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Old December 11th, 2005, 08:56 AM   #1
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definitive indie sound setup : gs400

Ok fellow forum buddys,

Ive been reading up on sound for the gs400 as ive decided based on excellent advice from here is the best bang for my buck.

My next question is sound.

It seems the rode video mic is the go, with some sort of xlr adapter.

What i want to do is be able to have the mic on cam or on a boom, balanced.

There is a lot of discussion about phantom power etc and i confused.
DO i need to pump power thru the mic to get it to work if its on a 4 metre lead to the beachtek, or can i just buy a passive one.

there fantastic advice on here, im learning so much!
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Old December 12th, 2005, 05:48 AM   #2
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NO takers?, oh well i guess its hard one. If your that into sound yuor probably got something with xlr inputs native
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Old December 12th, 2005, 09:30 AM   #3
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Brendan, I moved your thread to the Audio Production forum so it could be better answered.
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Old December 13th, 2005, 04:28 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tommy Haupfear
Brendan, I moved your thread to the Audio Production forum so it could be better answered.
Thanks for that Tom
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Old December 13th, 2005, 05:19 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brendan Sundry
...

Ive been reading up on sound for the gs400 as ive decided based on excellent advice from here is the best bang for my buck.
.....
It seems the rode video mic is the go, with some sort of xlr adapter.

What i want to do is be able to have the mic on cam or on a boom, balanced.

There is a lot of discussion about phantom power etc and i confused.
DO i need to pump power thru the mic to get it to work if its on a 4 metre lead to the beachtek, or can i just buy a passive one.
The Rode has a built-in battery and doesn't require phantom power (nor will it accept it, AFAIK). It's output is unabalanced as is the input to your camera so the Beach isn't needed either. You can use a stereo headphones extension cable as far as the connections are concerned but those might be subject to noise pickup since they're usually only marginally well-shielded. Rode makes an extension cable that is likely to have better shielding that would be a better bet or you could make one up yourself if you're handy with a soldering iron.
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Old December 13th, 2005, 06:22 AM   #6
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i think i want to go balanced though, so i can have a wireless if i need it
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Old December 13th, 2005, 11:31 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by Brendan Sundry
i think i want to go balanced though, so i can have a wireless if i need it
See my other note - a simple miniplug-to-XLR cable adapter does not make it a balanced system. it takes transfomers or other circuitry. And if any portion of the cable is unbalanced, the entire thing is unbalanced even with adapters in place.
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Old December 13th, 2005, 07:13 PM   #8
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surely if youve got it plugged into an xlr adapter box ie beachtek its better than having the stereo mini lead?

So the beachteks boxes arent balanced unless theyre powered?
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Old December 13th, 2005, 11:34 PM   #9
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"i think i want to go balanced though, so i can have a wireless if i need it"

You can have a wireless with 1/8" stereo miniplug. I believe the Sennheiser sets come with the adapter plug. My Lectrosonics wireless is 1/8" miniplug which I use with my VX2000. Don't worry about that aspect. I get great audio quality.

I don't think that the type of cable is nearly as critical as the placement of the mic and the mic's quality. A good quality 1/8" cable that is placed away from any power cables should do a decent job. Although the beachtek adapter is a nice piece of equipment, your production would benefit more from a couple of decent lights and grip equipment. Also, adding more connectors is a possible invitation to noisy connections.

Personally, I prefer to do audio in post whenever possible. Doing on-set audio takes an extra crewmember and audio problems waste the time of several actors and crew. In post, you are in a relaxed environment doing ADR with one or two actors at a time with the right mic placed properly. If you do post audio, don't forget to get "room tone" recordings from your set so you have appropriate background sounds to add during editing.
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Old December 14th, 2005, 12:20 AM   #10
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For wireless systems, the cable from RX to camera is usually very short and therefore not as suceptable to interference (just don't run it too close to the LCD screen as it can cause a buzz) so you could get away with unbalanced there.

Balanced audio is most useful for long cable runs where you want no noise. You would need a balanced mic (not the Rode videomic) and a beachtek box at the camera.

One advantage to using the beachtek (even if it is an unbalanced setup) is that you have proper level control without delving into the menus, and individual control of the channels. Another is that you could have a line level input on one channel and a mic level input on the other channel (if that's important to you).

Cheers.
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Old December 14th, 2005, 05:16 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brendan Sundry
surely if youve got it plugged into an xlr adapter box ie beachtek its better than having the stereo mini lead?

So the beachteks boxes arent balanced unless theyre powered?
The Videomic is unbalanced. AFAIK, the Rode miniplug to XLR adapter and similar adapters from other sources is not a balancing transformer but simply an plug adapter. Because the mic is unbalanced, the entire cable is unbalanced even if it is an XLR wired cable and the fact that the Beach accepts balanced mic inputs doen't change that. Unless there's an actual balancing transformer (called a "balun" by the way) at the microphone end of the cable, plugging into the Beach at the camera end won't turn an unbalanced feed into a balanced feed.

It's true that balanced feeds are less noise prone than normal stereo cables BUT going with

Videomic --> mini-to-XLR adapter --> XLR cable --> Beachtek --> Camera

does NOT give you a balanced feed. In that arrangement, the entire system is unbalanced and the only advantage you might gain is the shielding on the XLR cable is probably better than a plain old stereo extension cable from Radio Snak. IMO, you'd better off for less money using the Rode extension cable they sell as an accessory for the Videomic. It too is likely to be better shielded than the Radio Shack cable and is a whole lot cheaper than a Beach. Not that getting a Beachtek is a bad idea, far from it. But connecting everything up the Videomic as you've said you plan on doing will NOT accomplish what you apparently think it does.
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Old December 14th, 2005, 05:34 AM   #12
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Thanks guys , learning a lot,

Ive actually gonna get Jay Roses' book on sound for DV.

Just one more question i think.

I wouldnt mind getting this

http://www.signvideo.com/xlr-pro_xlr...udio-mixer.htm

so i can adjust audio levels during shooting. And it has a coupl of inputs.

Any reson not to buy it?

I will get that rode extesion cord and the mic but maybe with a convertor
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