InCinematographer - Issue 1 - June 2017 - 48

48

www.incinematographer.com | Issue 1 | June 2017

Miniature Mics
are Tough Enough
DPA Microphones flexes its muscle for History Channel reality documentary...

W

hen Nico Ruderman, President and Owner of
Spinrad Sound, was named audio supervisor
for the History Channel's reality documentary, The
Selection: Special Operations Experiment, he knew
he was about to take on a grueling and demanding
job. Ruderman would have 42 wireless lavs on a large
campus and in a variety of extreme elements. In order
to deliver unrivaled audio throughout the rigorous
production, Ruderman relied on DPA Microphones
d:screet 4061 Necklace and d:screet 4061 Miniature
Ominidirectional Microphones.
Harsh Test
"In looking at microphones, we needed a solution
that would allow us to be hands off with the 30
participants," says Ruderman. "Due to the nature
of the show, we had zero access to them. They
had to be able to mic themselves quickly. We also
needed something extremely durable
and DPA necklace mics were the best
solution for this. Since we wanted the
microphones to easily blend in with the
participants' uniforms, we selected DPA's
all black d:screet 4061 Necklace mics.
The Director, Grant Kahler, and I love the
sleek look of the mics and, of course, I
love how they sound. With the instructors,
we had to hide the lav, so we used the d:screet 4061
omnidirectional mic to match the necklace mics. DPA
was a great solution and I was happy to convince the
producers to use them."
One of Ruderman's biggest challenges in capturing
high-quality audio was the fact that the participants
were under extremely harsh conditions and
wearing the necklace mics 24-hours-a-day for two
weeks straight. "From our desert location where
temperatures reached sweltering triple digits, to
the water and sand of the beach and ocean, they
were almost always miked, even when they were
sleeping," adds Ruderman. "The DPA necklace mic's
resilience was impressive. Most of the mics were wet
at one point or another during the show, but dried
out and worked just fine."
Great Range
Another challenge Ruderman faced when capturing
the audio was the instructors' varying vocal ranges.
"The instructors would be whispering one minute,
and screaming the next. The d:screet Necklace mics
handled the varying levels of the instructors' audio

"d:screet 4061 necklace and
miniature microphones offers
the most clear, transparent, and
natural sound available"
Nico Ruderman, Audio Supervisor

Harsh reality:
The Selection:
Special Operations
Experiment

DPA Microphones' d:screet
4061 Necklace mic

DPA Microphones' d:screet
4061 Miniature mic

incredibly well," says Ruderman. "We never had
any clipping on the mics and, overall, they handled
remarkably well. The DPA mics definitely have a
great range."
Ruderman used his DPA mics with a combination
of Lectrosonics and Zaxcom equipment. "Another
cool thing with DPA mics, and another reason why we
went with them, in addition to their amazing sound,
is that we could easily swap out the transmitters as
needed," says Ruderman. "The Microdot connectors
were a lifesaver as they allowed the participants to
easily swap transmitters when needed. When they
were on base, we would use Lectrosonics but when
we left base, we would swap over to Zaxcom because
of its time-stamped integrated recording. We left the
adaptors attached and taped into the transmitters.
The participants would have their two transmitters
and would simply change over from Lectrosonics
to Zaxcom, and vice versa as needed. It cut down
on the mics we needed in half, which was amazing.
The fact that DPA mics are compatible with all major
companies is a plus when working on a project of this
magnitude."
The Wireless Mix
In addition to his DPAs, Ruderman also used a
Yamaha CL-5 as his main mixing board, seven Sound

Devices 970s for his multi-tracking across
different wireless zones on the base
and Sound Devices 688s out in the field.
Ruderman also used Wisycom receivers
for their wideband capabilities, in addition
to the Lectrosonics receivers. In total, we
had 42 wireless mics that needed to be
picked up across three different wireless
zones.
"This production presented huge challenges and
thanks to DPA, we were able to deliver fantastic
audio for what turned out to be a really great
show," says Ruderman. "The show went off without
a hitch and I also want to thank Travis Franklin, the
nighttime A1, who was a huge asset to the show.
This show didn't only test the participants, but all
of the production personnel and equipment, and
I'm thrilled with how my DPA gear performed. I will
definitely use DPA again."
Tough Challenge
The Selection: Special Operations Experiment is a
new History Channel series that places 30 men and
women with no military background through the
most intense physical and mental challenges of their
lives.
Instructing the 30 civilian participants are six of
the finest combat veterans that range across various
U.S. Special Operations units. With the instructors
challenging them both mentally and physically, with
tear gas, interrogation simulation and psychological
warfare among other tests, the participants are
driven to the breaking point.
This is not a competition series - there are no cash
rewards - only a test against oneself to see if the
mind has the will and strength to push the body to
complete the challenges.
www.dpamicrophones.com


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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of InCinematographer - Issue 1 - June 2017

In This Issue
InCinematographer - Issue 1 - June 2017 - Intro
InCinematographer - Issue 1 - June 2017 - Cover1
InCinematographer - Issue 1 - June 2017 - Cover2
InCinematographer - Issue 1 - June 2017 - In This Issue
InCinematographer - Issue 1 - June 2017 - 4
InCinematographer - Issue 1 - June 2017 - 5
InCinematographer - Issue 1 - June 2017 - 6
InCinematographer - Issue 1 - June 2017 - 7
InCinematographer - Issue 1 - June 2017 - 8
InCinematographer - Issue 1 - June 2017 - 9
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InCinematographer - Issue 1 - June 2017 - 11
InCinematographer - Issue 1 - June 2017 - 12
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InCinematographer - Issue 1 - June 2017 - 14
InCinematographer - Issue 1 - June 2017 - 15
InCinematographer - Issue 1 - June 2017 - 16
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InCinematographer - Issue 1 - June 2017 - 18
InCinematographer - Issue 1 - June 2017 - 19
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