I step into the bathroom and notice that the sound beyond the door does not diminish at all.
Bathrooms are typically poor places for audio recording anyway. The tile and sink and tub tend to reflect sound. But this room is worse than usual. Why? What's amplifying the noise beyond the door?
I look down.
The hardwood floor continues beyond the door. The hallway funnels the sound from the room beyond. This is not a good location to record audio.
The lesson: One of the most important aspects of a "location scout"--where you go to see a shooting location before you pack up your gear and friends to spend the day there--is to consider the acoustics of the place. How does it sound? Are you going to have echo problems? Is there something that makes noise you can't turn off? Does noise from outside bleed inside?
So, what can you do if you find yourself shooting somewhere with hardwood floors? Put fluffy stuff down. Grab blankets, towels, pillows, a mattress... even piles of clothes can help. I've been in a few recording rooms that have moving blankets tacked to the walls. You want anything that will absorb sound.
Your Media Production Mentor