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Old October 21st, 2003, 06:37 PM   #1
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: St. Petersburg, Florida
Posts: 2
Audio issues for external cam set up

First time here goes.

I'm running a SONY DCR-TRV-340.

The 'external' or 'helmet' cam is by
The 480EX Pro. It's about 3-times the size of a lipstick
case. The 'mic' they sent was a lapel type mic. Using the
a/v in-out mini-plug from the Sony, I plug the yellow
composite RCA and use the Red for audio(per Jones).
Both require battery power, which is supplied. Switch
the camera to VCR and voi-la! You've got vid and....ugh!
some very distorted sound.

I'm recording moving automobile on race-track. The sound
of wind noise, motor, and most notably the exhaust, just
pounds the lapel mic into submission.

Without getting into cumbersome mixers, I'm wondering
if it's a line level problem in the mic vs. Sony issue. I've
brought mixers into the equation with directional and
condensor mics to no avail. I can limit the distortion by
operating the mic channel to just at 1, and the mixer output
to barely one as well, but what's the point? A mixer that is
almost turned off...? Furthermore, I really can't have a mixer
sized piece of gear in the car. The tracks I race on won't allow
it. It's got to be small and secure to the car. Just trying achieve
some semblence of decent audio. There's GOT to be an easier
(and cheaper) way.

This is pretty much the same idea/set-up that NASCAR, Formula
One, and a host of other 'Race' types use that I watch on
SpeedTV, but without distortion.

Any and all input/ideas are welcome.

Mark in sunny Florida
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Old October 21st, 2003, 09:59 PM   #2
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Clearwater, FL
Posts: 8,273
Where is the lapel mic mounted?
Jeff Donald
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Old October 22nd, 2003, 07:40 AM   #3
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: St. Petersburg, Florida
Posts: 2
I've tried numerous locations. Always inside the car, but in the
back, behind the seat, on the floorboard.

The distortion is not so much as if you had the volume too loud
to cause it, but rather that serious 'break-up' distortion.
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Old October 22nd, 2003, 02:07 PM   #4
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Location: Palmerston North New Zealand
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If the problem is overloading of the mic, I wonder if a dynamic mic might fair better with loud noises(such as a V8 doing 6500rpm :) ).
You might have to insulate from the car body using soft foam so its not in 'direct' contact with the car body and locate it away from any air flow sources.
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Old October 22nd, 2003, 09:16 PM   #5
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Vallejo, California
Posts: 4,049
Having driven a race car a few times, the problem is, well, you are in a race car. No way around that.

A lavaliere microphone unless it is a dynamic unit, just cannot cope with the noise and vibration. If you could borrow something like a Shure SM58 or similar dynamic microphone, get a fuzzy windscreen around it and mount it in a shock mount, you might get some acceptable sound. The double shock mount (the microphone capsule is internally shock mounted will probably take care of the vibration issue.

The only problem with the microphone might be if you stop suddenly, it may continue on and they are fairly heavy.

Which might point you towards a dynamic lavaliere like a Shure Model 11.
Mike Rehmus
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