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Old November 10th, 2009, 04:28 AM   #1
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ZOOM H4n as 7D XLR input?

Just an idea here an I was wondering if anyone could confirm or deny my assumptions.

Got a 7D. It's cool. Audio options are not so cool. Got a NTG-3. It's cool. It doesn't like playing with the 7D.

To power the mic, I'll need 48v. This can be done with a Juicedlink or similar or a with an external recorder like the Zoom H4n. Both options are $300.

Dual system works, but recording into the camera in sync is just so much easier. Also, if magic lantern appears for 7d anytime in the near future I will certainly want to record into the camera.

But here's my question: can I use the Zoom H4n as a power souce for the mic, then use the line out to go to the camera? Effectively using one product for both dual system and synced sound before and after magic lantern?

Can anyone with a Zoom confirm this? I imagine there is the option for a monitor out. Any problems with this that anyone cares to shout out?
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Old November 10th, 2009, 06:32 AM   #2
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Yes you can do that. I tape my Zoom H4n to the front of my Glidecam for easy management. You can then use the Earphones/Line out jack to go into your 7D for easy sync with PluralEyes.
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Old November 10th, 2009, 07:18 AM   #3
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But you need something to lower the level of the lineout of the zoom to match the mic level of the camera. About -30db pad. And the sound will not always be usable because of the AGC of the camera.

What you can do is using this technique but still record in the zoom at the same time. The two tracks (recorded in the zoom and the one recorded in the camera) will be enough close to ease the sync in post.
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Old November 10th, 2009, 11:43 AM   #4
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what I heard is that when the Zoom is providing phantom power it eats batteries up in a couple of hours--and that your sound degrades when your batteries go. So a mixer going into the zoom and providing power for the mic is the way to go I guess.
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Old November 10th, 2009, 11:54 AM   #5
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I see.

Just tried a Zoom H2 with a mic using the line out. It works, just have to turn down the monitor volume so it doesn't blow out. Found that 50% worked alright, but the AGC still makes it sound gross.

Pretty sure a Zoom H4 would be helpful for a number of things, and the dual system is going to have to get me by for a while.

I guess my question is, when/if Magic Lantern comes out and we are able to control the audio gain on the 7D, will there still be a problem with overdriving the camera's input? Or can we just turn the camera way down?
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Old November 10th, 2009, 11:58 AM   #6
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I only get two hours out of my Zoom recording at 96kHz/24bit if I'm lucky without phantom power, don't bargain on hours.
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Old November 10th, 2009, 01:34 PM   #7
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Nicholas, are you using alkaline or lithium batteries? I've moved completely to energizer lithium and get over 4 times the life for just double the price.
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