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Voice Recorder or Boundary Mic for wireless presentation?

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Hello all... first post! 

I'm a videographer that films a lot of corporate conferences.  Keynotes and breakouts.  Usually I'll either plug into the house soundboard at these events, mic the speaker up myself (I use Zoom H1's with a lav mic for this), or put a Zoom recorder on a podium if I know the speaker/s will stay there (Either an H1 or H2n).

I have a conference coming up in two weeks and the organizer just told me they are not paying for AV... they don't feel it's necessary.  Smaller conference that'll be all in breakout rooms (rooms that can hold 80-100 people... 30'x60' in size roughly).  Set up will be a projector and screen at the front of the room, and that's it.  No podium.  The presenters will just walk around the front of the room by the screen and give their presentation without any house sound. 

It will include audience participation in that audience members will come up to the front of the room at times to elaborate on certain points during each presentation.   I would literally need to have 20 lav mics ready to go and constantly be taking them off and onto other people as we go.  Not realistic.

So I'm thinking about how to best capture the audio without putting lav mics on anyone.  The client is fine if it's not the best audio, but I'd still like to make it the best as possible. 

My thinking is to to put a couple Zoom H2n's on mic stands toward the front of the room and call it a day. 

Would boundary mics be better (like a couple ME33's connected to the Zooms for recording)? 

Zoom also just released the M4 with 32 bit float (  I'm wondering if those would be better than anything... IE... put one of them in the center of the front of the room and let the 32 bit float do its thing, leveling out the sound. 

I'm not an expert with 32 bit float, never really used that tech.  So I'm hoping there's some folks on here that have been in a similar situation who can tell me if I'm on the right track, or if there's a better alternative (something totally different I could try).

Look forward to any feedback!

Mike Caldwell:
Are you sure the client will be fine when they hear what room mics sound like for the primary audio?

Maybe a wireless lav on the main presenter and mic on a stand for the audience members to come up to?

Is there any audio on the video presentation?


--- Quote from: Mike Caldwell on January 24, 2023, 01:54:02 PM ---Are you sure the client will be fine when they hear what room mics sound like for the primary audio?

Maybe a wireless lav on the main presenter and mic on a stand for the audience members to come up to?

Is there any audio on the video presentation?

--- End quote ---

They're gonna have to be!  Lol.  It's a long-time client of mine and they've been fine with on-camera sound for simple things in the past.  So I'm not worried, at all, about that.  We're on the same page (I've warned them, over and over, that without professional audio, there's no guarantee for any type of audible sound in any video).

Anyway... this is a bit different in that there won't even be any hotel sound/AV team.  So it's not like my on-camera shotguns will even pick anything up.  So I'm thinking outside of the box here a bit and, honestly, it would be good to know the best option because this kind of scenario plays out sometimes when the house sound fails.  It'll be good to have a mic up front that would suffice as a good back-up source in the event a line feed ever cuts out. 

So, I guess to simplify the question for any other professional out there, here's the scenario...

There's a presenter 10' away.  Can't use a LAV or a handheld.  The mic has to be 10' away from the presenter.  The speaker might move side-to-side a little bit from the center point.  Maybe 10' either way from center.   If I could only put one microphone in front of him/her to record the audio from that spot, what would you use to get the best possible sound? 

Mike Caldwell:
I was thinking that the mic inputs would go direct to your system since there will be no audio support in the room.

For a surface mic look up a Crown PCC160 you can find them used for a couple hundred or less. They will need phantom power to operate.

Or you can buy them direct from the guy who designed them.

Dave Pluke:

--- Quote from: matthewmichael on January 24, 2023, 01:38:31 PM ---Look forward to any feedback!

--- End quote ---

NO, No FEEDBACK here!  ;D

Generally, I like boundary mics for roundtable discussions, but one needs to be mindful of table thumpers and jewelry rattlers.

If you're keeping it simple and want to work with what you have, the zooms on mic stands (with limiters set) are probably best. Otherwise, it'd be an audio console with AutoMix and a combination of boundary and shotgun mics.



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