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Canon XH Series HDV Camcorders
Canon XH G1S / G1 (with SDI), Canon XH A1S / A1 (without SDI).


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Old April 12th, 2007, 06:50 PM   #1
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XHA1 audio disaster!

I bought an A1 a few weeks ago and am very happy with the images i've been shooting. Then last night i guy i edit for asked me to bring my camera along to record a voiceover. I hadn't even taken the rode ntg1 mic i bought with the camera out of the box till today. Half an hout before the client turned up to do the VO i attached the mic but could not get any sound from it at all. I tried all the settings and went into the menu's Audio settings. Eventually i gave up as the client walked through the door, and i decided to go with the onboard mic instead.
The results were dire. In fact i think the onboard mic on my old Sony PDX10 did a better job.
I put the FCP files through Soundtrack Pro's noise reduction to try to improve it, but i rarely find that program does what it says on the box.
I've no doubt the gear is all great and its all operator error on my part but i'm mystified as to what i was doing wrong.
What settings should i have been using to get the camera to recognise the NTG1 in the first place?
I'd be grateful for any tips on this
Cheers
Dom
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Old April 12th, 2007, 07:10 PM   #2
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Dont know if youve done it, its all on the manual:

1.activate the XLR input (Menu/Audio Setup/XLR input ON)
2.Connect the mic to CH1
3.Set the 48v switch (phantom) of CH1 to ON
4.Set the input channel switch to CH1
5.Line/Mic swith to MIC

Hope it helps...
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Old April 12th, 2007, 07:11 PM   #3
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Did you turn phantom power on? Are you sure it's an NTG-1 and not an NTG-2? The NTG-2 takes batteries which is why I'm asking. Have other XLR mics worked with your A1?
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Old April 12th, 2007, 07:55 PM   #4
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Ed, even with the NTG2, if phantom is turned on, it will still work (much like the K6 modules from Sennheiser...
unless of course Rode have changed the mic from 3 years ago..
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Old April 12th, 2007, 08:56 PM   #5
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The NTG-2 will work with the (AA) battery in and phantom power ON or OFF. With no battery installed, phantom power must be ON. Caveat...Provided, that is, if you have enabled XLR ON in the menu.
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Old April 13th, 2007, 03:04 AM   #6
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thanks for the help guys. I'm sure i tried all of the steps you reccommend Hernan but i'll check it out again later today. If the client had been ten minutes late instead of ten minutes early i'd probably have sorted it out, instead of panicking. Nonetheless, the result from thye onboard mic was dissapointing. Apart from that i love this Camera.
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Old April 13th, 2007, 09:53 AM   #7
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Could you describe the audio you got and what made it dire?

I've been fairly happy with the onboard mic so far. My only complaint is that I have to use an NTG-1 on the camera in order to record 2 sound sources.
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Old April 13th, 2007, 01:53 PM   #8
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Well i finally got the audio working. Not that there was anything wrong other than my own panicky ineptitude.
I returned the NGT1 and swapped it for an NGT2 because i ride a motorbike in London and belong to a car club for my camera stuff and didn't want to be in a position where i was having to rent a car for voiceover work when i could buy a self contained mic.
What made the audio dire asks Brad?
Er..Dunno, it just sounds awful. I think when something sounds/looks crap its self evident. Not sure i can describe it any better than that.
But more fool me for not getting the Rode up and running before the client turned up.
I have only myself to blame!
BTW, this Rode is an impressive bit of kit.
D
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Old April 13th, 2007, 02:41 PM   #9
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The built-in mic is only going to give you decent sound if you're within about 3 feet of the subject and he is talking directly to the camera. That's true with any on camera mic, although a decent shotgun mic will give marginally better results when slightly farther away or a little off axis.
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Old April 13th, 2007, 02:58 PM   #10
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The built-in mic is only going to give you decent sound if you're within about 3 feet

If she'd been any closer Bill she'd have eaten it!
Which makes me ask the question:
If a client comes forward at the tail end of a production and says..."Oh but i forgot to mention So and So", whats the best way of seamlessly integrating it into the project?
In my experience, even if you get the audio quality right (which i failed miserably to do on this occasion) there's still the problem of the meter of the words which never seem to match up to the original.
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Old April 15th, 2007, 05:07 PM   #11
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The moral of this story is NEVER use/try new gear for the first time just before a money shoot. ALWAYS practice with it early enough to have recover time if you run into a problem.
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Old April 15th, 2007, 06:20 PM   #12
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Sound advice Don!
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Old April 15th, 2007, 07:39 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dom Stevenson View Post
If a client comes forward at the tail end of a production and says..."Oh but i forgot to mention So and So", whats the best way of seamlessly integrating it into the project?
This is voice over? Maybe lots of practice for the off-screen talking head followed by retakes of the audio, all the time with the video running in front of the person speaking to help keep the tempo correct. Then edit it in, maybe edit or loop some of the video if needed to make the extra audio to make it fit.

And perhaps most important - corrsponding additional charges for the finished product, especially if the omission was the clients fault, not yours.
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Old April 15th, 2007, 07:49 PM   #14
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Personally, if there was ever a chance to reshoot to make up for the original audio issues, then this 'omission' sounds like it. Regardless of who makes the mistakes, if you're the editor/producer, it's yours. Everyone should be on the same team, and with my past mistakes, I've never gotten an arguement to do small jobs over again because nobody wants to look (or sound) bad.
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