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Foley / Music - audio sampling kit
  • I am looking for some advice on audio sampling kit. I want to pick up a good quality microphone with very low self noise that I can use for high quality audio samples to be used for music production and foley, probably a condenser as I want to use it outside for field recording as well as in the studio. A wide frequency response seems the way to go for audio production, but this probably means getting a new recorder (I currently have a Sony pcm-m10) which is quite low noise but probably not good enough for music production?

    Price wise (I understand this can soak up all I am willing to throw at it) I have been looking at the Earthworks qtc40/50 Mics but would prefer to spend a bit less (around £500/$800) for the mic especially if I need a new recorder.. I have also been researching portable dat recorders which seem to have a good frequency response, but not sure if old tech is a good option? Analog tone?

    It would also be nice if I could use the sound kit with the GH4 too..

    If I need a new recorder and mic I'd like to keep it around £1200 - £1500 ($2000-$2500) for both.. It would be great to get some input from others as over six months of research has still left me confused about the right kit to go for to get the best quality on a budget, thanks :)


  • 6 Replies sorted by
  • I am not really pro at foley things, so get it with big grain of salt.

    May be go cheap? :-)

    Also, in reality if you are up to really small separate mic capsules it is usually Panasonic ones that have good reputation.

    For good sensitivity shotgun (I think it can be used for some of your tasks) - Rode NTG 3.

    Let me know exact specifics. I know that PCM-M10 is very popular recorder among foley people.

  • Thanks @Vitaliy for your suggestions :) I have looked at the Rode NTG 3 it looked a good all rounder mic!

    Exact specifics of project...

    Experimental film & sound recording project recording high quality "real world" samples for sequencing into "music" using hardware samplers (mpc & electribe sx) and analog synths & effects processing.

    Sounds to be sampled include traditional instruments (eg. piano wire plucking) through to small/quiet animal noises eg. fly buzz's and moth wing flapping etc.

    Obviously good sound in will improve final sound output, and things I have considered for good quality (but not cheap) include..

    1) Sound devices recorder (£1500/$2500) to use with cheaper mic eg.NTG 3 (£400/$650)

    2) Dat tape recorder (£250/$400) to use with high end mic Earthworks qtc 50 (£1500/$2500)

    3) Adding a good quality pre amp (£300/$500) to sony pcm-m10 and a high quality mic (£750/$1000)Earthworks qtc 40.

    Cheap options for high quality recording would be great if possible as I'm an artist doing some experimentation, that Behringer looks interesting on a budget.. maybe when this "music" hits the charts.. I can get the gear I'd like.. to make things easier? :)

  • The best quality on a budget:

    Sound Devices USBPre 2, Tascam DR-100MKII, Rode NTG 3

    USBPre 2 is Sound Devices quality. Great preamps and limiters. And it has digital output. DR-100MKII has digital input. So there you go. NTG 3 because of this:

    . Great all rounder mic.

    I have this combination and it just works awesome. You don't need to worry about input levels etc. in the recorder, because it's all digital. And with the great limiter, it's never going to clip. Truly professional quality.

    Downside is that you'll end up with 3 devices in your bag (you also need USB battery, I recommend Anker Astro E5). But you cannot get everything if you want to save some money.

    USBPre2 is also great audio interface for computer. So I use it at home and on the field.

  • matthere -

    i use a ntg-3 + tascam dr-40 for foley. also have a gh4 and the ntg-3 is a very useful microphone to own if you only will have one microphone. ideally though someone else should weigh in with a good recommendation for only foley, i am sure there are microphones in that price-range which will perform better or provide a more useful pick-up pattern.

  • You need a range of mics, the NT3 is nice outdoors, but indoors you will want cardiod or super cardiod without the interference tube. For foley and music you don't need to worry about framing, a good small condenser like the Audio Technicha 4041 will work great for dialogue, guitar, cymbals, and scratchy, rustley foley. (By the way that video with ntg3 has the mics far closer then usual boom situation, which is good for a tight shoot, but not really straining on mic's ability to record low noise, i.e. most mics sound good in this situation).

  • I had a feeling more than one mic was in order, @all Thanks for the info :)

    Any recommendations for a mic for very quiet sources?