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Old December 21st, 2005, 03:43 PM   #1
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XLR adaptors and XLR mics for GS400

looking for XLR adaptor for my GS400 to get quality sound. Did search and didn't find much. Looking for a mic to shoot indoor scenes with dialouge. Not sure if I should go for a shotgun or some other type. Please help and thanks.
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Old December 21st, 2005, 04:55 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Witt
looking for XLR adaptor for my GS400 to get quality sound. Did search and didn't find much. Looking for a mic to shoot indoor scenes with dialouge. Not sure if I should go for a shotgun or some other type. Please help and thanks.
Consider the Beachtek adapters, something like the DXA2s would work well with your camera for mics that don't require phantom power. Another possibility is the Rode Videomic which is an good mic that doesn't require an XLR, being one of the few mics approaching pro quality but still using a miniplug connector.
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Old December 21st, 2005, 07:28 PM   #3
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ur only real bolt on option is a beachtek, HOWEVER

with my MX500(backup camera), i regualarly use a sennheiser G1/G2 (depending on what i have handy) and use XLR mics connnected to the transmitter, then plug the reciever stright into the cam. This works REALLY well, and uve got a wireless kit to boot...
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Old December 21st, 2005, 07:59 PM   #4
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I use a Beachtek DXA-2s on my GS200 and it works great. I use it with my Audio-Technica Pro88W wireless mic. I’ve also have a Rode VideoMic and it works well plugged directly into the GS200. Depending on your budget the Rode Videomic may be the best value at only $150 considering I paid $169 for the Beachtek alone (no mic!).

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Old December 22nd, 2005, 09:52 PM   #5
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I through together a quick video for BeachTek demonstrating the DXA-2S. You can watch it on the BeachTek site or at http://www.dvcreators.net/products/beachtek.html

It's a nice match with the GS400. I'd recommend a RODE NTG-2 shotgun to go along with it. To me it's the best value shotgun (price vs. performance) on the market.

The nice thing about the BeachTek/shotgun combo is the ability to put a 20' XLR cable and get the mic right up on the subject. RODE also makes an inexpensive shockmount for on-camera use called the SM3. Plus you can get the "deadcat" for around $50.

The other thing I would recommend is a good hardwired lavalier like a Sony ECM-44b or Countryman B3 if you got a bit more budget. The AT-899 with the accessory pack is pretty awesome too. I especially dig the "viper clip"

But if you don't want to spend a whole lot, as John says, the RODE Videomic is a pretty dang good deal and you won't need a BeachTek. However, you'll only be able to go about 10' on the unbalanced cable. It just depends on what you need, what your budget is and where you want to go with audio in the future.
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Old December 23rd, 2005, 12:07 PM   #6
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For a passive device, I really like the SignVideo XLR-PRO. Very solidly built, and unlike the BeachTek, is designed for active mixing. The faders are quiet and smooth. Not knocking BeachTek, but I believe the knobs click into place don't they? If you can afford the BeachTek products with phantom power, or even gain and a limiter though, get that if you don't already have a mixer.
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Old December 23rd, 2005, 04:33 PM   #7
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Not knocking BeachTek, but I believe the knobs click into place don't they?
No, they are smooth and quiet. My Beachtek doesn’t introduce any noise into the signal.

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Old December 23rd, 2005, 10:52 PM   #8
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I'm hearing a lot about the Rode videomic and I understand that it is a mono shotgun mic. So the Rode videomic just hook up to my GS400 "WITHOUT" an XLR adaptor.......and/or will it also hook up to an XLR too?
Is the Rode mic versitile in this way or something? Thanks for all the help!!! Also, In the most simplest terms....What is the purpose/benifit of a mixer? What exactly do you use these for?? I'm just starting to learn about audio.
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Old December 24th, 2005, 05:50 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Witt
I'm hearing a lot about the Rode videomic and I understand that it is a mono shotgun mic. So the Rode videomic just hook up to my GS400 "WITHOUT" an XLR adaptor.......and/or will it also hook up to an XLR too?
Is the Rode mic versitile in this way or something? Thanks for all the help!!! Also, In the most simplest terms....What is the purpose/benifit of a mixer? What exactly do you use these for?? I'm just starting to learn about audio.
Yes, the Rode is a mono, unbalanced mic that has a miniplug connector that will plug straight into your camera. They also have a boom, extension cable (proobably better shielded than a typical Radio Shack stereo extersion cable would be), and furry available as accessories, They also have a min-to-XLR adapter to use the mic with cameras and mixers that have XLR inputs and while you can have problems using a simple adapter for XLR-to-miniplug inputs, going the other way is usually not an issue.

There's mixers and then there's mixers, ranging from simple to complex. First of all, the automatic sound recording level controls in the camera should only be used when there's just no other option - it's almost always better to do it manually if possible. So you need some way of monitoring and adjusting the levels. A mixer will take inputs from a variety of sources, adjust their levels and route them to your choice of the left channel, the right channel, or blend them together and send them to both channels at once for mono dialog, and then on to the recording device at the right level for its inputs. Let's say you were recording an interview with two people. For best sound you might put a lav mic on each of them. The mixer would take the feed from each mic, blend them together, and send them equally to both the left and right channel in the camera. OR you could choose to put each mic on its own track - the mixer would route each mic to the channel you wanted it on - and the sound person would use the mixer to make sure the volumes are the same on each one. The camera operator could concentrate on working the camera while the mixer operator monitors the sound and makes sure the levels stay correct. OR you''re back 10 feet shooting a subject. You're using just one mic but you want it close to the subject so you've put it on a boom. The sound person holding the boom might have a small, belt mounted mixer so he can adjust the sound level before it goes on to the camera, and also have a pair of headphones plugged into it to monitor the sound during the shoot to make sure the mic is aimed properly. Mixers will often have better sounding preamps than do the direct mic inputs into the camera so another use is to take the mic input and boost it to line level to send to the camera in order to get better quality sound than can be obtained sending it directly through the camera's mic input. Finally mixers can be the component in the chain that supplies the phantom power required by the many professional grade condenser microphones that lack internal batteries.
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Old December 24th, 2005, 09:11 AM   #10
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In addition to what Steve said, I found that the output of my Audio-Technica Pro88W wireless mic was too hot for my GS200 and the GS200 does not have ANY audio controls. (I believe the GS400 does) So I had to buy the Beachtek DXA-2s to attenuate the Pro88W mic so that it didn’t distort the inputs of the camera. The Rode Videomic does not have this problem. It was designed to be used with the small consumer cams. The Beachtek served as my mixer in that scenario.

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Old December 24th, 2005, 10:24 AM   #11
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I guess it's worth asking why you want to mount the mic on the camera, by the way. That might be the best option for some run and gun situations if you're working alone, but you have to get really, really close. The general rule for interiors is that you need to get the mic within at least three feet, and even that's pushing it. If your trying to shoot dramatic work, mounting the mic on camera is fairly useless. For most situations you should be booming the mic or using lavs. The VideoMic does have threads for a boom and a built in shockmount, but it's not really designed for heavy use or anything. The threads are plastic, there's no way to adjust the angle of mic, and the shockmount isn't really that great. If you were to boom mount it, running the unbalanced cable back to the camera will run a considerable risk of RF interterference, and you will have to run a second cable from the headphone jack back to the boom op so he or she can monitor the audio and make sure the mic is being aimed correctly. I guess I'm saying try and buy a better mic and shockmount if you can afford it. I know that isn't always possible when people are just beginning to build their sound kit.
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Old December 24th, 2005, 10:41 AM   #12
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If you want more information on how the RODE Videomic works with the GS400, see this.

BTW, the Videomic has metal threads for its mounts. They are quite rugged. The accessory shoe mount is plastic and the anti-rotation tangs can be sheared off if it is overtorqued. To get more flexibility in adjusting the angle of the mic on a boom, use a ball mount. Or, you can use a monopod with an angle adjustment on the head.
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Old December 24th, 2005, 02:32 PM   #13
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Apologies for giving bad information on the threads. Been a while since I handled that mic and I guess I misremembered. Seriously though, a monopod? Seems awfully heavy and cumbersome and probably too short. A genuine shockmount can be had for like fifty bucks. Just my two cents.
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Old December 24th, 2005, 02:40 PM   #14
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Guy Bruner
If you want more information on how the RODE Videomic works with the GS400, see this.

BTW, the Videomic has metal threads for its mounts. They are quite rugged. The accessory shoe mount is plastic and the anti-rotation tangs can be sheared off if it is overtorqued. To get more flexibility in adjusting the angle of the mic on a boom, use a ball mount. Or, you can use a monopod with an angle adjustment on the head.

"Quite rugged" would be a very subjective statement. It's 1/32 thick steel, and it didn't take much for my boom to bend the threads. If you keep the mic on the stand all the time, and aren't constantly subjecting it to movement, it will probably last. However, price needs to be taken into consideration as well. I can't really imagine this mic being used much on a boom vs a remote stand, but....

It won't help with the Rode, but check out the new Ktek shock mount. Inexpensive, lightweight, and effective.
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Old December 24th, 2005, 03:53 PM   #15
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Hey, Spot, the threads are "quite rugged" as compared to plastic :-). I'm not trying to turn the Videomic into a panacea. It is a very good mic if you are in the upper consumer / low prosumer market. I, too, like the K-Tek mounts. I use the KCAMSSM mount with my AT897.
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