NO GAFFA NEEDED FOR SPEED
We know that much of the sound for film and television programs isn’t real-time. It’s later carefully captured, doctored and dubbed to suit the action, or a Foley studio does its thing. What’s interesting is that even some of the more mundane sounds – the ones we take for granted – are also frequently edited in, such as car noises. A chap called Steve Browell specialises in motor vehicle sounds and recently got a guernsey for Under The Skin, and Steve has also been involved in other film projects and, no surprise, the Need For Speed computer game franchise. This is all unashamedly about DPA microphones; he uses a matched pair of DPA’s d:dicate 4011C compact cardioid recording microphones and a selected pair of d:screet 4061 omnidirectional miniature microphones. Steve also owns a pair of d:dicate 4021 compact cardioid recording microphones in an DPA X/Y setup that have been customised to fit into a Rycote windshield. Here’s an insight into Steve’s work day.
“I also had to find materials that would withstand the high temperatures and a few Rycote windshields got burnt in the process,” he explains. “The McLaren MP4 12c was particularly bad for this; on overrun you can get a flame of three foot out of the exhaust. It can also be a problem fixing the microphones onto the cars and not damaging the paint and bodywork, which is important when some of them are valued at over $1m. Each car’s shape is so different and I need to be extremely flexible with my methods to get the microphones into a sweet spot: out of the direct airflow around the car but also avoiding some of the high temperatures and trying to dampen some of the vibration.”
Yep… note that Steve uses masking tape, not gaffa. Smart thinking. Shelling out for fixing the paintwork on a McLaren is going to need more than a spray can of touch-up.
Australian Distributor: DPA Microphones, Amber Technology www.ambertech.com.au