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Author Topic: What's the word on USB mics?  (Read 600 times)

Spenser Hamilton

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What's the word on USB mics?
« on: July 12, 2021, 04:48:28 PM »

The Gallery side of our operation has been doing a lot of virtual art content over the last year, most of it we are shooting in the Studio (Sony camera, either an RE20 or a camera mounted shotgun mic for voice), but one of our teachers prefers to shoot her videos at home in her own studio space.

First video came out, video quality is fine but the audio sounds like you would expect a built-in webcam mic to sound. Wondering if a USB mic on a desk-mount stand might be an easy solution as I don't want to send her home with an audio interface, the RE20 and a bunch of cables.

Anybody doing this? What do you find works?
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Dave Garoutte

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Re: What's the word on USB mics?
« Reply #1 on: July 12, 2021, 05:06:02 PM »

Lots of people doing this.
Search Youtube for usb mics.  Lots of demos.
Curtis Judd is a pro audioer who does in depth reviews of stuff.
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Keith Broughton

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Re: What's the word on USB mics?
« Reply #2 on: July 12, 2021, 06:45:56 PM »

The Gallery side of our operation has been doing a lot of virtual art content over the last year, most of it we are shooting in the Studio (Sony camera, either an RE20 or a camera mounted shotgun mic for voice), but one of our teachers prefers to shoot her videos at home in her own studio space.

First video came out, video quality is fine but the audio sounds like you would expect a built-in webcam mic to sound. Wondering if a USB mic on a desk-mount stand might be an easy solution as I don't want to send her home with an audio interface, the RE20 and a bunch of cables.

Anybody doing this? What do you find works?
USB mics can sound quite reasonable for this application. Just make sure it's directional as some are just omnis on a stand.

Which makes me think of another question...
When did it become OK and even "cool" to have a big assed mic in the shot?
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Dave Garoutte

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Re: What's the word on USB mics?
« Reply #3 on: July 12, 2021, 08:20:19 PM »

USB mics can sound quite reasonable for this application. Just make sure it's directional as some are just omnis on a stand.

Which makes me think of another question...
When did it become OK and even "cool" to have a big assed mic in the shot?
Because it looks like the radio DJ and talk show mics, so it must be right. ::)
Plus you can hide behind them.
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Tim McCulloch

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Re: What's the word on USB mics?
« Reply #4 on: July 12, 2021, 09:02:46 PM »

The Gallery side of our operation has been doing a lot of virtual art content over the last year, most of it we are shooting in the Studio (Sony camera, either an RE20 or a camera mounted shotgun mic for voice), but one of our teachers prefers to shoot her videos at home in her own studio space.

First video came out, video quality is fine but the audio sounds like you would expect a built-in webcam mic to sound. Wondering if a USB mic on a desk-mount stand might be an easy solution as I don't want to send her home with an audio interface, the RE20 and a bunch of cables.

Anybody doing this? What do you find works?

A friend of mine uses this mic (although with a different preamp/mixer)
https://www.amazon.com/Marantz-Pro-MPM1000-Recording-Microphone/dp/B08RFXT53N/
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Scott Helmke

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Re: What's the word on USB mics?
« Reply #5 on: July 12, 2021, 09:03:36 PM »

USB mics can sound quite reasonable for this application. Just make sure it's directional as some are just omnis on a stand.

Which makes me think of another question...
When did it become OK and even "cool" to have a big assed mic in the shot?

If you don't have a Shure SM7, you're nobody.

BTW, Shure now has a USB version of the SM7, or at least something that sounds pretty good and looks like an SM7.
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Tim McCulloch

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Re: What's the word on USB mics?
« Reply #6 on: July 12, 2021, 10:05:44 PM »

If you don't have a Shure SM7, you're nobody.

BTW, Shure now has a USB version of the SM7, or at least something that sounds pretty good and looks like an SM7.

Or an RE-20, or Heil PR-40.  All the "big" dynamic mics seem to need a lot of clean gain (these have sold a lot of Cloudlifters).

I've never known why having a mic in a camera shot, when it's clear a microphone is being used, became such a taboo.  Movies, plays/musicals.. yeah, I get it.  Note that the late night TV hosts have desk mics (as props or "last chance" backup) in shot.

So, Professor Broughton, how about a nice discussion of gain staging in a digital world?
  8) 8) 8)
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Doug Fowler

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Re: What's the word on USB mics?
« Reply #7 on: July 12, 2021, 10:23:58 PM »

Or an RE-20, or Heil PR-40.  All the "big" dynamic mics seem to need a lot of clean gain (these have sold a lot of Cloudlifters).

I've never known why having a mic in a camera shot, when it's clear a microphone is being used, became such a taboo.  Movies, plays/musicals.. yeah, I get it.  Note that the late night TV hosts have desk mics (as props or "last chance" backup) in shot.

So, Professor Broughton, how about a nice discussion of gain staging in a digital world?
  8) 8) 8)

Don't forget Senn 421!
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Justice C. Bigler

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Re: What's the word on USB mics?
« Reply #8 on: July 13, 2021, 03:05:59 AM »

Which makes me think of another question...
When did it become OK and even "cool" to have a big assed mic in the shot?
Showing off your big, expensive mic has always been cool, unless you're a video guy and then you get mad because people won't accommodate you when you show up to the gig 10 minutes before curtain.
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Helge A Bentsen

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Re: What's the word on USB mics?
« Reply #9 on: July 13, 2021, 06:16:34 AM »

I think it's better for unexperienced users to use a decent mic on a stand talking directly into it than trying to deal with lav placement, corrective eq and room acoustic.
Did a live podcast where the host decided we must use lavs and afterwards complained that it didn't "sound right".
I tried to warn him up front that a omni placed on your chest in a room with a PA doesn't sound like your SM7B up close, but that was ignored...

The next show we did I provided Sennheiser MD441, he thought they looked cool and sounded right.
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Re: What's the word on USB mics?
« Reply #9 on: July 13, 2021, 06:16:34 AM »


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