Equipping You to Communicate Effectively
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It has been sometime since people have posted to this area. What are you using between your video area and your camera stations? What has worked and what has not.
We have just gone through and replaced all our mics and now want to address the communications side.
We have the following area to consider.
1. Video area to camera stations-these could be wired, but would like to have a wireless system to add in the feature to support a moving camera.
2. We usually put on at least one drama per year and need to upgrade the cheap Radio Shack units we have now.
3. We are starting a security detail who is being trained by a local PD SWAT member and in how to react and interface with police when they arrive on the scene. We will need a wireless system for them.
What would be best if we could have a system that could provide 2-3 channels and worked between the wired and wireless.
You pretty much want your Security and A/V communications to live in separate world. We are using the Little bit more expensive motorola 2 way radios for out security, ushers and parking lot. The A/V communications is a full blown Clear Com 4 channel matrixed base station with a Telex BTR 800 wireless system occupying part of it. Most of the stations are wired with belt packs. The stage crew has 2 of the wireless belt packs, the Director has one and there will be a Video lead position that has one soon.
Peace (Phil 4:7)
For production intercom, very little beats RTS or Clear-Com. RTS two-wire or four-wire systems are easiest to interface with camera base stations since RTS is the standard of Television. Interface it to the base stations, and the com travels over the triax to the camera heads where a headset plugs directly in. Very simple, very elegant. And since it's on the triax, that makes it really easy for handheld camera positions as well. That, and then RTS beltpacks or desk stations for the rest of Production and you're ready to rock and roll. Clear-Com, on the other hand, is the standard of live theatre, and it's functionally equivalent though not plug-and-play compatible (you could interface them with a hybrid network, but that's a lot of work; it's easier to go all one way or the other).
Sometimes there is a need or benefit to separating the director/camera intercom channel from stage; that's also easy to do with an RTS or CC system, whether party-line or matrix.
I agree with Drew: you want security separate. It may not be a bad idea to have a security radio at some technical position such as Production Manager, but they should be isolated. The security com is best a business-band radio system; Motorola is top-notch. You probably want earpieces for at least some of those HTs. These will be inherently half-duplex where only one party can transmit at a time, and if two transmitters are on you will either receive the strongest of the two if their signal levels are vastly different, or nothing intelligible at all if levels are similar (as with any FM radio system). I believe you would have to apply for a license and frequency assignment since this is a licensed radio service.
I agree with comments so far. RTS for production. It also interfaces well with
Copperhead or Camplex fiber as well for tethered cameras.
Security/ushers separate radios. Don't install or use a repeater system as a power
outage will knock radios out. (Same with cellular but mostly because towers get
swamped after storms) Use common FRS radios for staff if you don't have the
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