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Old April 29th, 2005, 12:18 PM   #1
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Proper Audio Seting for Input from Mixer

I'll be at an event next week where I will be receiving the audio (from the stage) fed to me from the in house audio mixer.

I plan on asking for one XLR cable to me and I have a XLR Y cable which I'll plug into my MA-100 to the cable from the mixer.

What should I set the input on Audio 1 to, Line, Mic or Mic ATT 20? Normally, I have it set on Mic ATT 20 for my G2 wireless inputs but will be using a direct feed for this shoot.

Thanks for any help on this....
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Old April 29th, 2005, 12:22 PM   #2
 
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It'll probably be a +4 out on the mixer so you'll likely need to use line.
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Old April 29th, 2005, 01:56 PM   #3
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And you really should have a switchable inline attenuator handy too. The MA-100 and the line-level setting of the camera can't handle full +4 signals.
The XL-1 records best quality when using MIC Att, so it's ok if you knock the line-level signal down 20 or 30db and use that instead of LINE.
Be aware of ground-loop hums that can occur when connecting to a distant in-house board for audio and a local video monitor that's AC powered.
If that occurs, you need an isolation transformer like in a passive direct box that could be placed at the in-house mixer's output to you. Or you could use an Ebtech Hum Eliminator and the proper adapters at the camera end.
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Old April 29th, 2005, 02:10 PM   #4
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Hi Jay-

In reply to your suggestion for me to get an in-line Attenuator, do you recommend any particular kind / model?

I did a google search and came up with this one from Shure - A15AS

http://www.shure.com/accessories/a15as.asp

Would this be what you're suggestiing?

And just to clarify, you're recommending using the attenuator along with setting Audio 1 in at Mic ATT 20, correct?

Thanks for your help....
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Old May 1st, 2005, 10:29 AM   #5
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Yes, the Shure model will work. It gives 15, 20 or 25db of attenuation.
Audio Technica has a model that gives 10, 20 or 30db of attenuation.
http://www.audio-technica.com/cms/el...e16/index.html
You can even use the two together to achieve additional combinations.
You will have to experiment to find the correct amount because there's no way for sure to know exactly what you'll be getting from their mixer.
It will almost certainly be in the area of 0 to +4, unless they have mistakenly engaged a mic-level output switch or it's an AUX SEND that isn't turned up very high.
You can use a little attenuation (-10 or -15) and use the line-level setting on the camera, but it actually records best using the Mic Att setting. Using -25 to -35db of attenuation should allow you to use this camera setting if they are sending you a full line-level signal.
Keep the camera level controls around 50%. The recording level meters should read a healthy level, around -12db. The meters don't tell the whole story though, you must listen carefully with sensitive, closed headphones for distortion on loud passages. If this happens when the meters still read in the safe zone, then you're overloading the input and you need additional outside attenuation.
If the meters read very low, then you need less outside attenuation.
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Old May 1st, 2005, 11:52 AM   #6
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Jay-

Thanks for the informative reply. I went with the Audio Technica as well as a hum eliminator....
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Old May 1st, 2005, 12:15 PM   #7
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You're welcome. You may also need some adapters or extra cables depending on which model of hum eliminator you're getting. The regular 2-channel version of the Ebtech Hum Eliminator uses balanced 1/4-inch jacks. It also automatically senses between balanced and unbalanced and can be used to convert between the two as well as eliminate hums. If you want to use your XLR cables with it and maintain a balanced connection, you'll need some TRS 1/4-inch male to male XLR, and some female XLR to TRS 1/4-inch male cables.
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Old May 1st, 2005, 12:44 PM   #8
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Jay-

The plan is to get the feed via XLR and use a female XLR to male 1/4 adapter to plug into the hum eliminator. Then come out of the box with a male 1/4 to male XLR cable, connect the attenuator, then connect the attenuator to a female XLR to 2 male XLR Y cable. The two male XLR's will connect to the back of the MA-100. I'll set input at Mic ATT (play with the attenuator settings) with camera levels around 50% and fine tune from there....
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Old May 1st, 2005, 05:35 PM   #9
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Sounds like a good plan. I'll add a couple of other bits. As long as your 1/4-inch to XLR cables are balanced (3 conductors on the TRS end) and wired T,R,S to pins 2,3,1 of the XLR's you'll maintain a balanced connection all the way until the MA-100 output. This is a good thing.
However, some MA-100's are known to pick up electrical interference from the power connection with the camera. If you can hear noises in your audio like the motor whine when you roll tape, you can bypass the MA-100 and get cleaner audio.
Simply put the balanced attenuator between the mixer and the hum eliminator and use a short unbalanced 1/4-inch TS to RCA male cable out of the hum eliminator. Then use an RCA Y cable to go directly into the camera's RCA connectors, set to Mic ATT. This will still maintain a balanced connection for the majority of the run and will still eliminate ground-loop hums.
If you want to do the trick of recording one channel on the camera slightly lower to prevent your recording levels from going too high on your hot channel, you have to use the pan control on the camera. There's only one level control for both channels. Remember, this trick won't help with overloading the input. You still have to listen and use the external attenuator to prevent that, but it can help keep your recording levels a little hotter since you now have a little more cushion on one channel.
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Old May 4th, 2005, 12:18 PM   #10
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Looks like I'll be going wireless from the mixer to the XL1, as the distance is about 80' plus camera will be on the balcony and mixer down below. I'll be using a Sennheiser SK100 (EW100) to transmit from the mixer and a EK100 receiver into the camera. I'll still use the XLR Y cable to connect out of the receiver into the MA-100 connections.
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Old May 4th, 2005, 03:35 PM   #11
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You'll have to set the transmitter input gain to accept a line-level output from the mixer (or attenuate it down to mic level) and use the correct adapter cable. You'll also need to set the receiver output to mic-level so the MA-100 can handle its output.
If you can't get good reception because of the balcony itself, you'll need to find a way to SAFELY place the transmitter or receiver with a better line of sight to each other. Normally you get best reception when both the transmitter and receiver antennae are aligned vertically. The exception to this is when they are above and below each other. You'll need to experiment with placement and angle to make sure you have a reliable signal.
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Old May 4th, 2005, 04:05 PM   #12
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This transmitter has a sensitivity setting of -30db, -20db, -10db, & 0db.

The receiver has "sqelch" settings of 0-40db in 5db increments and a dial on the side to increase /decrease volume....

Based on your suggestions, what would you recommend for the wireless settings?
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Old May 4th, 2005, 06:23 PM   #13
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The transmitter should be at 0db if you're getting a line-level signal from the mixer. You may need -5db more attenuation if it's a hot signal, but usually you can adjust it from the mixer to be a little lower and the 0db sensitivity setting should work. Follow the normal procedure for setting this trim using the indicators on the transmitter while inputting a typical signal.
Normally you keep the receiver squelch at the minimum (0db) in order to get the longest range, but that also makes you more vulnerable to interference from weak nearby transmitters. Leave it at the minimum unless you get interference. If you get interference, change frequencies first. If that doesn't work, then raise the squelch until the interference goes away. Hopefully your actual signal won't go away completely too, but you will have reduced range.
I would activate MicATT on the camera, set the level control at 50%, then raise the receiver output until you get a meter reading around -12db. Listen to the camera with good headphones for any hint of distortion on peaks. If you get distortion while the meters read -12db, then the receiver output is too high. Roll it down until the distortion goes away, then raise the camera control to bring the meters back up to -12db.
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