1 03 2010

Friday I was in Charlotte for a promo event for the CIAA tournament. Here some photos of your boy Genuwine.

Tascam just stepped it UP!

2 02 2010

Tascam’s previous field recorder was the HD-P2, which is a 2 channel recorder with timecode. Its a pretty sweet recorder.

Tascam HD-P2 recorder

But now they’ve stepped up their game. In the past couple of years multi channel recorders have been getting cheaper and better. And with the explosion of DSLR film making it creates the stronger need for a dedicated soundie, thus improving our need, which is a huuuuge plus. One thing that really hasn’t been improving lately is the quality to price ratio with sound gear, until now.

Tascam DR-680

Tascam’s DR-680 is possibly a game changer. yeah it doesn’t have timecode, but its not like you can’t stick timecode into an unused input, CAUSE ITS GOT 6! And in the game I’m in, timecode isn’t an issue. So for less than $1000 you’re getting a 6 channel recorder. My idea setup is running my 4 mixer inputs to channels 1-4 and then sending a mix to 5 and 6. Post will wet their panties. Buuuut for now, my current mixer doesn’t have dedicated outs for each input. I’ve got the older PSC mk4 mark2 mixer. although a 4 channel mixer, no dedicated outs. Thus requiring me to step up to the Alphamix or ideally, SD 552.

some damn good nom noms

20 10 2009

recently i came up on some awesome vegan marshmallows. there used to be this one company that made them, but they were big fat liars and used animal gutz in their products. so boo ya! found sweet and sara. hit up whole foods and shhhaaapooww! got em stacked in the fridge! well… actually i did have them stacked 4 high. now i just have one box left. they are a gazillion times better than the other ones from the big fat liars. they melt so much better, and even roast good over a fire.

they are cubes, which look kinda odd at first, but they work better for all things nomable.

they got these cute little smores too!

and holy shit! when i went to the site today, low and behold they got dem mini mallows!!!! previously i was biting chunks of the bigger ones and spitting them into my hot chokit. April might have yelled at me for that…

these lil buggers are hand made in NY and are animal product free and friendly(simon would definitely eat them). so yeah, go buy some.

dalton jones benefit bmx jam – oct 11

26 09 2009


Recently Eastern Rider Phil Jones’ little brother Dalton Jones was paralyzed in an accident. He is recovering and Phil and his father are facing enormous bills and costs associated with Dalton’s care. The Charlotte BMX Community is coming together to lend a helping hand in raising some much-needed cash for Phil and his father in their time of need.

1pm till Dark – $10 jam to ride all afternoon and win some rad prizes and help out.
Pads and Helmet are required to ride the park, so be sure to bring yours.

The park is located at the Naomi Drenan Recreation Center – 750 Beal Street, Charlotte NC 28211
Park website is

Spread the word, show up, and lend a helping hand to a fellow bmx’er.

the cost of film school worth it?

17 09 2009

Today wake forest university announced they are adding a documentary film program to their MA and MFA. i have no clue what thats going to cost, but for an undergrad in communications you’re looking at $30k/year. high point university just opened their new communications building (which is amazing btw!). but that price is about the same, maybe a little more at $35k i think. 

so for a 4 year degree you’re looking at $120k, easily, if not more. thats a lot of damn money! i started out filming bike videos and got my video experience in the real world. i got my education from piedmont community college (AAS in digital effects and animation/film). i spent less than $5k on my education. that includes driving to and from school(its in BFE), books and crap. not including living expenses, cause i’d be paying that anyway. 

currently i’m in my 2nd “real” job. my first was a producer at a TV station and now i’m a video producer for a news paper (going on 2 years). these 2 jobs are what those students would be applying for. i’m not gonna say how much money i make here at the paper, but if i spent $120k on my education i’d be pissed as all get out! granted, yes, those degrees are all fancy and can help, but still, in this biz its about your experience and skills. frankly, its embarrassing to see some of the stuff that comes out of these big 4 year schools. 

in north carolina, i don’t know of any jobs that students coming out of a 4 year undergrad with little experience that would be making more than $40k. i don’t see the value in it. 

sweet new gizmo! sound devices 552 mixer

10 09 2009

sound devices(makers of quality sound gear) just announced their new SD 552. i’m guessing this is just an added model to their line of mixers, the mix pre, 302, 442(n), and now 552. i’ve always liked the idea of a 5 channel mixer. 4 channels is def sweet to have but adding another channel is all the better! especially with the more common type of reality shows popping up.

but what stands out so great about this 5 channel mixer? oooh another channel… so what? well, they did a bit more than just add another channel. they went ahead and tossed in a damn recorder in there to boot! so thats 5 channels of audio.. and a freakin recorder! albeit a 2 channel recorder, its pretty damn sweet. perfect for your backup track or awesome for indy stuff. as of now i’m still not aware of any bag based recorders with 5 dedicated inputs. but i’m sure sound devices is working on something tho!

check it out on the sound devices page for more info. she’ll ring up for around $2900, trew audio has it for $2895

throw in a denecke time code generator and you’re set!

but i’m still rocking my psc m4 mkii 4 channel set up.

the digital journalist?

26 08 2009

i left the teevee biz about 2 years ago and jumped into the news paper biz. the GM at my station threw me the ol “you know news papers are dying every day..” spiel. but there was just something about the biz that attracted me. i was tired of doing the same ‘ol 10, 15, 30 second promo spots. i was more into trying to tell a story.

so here I am, a news paper videographer. yeah, i get lots of questions about that one…

but since i’ve been here i’ve been caught up in an ever changing industry. there’s been the idea that every reporter should know how to shoot video, record audio, take photos, blah blah blah… no, they don’t. it would be nice if they knew how to do all that stuff, but i don’t think its necessary.

what every reporter should know how to do is:

•record audio, with a mic. be it an interview, nat sounds or voice over. audio is a strong building block of creating great multimedia.

•write a script. bring out those awesome moments from the audio, then tie it together with a bangin’ script

•read a voice over of that bangin’ script you just wrote.

•edit audio. its not that hard, especially if you recorded it right. and editing audio makes you realize quicker what you did wrong and how to improve it.

•carry shit.  yes my gear is heavy and i don’t like carrying my camera bag, tripod, light stands and lighting kit all by my self. we are a team.

•be completely silent during recording. let the subject keep going, shake your head in agreement, don’t talk. taking notes is fine, but keep it as silent as possible, that means no page turns while the subject is talking. you should refer to time code. if working with a videographer, have them put their camera to day run time code. then refer to your watch for time code.

•understand all aspects of production. go take an intro to film production course at a community college. it’ll help you a lot more than taking that 5 day multimedia workshop.

if a reporter could do all of that, they would be a force to be reckoned with! one of the reporters i work with quite a bit doesn’t know how to record audio, but they can write a script, read VO and they are becoming very understanding of how production works(location scouting, time management, sound issues, lighting, etc..). basically, they are becoming a producer, which should be half the role of a reporter. and i love working with that reporter because of that.

an awesome toolset for any reporter would be this:

zoom h4n recorder ($350)

rode ntg2 shotgun mic w/fuzzy windsock ($300)

point and shoot digital camera w/hd video such as panasonic lx3($500)

tripod, cables, headphones, bag, memory card, etc.. ($150)

total- $1300

yeah, thats a lot of money. trust me i know. my camera bag is valued around $10k. but its money well spent. if you have a good accountant it can probably be a tax right off too. but you know what. its yours. not the company you work for, yours. and you can do whatever you want with it. and in most cases, if you spend your hard earned money on something, you’re going to put it to use and respect it more.

and while you’re at it. please have a cell phone. preferably a blackberry or iphone.

here’s a multimedia piece a co-worker did all with an iphone. nothing other than his phone. i think this is his 3rd multimedia production with his 3g iphone. if he had the 3gs i’m sure he’d be doing some video along with it. but he recorded audio, took photos, edited his audio and put a collage of photos to go with it.