What is in this article?:
Miking the crowd
Of course, there are many mixing challenges unique to each type of work. In a stadium, the elements make a big difference. If it’s a humid day, with lots of water in the air, or if it’s foggy, that makes a big difference to the high-frequency content of the sound we’re capturing, and we EQ the mics to compensate. For sports, there’s also debate as to where to put the commentary in a 5.1 mix. Do you spread it across the front three channels to create a phantom center, or use the dedicated center channel only? We choose the latter. From a post-production point of view, and also if you’re doing world feeds, it’s convenient to be able to remove the center channel, and thus the commentator in the country of origin, and replace it with something else. Behind that center speaker, we also put some effects from the 5.1. A commentator’s mic is often cut off completely when he or she is not talking, and it does sound odd if the center channel suddenly goes dead.
Mixing live football is also less predictable than light entertainment. Obviously, you never know where a football is going to be kicked, so you’re always chasing it around the pitch, crossfading from one pitch mic or stereo pair to the next, and trying to maintain a consistent level as you fade from one mic channel to the next. You soon learn to pull channels down pretty quickly once the ball is kicked, as players often swear profusely after taking a shot!
Singer’s microphone technique
The technical challenges with a show like “The X Factor” are different. You have people with a wide range of abilities singing into microphones, some with good technique and others with none. On the night of show, they can be twice as loud as they were in rehearsal because they’re excited or half as loud because they’re nervous.