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Old March 31st, 2005, 09:35 AM   #121
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I don't know about the specifications of the MA-300 (and MA-100) so I'll leave that to someone else.

But with the MA-300 you only have the volume controls of your GL2 to play with.
The Beachtek adaptors will give you more options. (and some of them provides phantom power too)
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Old March 31st, 2005, 11:20 AM   #122
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An XLR to mini adaptor will work with any battery powered mic that puts out a reasonably strong signal. Depending on the senstivity of the mic and the impedance of the mic compared to that of the camera, you may not be able to get the recording levels as high as you would prefer.

Make sure you get an adaptor that is properly wired for XLR mono to unbalanced stereo mini, or else you'll only be able to record to one channel.
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Old April 5th, 2005, 01:01 PM   #123
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I made my own dual-XLR to mini cable (one mic to each input channel). For the money (or lack thereof), it works great for non-phantom mics or (with proper attenuation) line-level mixer feeds.

Do you have a specific mic/source in mind?
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Old April 5th, 2005, 04:11 PM   #124
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Yes, I wanted to boom with my AT 835B Shotgun. It is a powered mic.

I was curious if it's better to use as XLR adaptor to mini stereo or mono? Is it better to record the XLR mono signal on the two channels or one?

Another thought...is it possible to use the boom on one channel and the camera mic on the second channel to later mix in for ambient??

Never claimed to be a sound recordist but I may have to do this for a short scene next week. Many thanks.
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Old April 5th, 2005, 04:36 PM   #125
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One channel should be fine. You can send it to both left and right once you get it into your editor. (In Premiere, it's called "Duplicate Left" or "Duplicate Right," depending on which you had it plugged into.)

Unfortunately, you can not use the internal mic and an external one at the same time. If you want ambient sound, you'll have to set up a second mic just for that purpose and run it into the other channel. With this setup, you should have the ability to mix them in post.

Be careful when shopping for "stereo" cables with one XLR jack. Just make sure it's for a balanced XLR and not a stereo XLR. There have been previous posts here concerning those.
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Old April 5th, 2005, 05:51 PM   #126
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I'll look through my adaptors and see what I may need. Thanks for the good advice.
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Old April 5th, 2005, 06:03 PM   #127
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Recommend BeachTek DXA-4P

Jim,

IMO the BeachTek DXA-4P is the best value. It goes for about $150-160 new and you can get used ones anywhere from $80-$120. Shows up on eBay regularly. I actually bought mine used for $55. :-) Click the link for more details. It bolts to the bottom of the GL2 and becomes "like one unit". The BeachTek bottom then can be mounted to a standard tripod.

BeachTek is recommended by many DVInfo.net members. It's rugged, gives you both line and mic input, and both 1/8-in minijack and XLR inputs. I've used one for a year now and never had a problem. Don't know of anyone that ever had a problem.

With regards to recording from one mic to both L & R channels -- I highly recommend it:

(1) If you only record to one channel it can make for an unbalance problem with the GL2 audio circuit.
(2) By recording both channels, you can set the level on one channel based on expected sounds, and then set the other channel about 7-10 db lower. This gives you some pad in case of an unexpected loud sound (laughing, sneezing, yelling, etc.). You can then select the best audio track in post that you want to use.
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Old April 14th, 2005, 09:13 AM   #128
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I just got this converter for my sennheiser me/66 and GL2.
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/cont...=154878&is=REG
Its balanced xlr to stereo mini and seems to deliver a high quality. Of course I use battery power for my mic. Phantom power does deliver a bit higher quality but the difference is miniscule. If you can use battery power and don't have the $150 budget for the beachtek or MA-300, I reccomend this.
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Old June 30th, 2005, 10:19 AM   #129
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A quick question about the beachtek adapter. To record to both channels do you simply flip the switch to stereo then make the level adjustments with the DXA-4P? If it is more complicated than this could you possibly explain Pete?

thanx
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Old June 30th, 2005, 11:29 AM   #130
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That's correct except you actually may need to set the switch to "mono" to get a single mono mic routed to both channels. I seem to recall that the labeling of the correct choice of switch position is counter-intuitive.

Start with the GL2's own level controls set at mid range and the Beachtek's at maximum. If you need to increase the signal, use the GL2 controls. If you need to reduce the signal use the Beachtek controls, because the alternative of turning the GL2's level controls way down to get an acceptable recording level will set you up for clipping of the audio at the input. The GL2's level meters monitor recording level, not input level.
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Old June 30th, 2005, 01:22 PM   #131
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Recording One Mic with the BeachTek

Tague,

To record the signal from one mic to both channels:
  1. Plug the mic into the BeachTek LEFT input
  2. Set the BeachTek to MONO
  3. Set the BeachTek level control for BOTH Left and Right to maximum
  4. Using camera controls, adjust the L channel level for optimum recording of your subject. Generally, you want to adjust the GL2 level so that the max level is at about -12db.
  5. Then set the R channel level lower by about 10 db. This will allow the R channel to properly record unexpected loud sounds that may be clipped by the L channel.
  6. The best audio can then be selected during the editing process.

I have always adjusted the input level using the GL2 audio level controls with the BeachTek set to maximum. To the best of my knowledge, the GL2 audio level controls adjust the INPUT signal that will be recorded.

Here's a quote from the BeachTek DXA-4 manual:
Quote:
For the best signal to noise performance, the levels controls on the DXA-4 should normally be set as high as possible. If necessary, adjust either the left or right volume control to balance both inputs so they are of equal amplitude. Then set the desired recording level with the manual level control on the camcorder. Use this same control (not the adapter controls) to ride the levels during recording.
Fred, I'm not sure I understand your comment:
Quote:
If you need to reduce the signal use the Beachtek controls, because the alternative of turning the GL2's level controls way down to get an acceptable recording level will set you up for clipping of the audio at the input. The GL2's level meters monitor recording level, not input level.
As long as you adjust the GL2 recording level (using the GL2 controls) so that the signal does not exceed 0db, there should be no clipping, correct? As I stated above, I usually adjust the level so that it does not exceed -12db while testing the mic with the expected audio. If you have a very hot mic and you cannot reduce the level to -12db using the GL2 controls, then you could adjust using the BeachTek controls. The GL2 also has a mic attenuator that you can set ON using the menus when you have a very hot signal. But I've never used it.

Best Regards,
Pete
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Old June 30th, 2005, 02:26 PM   #132
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Pete,

I think Fred was getting at the fact that it is possible to have a signal so loud that the GL2's preamps distort. When the signal enters the camera, it goes to the preamps, and THEN to the input controls. Turning it down just reduces the level of the already-clipped signal. It may look OK on the VU meters, but it's still distorting. I made this mistake myself... once.

Turning the signal down at the Beachtek box or with the attenuator would keep it in range for the preamps.

The best method to avoid this problem (in my opinion) is to always monitor via headphones at the camera. If it's clipping, you'll hear it.
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Old November 12th, 2005, 10:36 PM   #133
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Question about XLR

Since the GL2 does not come with built-in XLR ports, you can drop an extra $200 or so on the MA-300 accessory shoe. But what about having a cable that converts 1/8" to XLR? Would it make a significant difference in quality? I found http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/cont...ist&sku=233892 to be an alternative, but I'm not sure if it should be considered.
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Old November 13th, 2005, 01:06 AM   #134
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That kind of adapter will make you lose the noise protection provided by the balanced signal on the XLR cable. It simply takes the 2 parts of the balanced signals and sends them to the left and right channels. A proper adapter will subtract the two signals, eliminating the noise, before sending it into your camera.

Not much point using XLR if you don't use the differential signal...
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Old November 13th, 2005, 02:21 AM   #135
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The point in using XLR is that you already have the equipment. Yes, it will be noisier, but the average to above-average person will never notice. I mean, most people's home systems are so sh*tty that they wouldn't know the difference between an XLR and the 1/8 minijack.

Even if you're going to film,. theaters are so unpleasant these days, with badly focused film and cell phones going off left and right, that a tiny hiss that's below the aural comprehension of most humans is a nonstarter.

I use a simple Radio Shack adapter to convert XLR to 14 inch and then to mini for my GL2.

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