Powering the ME66 with phantom power or AA battery. Any differences in quality? at DVinfo.net

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Old June 27th, 2003, 12:17 PM   #1
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Powering the ME66 with phantom power or AA battery. Any differences in quality?

I was curious if there was any difference in recorded audio quality between powering the ME66 with the DVX's phantom power or simply using a AA battery?
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Old June 27th, 2003, 01:34 PM   #2
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I made some test powering the ME66 through the battery or Phantom with a MM-1 portable mic preamp and yes I really see a difference on the noise floor. I get much better results with the Phantom power but that can also come from the MM-1 design. On both cases I used the MM-1 (even for the battery test) because the pre-amp on the cam I use (GL2) is not as good as the MM-1.
Also the MM-1 provides 12V and 48V power, any setting pretty much gave me the same result.

So from now I've removed the battery and use Phantom only (save me another battery to monitor).
You're lucky to have Phantom and XLR so I would go for it (after some tests of course).

Dany
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Old June 27th, 2003, 01:39 PM   #3
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The only time I have noticed a difference is when I let the battery run down on a camera without phantom power. Gave me the about the same results as when I forgot to turn the battery module on. (Amazingly I was able to bring up the sound level using Sound Forge.)
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Old June 27th, 2003, 02:14 PM   #4
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The K6P (phantom) module provides even better phantom sound than the normal K6 does, which is much better than using a battery. If anyone is interested in buying a K6P module for their ME66, see my post in the classifieds. I will also trade my K6P for a normal K6 if anyone is interested. Thanks!
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Old June 28th, 2003, 12:58 PM   #5
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Dany hit the nail on the head... do some tests...

In general, anything with a power supply unit WILL generate noise.. from hums to hisses to drones etc etc

Doesnt make a difference when viewing on a standard tv, but run thru a Surround Processor with a decent EQ and you will notice the difference...
One top of that, if your working in a 5.1 audio environment, that excessive noise could be detrimental to the finihsed product as when determining set freq levels, they are being corrupted by this noise..
It may not be THAT audible to the human ear but processing audio using frequency values alone (such as segregating an low end Sub frequency to set for LFE in 5.1) will give u inacurate readings...
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Old June 28th, 2003, 11:53 PM   #6
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Many microphones, maybe all of them, perform better with Phantom Power than with a 1.5 or 9 volt battery.

Here is the spec set for the Audio-Technica 835B shotgun:

OPEN CIRCUIT SENSITIVITY
PHANTOM 38 dB (12.5 mV) re 1V at 1 Pa
BATTERY 39 dB (11.2 mV) re 1V at 1 Pa

IMPEDANCE
PHANTOM 500 ohms
BATTERY 600 ohms

MAXIMUM INPUT
PHANTOM 130 dB SPL, 1 kHz at 1% T.H.D.
BATTERY 115 dB SPL, 1 kHz at 1% T.H.D.

DYNAMIC RANGE (TYPICAL)
PHANTOM 106 dB, 1 kHz at Max SPL
BATTERY 91 dB, 1 kHz at Max SPL

So it does make a difference. The reason I'm quoting AT information is that they seem to be very open with their technical information.
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Old June 29th, 2003, 10:01 AM   #7
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Damn- even using Phantom Power with my ME66 it's practically useless if any loud sounds happen. If I set the levels to maximize standard dialogue, if someone raises their voice it gets shrill and distorts. If I turn on mic ALC (on DVX100) it helps alleviate the problem but then my audio levels aren't precise, they flux to "try" and adjust to the volume change which, even then, isn't good enough.
Sometimes I wish I had purchased a cheaper shotgun or different style of mic. The sound it produces is incredible however it's only for low to medium volumed sounds/dialogue.

Man, how do people set their levels for environments with both low and loud sounds. If I set it for low the loud distorts, if I set it according to the loud sounds I can barely hear the low.
Guess the only way to do it is set each channel on the input of the shotgun to different levels and pan in post to accomidate the different levels beings all shotguns are in mono.
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Old June 29th, 2003, 01:19 PM   #8
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Scott,
If the K6P has better phantom sound, why do you want the other? Just curious as I'm shopping around.

Marcia

P.S. It occurs to me that I'm not altogether clear as to what exactly phantom power IS. The K6/K6p is plugged into a power source that hangs/mounts/is connected where? On the cam? On me? How big/bulky are these units? Does it basically come down to deciding between weight and mobility (battery power) vs. sound quality (phantom power)?
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Old June 29th, 2003, 01:36 PM   #9
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There are already several good threads on this topic:

http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showthrea...&threadid=9064
http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showthrea...&threadid=9082
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Old June 29th, 2003, 02:16 PM   #10
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Glenn,

The solution is to feed both camera channels with the microphone output and then set the gain levels on each differently. One lower than the other. Then you can switch channels in post.
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Old June 29th, 2003, 04:03 PM   #11
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I know I can pan to whatever channel sounds better but how do I duplicate that particular channel so it doesn't play in just the left or right channel. PS. I use Premiere and Vegas 4.0c.
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Old June 29th, 2003, 04:40 PM   #12
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Marcia,
The reason I want the regular K6 even though it provides inferior sound is because my XLR adapter can not support phantom power. So my mic is useless to me unless I have hte normal K6. Buying the K6P was a mistake on my part. I never intended to do this.
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Old June 29th, 2003, 04:49 PM   #13
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<<<-- Originally posted by Glen Elliott : I know I can pan to whatever channel sounds better but how do I duplicate that particular channel so it doesn't play in just the left or right channel. PS. I use Premiere and Vegas 4.0c. -->>>

Glen,
If I understand what you're asking, it shouldn't matter which editing software you're using. I've cut on Lightworks, Avids, and FCP, and on any of them what I've done (if for whatever reason there's only one channel available to me) is simply copy/paste the good audio onto an additional track. Pan the original audio on the first track one direction (eg left), then pan the copied track, the other direction (eg right). BTW, copy/paste works great for boosting the volume when it was recorded badly as well. You effectively double the volume you have to work with.
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