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Old August 14th, 2010, 07:54 PM   #16
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I just realized something, but please correct me if I'm wrong. I noticed that some mono lavs have a 3.5 mm stereo plug, and if I remember correctly, the lav in the Sennheiser G3 set I had had a stereo plug as well. Is it that the stereo plug is used not as left and right channels, but as a way to make it compatible with plug-in power recorders, or with wireless transmitters? I've seen a few lavs at the B&H website, and some are not stereo but have the stereo plug, and some still have the mono plug, so I'm a little confused. I noticed that the Giant Squid one has a stereo plug, so that might be the reason why it's compatible with the Zoom H2. Can someone tell me if I'm right or wrong?
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Old August 15th, 2010, 06:22 AM   #17
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The Sennheiser input and mating lavs use a 'stereo', ie, TRS (Tip-Ring-Sleeve), plug but they're not wired for conventional stereo. The transmitter can accept either a mic level or a line level input signal. For the cable used in connecting a mic level signal such as a lav capsule to the transmitter input, the tip connector is used for signal hot and the sleeve is ground, the ring being connected to the sleeve. The version of the cable wired to send a line level input to the transmitter uses the ring for signal hot, the sleeve for ground and it's the tip that is grounded to the sleeve. The use of a TRS plug, in and of itself, doesn't indicate anything regarding plug-in power.
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Old August 17th, 2010, 12:36 PM   #18
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Many mics that have a 1/8" TRS simply feed the same signal to both left & right channels.
For instance, the 1/8" to 1/8" cable that comes with the G2/3 compact receiver.
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Old August 17th, 2010, 07:46 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by Rick Reineke View Post
Many mics that have a 1/8" TRS simply feed the same signal to both left & right channels.
For instance, the 1/8" to 1/8" cable that comes with the G2/3 compact receiver.
That is likely true for OUTPUT cables.

However, note that INPUT connectors and cables for wireless transmitters tend to use the tip and ring nodes for audio and power, NOT for "left" and "right" since it is a monaural device.
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Old August 18th, 2010, 08:44 PM   #20
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The G3 uses a mini balanced TRS connector. It is not stereo, but is wired positive, negative, and ground instead of Left positive, Right postive and common ground (as would be stereo).

A couple thoughts. if you are getting dropouts because of somebody picking up a child, than that is to be expected. A low-end wireless rig like that does not have the power to broadcast through a person. Rather than putting the pack in a coat pocket, why don't you have the groom put the transmitter on a belt or on the waist of his pants in the small of his back. You'll have much better overall pickup. With the G3 system, you also need to make sure that the pilot tone is also on. That will help much with the reception.

Second, the mic used makes a really big difference. Honestly, I think your sample of the AT mic sounds a lot better than the squid. Gain match the two and the differences will become pretty obvious. The possible issues there are if your recorder cannot crank the gain enough without getting really noisy. If you can save up the cash for a countryman B6 or a DPA 4060, you'll start hearing much better quality audio than either of these. Of course, you're looking at a couple hundred dollars each for these, even on the used market.

Of course, with all of this you need to make sure that you have cables that are wired properly. If you are coming out of an XLR, you need to connect Pin 2 to the tip, Pin 3 to the ring and Pin 1 to the sleeve.

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Old August 19th, 2010, 01:16 AM   #21
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Ben, thanks for the info. I definitely plan on getting a countryman at some point in time
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Old August 19th, 2010, 04:23 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by Benjamin Maas View Post
The G3 uses a mini balanced TRS connector. It is not stereo, but is wired positive, negative, and ground instead of Left positive, Right postive and common ground (as would be stereo).

...
Of course, with all of this you need to make sure that you have cables that are wired properly. If you are coming out of an XLR, you need to connect Pin 2 to the tip, Pin 3 to the ring and Pin 1 to the sleeve.

--Ben
Not correct. You've described the proper wiring of a balanced connection using a TRS plug but the audio input to a G3 transmitter is unbalanced. The G3 transmitter can accept either mic level or line level signals at its audio input with the sensitivity being determined by the wiring of the cable going into it. If you're wiring for a mic level signal source such as a lav capsule, the tip is signal hot, the sleeve is signal ground, and the ring is shorted to the sleeve. If you're wiring a cable to connect from a line level source, the signal hot goes to the ring, sleeve is still signal ground, and the tip is grounded to the sleeve. In both cases, the XLR pin 3 goes to the TRS sleeve, NOT the ring. For the mic level XLR 2 goes to the tip and for the line level it goes to the ring. XLR pin 1 goes to the cable shield which is either left floating unconnected at the TRS end or connected to the sleeve as well.
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Old August 20th, 2010, 03:07 PM   #23
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It works great

Just wanted to say for whoever else might be in my same situation, that today I received the Giant Squid omnidirectional lavalier and it works very well with the Zoom H2. A tip for someone with the same equipment to get the best possible sound, since I've tried all the different settings. After recording myself reading a magazine article with the mic attached in the same exact position on my chest, and reading at the same volume, I determined that the best settings in the Zoom H2 for this microphone are AGC/Comp set to Comp 2, with the Mic Gain switch to Mid and Mono Mix set to ON. And, of course, Plug-in power has to be set to on for this mic to work.

These settings gave me the best audio quality with the least amount of hiss. I compared them by laying out all the audio events in a Sony Vegas timeline, at first without any added filters, but then setting the Normalize function to the audio events, and also raising the input gain in the Track Compressor filter (without adding actual compression).

Then I also experimented with adding compression and I got the best results as well for the event that had been recorded using the settings I specified above. Note that Comp2 set to Mid Gain is also the best setting even if you don't set Mono Mix to on, but since the mic itself is mono, when mono mix is not set to on you get stereo hiss but the voice in mono, which makes the hiss more apparent than if both hiss and voice are in mono.

The build quality of the microphone seems sturdy and well built, although it doesn't come with any type of foam or fur wind screen, so it's a good idea to get one of those. It's also a good idea to order the mic with the angled plug instead of the regular one. While it may be $6 more, it will fit better inside a pocket with the H2 than the regular connector.

Overall I'm happy with the audio quality. There a small amount of hiss, but it's not too distracting and for $36.45 with shipping included it's a great deal.

Edit: I said Mid Gain before because when I did the tests High gain would easily give me an overload sound whenever I raised my voice a bit, but later I realized that it was because the phones volume was set too high and I was using small walkman headphones. When I connected bigger headphones and lowered the phones volume I realized that that "ploc" sound wasn't caused by the mic but instead because the volume was too high for the small headphones. So after doing more tests, Comp 2 with High Gain in Mono Mix seems to be the ideal setting.

Last edited by Sebastian Alvarez; August 21st, 2010 at 10:42 AM.
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