View Full Version : The Physical Connection
January 9th, 2008, 07:30 AM
Hi all, I have poured over the userís manual and this wonderful forum (and of the two, have learned the most here), and need help connecting the hardware. Iím just starting to put extra mics and dv cameras together and am finding that info on making the physical connection is sort of thin.
I want to connect a wireless lav mic system to my Canon XL2. I have a wired lav mic with a mini jack and no where to plug it in that I know of. Someone here on the forum said you need a mini jack to XLR adapter for that but be careful because you may also need a mono to stereo adapter. Where do I get one of those? My wired lav mic doesnít indicate whether itís stereo so should I assume itís mono?
So, while Iím shopping for a wireless lav mic system, Iím thinking what else will I need to make it work? Neither the camera manufacturer nor the mic folks address this fundamental piece of info. Is there a standard piece of connecting equipment in everyoneís bag but mine?
January 9th, 2008, 08:05 AM
Your post mixes issues regarding wired and wireless lavs so it's hard to know just what's what.
It's almost certain that your wired lav is mono - I've never heard of a stereo lav. But less clear is what sort of connection it does have ... you said it has a mini plug on it but there may be more to it than that. What mic is it and what is intended to connect to?
You XL2 has a front mini jack where the builtin mic goes and rear XLR connectors. Some wireless brands have mini outputs, some have XLR, and some come with cables for both. For example, the popular Sennheiser G2 receiver comes with two cables, one ending with a mini plug and the other ending with an XLR and you can pick which one to use depending on what the camera has as its input. If you pick one that only has a mini, you can get an adapter to plug it into one of your camera's XLR inputs for just a few dollars.
Mono to stereo adapter shouldn't be necessary - there's no reason to record dialog from one mono mic on both stereo channels - you can pan the one mono track wherever you want it to go in post.
January 9th, 2008, 09:55 AM
Thank you, Steve, the fog is beginning to clear! Since your reply, I tested the mic WITH the camera. I didn't know the mini jack was part of the front mic, just didn't think to unplug and take a look. Of course, that way you use the external mic or the built-in mic, but not both at the same time - now I get it. I understand, too, "pan the one mono track wherever you want it to go in post" from a Final Cut Pro point of view. However, your reply about that plus the mono-to-stereo comment helped me to better understand "how the camera's audio recording will behave once transferred into the computer and how it will affect my project."
I have the Audio-technica ATR35a wired lav mic, very inexpensive, but great for practicing. Thanks for the wireless suggestion with both types of connecting cables. Funny, searching for "Sennheiser G2" returns a "sorry, no match" at sennheiserusa.com. I'll keep looking.
January 9th, 2008, 10:29 AM
The G2 is part of Sennheiser's "evolution" series of sets. We often call it the G2 here.
The ew 112 P G2 on this page is probably the one you want. You can find it in B&H's wonderful online catalog too (bhphotovideo.com)
January 9th, 2008, 06:01 PM
Thanks for suggesting a model, David, that's a great help to me.
January 9th, 2008, 07:17 PM
That's the one I have and I like it a lot.
By the way, in case it's not clear to you yet, you can always record one device in one channel and another device in the other channel. And you can do that whether you choose the RCA jacks, the XLR jacks or the front mic jack as your inputs. It's a bit more difficult to do that with the mic jack, but you'd rarely want to with the other, more direct and robust options available.
You can also record one mono device to both channels, and there can be situations where you might want to--such as recording at a normal level in one channel and a low level in the other channel, in case the main channel gets distorted by an overload from a loud passage. More likely for concert material than dialog, as Steve said, but not impossible there either if someone shouts.