervisor or Audio Supervisor does on a Reality tv shoot does? Well that answer is it depends on the show. On most medium to smaller reality shoot 3-4 camera shoots. The audio supervisor is in charge of building the equipment packages either out of his own inventory of gear ot arranging the rental of whatever gear is needed or required. He works with the production company regarding budget, required equipment and hiring of other mixers or Audio techs sometimes refered to as a A1 or A2. If you have a fair budget for all of this and a production company that listens to your input your job is fairly easy it is just about getting the right gear and operators in place.  Alot of mixer (Like myself)  own multiple audio packages. I own 3 so for alot of jobs I do I can provide all the gear as well, which makes my life much easier since it is my gear and I already own it. It gets challenging when your budget isn’t enough to get all the gear you want or your in an area of the country with no local sound houses and everything has to be shipped in from out of state. But that is all part of the job. On larger shows the supervisor may just supervise and help with any issues that may arrise or they may be in the control room of the show assissting in the final field mix. It really all depends on the size of the show and the size of the budget.