Filmmaking Amateur | Flip Mino HD Audio Challenges (Day Eleven)

by Scott U
(Georgia, USA)

Lately, I've been spending time at a center that provides support for those with mental illness and severe addictions. It's a great place. They've transformed an entire neighborhood block from what was once a corner where oil (not a gas station) was sold and transferred to a beautiful urban garden (if you can call anything in Southwest Georgia urban). There is a lot of good work going on there and the peers (those being served) are characters. I think I may have an opportunity to tell an interesting story. So, I keep going back.

Last week, I got a Flip Mino HD and did some quick tests compared to my Panasonic DVX100A.

The Flip performed very well and given it's pocket size, the Flip is quickly becoming my go-to video camera. However, I recently did an interview at the center and found that the audio wasn't so great. Actually, it's not really usable. So, I am stuck. The Flip shoots better video than the Panasonic and is much less bulky. But the DVX100A, with its XLR line inputs, provides audio recordings in ways that the Flip never will.

Sound is so important in video. I actually argue that sound is more important than the video images. You can see my situation. At this point, to get the best of both worlds, I'll have to use the DVX100A when doing actual sit-down interviews. The Flip isn't bad at all with run and gun interviews (although you need to make sure you are about three feet or so from the interviewee. But I am not a fan of using two cameras to do what one camera can. But alas, the budget issues arise. Right now, there is no money in the budget for the Canon 5D I am after (or the 7D for that matter).

I'm not in a terrible place. After all, my problem is that I have two cameras. A more severe problem would be having no camera.

Does anybody have any ideas on how I can beef up my audio (without breaking the bank)? Does anyone have any stories where they shot a video using whatever equipment was handy? Leave your comments below. Thanks!

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