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Old July 2nd, 2015, 01:20 AM   #1
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RodeLink static

Hi all,

I recently purchased the RodeLink 2.4GHz wireless lav system. At the moment I have it plugged into my Canon C100 via the 3.5mm mic jack, as I don't have an XLR adapter yet.

The problem is - I'm getting a lot of static in the audio. Not the type of static I would have thought would come from a digital system - it sounds like analog interference.

I'm just wondering if anyone who has had experience with digital wireless systems can comment? Would this likely be static introduced via the 3.5mm line in cable?

Any tips appreciated.
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Old July 2nd, 2015, 02:47 AM   #2
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Re: RodeLink static

Did you set the transmitter gain/sensitivity control properly (as instructed in the manual)?
Does the receiver indicate that it is receiving proper audio levels?
What does it sound like when you listen to the receiver with your headphones?
Does your camera normally record an audio signal with low noise? Using what mic?

You described the noise level, but you did not describe the audio signal level.
Is the audio signal at the proper level, accompanied by excessive noise?
Or is the audio signal level weak and the noise comes from compensating for a weak signal level?
There are several possibilities here, but we don't have enough information to know what the problem might be.
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Old July 2nd, 2015, 04:35 AM   #3
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Re: RodeLink static

Quote:
Originally Posted by Richard Crowley View Post
Did you set the transmitter gain/sensitivity control properly (as instructed in the manual)?
Does the receiver indicate that it is receiving proper audio levels?
What does it sound like when you listen to the receiver with your headphones?
Does your camera normally record an audio signal with low noise? Using what mic?

You described the noise level, but you did not describe the audio signal level.
Is the audio signal at the proper level, accompanied by excessive noise?
Or is the audio signal level weak and the noise comes from compensating for a weak signal level?
There are several possibilities here, but we don't have enough information to know what the problem might be.
Thanks Richard. Apologies for the lack of info - I'm by no means an expert with audio.

The RodeLink system is fairly simplistic - the only control over gain is a 0, -10, -20dB toggle. I had it set to default (0dB) and was getting good levels through the camera (peaks around -10). So I don't think the static was due to compensating for a weak signal - I had the dial on the camera turned all the way down to 4 to get good levels.

The camera itself generally records very good audio with low noise (my other mic is a Rode NTG2) - but that's through the XLR inputs. I haven't tested any other mic through the 3.5mm mic input.

Interestingly when I plug my headphones into the receiver, the audio is clean. So I guess that indicates an issue with the camera.

Thanks in advance.
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Old July 2nd, 2015, 06:27 AM   #4
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Re: RodeLink static

Does the camera's 3.5mm input have plug-in power? If so, that should be turned OFF.

Also make sure the plug is clean and free of fingerprints or oxidation on both ends of the cable.

Try another cable as well.

Move the cable around while listening to see if the cable has a fault or if the interference could be coming from the camera, such as the viewfinder.

Lastly I would turn off the phantom power on the XLR connectors. Even though it shouldn't matter, I have lately had that be a source of noise on the other unpowered XLR with a different Canon camera and a wireless receiver.
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Old July 2nd, 2015, 10:16 AM   #5
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Re: RodeLink static

Yes, turn off the plug-in power.. if there is any. I'm not even sure the C100 has a 3.5mm input.
If using an XLR input, make sure the 3.5mm to XLR adapter is wired properly. The pin-3 terminal should be tied to pin-1 (shield/ground).
Phantom Power MUST be off, if not, catastrophic damage could occur to the camera and/or receiver.
BTW, 'Plug-in Power' and 'Phantom Power' are different animals... and not interchangeable.
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Old July 2nd, 2015, 05:29 PM   #6
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Re: RodeLink static

"...BTW, 'Plug-in Power' and 'Phantom Power' are different animals... and not interchangeable."

What is "Plug-in Power"? My Sony FDR-AX100 has a mic jack that is labeled "Plug in Power" and I've always wondered what that was about. Found nothing in the manual about it. None of my other cameras have such a label. Is it a Sony thing? Are all 3.5 mic jacks not the same?

Mark
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Old July 2nd, 2015, 05:48 PM   #7
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Re: RodeLink static

I think Sony coined the term. It's a low-voltage power on the mic jack to power small mics that need it.

If your audio connection doesn't need it, it can cause a lot of noise problems. Just a slight movement of the cable can cause very loud pops and buzzes.

Some cameras and recorders have it and some don't. On some you can turn it off or on but others it's on all the time.

This is why the BeachTek and other adapters were a very important tool for connecting to 3.5mm jacks, they had the capacitors to deal with this power without it causing noise problems if you had a device where this power couldn't be switched off.
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Old July 2nd, 2015, 05:57 PM   #8
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Re: RodeLink static

Thanks Jay. My camera does't appear to have any menu setting to switch that power off. Hopefully there's no harm with plugging a Sony wireless receiver into this jack.

Mark
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Old July 3rd, 2015, 04:41 AM   #9
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Re: RodeLink static

Thanks guys. The C100 has no option to turn "plug in power" on or off. But it definitely has a 3.5mm jack - I have the RodeLink plugged into it. And as it's plugged into the mic jack (rather than XLR), phantom power isn't an issue.

I think buying a 3.5mm to XLR adapter might be my best bet here. But it would still be good to know how to get good results from the 3.5mm mic jack.
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Old July 3rd, 2015, 06:16 AM   #10
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Re: RodeLink static

Have you checked in the C100 page of this forum? Someone there has likely used the 3.5mm jack.
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Old July 3rd, 2015, 06:17 AM   #11
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Re: RodeLink static

Hi Jody

Just bear in mind that Canon preamps are noisy so it simply might be the 3.5mm input that's full of noise ..Definitely don't do anything until you have tried the same situation thru the XLR inputs ... Often 3.5mm inputs also tend to be higher gain than XLR so that could also add a bit of noise. I have heard people talking about the 5D audio input and saying that you have to set the level no higher than "1" otherwise it's noisy!! Might be worth trying that in the meantime as it might also happen on the C100??

Chris
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Old July 3rd, 2015, 08:29 PM   #12
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Re: RodeLink static

Thanks Chris. I've ordered an XLR adapter - will see how that goes.
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