B3 Omnidirectional Lavalier microphone delivers big results
Springfield, OR – December 2011… Launched on Discovery Velocity in the U.S. and Discovery Turbo in the U.K, Graveyard Carz is an automotive reality show focusing on restoring Chrysler muscle cars. Not only are the cars wrecked, they are beyond repair. Produced by The Division Productions, LLC, the cast of Graveyard Carz gets down and dirty as they restore these seemingly ‘beyond repair’ automobiles back to their past glory. The last thing the cast and crew of this show need is a mic that gets in the way of the fast-paced production. That’s precisely why the Countryman B3 Omni Round Lavalier microphone is so vital to this show.
Casey Faris is Executive Producer for Graveyard Carz. Sharing many of the everyday responsibilities with partner Mark Worman and sound recordist Richard Cranach, Faris is directly involved in all aspects of the show’s pre production, production, and post production. He is, without question, a ‘hands-on’ kind of guy. In the two months that Graveyard Carz has been in production, Faris reports their five Countryman B3 mics (four for production, one for backup) have become their favorite ‘go-to’ microphones.
“We initially auditioned three Countryman models,” says Faris, “and, for our requirements, the B3 worked the best. The B3’s sound quality is very natural, big, and full. Make no mistake, we’re getting studio quality audio from this little beast. We typically position the mics in the center of the chest on the inside of the talent’s tee shirt and the audio quality we’ve been getting is unbelievably great. Our sound mixer and I were floored when we initially heard the sound from this tiny microphone.”
Faris is equally impressed with the build quality of the Countryman B3. “In terms of reliability, these mics are awesome,” Faris reports. “As is the case with any reality show, the equipment isn’t always handled as ‘gently’ as one might hope for. The mics get their fair share of bumps, drops, etc., but they continue to deliver terrific sound quality for us.”
What Faris seems most impressed with, however, is the extent to which the entire cast and crew have come to rely on their B3’s. “When we’re shooting in the field,” Faris explained, “it’s not uncommon for us to have just an hour or so to get the shots we need. We’ve had numerous occasions where, instead of setting up a boom mic and working on the positioning of the boom/operator so as not to interfere with camera angles, we’ve elected to go with the B3 and a wireless transmitter instead. We find that we’re able to get really good audio quality and the process of clipping on the B3 and a wireless transmitter is not only easier—it saves us valuable time. We’re using the B3’s with Sennheiser wireless systems and the combination of these products yields terrific results with a minimum of time spent getting ready.”
Since his first encounter with Countryman Associates, Faris says the attention to detail and responsiveness of the company’s customer and technical support staff has been a most pleasant surprise, “The people at Countryman Associates have been great to deal with. When we initially spoke, we weren’t certain what mic we should use. To help us make the right decision, the company sent us three models to audition. I was very impressed with their willingness to provide us a choice of microphones. In my opinion, this kind of support isn’t typical of what one frequently experiences in this industry.”
As he re-directed his attention to the day’s production schedule, Faris offered this parting thought. “We’ve been very pleased with both the Countryman B3 mics and the responsive support we’ve received from the company,” he said, “and we’re extremely pleased with the sound quality the B3’s deliver. While we have a variety of audio recording products at our disposal, the bulk of the best audio tracks are now being captured using our B3’s. For such a tiny mic, the results are pretty darn big!”
To learn more about Graveyard Carz, visit the show’s website at www.graveyardcarz.com.