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Old September 29th, 2005, 08:18 AM   #1
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Best way to feed three cameras?

I've got a SD302, which has two balanced XLR outputs (right and left), and an unbalanced stereo tape out. What's the best way to feed three cameras? Is there an inexpensive mixer maybe that will take the tape out and give me at least two balanced stereo outputs?
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Old September 29th, 2005, 08:35 AM   #2
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http://www.peterengh.com/products.php

look for the splitmon 3

excellent product , give you ability to hear the returns as well

the other i know is the same but for British pounds :-)

http://www.ravencourt.co.uk/camera_splitter.htm
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Old September 29th, 2005, 09:00 AM   #3
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Sounds like what you need is a Distribution Amplifier, or DA for short. Check out the sponsors websites or look in Markertek. There are dozens of makers for DAs. Pricing depends on types of connections, number of outputs and how professional the amps are inside.

You might even find something at Radio Shack. A mixer with multiple outputs may also work. A stereo mixer with the pans set to center will give you at least 2 outputs.

Try to get an active DA. Passive DAs are simply signal splitters and the levels tend to fall off really fast splitting the signal like that.

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Old September 29th, 2005, 09:02 AM   #4
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That's exactly what I need! I take it that device is passive? Unfortunately, it's a little out of my price range at the moment. Gotta get one eventually though. Any less expensive solutions out there?
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Old September 29th, 2005, 09:04 AM   #5
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Thanks Sean. I was referring to the Splitmon in the last post.
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Old September 29th, 2005, 09:49 AM   #6
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You can get up to 4 balanced and 1 unbalanced stereo outputs from a Mackie 1202-VLZ or 1402-VLZ:

Main Out XLR
Main Out TRS
Tape Out RCA
Aux Send 1&2 TRS
Control Room Out TRS

If you really needed a fifth output to be balanced, you could route the Tape Outs back into a pair of inputs and keep them muted. Then the signal would exit the Alt3/4 TRS stereo pair which is balanced.
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Old September 29th, 2005, 05:01 PM   #7
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Do you really need to feed the same audio to three cameras? Feed it to one camera, record scratch tracks on the other two with their internal mics, and align everything in post as you cut from one camera's take to another. Or use double-system - each camera's own internal audio is purely for reference while you record the actual sound track you'll use on a dedicated audio recorder. You'd be editing together 3 video tracks and 1 stereo audio track on the timeline, piece 'o cake. I wouldn't expect signifigant sync problems and by keeping the location sound all on one tape regardless of which roll the picture is coming from you'll get more consistent sound quality.
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Old September 29th, 2005, 06:02 PM   #8
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Steve,
Yeah, I hear you. I'd do double system sound if it was my shoot. But this is a paying job and they're determined to record direct to camera. Giving them useable audio on all three cameras would be more of a courtesy than anything, and a way to protect my reputation in the event they had trouble synching up in post.

So far the Splitmon is looking like the most elegant solution by far, but good golly, once the price of cords is factored in I'd be looking at about $1,000 here. Ouch! This seems to come up so often I may just pop for it though.
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Old September 29th, 2005, 07:10 PM   #9
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The split mon looks great. If you're still considering a DA. Shure has the FP16A
http://www.shure.com/mixers/models/fp16a.asp. Kramer has the VM5AD http://www.kramerelectronics.com/ind...em.asp?pic=178. Or for something with individual adjustable outputs. Whirlwind has the DA-2 http://www.whirlwindusa.com/distamp.html.
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Old September 29th, 2005, 08:55 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marco Leavitt
Steve,
Yeah, I hear you. I'd do double system sound if it was my shoot. But this is a paying job and they're determined to record direct to camera. Giving them useable audio on all three cameras would be more of a courtesy than anything, and a way to protect my reputation in the event they had trouble synching up in post.

So far the Splitmon is looking like the most elegant solution by far, but good golly, once the price of cords is factored in I'd be looking at about $1,000 here. Ouch! This seems to come up so often I may just pop for it though.
Do they need to record mono or stereo on each camera? Was just thinking, starting with your 302, you have a program mix-out as well as your two main outs that can be daisy-chained to another 302 or a 442 mix-in. What about renting a couple more 302's so you have one mixer with a stereo pair of main outputs for each camera? The main-outs of the first one in line feeds audio to camera 1 while its tape-out/mix-out drives the mix-in of the next 302 in line. That one feeds a stereo pair from its main-outs to the second camera and its tape out daisy-chains down the line to a 3rd 302 whose main-outs drive the third camera. Or rent a 442, it has two parallel stereo output pairs to send a pair to each of two cameras and daisy chain it to your 302 for the audio for the 3rd (or 1st, depending on the order you connect them) camera,. Daisy chaining is what they put the mix-in connector on there for.
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Old September 30th, 2005, 10:46 AM   #11
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We're using three mics, so I figured I'd keep them separated on different channels for safety. It would be easier if it was mono surely. Yeah, I thought about daisy chaining. It's too bad the mixpre doesn't have a mix-in. I'd be tempted to just buy one for the extra inputs and outputs. Clearly, what I need to do is buy a 442! (I wish.)
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Old September 30th, 2005, 11:10 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marco Leavitt
We're using three mics, so I figured I'd keep them separated on different channels for safety. It would be easier if it was mono surely. Yeah, I thought about daisy chaining. It's too bad the mixpre doesn't have a mix-in. I'd be tempted to just buy one for the extra inputs and outputs. Clearly, what I need to do is buy a 442! (I wish.)
I hear ya! Renting one 442 would do the trick.
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