AT 897 with H4n: volume is too low at DVinfo.net

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Old May 1st, 2010, 03:34 AM   #1
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AT 897 with H4n: volume is too low

hi,

I have AT 897 and zoom H4n, with 897, audio level and so recorded sound is too low to be used. However, I did many proper recordings AT 897 with Canon XL2, h4n just does't get any proper sound level with AT 897. The bad case is I suggested this combo(Zoom H4n and AT 897) to one of my friend for sounding with 7d, he get the same low audio level problem. We used 24V phantom power and properly connect 897 to H4n with XLR cable.

If this is normal and expected fron this combo, I might think another recorder and mic.

thanks,
Alkim
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Old May 1st, 2010, 11:01 AM   #2
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No, I wouldn't say that's normal or to be expected. Are you saying it sounds good when you're setting it up, but when you record it goes too low? Are you unable to get the levels to read high enough after adjusting the input level? The AT 897 can take the full 48v phantom power setting. That might give you better pickup.
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Old May 1st, 2010, 04:20 PM   #3
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Eric,

when I set it up, nether I could read the levels high enough, nor when I I get enough volume, after I hit record button. I tried with 24V phantom power I got very low level, with 48V I got nothing.

Interestingly my friend also got the same results. I don't know where I made mistake.

When I use internal mics, both levels and recorded sound is high enough.

Alkım.
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Old November 6th, 2010, 09:02 AM   #4
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Low volume on H4N with ME66 too

We are having the same issue of very low volume on our new H4N. Have you figured out the problem?

We have a Senheisser ME66/K6 XLR connected in Stereo mode, MONO MIX OFF,
and in post the audio is very low... If we change to MTR mode, the volume is even lower.
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Old November 8th, 2010, 01:53 PM   #5
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I'm not surprised that you could have that problem with the AT897 and the H4n. The AT897 is a very smooth and nice sounding shotgun, but it has low sensitivity and works best with a mic input that is either already very sensitive (like some cameras) or can be boosted cleanly (like a mixer input). The H4n mic input fits neither of those categories.
The ME66/K6 however should have plenty of signal unless it's the factory-attenuated version, or there is some other problem like a bad cable, bad battery, poor phantom power, etc.
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Old November 30th, 2010, 03:26 PM   #6
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Jay-
What shotgun mic (sub $400 range) would you recommend for doing dialogue? (with h4n or similar recorder)
Thanks!
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Old November 30th, 2010, 03:56 PM   #7
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Just a suggestion - you are quite sure that you are not using the REC LEVEL AUTO function? It works a funny way on the H4n, not like a camera auto gain. It there is any sort of sudden peak the REC level is lowered for the rest of the recording (it doesn't come up again no matter how quiet the source becomes).
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Old December 1st, 2010, 12:01 AM   #8
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We have the same issue with the Zoom H4N. And unfortunately the Zoom has a pretty high noise floor, so just boosting in post is not pretty. Maybe a preamp is needed here.
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Old December 2nd, 2010, 10:59 AM   #9
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I agree, a good preamp or mixer can be extremely beneficial to get lower noise recordings with the H4n.
As to a mic with higher sensitivity in that price range, the AT875r comes to mind, but it's not as hot as the K6/ME66 that has already been mentioned. It's also not as hot as the AT4073 or whatever its latest version number is now called. This higher product line 40-series AT mic is also over your mentioned price point.
A good preamp free's you up to have more flexibility with whatever mic you need for a particular task, as well as giving you a lot more control.
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