1. I went outside with the MKE400 today. It wasn't terribly windy, but I wanted to get a feel for what the mic would do outside nonetheless.

    I was most surprised by the sound from the Image Stabalizer motor. I guess the pickup pattern on the MKE400 truly is cardiod (not that I expected anything less, ut's just that the mic still sits right above the motor on the lens!)

    The video isn't great, and the sound from the neighborhood isn't great either. Lots of noise from all sides. But, the built-in audio also picked up Aaron yelling from behind me, which the MKE wouldn't have done.

    # vimeo.com/20769369 Uploaded 217 Plays / / 0 Comments Watch in Couch Mode
  2. My impressions of the Zoom H1:
    I like the size, but it does feel a little flimsy.
    I discuss that and more, with some audio samples at the end.
    I teach high school band so I recorded a few players outside on the football field. Pay careful attention to Blair's bass work. I just walked up to his amp* and told him to play something. I like his style.

    *not actually an amp, but a Fender Passport system -- not the best, but it's what we have to work with :-)

    # vimeo.com/14537652 Uploaded 55.7K Plays / / 11 Comments Watch in Couch Mode
  3. My kids are such good sports. I asked them to spend a couple seconds helping me compare the audio quality between the three sources:

    The T2i built in audio - obviously not the preferred method of capturing audio, but it has to work in a pinch and I wanted to hear how it sounds next to the other two options.

    The Zoom H1 mounted to the top of the camera - this picked up plenty of me talking and a little of Evan talking. Here we have a case where I think it would have sounded fine if an adult would have been talking louder from the same spot Evan was. In his defense, it is a little bizarre to have to tell your dad how old you are!

    Audio Technica ATR3340 Lav Microphone - I mounted this to Aaron's shirt. His first instinct was to lift it up and stick it right next to his mouth to talk. He quickly learned to just let it pick up audio naturally and I think the result is fairly good. If you listen carefully about midway through his "interview" you can hear the classic sound of a cell phone (my iPhone in my pocket) causing hum.

    Always remember to monitor your audio and turn your cell phone off so as not to ruin a real interview!

    Also, I should note that I didn't get off to a good start with the ATR-3350. I took it out of the box, recorded this and proceeded to leave it turned on for the amount of time it took me to edit the video. Better buy some extra batteries to have on hand.

    Thanks to cheesycam.com for the suggestion on the ATR3350.

    # vimeo.com/14621765 Uploaded 2,550 Plays / / 17 Comments Watch in Couch Mode
  4. This is one way I've found to work well for precisely syncing audio recorded on a separate system. In this case, I recorded the audio on the Zoom H1 and the video with the Canon T2i.

    As I watch this screencast I'm sure someone is going to ask how I got the Zoom H1 to record a mono lav mic input into stereo sound -- don't worry, I didn't. I used the batch export command from the File menu in FCP to export the files after centering the pan of the left channel...at least I think that's what I did. It was late and the details are fuzzy. ;-)

    The key to this method is getting the audio matched at the sub-frame level (1/100 of a frame) so that everything is perfectly in sync.

    I used a home made slate I made with a piece of scrap wood, a hinge, an 8x10 picture frame glass and some mirror holding mounts. Finished it off with a paint job using some spray paint I had on hand.

    # vimeo.com/15913968 Uploaded 1,195 Plays / / 5 Comments Watch in Couch Mode
  5. The least exciting area of the Final Cut Pro interface is the lowly Browser. Everyone knows the basics, but did you know ⌘4 is the keyboard shortcut to make it the active window?

    Did you know you can cycle through view options with ⇧H and you can copy a clip from one bin to another by Option-dragging or by using the keyboard shortcut ⌥D?

    I always encourage my students to think like a Certified Pro. They may always create a new Bin by typing ⌘B, but they also need to know the other ways to accomplish the same task.

    This short screencast will hopefully approach the Browser with that mindset. Expect to see a few more on a variety of topics. I'll share them with my students and I'll share them here.

    # vimeo.com/15089279 Uploaded 109 Plays / / 0 Comments Watch in Couch Mode

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Shawn Harrel Plus

Quick tips and information for video production and editing with Apple's Final Cut Pro

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