It is very important to take some time when you are looking for good sound equipment to ensure you are picking good quality equipment. While there is a general presumption that equipment that is expensive is better quality, it is not always true. It is very important to start looking at different brands that you are interested in and start doing some research. Simply purchasing the first piece of sound equipment that you find could have you purchasing something that is overpriced, inferior quality or inadequate for your needs.
Looking around and talking to other film makers should be quite helpful when you are trying to decide what sound equipment you need. In general, the most important piece of equipment for sound is a good set of microphones. You need microphones that will pick up ambient noises and also those that will be used to pick up the voices of your actors. If you have a choice between which quality you want to be the best you need to look at your voice microphones first. This will ensure that everything your actors say can be recorded in crystal clear quality. If you have to skimp heavily on prices you should be able to confidently purchase a cheaper microphone for ambient noises that will not cause you great headaches as you are trying to edit the film later.
There are numerous models of microphones that you can choose from. One of the biggest tips you can follow is to start looking for brands that are actually made from the same manufacturer, often this can save you a great amount of money if you find a lower priced brand from a company that you know and trust. This can allow you to still purchase a high quality microphone that is much cheaper than you would pay if it has a different brand name on it. This can allow you a lot of versatility and also allow you to purchase the professional equipment that you want much cheaper than if you were purchasing the pricier models.
One of the most important things you always need to remember to do regardless of what sound equipment you select is to ensure you record at a minimum 3 minutes of ambient sound in any area where you film. This means if your feature film is expected to have 5 different filming locations you should have a minimum of 15 minutes of sounds. Additionally, to make it easier to handle the sounds later if they are needed you should be sure that each is clearly labeled so that you can make appropriately choices while you are editing. You never know when you will need to use a sound loop rather than using the sounds of the actors, or if there will be background noise that is completely inappropriate for the scene you are filming.
Having the backup sounds will enable you to edit the sound to create the perfect scene, even if the filming conditions were not optimal. Just imagine how upsetting it could be if a sudden gust of wind came along during your filming. This could potentially ruin any film, and create huge problems during production trying to cut out the sounds of the wind while still keeping other ambient noises in place. By having the ambient background noise that is additional, you could simply replace the windy ambient noise with the more appropriate sound selection, which will ensure you do not have to reshoot an entire scene because of a small windstorm.
The problems that you may encounter during filming can always be corrected with the correct sound software and an appropriate amount of sound recorded. Just be sure you are using good equipment and proper software to obtain the best results. If you truly have a limited budget, you need to spend the bulk of your money on a good set of sound software since this will become one of the best investments you have ever made for your films. One saved feature film will make the price of the sound software quite worthy of the money you paid.
By Hollywood Connections Center Staff
The Worldwide Network Of Artists & Entertainment Industry Professionals