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Old February 18th, 2009, 05:40 PM   #1
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Help - NTG-2 On-Camera Kit Versus VideoMic

I currently have the Rode Videomic sitting atop my Canon HG20. I purchased it after posting a couple of threads here - thanks to all who took the time to read and help me in those threads!

The VideoMic does provide an improvement over the built-in mic on the HG20, but the way the shock mount is designed the mic bounces in the shock mount a lot when moving around, which seems to be introducing noise. I'd like to find a better solution, even if it costs a little more money - but not looking to spend $500-600 right now.

Perusing through B&H the other day, I came across this NTG-2 kit designed for mounting the NTG-2 on cameras:

Rode | NTG-2 Shotgun Microphone | B&H Photo Video

I am strictly amateur and use the HG20 to capture family moments (my wife and I have a one-month old son). I am fully aware that getting the mic off the camera and closer to the subject would be the best solution. Unfortunately it's not really an option very often right now, as I am typically a one-man show and my subject(s) very rarely sit still. :)

I have some questions:

1. Do you think this NTG-2 kit will be a better solution than the Rode Videomic when attached to my HG20?

2. What is the downfall of using the Pearstone XLR to 3.5mm mini cable that comes with the kit versus using a Beachtek DXA-2S or a Juicedlink CX211 between the NTG-2 and the camera's mic input?

3. If I purchased this NTG-2 kit, which wind muff would you recommend? Dead Cat? WS6? Another brand? (keep in mind I am not in the market to buy the Rode blimp at this point).

Thanks in advance.
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Old February 18th, 2009, 06:44 PM   #2
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IIRC the NTG series and the VideoMic are the same microphone, except for the physical design and power requirements.
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Old February 18th, 2009, 10:17 PM   #3
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IIRC the NTG series and the VideoMic are the same microphone, except for the physical design and power requirements.
No way - really?
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Old February 18th, 2009, 10:21 PM   #4
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I think I remember something about this on these boards a while ago. Anyone else want to substantiate this?
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Old February 18th, 2009, 11:04 PM   #5
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I think I remember something about this on these boards a while ago. Anyone else want to substantiate this?
The polar patterns and specs on Rode's website are similar but not identical...

Even if they are similar, I still don't like the way Rode designed the shock mount of the VideoMic. As I move around while filming, the mic bounces around too much and I can hear noise going in the headphones. It looks like the NTG-2, when mounted into the Rode SM3, will be more secure and not bounce around.
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Old February 19th, 2009, 05:36 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Edward Carlson View Post
IIRC the NTG series and the VideoMic are the same microphone, except for the physical design and power requirements.
I believe you're misremembering discussions about the NTG-1 and NTG-2 being the same mic with the NTG-2 having an internal battery for power while the NTG-1 does not. No way are the NTG-1/2 the same mic as the Videomic.
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Old February 19th, 2009, 08:40 AM   #7
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I believe you're misremembering discussions about the NTG-1 and NTG-2 being the same mic with the NTG-2 having an internal battery for power while the NTG-1 does not. No way are the NTG-1/2 the same mic as the Videomic.
It makes much more sense that the NTG-1 and NTG-2 are the same from a performance standpoint.

Putting that issue to bed, allow me get back to my original questions:

1. Do you think this NTG-2 kit will be a better solution than the Rode Videomic when attached to my HG20?

2. What is the downfall of using the Pearstone XLR to 3.5mm mini cable that comes with the kit versus using a Beachtek DXA-2S or a Juicedlink CX211 between the NTG-2 and the camera's mic input?

3. If I purchased this NTG-2 kit, which wind muff would you recommend? Dead Cat? WS6? Another brand? (keep in mind I am not in the market to buy the Rode blimp at this point).

Thanks in advance.
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Old February 19th, 2009, 08:47 AM   #8
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I agree the shock mount is too lose on the VideoMic. I have the SM3 for my NTG-1, and it is a lot more secure. So it would be better in that sense.
The Beachtek solution allows you to control the audio level of the mic, but is more expensive.
The Røde DeadCat is the least you could do for wind protection. Remember though, that on a small camera, the fur of a wind muff could get in the way of your shot, so you would have to tilt the microphone up, or move it off the camera somehow.
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Old February 19th, 2009, 09:38 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by Jason Woodbury View Post
It makes much more sense that the NTG-1 and NTG-2 are the same from a performance standpoint.

Putting that issue to bed, allow me get back to my original questions:

1. Do you think this NTG-2 kit will be a better solution than the Rode Videomic when attached to my HG20?

2. What is the downfall of using the Pearstone XLR to 3.5mm mini cable that comes with the kit versus using a Beachtek DXA-2S or a Juicedlink CX211 between the NTG-2 and the camera's mic input?

3. If I purchased this NTG-2 kit, which wind muff would you recommend? Dead Cat? WS6? Another brand? (keep in mind I am not in the market to buy the Rode blimp at this point).

Thanks in advance.
"Better solution" in what way? What do you feel is the problem with the Videomic that you're hoping to fix?

A simple XLR to mini adapter doesn't give you as many options or as much control as an adapter device such as a Juice or Beach. Probably would be adequate, however. If not, it's not adding much to the cost of the kit anyway so you're no worse off for having it. Try it and see how it works out and if you think you need more, get the adapter box then.

A blimp or furry on an on-camera mic is starting to get awfully large, certainly when on a little camera like yours. You really would only need that much outdoors in a breeze anyway. Much of the time, and certainly indoors, I think you'll find the stock foam windcover to be adequate.
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Old February 19th, 2009, 02:15 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Steve House View Post
"Better solution" in what way? What do you feel is the problem with the Videomic that you're hoping to fix?

A simple XLR to mini adapter doesn't give you as many options or as much control as an adapter device such as a Juice or Beach. Probably would be adequate, however. If not, it's not adding much to the cost of the kit anyway so you're no worse off for having it. Try it and see how it works out and if you think you need more, get the adapter box then.

A blimp or furry on an on-camera mic is starting to get awfully large, certainly when on a little camera like yours. You really would only need that much outdoors in a breeze anyway. Much of the time, and certainly indoors, I think you'll find the stock foam windcover to be adequate.
When I write "better solution" I am thinking primarily of something with a better shock mount setup than the VideoMic's built-in shock mount - which allows the VideoMic to bounce around too much. This bouncing seems to be introducing rumble and camera handling noise into the audio. But I suppose for the price it's hard to beat it.

A little more "clarity" over the VideoMic would be nice as well, but maybe my HG20 and it's 3.5mm mini mic input is only so capable. When I say "clarity" I mean that when I play back footage on my computer or on my television, the audio seems to be a little "muddy" in the low end which tends to overpower the middle and high tones. Again, not sure if that is a characteristic of the VideoMic, or if it is a limitation of the HG20. I try to record using manual audio levels rather than the HG20's auto mode, and try to keep the audio meter from jumping to the right of the 12dB mark very often. I don't think I am hearing clipping.

Thanks!
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Old February 19th, 2009, 03:42 PM   #11
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The NTG's are very sensitive (noisy) when you touch anything on the mic/shockmount or even cable. So i don't think it is better then a videomic in the way you want to use it, MAYBE much worse.

Also a shotgun isn't really the best mic for indoor use, so i suggest you stay with the videomic, or maybe try out Rode's stereomic. That be said as a NTG-2 user, wich i really love, and a former beachtek user.
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Old February 19th, 2009, 05:07 PM   #12
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First off what kind of stuff are you shooting? Is it essential to have the mic on the camera?

If it were me, I'd go to the Juicedlink with Phantom Power and go with theRode NTG-1 along with a Bracket 1 Mini.

Why? The NTG-1 is shorter, and for a small camera like the HG20, you'll find the rig to be more balanced.

I'll go into the studio and build this for you along with WS7 and take a pic...back in a bit.
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Old February 19th, 2009, 06:09 PM   #13
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Here's the RODE NTG-1 and NTG-2 along with WS7.
Attached Thumbnails
Help - NTG-2 On-Camera Kit Versus VideoMic-ntg1.jpg   Help - NTG-2 On-Camera Kit Versus VideoMic-ntg2.jpg  

Help - NTG-2 On-Camera Kit Versus VideoMic-_mg_0330.jpg  
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Old February 20th, 2009, 02:04 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Guy Cochran View Post
First off what kind of stuff are you shooting? Is it essential to have the mic on the camera?

If it were me, I'd go to the Juicedlink with Phantom Power and go with theRode NTG-1 along with a Bracket 1 Mini.

Why? The NTG-1 is shorter, and for a small camera like the HG20, you'll find the rig to be more balanced.

I'll go into the studio and build this for you along with WS7 and take a pic...back in a bit.
Guy, thanks for both of your posts and the time you took to take those pictures. That helps a lot. While I'd like to have the setup you show in your third picture (with the wind muff), the cost differential compared to the NTG-2 kit I linked to above is going to be at least $450. While I'd like to spring for the setup you show, my wife isn't on board with the cost - so that option is off the table for now.

As for the stuff I'm shooting, it's just your average hand-held moments inside the house and outside. Nothing that really is conducive to setting up a mic on a boomstand.

Quick question regarding mics: I notice the Azden SGM-1X mic has a listed signal-to-noise ratio of 65 dB while the Rode NTG-2 has a 76 dB ratio. Do you want a higher number here, or a lower one? I would guess higher is better, right?
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Old February 20th, 2009, 02:52 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Jason Woodbury View Post
...
Quick question regarding mics: I notice the Azden SGM-1X mic has a listed signal-to-noise ratio of 65 dB while the Rode NTG-2 has a 76 dB ratio. Do you want a higher number here, or a lower one? I would guess higher is better, right?
76 is a LOT better than 65 and you should know that Azden in general doesn't, shall we say, garner the highest regard among working audio people.
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