Engineering Service, Inc.
Sound mixer Sharon Frye utilizes Sound Devices audio tools for Reality TV.
The draw of reality TV is that it is unpredictable; you never know who is going to do or say what next. For field mixer Sharon Frye, however, that means having as many available tracks to record is important. As a result, Frye turned to Sound Devices 664 and CL-6 products to make sure she captured everything on the Oxygen reality show “Bad Girls Club.”
“There are a lot of things that Sound Devices does to make the gear incredibly intuitive for a sound mixer,” she explains. “One of the biggest challenges when you’re mixing in the field, especially when there are a lot of things happening in a given scene or shoot, is that you cannot look down at your mixer, so it’s imperative that it has an easy-to-use layout. Another great feature of the interface is the readability of the screen, especially since we spend a lot of time in nightclubs and bars for the reality-style capture of these shows. Knowing that I can see the interface in the dark, and really any lighting scenario, truly makes a difference in the usability of the product.”
Needing to track seven girls living together under one roof, the 664 is able to record 16 tracks of audio to SD or CompactFlash memory cards. Combined with the CL-6 input control expansion accessory, the mixer gains six more rotary faders with PFL switches, LED metering and illuminated transport controls. In addition, the user interface is easy to read, making it ideal when shooting in any lighting situations.
“As the mixer, it’s my job to provide clean and usable audio,” explains Frye. “However, in applications when the camera is the only recordable source, I have to depend on the operator’s deduction of the situation to tell me whether my audio is clean, since I can’t listen to it directly. Now, with the 664 as my mixer and recorder, I know that if the on-camera audio isn’t being adequately captured, I have the clean ISO tracks directly on my mixer“.
With the ability to be both mixer and recorder, the 664 was the only recorder that Frye used during the 24/7 filming schedule.
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