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Old February 7th, 2008, 01:13 PM   #16
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Just pointing out that the AD-20 listed above isn't a pre-amp, but rather an AD converter.
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Old February 7th, 2008, 01:44 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by Jack Walker View Post
Those are very interesting looking!
[I'm not sure, but after quickly skimming dvinfo posting rules and faqs it seems I can post the below. If not, sorry, I may have missed posting rules.]

Right, new to me.

Since my last post I've continued quest for quality portable preamps, here and across other forums and manufacturers.

Atlas Audio Pro Juggernaut
Black Lion Audio Sparrow Micro Series ADC (a AD converter actually)
Core Sound Mic2496 V2
N-Box
Sound Professionals SP-PREAMP
Cantar X2 (large)
FMR Audio Really Nice Preamp
The Broadhurst Gardens No. 1 Dual Channel Microphone Preamplifier
Rupert Neve Designs - Portico 5012 (rackable but apparently small)
Graham Patten DMIC 20
Sonosax SX-M2
Hitec Audio PreMobile 2
Fel Battery Microphone Amplifier BMA1
SOUND PROFESSIONALS - NEW! MINIATURE LOW NOISE GAIN-SELECTABLE PORTABLE STEREO PREAMP. MADE IN USA (sorry for caps)
Musical Fidelity X-Pre V3 Preamplifier (not sure size)
Sonic Studios PA-3SX

I hope there are no duplicates with the previous mentions.

Alex
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Old February 7th, 2008, 01:46 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by Marco Leavitt View Post
Just pointing out that the AD-20 listed above isn't a pre-amp, but rather an AD converter.
But it seems it or a certain variation (Denecke AD-20/Zefiro Inbox dual Microphone Pre-Amp and 20-bit/44.1 A-to-D (Standalone)) does do preamp as well...

Alex
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Old February 7th, 2008, 02:03 PM   #19
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I guess I should be more specific. The AD-20 does have preamps, but it only outputs a digital signal. In other words, you couldn't connect it to any camcorder I'm aware of. It's a nice little AD converter though. It works nicely with HiMD and hard disk recorders. We use ours with a mixer (and the Denecke preamps turned off) and the signal to noise ratio is so far below that of any playback equipment I have that the hiss is essentially zero. I'm sure you'd hear it on high-end equipment. The internal preamps are only useable for about half the range however (that's why we use an external mixer). They get hissy pretty fast after that.
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Old February 7th, 2008, 02:31 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by Marco Leavitt View Post
I guess I should be more specific. The AD-20 does have preamps, but it only outputs a digital signal. In other words, you couldn't connect it to any camcorder I'm aware of. It's a nice little AD converter though. It works nicely with HiMD and hard disk recorders. We use ours with a mixer (and the Denecke preamps turned off) and the signal to noise ratio is so far below that of any playback equipment I have that the hiss is essentially zero. I'm sure you'd hear it on high-end equipment. The internal preamps are only useable for about half the range however (that's why we use an external mixer). They get hissy pretty fast after that.
This sounds wonderful. Lowest noise is also what I'm after, after listening to downloaded mp3s recorded with I-dont-know-what-gear where one hears no noise.

I guess AD-20's output could also be fed to a 'bit bucket' like the digital part of the M-Audio MicroTrack recorder. I have a separate search ongoing on portable recorders.

But although these look portable, parking them all on a hv20 make it more and more bulky... trade-offs trade-offs...

Thanks for the information on AD-20 use and low-noise.
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Old February 7th, 2008, 04:51 PM   #21
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"I'm looking at battery-powered audio stereo preamps with phantom power to fit on a Canon HV20 camera, overall still cheaper and smaller than the Canon XH-A1 camera."

Why are you looking at pre-amps? The HV20 has no line input. Spend your money on decent, phantom powered microphones, and use a device like the Beachtek. This has a mic level output which goes straight into the HV20, which will give you the best sound quality the HV20 is capable of recording.

If you want top quality sound, record dual system. The Zoom H4 will record far better sound quality than any DV or HDV camera. If you want better sound than the Zoom H4, get a better flash recorder. If you want the best, get a Sound Devices 702 for $2,000.

Patrick
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Old February 7th, 2008, 06:09 PM   #22
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"I'm looking at battery-powered audio stereo preamps with phantom power to fit on a Canon HV20 camera, overall still cheaper and smaller than the Canon XH-A1 camera."

Why are you looking at pre-amps? The HV20 has no line input. Spend your money on decent, phantom powered microphones, and use a device like the Beachtek. This has a mic level output which goes straight into the HV20, which will give you the best sound quality the HV20 is capable of recording.

If you want top quality sound, record dual system. The Zoom H4 will record far better sound quality than any DV or HDV camera. If you want better sound than the Zoom H4, get a better flash recorder. If you want the best, get a Sound Devices 702 for $2,000.

Patrick
Thanks for the advice. I know I read like a newbie... I'm a total one :-) and paranoid on top of that :-)

Phantom-powered mics - yes, I've noticed the difference. But their phantom power tends to be big, the smallest and quality I could find seems to be Denecke PS-2. Then there's Schoeps CMBI running with a battery within the body. I'm searching now to see whether CMBI's output can go into line-in of something else, or must it be mic-in of that smth else.

Zoom H4 - yes, looks good with its built-in 48v phantom power, but seems big. Zoom H2 looks smaller but its Line-In can't be modified volume (other than digitally) and CMBI doesn't modify its output.

Sound Devices 702 - yes, quality, but big to 'park' on HV20.

I think I'm looking for smallest quality combination power+capsule+preamp+recorder... whatever that is. Seems to me that whenever a single high-quality AD is mentioned it's going to be big, similar for preamp, for recorder, etc. The devices that combine any of these things into one seem to be lacking in one aspect or another.

Not to mention that I want it twice (M/S Stereo :-)

Alex
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Old February 7th, 2008, 06:30 PM   #23
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The Zoom H4 will record far better sound quality than any DV or HDV camera.
Patrick, I'm going to disagree with you here. If you take an average to low output mic and send it directly into the H4, you will need to turn up the gain so high that noise and hiss will be a problem, as the mic preamps for external mics aren't very high quality. This may not be an issue with a higher output mic and could be circumvented with a quality preamp sending line-in to the H4. But of course if you start adding expensive quality gear to overcome the limitations of the H4, then you might be better off buying one of the Sound Devices 7XX series recorders, as you pointed out.

And it is possible to record excellent sound using a mic into a DV camcorder, as that sound is not compressed and some DV camcorders have an OK mic preamp. Also, in my testing, even sending a quality mixer output into an HDV camcorder gave me better sound than sending a mic directly into the H4. Of course HDV has audio compression, and it is noticeable, but not as noticeable to me as the hiss/noise of an H4 with an average to low output mic directly connected.
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