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Author Topic: Recording Marching Band (formerly: Furry windscreens - moisture resistance?)  (Read 13954 times)

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Offline voltronic

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Going to be doing a bunch of marching band recordings outside this fall, and I was wondering if anyone has ever used something like Scotch Guard on furry rat type windscreens and found it effective.  If so, are there any potential negative effects on the windscreen from doing this?  I'm not expecting actual waterproofing, just some protection from a light drizzle on damp October nights.
« Last Edit: August 18, 2014, 06:09:37 PM by voltronic »
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Offline Boomoperator

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Re: Furry windscreens - moisture resistance?
« Reply #1 on: August 16, 2014, 11:48:34 AM »
Found this on the Rycote website:

Q. Can I treat my Windjammer with water repellent to make it waterproof?
A.  The Windjammer material is already treated with a very fine layer of Scotchguard, but adding any further quantities can result in a crackling noise being heard. Water repellents may also seriously degrade the HF transparency of the backing, so we really would not recommend it.

I don't know if other brands use water repellent material.
Rycote & RemoteAudio also sell real rain covers, they're maybe even DIY-able..

http://player.vimeo.com/video/95980641
http://www.rycote.com/products/accessories-parts/duck-raincover/
http://www.remoteaudio.com/rainman/

Offline voltronic

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Re: Furry windscreens - moisture resistance?
« Reply #2 on: August 16, 2014, 01:21:23 PM »
Thanks for those links.  The ones I have are Chris Church's Dead Rats, and I don't think there's any waterproofing on them.
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Offline Gutbucket

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Re: Furry windscreens - moisture resistance?
« Reply #3 on: August 16, 2014, 06:18:33 PM »
I've sprayed the outside of foam screens and rats with silicone water repellant.  I find it mostly just makes it easier to shake water off them, rather than really keeping them from becoming wet.  I mostly did it just to make them slightly more hydrophobic so they'd have less tendency to wick wetness towards the microphones as easily.
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Offline voltronic

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Re: Furry windscreens - moisture resistance?
« Reply #4 on: August 16, 2014, 09:27:54 PM »
I've sprayed the outside of foam screens and rats with silicone water repellant.  I find it mostly just makes it easier to shake water off them, rather than really keeping them from becoming wet.  I mostly did it just to make them slightly more hydrophobic so they'd have less tendency to wick wetness towards the microphones as easily.

That's exactly what I'm going for.  I was just worried that the spray would potentially gunk up the fabric in a way that's no longer acousically transparent.  Thanks!
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Offline Gutbucket

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Re: Furry windscreens - moisture resistance?
« Reply #5 on: August 17, 2014, 01:27:47 PM »
It didn't seem to gunk them up.  Took a few hours to dry and was then basically unnoticeable.  I did the 'hold it against my ear and listen' test before and after and heard no differences in high frequency attenuation.
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Offline voltronic

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Re: Furry windscreens - moisture resistance?
« Reply #6 on: August 17, 2014, 02:29:14 PM »
Good to know.  I will spray away!
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Offline 2manyrocks

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Re: Furry windscreens - moisture resistance?
« Reply #7 on: August 17, 2014, 06:10:32 PM »
I'd like to know where the sweet spot is for recording a marching band.  They start out on the goal line, march all over the football field, turn in every direction...

How do you plan to record them? 

Offline voltronic

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Re: Furry windscreens - moisture resistance?
« Reply #8 on: August 17, 2014, 07:16:12 PM »
I'll let you know when I find out. :)  This season is the first I'll be bringing full size mics with me to marching band shows.  Most professional companies I see that record the final shows of the competition circuit for DVD production use an X/Y cardiod pair on a very tall stand at the 50, just in front of the stands.  Then they have 1 or 2 pairs of omni outriggers flanking the X/Y pair at around the 10 and 30 yard lines on either side.  I on the other hand have to do this more run-and-gun style with just one pair of mics, as I only have the capability to record 2 channels.

For home games, I have access to the press box roof since I'm on staff.  When I record, I am running video and audio together and that tends to be the best location for video to capture the whole band from a fixed camera angle (although quite distant for audio).  So if I'm up there, I'm going to experiment the first couple of times - one show I'll run the omnis clamped to the railing spaced as far as I can, probably about 15-20 feet.  The next time I'll try my cards in NOS (especially since my cards are really almost subcards).  In this situation I have plenty of time to set up carefully, and usually the only other person who might be up there is a video guy for the football team.

For away games and competitions, I'll be able to be either in the stands or on the field directly in front of the band, but definitely not above the press box.  If I'm on the field, that means I'm also on the schlepping crew for the pit equipment (podium, mallet instruments, synths, tympani, etc.).  In that situation, it's a very much run-and-gun situation and I'll need to have everything set up very compact on a monopod with a flash bracket and various attachments. 

If I'm in the stands as an audience member, I'll probably go with my cards in NOS clamped to bar if I'm right in front in the first row of stands.  Otherwise, I'll again be holding up the whole thing on my monopod / flash bracket setup.  I wouldn't use my omnis in that situation because I wouldn't have the space or time to spread them appropriately.
« Last Edit: August 17, 2014, 08:30:08 PM by voltronic »
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Offline 2manyrocks

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Re: Furry windscreens - moisture resistance?
« Reply #9 on: August 17, 2014, 11:38:54 PM »
This brings back a lot of old HS Band memories.  Our press box was located behind the stands, and from the location of our press box, I'd be afraid of recording a bunch of the chatter from the audience running their mouths instead of listening to the band. 

Offline voltronic

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Re: Furry windscreens - moisture resistance?
« Reply #10 on: August 18, 2014, 06:42:25 AM »
I've found that to be much more of a problem when recording in the stands.  When I've been on top of the press box, conversation is much quieter.  But then you sometimes hold on for dear life on very windy days. 
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Offline John Willett

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Re: Furry windscreens - moisture resistance?
« Reply #11 on: August 18, 2014, 07:30:26 AM »
I'd like to know where the sweet spot is for recording a marching band.  They start out on the goal line, march all over the football field, turn in every direction...

How do you plan to record them?

A pair of boundary mics on a large perspex panel each works wonderfully.  ;D

Offline 2manyrocks

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Re: Furry windscreens - moisture resistance?
« Reply #12 on: August 18, 2014, 07:42:39 AM »
How would you mount the boundary mics/panels and space them?  Would you hang each  panel off the top of the press box so many feet/meters apart?

Offline Gutbucket

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Re: Furry windscreens - moisture resistance?
« Reply #13 on: August 18, 2014, 09:08:58 AM »
Concrete wall = perspex panel for purposes of boundary mounting.
Just harder to adjust the orientation of the wall.
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Offline 2manyrocks

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Re: Furry windscreens - moisture resistance?
« Reply #14 on: August 18, 2014, 03:15:32 PM »
Please correct my limited understanding of boundary mics.  I got the impression that a boundary mic is essentially an omni mic placed on a flat surface (the boundary), but the mic usually goes in a housing to protect it from being stepped on as many boundary mics are floor mounted?

A while ago, I had drilled out some aluminum channel as a housing to try this out with some Rode NT45 omnis, but that's as far as I got with this. Seems like I had thought about suspending the mics with rubber bands inside the housing and then mounting the channel to a flat surface.   

 

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