Thinking Outside the Soundbag

So for a month now I have been walking onto set like I’m Robocop. And if you are an F8 user out there you really should look into the iOS app. It is freeing. And for all of you Sound Device 6-series guys you too can now taste a little of this bagless lifestyle.

The latest firmware from Sound Devices now allows for 3rd party accessory makers to create WiFi apps to act as a remote control, enter meta data, and other options. And now the Sound Device’s own Wingman app allows for this over bluetooth. It doesn’t allow full control like the F8 iOS app but it is a step in the direction, away from harnessing bags to our bodies! The Zaxcom backpack body suit I feel went in the opposite direction of what the future holds.

Once you’ve gone bagless the first thing you will do is stop caring about the weight of your gear. To cart based location sound mixers this is an old concept of not caring about size, weight, or battery draw. But with the option to control your recorder wirelessly even making the transition to a cart from a bag easier.

The big advantage of going to a cart was getting to add a full size mixer/control surface to create great mixes. On the F8, you can work your faders from the iOS device. This means you don’t need a big rolling cart anymore for your mixing board.

By rack mounting your SD-6-SERIES or Zoom F8 into a rolling Gator Case or SKB Case you could now use cheaper rack mounted recievers, run off wall power or UPS systems, or even use your gator case also as your on set throne as you lord overy the audio on set. #SetLifeGoals #winning

My favorite out of the bag thinking is coming from Mixer Cage. They take the concept and layout of a bag but the mounting options of a camera cage. When the creator Daniel Powell uses it in the “cart mode” he slips it on top of a rolling camera tripod that also let’s him hang his iPad from and clamp a boom pole too. Featuring a few dozen 1/4″20 mounting holes he can magic arm a monitor, the iPad, extra recievers or IFB transmitters how ever he wants to fit the days needs. I’ve talked to a few beta testers and all have talked about how much faster they can work when operating from the Mixer Cage.

What does it take to go bagless? It seems everyone is opting to support iOS so the best option is the iPad mini. I use the iPod touch when I one man band and need to also opterase a boom pole. You will also want a separate IFB feed for yourself as you may want to feed yourself a different submix than what you give to the producers/clients/scripty. I use a Sennhesier IEM system because of its clarity but there are many different options, just make sure they don’t crackle or pop a lot like the comteks.

Some people ask how do you know when your talents lavs are popping and not your wireless monitors. Simple! Look at your peak meters on your IOS app aftwr you hear a crackle or pop. If any peak meters are lite up, your talents mic had the RF hit. If not, it was your monitor.
I hope everyone goes out and embraces a bagless future. Save your back from years or pain and buy an iPad!


2 thoughts on “Thinking Outside the Soundbag

  1. Nice perspective! I am waiting for makers to get out of the iOS trap. Blackmagic show what is possible with their new cameras that can be controlled from an Arduino shield, RC unit, or anything else you want to wire up. Free your ass and your sound will follow!


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