In the world of television production, audio and video crews are faced with the challenges of staying concealed while capturing the action for hidden-camera shows. Wireless audio equipment becomes an even more crucial tool in these types of scenarios. Audio production company ToneMesa Inc. carefully selected its audio equipment with these applications in mind for the upcoming prank series SCIJINKS, airing on the Science Channel.
The hidden camera prank show uses scientists from fields of chemistry, physics and technology to play pranks on people by introducing funny and unusual scientific discoveries. Sound Mixer Joseph Maffei and owner of ToneMesa Daniel S. McCoy, CAS, relied on a range of wireless transmitters and receivers from Wisycom, designer and builder of the most sophisticated RF solutions for broadcast, film and live production.
The show required Maffei and McCoy to be both mobile and covert at any given moment. "We had to be low-key, so we chose a hybrid bag/cart setup to satisfy demanding needs of the video village and the show's recording track requirements," says Maffei. "We used Wisycom MCR42 receivers with MTP30, MTP40, MTP41 and MTB40 wireless microphone transmitters. We were very fortunate to be the first in North America to deploy Wisycom's new LBNA2 wideband antennas and they performed really well. We had to hide the LBNA2's in awkward places at times, including the inside of ceilings. We incorporated this setup with a BSRF AS-122 dual-channel active antenna splitter and the results have been flawless. In addition, we used three interchangeable Sound Devices recorders (688, 633 and MixPre-6)."
The battery life of the Wisycom transmitters was a stand-out feature for Maffei, who was getting over 18 plus hours use. There were plenty of plant mics in action and battery data was vital as windows to replace them were limited.
"Sound quality is the biggest strength of Wisycom," adds Maffei. "No other manufacturer optimizes its equipment to sound best under specific conditions. The AES signal-to-noise ratio is spectacular. In addition, Wisycom has been a life saver on many occasions. It has made coordinating frequencies at large capacity much easier. With the recent FCC chopping block in America, we still have an abundant amount of wireless real estate left to play with."
Another standout feature of the Wisycom gear for Maffei was its reliability. "We literally had zero hits or dropouts on this project even in the heaviest of congested environments of Los Angeles," says Maffei. "Wisycom has simply given me peace of mind. With its ultra-wide bandwidth, I know on run-and-gun days I'll find a clear, strong group of frequencies from location to location, and the batteries will go an entire day without having to swap replacements during awkward times. With Wisycom, I am assured that I'm handing my clients' clean and natural sounding files without interference or dropouts.
Maffei also compliments Wisycom's forward-thinking approach in terms of the changing RF climate in the U.S. "It's very exciting to see all the new Wisycom products coming out, especially the ones being produced to ease the burden of the FCC auctions. You have to love Wisycom for jumping in quickly and tailoring products to accommodate our loss in bandwidth."
Maffei and McCoy will be implementing a similar Wisycom system on their next project, a feature film for the Duplass Bros featuring Ray Romano.
Wisycom is a designer and builder of the most sophisticated RF solutions for broadcast, film and live production, renowned for their durability, flexibility, reliability, practicality and cost-effective price points. Wisycom's design process is driven by attention to detail, customer feedback and ultimate quality, from the selection of components to the manufacturing process, which takes place at the company's Italian plants. The company prides itself on serving as a technical advisor and partner to every customer. From custom design to evaluation and dimensioning of systems, the Wisycom team stands by its customers through every step of the process. For more information, please visit www.wisycom.com.