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Canon XF Series HD Camcorders
Canon XF305, XF205 and XF105 (with SDI), Canon XF300, XF200 and XF100 (without SDI).


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Old August 1st, 2011, 11:13 AM   #1
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XF100 cannot separate audio channels when recording from an external mike

Hello,

I haven't been able to assign different recording levels to the audio channels when recording from an external mike (XLR). Channel 2 cannot be set separately and remains linked to channel 1.

Canon Canada support says I should connect a splitter cable to my Sennheiser microhone and trick the camera into seeing my mike as 2 mikes and set the levels separately. I don't like this very unprofessional solution, and I think there is a design flaw with this cam, that you should be able to control the audio channels separately when using an external mike, like I've ben able to do with all the camcorders I've owned before (HM100, NX5, Z1U, etc).

Looking for a way around this problem, any help would be appreciated.

André Vanasse, videographer
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Old August 1st, 2011, 12:51 PM   #2
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Re: XF100 cannot separate audio channels when recording from an external mike

The xf100 can absolutely set levels independently. Please refer to pages 79-81 in your manual which describe all the modes and how to set them. :)

Also list exactly your setup and whats plugged into what and we might be able to solve your problem.
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Old August 1st, 2011, 01:22 PM   #3
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Re: XF100 cannot separate audio channels when recording from an external mike

Robert,

Thanks for your answer.

My setup:

-Sennheiser connected to XLR input CH1
-Both channels set to "external" on the side panel, ch1 set to MIC +48v
-Menu/Audio input/CH!/CH2
-Menu/XLR ALC Link/Separated

Still unable to control CH2 level. Stays linked to CH1
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Old August 1st, 2011, 01:43 PM   #4
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Re: XF100 cannot separate audio channels when recording from an external mike

OK...now I see what you mean. I thought you were recording two mics and couldn't control the second channel. With one mic sent to both it does only have one level control. My 300 does the same thing. Personally I don't see it as a problem. Never done that and can't imagine why you'd want to record one mic to two different levels though you do see the need. Splitter solution seems the best as per Canon's suggestion. It's obviously a decision Canon has made if their top two cameras behave that way.
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Old August 1st, 2011, 01:51 PM   #5
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Re: XF100 cannot separate audio channels when recording from an external mike

Is the A- M switch set to M?
Mike
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Old August 1st, 2011, 01:53 PM   #6
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Re: XF100 cannot separate audio channels when recording from an external mike

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Ayotte View Post
Is the A- M switch set to M?
Mike
Doesn't make a difference. Just tried this on my 300. Thanks though!
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Old August 1st, 2011, 01:58 PM   #7
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Re: XF100 cannot separate audio channels when recording from an external mike

Even when I use only one mike, I always set the 2 channels separately, one on automatic, the other on manual and at different levels. I find it safer and it allows me to pick the best of both. Been doing that for years, with my old PD-150, a Z1U, NX5, HM100, and others. I was very surprised to discover that the Canon XF100 doesn't have this very basic and ubiquitous feature.

AV
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Old August 1st, 2011, 02:01 PM   #8
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Re: XF100 cannot separate audio channels when recording from an external mike

Fair enough. My audio backup is always using two mics. Generally a shotgun for main and a lav as backup. Or two lavs. If my main mic fails, the other one is there.
Just different ways of working. As I mentioned, it's a Canon decision not a design flaw.
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Old August 1st, 2011, 02:12 PM   #9
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Re: XF100 cannot separate audio channels when recording from an external mike

For me, not having such a basic feature is a flaw, and the worst of it being that they must have left it out knowingly. From your posts I understand that the whole XF series including the XF300 is designed that way. Thanks for your input ;-)

Last edited by Andre Vanasse; August 1st, 2011 at 02:55 PM.
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Old November 11th, 2013, 12:11 PM   #10
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Re: XF100 cannot separate audio channels when recording from an external mike

Splitting levels is imperative in case one channel peaks you've got another channel with more headroom to patch in.

Every other professional camera can do it and always has been able to so it's a flaw.
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Old November 11th, 2013, 05:26 PM   #11
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Re: XF100 cannot separate audio channels when recording from an external mike

OK - perhaps a silly question, but if you use an XLR splitter (inexpensive) to send to both inputs at the same time, then operate them as independent channels (as I do all the time) then will that get you where you need to go?
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Old November 12th, 2013, 11:17 AM   #12
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Re: XF100 cannot separate audio channels when recording from an external mike

To me, it seems like it might be a good thing to have one mic record to both channels, just in case something bad happens, you have a back up channel to use.

Jonathan
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Old December 29th, 2013, 12:10 PM   #13
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Re: XF100 cannot separate audio channels when recording from an external mike

Andre, I've been using an XLR splitter with my XF100 since day one, and it works like a charm. I don't know why you consider it unprofessional, but it takes up little room, weighs next to nothing, and presents no issue. Give it a try, after awhile you forget its there.
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