How To Mic a Walk and Talk

Shure is pleased to offer video professionals practical advice and tips to help them achieve the highest quality audio possible.

To address some of the common challenges videographers face, we’ve launched a three-part video series including the topics: How to Mic Someone at a Computer and How To Sync Audio and Video. In this part, we will describe how to mic a so-called “walk-and-talk” situation.

How To Mic A Walk-and-Talk

The walk-and-talk technique captures one or more individuals speaking while moving. In this video, we’ll show some ways to record professional-quality audio in an office or industrial environment using this method.

 

Transcript

When a video production involves someone talking while moving, getting clear audio can be more difficult than when they’re sitting or standing still.

One scenario that comes up occasionally is the walk-and-talk, where a person walks through an office or warehouse. The subject might give a virtual tour to viewers or participate in an interview with a second person.

Recording While Moving

If the subject is moving a short distance, it may be practical to use a shotgun microphone on a fish pole. A technician holding the pole can move the microphone to track the subject.

If the subject is moving around corners or through a very wide shot, however, a wireless microphone is essential. The easiest solution is to put a lavalier microphone and bodypack transmitter on the subject, allowing them to move freely. In this example, we’re using the Shure FP Wireless system.

The signal is picked up by the portable receiver, which runs on batteries. The receiver can be mounted on top of the camera or worn by the person holding the audio recorder. Because the distance from the microphone to the subject’s mouth doesn’t change, the sound level is very consistent.

Recording Two People

If you need to pick up the sound of the subject and an interviewer equally well, you have a couple of options. One option is for the interviewer to use a handheld mic, news-style, connected to a plug on wireless transmitter. News reporters use an omnidirectional mic because it can pick up two people easily. 

Using Wireless Lavaliers 

If it’s impractical or undesirable to have one of the subjects hold the microphone, you’ll need to mic them individually with two lavalier mics and two wireless bodypack transmitters. Of course, each wireless transmitter needs to be tuned to a different frequency and picked up by a dedicated receiver. Ideally, the audio output from each receiver should be recorded on separate tracks on the camera or audio recorder. This gives you more flexibility when editing your video. 

With the right equipment, you can capture professional sounding audio, even when the speaker is moving. For more information about Shure products for video products, visit shure.com.

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Davida Rochman

Davida Rochman

A Shure associate since 1979, Davida Rochman graduated with a degree in Speech Communications and never imagined that her first post-college job would result in a lifelong career that had her marketing microphones rather than speaking into them. Today, Davida is a Communications Manager, lending her skills to a wide spectrum of activities, from public relations and social media to content development and sponsorships.

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