Current Happenings – July 2, 2012

Today I filmed some quick person-on-the-street type shots for an upcoming Obama related video series. The plan was to match footage that was shot in New York City a couple of weeks ago (I couldn’t attend because of a location scout). I really haven’t shot much video on my 5DMK3, or really on any DSLR ever since the FS100 came into the picture. But surprisingly, it went relatively smooth considering we had audio gear die on us.

The following are screenshots right out of the raw file from the camera.

It was supposed to be a very simple shoot: Handheld 5D, an external recorder, some quick lines, and then we’re out. What ended up happening is that our Tascam DR-100 (which I find to be a very reliable machine) went dead on us. That’s no fault of the Tascam’s, but because whoever borrowed it from the company beforehand (both XLR’s were completely kaput). At the last second, when all seemed to be lost, I thought, “Well, there’s on option I know of, we can go line-in.”

I started shooting on DSLRs (for video) during the wonderful age of AGC (auto gain control). There was no ‘line-in’ without cumbersome setups (Beachtek comes to mind), so everyone grabbed an H4n and created some complicated post workflows. With the 5DMK3, you don’t get the best audio in the world, but for quick shoots like the one I did today, it works perfectly. Line in (XLR to 3.5mm), monitoring out (3.5mm to headphones), and the ability to visually monitor levels and manipulate gain while recording. Anyway, it was my first time using audio in with the 5D, and it was a piece of cake. I’ll probably use this feature more in the future for low budget short films and commercials.