Acquiring and Editing Audio
In addition, Premiere Pros compliance with two audio industry standards: ASIO (Audio
Stream In/Out) and VST (Virtual Studio Technology) ensure that it works smoothly with
a wide range of audio cards and dozens of audio e ect plug-ins. I cover those plug-ins, the
full range of audio e ects in Premiere Pro, and its Audio Mixer in Lesson 12.
Selecting the right mic for the job
Most likely you work with a camcorder that has an onboard mic. Onboard mics take
the middle ground.  ey pick up sound from everywhere, including wind, the hum of
overhead  uorescent lights, noises you make while handling the camcorder, as well as
the the hum of the zoom lens motor.
What you need are external mics: specialized mics that serve narrower but useful
functions. Here are the four basic types that suit most circumstances:
Surface mount
Four standard-issue mics: handheld, shotgun, lavaliere, and surface mount
Used by permission. Shure, Inc. 2005
Classroom in a Book
Handheld mic
Handheld mics are the workhorses of the audio industry. Since they are built with
internal shock mounts to reduce handling noise, you’ll use these mics for interviews,
place them on podiums to record speeches, and voice narrations with them.
Many handheld mics are omnidirectional, meaning that they pick up sound from all
directions.  ey’ll pick up ambient room noise as well as close-up audio. To minimize
that unwanted noise, keep the mic as close to your subject as practical—usually about a
foot from the speaker’s mouth.
Basic handhelds start at about $25. Top-of-the-line, durable handhelds start at $150.
Position handheld mics 12 inches from the speakers mouth at an angle of about 45°.
at cuts down on pops made by your breath when you pronounce Ps and Ts.
Shotgun mic
So-named because it resembles a shotgun barrel, the shotgun mics unidirectional barrel
(called an interference tube) narrows the focus of the audio  eld to about 30 degrees.
Shotgun mics dont zoom.  ink of them as looking through a long tube.  ey narrow
your “view” of the sound.
Note: e telephoto-lens equivalent in the microphone world is a parabolic dish. You’ve
seen networks use them along the sidelines of NFL games to get those great crunching hits.
Shotgun mics are a great way to reduce ambient noise and work well during informal,
impromptu interviews. Instead of shoving a handheld mic in a nervous interviewees
face, hold a shotgun mic farther away.
A good shotgun mic will set you back about $1,000.
Used by permission. Shure, Inc. 2005
Acquiring and Editing Audio
Lavaliere mic
Lavalieres are perfect for formal, sit-down interviews.  eir tiny size means that you can
conceal them to minimize that “Oh, were watching TV” disconnect.  e downside is
that most require batteries. You can buy a basic lav at an electronics store for $25.
High-quality lavs start at $200.
Surface mount—boundary—mic
You’ll use these specialized mics to pick up several speakers at a conference table or on
a theater stage.  ey’re built to be placed on a  at surface and pick up sound waves both
in the air and from the hard surface. A basic omni-directional boundary mic costs $40.
Higher quality boundary mics cost about $150.
Wireless systems and mics
Wireless mics open a whole new spectrum of possibilities, enabling you to record sound
from a distance. A er you’ve used one, youll wonder how you got along without it.
Depending on the wireless system, you can either hook up standard mics—handheld,
shotgun or lavaliere—to a wireless transmitter or use mics with built-in transmitters.
Entry-level set-ups cost about $200. Top-of-the-line systems retail for $2,000.
Best single-mic solution
If I had to choose a single-mic system solution, I’d go with a wireless shotgun mic. A
shotgun mic is versatile and using a wireless transmitter gives you great mobility. You
can get crystal clear audio even though the mic might be far from you on a podium, or in
your producers hands in the middle of a crowd. Interviews will be more spontaneous—
the mic can be less obtrusive than a typical handheld mic and there is no awkward pause
while plugging a cable into the camera.
Used by permission. Shure, Inc. 2005

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