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Old November 20th, 2008, 07:54 PM   #1
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Ntg-3

Hello all, back again with some audio questions. Iíve been trying to invest in a Sennheiser 416, but I think at this point, Iím not going to find one for the price Iím looking for, and thatís probably my fault. Iíve gone back and read the very informative thread about the Senn 416, and re-read all the suggestions about the NTG-3.

Ideally, Iíd like to spend about $900 on equipment (which pretty much cuts out the Senn new). I plan to shoot indoors and outdoors, and am willing to do what I need to protect against nasty indoor echo. A lot of you have suggested that the NTG-3 is extremely similar to the Senn 416, which is why Iím considering it.

My extra funds for film have recently become my extra funds for my wedding, so cash has become tight. $600 for the NTG-3 sounds good. If I can go another $150 for boom pole and cables (XLR to phantom power to 1/8 inch) and maybe another $150 for the phantom power, that would all be ideal.
My questions:

1) For those that have used this, whatís your best technique to battle issues of indoor use?
2) Can anyone recommend a phantom power source thatíll just get my by?
3) Anyone recommend a good boom?
4) Some NTG-3s are going used for less. For the dollar, do you think itís best to buy new?

You guys are always very helpful, and more so, very knowledgeable and I respect that a lot. I hope to hear from you soon.
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Old November 21st, 2008, 07:45 AM   #2
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Rode NTG3 and Boom Pole

Hi Brian,

I haven 't been to Columbia, Missouri for a while (did some work there at the Uni a few years ago!)

I can't help with all your questions except that I highly rate the Rode NTG-3 (and Rodes after sales service/10 year guarantee should you ever have any issue with it - It does happen as another thread on here by me will inform). Seems a bit too new to be available second hand though so I guess that's $600 spent....and VERY well spent. Lovely mic. The very cheap WS7 windjammer is also excellent and very well worth buying for the NTG-3 and will help you with any outdoor work with it, ideally with the Rode Pistol Grip for boom. However, I sometimes use a (cheap) Rode Supension mount or an alternative make of wind protection (Rycote S Series 330) when it's on the Boom.

I have a 3 meter (5 section) Rode Boom Pole which is brilliant for a starter pole and very inexpensive. Looks very Pro too but maybe a tad heavy. They also do a shorter Mini Boom Pole (3 section, 2 Meters, I think off-hand) which will be even cheaper and a little lighter. Length/weight depends on your needs. Sure, there are lots of nice carbon fiber poles but those seem potentially out of your budget right now!!!

I'm sure others will chip in and answer your other questions. Good luck!
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Old November 21st, 2008, 08:40 AM   #3
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Thanks for your reply! I appreciate your insight! And hey, you've done work for the University? That's pretty sweet. I actually work for the University, and know a bunch of guys that do most of the UM System videos.

Anyway, Yeah, this NTG-3 looks pretty awesome. I've made a final offer for a Sennheiser 416, and if that falls through, I'm going with the NTG-3 for sure. It's tough to decide between the two: used Senn and a new NTG-3. I've known people that have used both and say they can't tell the difference between the two. Others say, hands down, the Sennheiser is the way to go.


** EDIT **

Well, the Sennheiser fell through, so looks like it's the NTG-3 for me!
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Old November 21st, 2008, 09:27 AM   #4
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I have an NTG-3 and can attest to its good quality (and no, I'm not interested in selling it! <grin>).

For the XLR-to-mini adapter and phantom power supply, consider rolling both operations into one device and look at one of the excellent Juicedlink adapters that supply phantom. I've got the 431 and it's a very nice unit. There are two channel versions that cost a bit less.

Fot the boom, can't help you much with suggestions in your budget. I looked long and hard and finally settled on a 12' Loon boom, but I'm sure that's quite a bit higher than you'll want to go. For a mount, I'm sold on the Rycote Invisions - the #7 is perfect with the Rode and is only $75.
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Old November 21st, 2008, 10:05 AM   #5
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About phantom power - you could also buy the similar NTG-2 and use AA battery as power source.
I have NTG-2 and it's a good mic. Not advocating it, just showing another way to solve phantom problem, if you haven't got a phantom capable cam.
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Old November 21st, 2008, 10:52 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Andris Krastins View Post
About phantom power - you could also buy the similar NTG-2 and use AA battery as power source.
I have NTG-2 and it's a good mic. Not advocating it, just showing another way to solve phantom problem, if you haven't got a phantom capable cam.
You're mixing up the NTG-1/NTG-2 family of mics with the NTG-3. The new NTG-3 is not at all similar to the NTG-2 except that they are both shotguns and both are made by Rode.
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Old November 21st, 2008, 11:16 AM   #7
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Looked at the JuicedLink CX211. It's the cheapest, but it doesn't really seem that I need much more. Additionally, I was looking at the Beachtek DXA-2S. Both seem suited to the kind of job I'm working with.
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Old November 21st, 2008, 11:34 AM   #8
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Which camera will you be using? I was just in the studio testing the NTG-3 with the Juiced Link last night, along with the SD 302 and a cheapy Azden 3 channel mixer, which actually, very surprisingly, held up well. I'll be getting a couple models from PSC to test too. In my opinion, depending on what camera that you're using and what kind of shoots you're doing, you may want to spend less on the mic, and more on a mixer (and this is coming from a guy who sells a lot of mics and no mixers :)
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Old November 21st, 2008, 11:44 AM   #9
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Don't laugh...

Sony HDR-HC9
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Old November 23rd, 2008, 03:08 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Guy Cochran View Post
In my opinion, depending on what camera that you're using and what kind of shoots you're doing, you may want to spend less on the mic, and more on a mixer (and this is coming from a guy who sells a lot of mics and no mixers :)
I agree Guy, all prosumer vid cam mic preamps are the pits, it's where they save money.

My NTG-3 via the SD302 into the Canon A1 line in sounds way better than its mic inputs, and much quieter. Petri here measured it as theoretically perfect noise figures.

I'm not a fan of the Beachteks, to me a good example of them is the Juiced link on line demo.

Cheers.
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Old November 28th, 2008, 11:50 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Brian Maurer View Post
Don't laugh...

Sony HDR-HC9
Hi Brian,

I have a similar camera (Sony SR-11) and wanted to put up a test to let you hear the RODE NTG-3 Shotgun Mic. Unfortunately, I found the most troubling part of the experience to be in getting reliable levels into a consumer camera. More so than buying a great mic, you need accurate consistent and reliable levels. Your camera probably just has a high and low setting for attenuation. No VU meters, no fine tuning of levels, no headphone level adjustment.

The ideal situation I would suggest is to use some of your budget to acquire a mixer with proper VU meters. Then test, test, test until you can accurately predict how much headroom you have with your mic. The mics I would suggest looking at are a little less expensive to arrive within your budget, however I'm confident that you'll get better results with the combination of a professional mixer and a lower priced mic. So, instead of the NTG-3, go for an NT3 hypercardioid indoors. It's heavy so take off the outer metal sleeve if you want to boom with it. For outdoors, less expensive solutions are the Audio Technica 875r and the Rode NTG-2.

If you were looking at the NTG-3 and Sennheiser MKH-416, I realize that you are serious about sound. So I would start by not looking at the portable XLR adapters, instead at something like the DV Promix 3
Or, I'm testing and considering reselling the Azden 4 channel Azden Corporation - Wireless Microphones For Working People - FMX-42 4-Channel Portable Mixer
I'll probably catch hell around here for suggesting it, however against a Sound Devices 302, I found it a very reasonable entry level contender for less than half the $$$.
If you would like, I can 30 day loan any of the above mentioned equipment at 10% of the price. That's a pretty bold offer. Considering the mixer street price is $549 and the mics are under $300. At least you'll then have some time to spend with the products before making a commitment and I'll know that we're providing a total working, field tested solution with a guarantee.

Best of luck,
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Old November 30th, 2008, 07:33 PM   #12
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Thank you very much for the offer. I was away for about a week for the holiday, and haven't had a chance to update here. I fear you may be right, about the sound levels on the camera, and until I'm able to upgrade, I hope I"ll be able to find something that works well. I've got a few hundred dollars left, actually. This weekend, things turned my way, and I came into ownership of a well priced Sennheiser 416. Now I'll need to power it / mix it, and get it into the camera. Boom suggestions would be great as well. I think there was a thread earlier here that I was reading about booms, so I might go take a look at that as well. Thanks again!
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Old December 2nd, 2008, 05:30 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Guy Cochran View Post
So, instead of the NTG-3, go for an NT3 hypercardioid indoors. It's heavy so take off the outer metal sleeve if you want to boom with it.
Guy, no offence but removing the outer metal cover of the NT3 will greatly modify its polar pickup and seriously contribute to RF (radio interference) pickup, dust and moisture.

Need to fix your NT3 link, it currently comes up as the Format FM600 there ;)

Cheers.
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Old December 2nd, 2008, 05:52 PM   #14
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Just so people don't get confused, this thread was started before I made my final decision. I've purchased a Sennheiser 416, and the discussion has moved here. Just wanted to make sure...
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Old December 2nd, 2008, 06:15 PM   #15
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Thanks Allan. Here is the proper link Rode NT3

Just to be sure we're talking about the same thing, the NT3 has a metal body which unscrews to reveal the battery compartment. This solid piece of metal, you're saying, when removed will "greatly affect the polar pattern"? You've tested this?
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