Rocky Wyler explains some of the traps when working sound on a Reality TV Set.

When shooting reality television, many challenges come into play for everyone involved, producers, DP’s, audio; and it is important for everyone to work together to face these challenges. Audio has their own set of challenges when shooting reality, and as a DP I know how difficult these challenges can be and how much they affect the whole production.

For starters you need to have a good A1. Without an experienced person, all the technology in the world can’t save you from an audio disaster. You need someone that is knowledgeable and will be able to keep up with the constant changes and surprises of filming reality television. They should also take excellent care of the equipment and check everything at the end of each shoot day so that there are no surprises for the next day.  In my 25 + years of shooting all kinds of projects, reality shows are really hard on audio equipment, especially wireless mics. As a DP, there is nothing I hate more than waiting for audio when everyone else is ready to shoot.

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This is a thorough, thoughtful article. It’s interesting, reality TV seems to be a lot like the days of early film in the ways that a sound guy needs to be able to camouflage microphones. Read the article; it’s interesting.

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