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Old October 15th, 2007, 01:26 PM   #1
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Same Mic, Different Camera, Disappointing Audio

Hi Guys,

I recently upgraded from a PD150 camcorder to Canon's A1, and on my first shoot with the new camera, I attached the PD150's shotgun mic to it.
During interviews, I noticed much more background noise than ever before. I assume the problem lies in my settings, as I don't know too much about audio.

I shot with ATT set to off, and with the camera set to Mic (not Line). There was no reason behind these decisions. I also had Auto Levels turned on.

Thanks,

Jordie Shapiro
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Old October 15th, 2007, 01:28 PM   #2
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Did you turn on the XLR inputs from the audio menu? If not, you were using the in-cam mics.
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Old October 15th, 2007, 01:34 PM   #3
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Yes! I was definitely getting audio through the attached mic.

Do you think having the audio set to Auto Levels, helped bring up the background noise?
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Old October 15th, 2007, 09:45 PM   #4
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absolutely.

I try never to use autogain on mics.

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Old October 16th, 2007, 01:14 AM   #5
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Autogain does not affect the loudess ratio between the voice of the talent and bacground, it might just pump up the levels during quiet passages.
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Old October 16th, 2007, 09:14 AM   #6
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That depends on how loud the ambient noise is. If it's reasonably loud and the talent is a quiet speaker, the autogain responds to the noise floor more than the voice. The, even those quiet passages are no long quiet.

Regards,

Ty Ford
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Old October 16th, 2007, 12:49 PM   #7
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Hi Jordie,

I'm guessing you're auto-gain hunt is a bit of a wild goose chase. If you are using any microphone more than 10 feet from your subject, you won't be happy with the results. Autogain or manually cranked up, proximity effect is your enemy - unless you can get your subjects to yell their words... <wink>

However, you did say you had better results with the PD150 - did you use a different shotgun mic there?

Good luck, Michael
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Old October 16th, 2007, 01:31 PM   #8
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FWIW,

I had an "Audio Bootcamp" here in my studio a few years back and someone brought a PD150. We were very shocked by the comparison between the PD150 on-camera mic and a Sennheiser 416. It was not just a night and day difference, it was more like a night and day and night and day and night and day difference.


As I explained to them, the camera costs, what, about $3-4K? A 416 costs about $1300. How much of the $3-4K do you think went into the mic? Maybe $100-200?

The take away message is that you DO have to pay for quality.

Take away message Part B is, if you can't get closer than a few feet (acoustics of the space depending), your sound will suck regardless of which mic you use.

Part C is, "No, really, you have to get closer if you want good sound."

Regards,

Ty Ford
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