Question: How do you mike a wedding ceremony?
Answer: The dress has been purchased, the tuxedos have been rented, the cake has been ordered, the ceremony location reserved and the photographer is under contract. Wow! There is so much to do in preparation for the big event. This list represents just a handful of items that must be handled before a wedding. No wonder many couples hire a wedding coordinator to handle the logistics and reduce (somewhat) the stress involved with planning. One decision the couple may have made is that, along with photos, they want a quality video recording of the ceremony. This entails much more than a guy at the back of the venue with a camcorder. And you certainly don’t want a big camera peering over the shoulder of the officiant, either. So how do you capture not only the best video possible, but also great audio?
Let’s get one thing out of the way right up front, even though wired microphones are an option, you simply cannot have a bunch of microphone cables lying all over the floor, and you certainly do not want the mic visible in the video. If you choose to use wired microphones, make sure you use the minimal number you can get away with, as well as finding someplace where they can be well hidden. Quite often a boundary microphone such as the U851RO can be placed on a tabletop or the altar close to the couple and officiant. Another option is to use shotgun microphones such as the AT875R placed at a distance and aimed at the couple.
One other problem with using a wired microphone, or multiple wired microphones, is determining how to connect them to the camera. In most cases this means using a mixer of some type. This in itself is not much of a problem when you have a stationary camera, but can be problematic if the camera needs to move around the room because, as it would be tethered to the mixer or microphone.
Another option is a wired microphone mounted on the camera. An excellent microphone for this would be the PRO 24-CM Stereo Condensor Microphone, which is made just for this purpose.
Quite possibly the best way to mike a wedding would be using a wireless lavalier microphone system such as the System 10 Camera Mount System.
Both the receiver and belt-pack transmitter are battery operated, so there is nothing tethered to an AC power outlet, and the receiver mounts directly to the camera via the provided shoe mount. The system includes an omnidirectional microphone that will pick up sounds from 360 degrees around it. The optimal placement of the microphone is on the pastor, priest or officiant since they do the majority of speaking and are in close proximity to the couple. The omnidirectional pickup angle of the microphone will easily pick up the couple as they recite their vows. For added audio capabilities, two System 10 Camera Mount Systems can be used along with the AT8691 Camera Shoe Dual Mount and dual mono-to-stereo cable. This allows two receivers to be mounted on the camera.
If you have additional questions or would like a recommendation for an Audio-Technica microphone, feel free to contact the Audio-Technica Audio Solutions Department. We are always happy to help.