recent experience with shotgun or boundary mics?

Stuart R

Member
Hello all,

I've found a few threads about choir mics, PZMs, boundary mics, shotguns etc. but nothing very recent, so I'm curious how this continuing challenge has been going for others.

Children's theatre, leads all with their own lavs and heard loud and clear, but the poor ensemble just gets lost every time, even when they're putting out 110% (some of them weigh, like, 50 pounds). So I'd love a way to beef up their voices. In my experience, hanging choir mics aren't great because the kids aren't really in a position to stand still and sing with gusto directly at the mics, plus the mics can get caught in scenery, soft goods, etc. PZMs and boundary mics on the apron have the ol' footstep issue (yes, put them on a foam or rubber base) but our ensemble kids are usually in the upstage area. I tried using shotgun mics (AT?) years (as in 25) ago, and just remember how HUGE they were and intrusive on stands in front of the stage. That said, I don't know what's out there now. For example, a couple people suggested using AKG C747 v11 mini shotgun mics but some sites say they're discontinued, whilt the AKG site itself doesn't mention theatre as an application.

So, any advice on helping the family hear little Emily and her friends singing their hearts out upstage left?

Many thanks.
 

RonHebbard

Well-Known Member
Premium Member
Hello all,

I've found a few threads about choir mics, PZMs, boundary mics, shotguns etc. but nothing very recent, so I'm curious how this continuing challenge has been going for others.

Children's theatre, leads all with their own lavs and heard loud and clear, but the poor ensemble just gets lost every time, even when they're putting out 110% (some of them weigh, like, 50 pounds). So I'd love a way to beef up their voices. In my experience, hanging choir mics aren't great because the kids aren't really in a position to stand still and sing with gusto directly at the mics, plus the mics can get caught in scenery, soft goods, etc. PZMs and boundary mics on the apron have the ol' footstep issue (yes, put them on a foam or rubber base) but our ensemble kids are usually in the upstage area. I tried using shotgun mics (AT?) years (as in 25) ago, and just remember how HUGE they were and intrusive on stands in front of the stage. That said, I don't know what's out there now. For example, a couple people suggested using AKG C747 v11 mini shotgun mics but some sites say they're discontinued, whilt the AKG site itself doesn't mention theatre as an application.

So, any advice on helping the family hear little Emily and her friends singing their hearts out upstage left?

Many thanks.
@Stuart R Prerecord under ideal conditions and lip synch?
Toodleoo!
Ron Hebbard
 

StradivariusBone

Custom Title
Fight Leukemia
I've seen Ron's suggestion in real life more frequently these days. If it's good enough for Macy's?

In all reality, every situation is going to be different and unless your director is willing to block and choreo to the capability of the mics you have, there will be less than ideal audio from the kiddos.

One thing I've taken to doing for musical groups and choirs to tracks is using an US PA to drive the bulk of the track audio. It blends better with the performers and unlike wedges, the audience is in the field and it works for general PA too. The mains run less track and more of whatever vocal mic you can muster.
 

Lextech

Well-Known Member
For me hearing the kids FAR outweighs a mic in audience view. I am a fan of screwing a mic flange into the deck lip and mounting what ever small diaphragm condenser makes the most sense. Hyper cardioid if I am doing a straight show and there's no pit. Cardioid when there is a orchestra behind the mic. I understand the scenic designers worries but as I have explained to several directors, if the audience is noticing 3 mics at 3 inches tall across the front of the stage you have larger problems with your show.
 

JohnD

Well-Known Member
Fight Leukemia
Just have the kids Ethel Mermanize it!
 

JimOC_1

Active Member
Not a pro, but the AT897’s I use at the grade school have much better pick up/less off axis pickup, than the AT875r. So no win for the newer tech on that one. Had tried Shure MX202 before the ATs. Usually, the soundtrack is only fed through the monitors, with the only music in the mains being picked up by the mics.
Anyone have opinions on the Rode NTG2, 4, or 4+, vs the AT897?

Had tried US PAs, but for now the monitors seem easier.
 
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teqniqal

Well-Known Member
Is 'gain before feedback' your issue? If so, we could use some more information, like a plan and section showing the location(s) of your voices, locations of mics, and locations of loudspeakers (and make & model info for those). A drawing to scale, or some notations about dimensions / distances would be very helpful.
 

TimMc

Well-Known Member
Premium Member
"They don't have this problem on TV!" /sarc, satire, overall curmudeonliness.
 

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