on camera and wireless mic at DVinfo.net

Go Back   DV Info Net > Canon EOS / MXF / AVCHD / HDV / DV Camera Systems > Canon HDV and DV Camera Systems > Canon XL and GL Series DV Camcorders

Canon XL and GL Series DV Camcorders
Canon XL2 / XL1S / XL1 and GL2 / XM2 / GL1 / XM1.


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old June 9th, 2005, 04:22 PM   #1
New Boot
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: columbus OH
Posts: 11
on camera and wireless mic

I have just recently received my Canon Xl2 and purchased an Azden WLX pro
mic and receiver to begin shooting weddings. I know this isn't the best audio equipment out there, but all I can manage at this time. This mic receiver has an ac 1/8th inch plug in, which I found out will not plug into the XL2. I have purchased an XLR adapter and have connected it this way to the rear of the camcorder. My problem is I need the wireless mic for a wedding next weekend, but I cannot get audio from the on camera front mic and the wireless mic at the same time. I don't think I need anything else to be able to pick up both audios, but I am not understanding the control settings, whether or not to have the 48v on or off. Also the manual mentions mics w phantom power and I'm not sure what that is. What can I do to pick up both mics?
Any help is GREATLY appreciated. Thanks, Lisa
Lisa Lendavic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 9th, 2005, 04:34 PM   #2
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Baltimore, MD USA
Posts: 2,323
Hi Lisa,

You can, but you have to use both rear XLR inputs. You can reroute the camera mounted mic with a shortie XLR.

Regards,

Ty Ford
Ty Ford is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 9th, 2005, 05:39 PM   #3
Trustee
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Healdsburg, California
Posts: 1,138
I'm not sure why you would need to use both rear XLR inputs. Here is the scoop. The onboard mic is a stereo mic, so when using it onboard you are already committing 2 channels of audio when using that mic. To add the wireless mic as an addition to the onboard mic, you will need to use the 4 channel / 12 bit audio mode. You can activate this mode using the menu and you will find it in the audio setup, choosing the 4 channel mode.

Then you will need to run your 1/8" to XLR cable to one of the rear XLR ports on the camera. The left XLR port will put the wireless mic onto channel 3 (the left side of a stereo field in your headphones) and the right port will be channel 4. On the audio control panel on the side of the camera, you must select the rear option for in the audio 2 section. If your wireless XLR is in channel 3, you also have the option to have it field out to channel 4 using this panel so that the wireless is not coming out only on the left side when playing back.


There is something else to note. When all the connections are working, you can check them using the audio monitor button to switch between 2 channel and 4 channel monitoring to see visual feedback in the audio bars of your screen. This is a nice little feature that can easily be overlooked. I didn't see any notation about it in the manual or in the Greg Salman DVD, but I probably just missed it or something.

Since I am told that some NLE's don't play well with 12 bit audio, you may want to convert the audio to 16 bit before your editing sessions.

On some shoots I have done, and a few weddings, I use the 4 channel audio with the onboard mic for room ambient sounds, a wireless in the groom's lapel going to mic input 3, and a shotgun mic for directional distance on mic input 4, I usually have dedicated devices capturing separate audio for the musicians, readers, etc... And then convert all the audio for matching bitrates prior to editing. I love the 4 channel feature of the XL2 in that it allows me to quickly have synced audio from so many sources with the captured footage.
-J.
Jonathan Jones is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 9th, 2005, 06:49 PM   #4
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Baltimore, MD USA
Posts: 2,323
Good luck with that. :)

Ty Ford
Ty Ford is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 9th, 2005, 08:11 PM   #5
Trustee
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Lipa City Batangas, Philippines
Posts: 1,110
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lisa Lendavic
I don't think I need anything else to be able to pick up both audios, but I am not understanding the control settings, whether or not to have the 48v on or off. Also the manual mentions mics w phantom power and I'm not sure what that is. What can I do to pick up both mics?
Any help is GREATLY appreciated. Thanks, Lisa
Hi Lisa. Some microphones (condenser types) require 48V to be supplied to them before they will give any output. A mic preamp that can take condenser mics will have the capability to supply this 48V on the mic's signal leads. Because there is no additional connection required for this, it is called phantom power.

In your case, the XL2 can supply 48V phantom power OK, but you don't actually need it. The on-camera mic is a moving coil type, so does not require a supply. The wireless mic is probably moving-coil too, but in any case, it has its own preamp so does not need the 48V phantom power from the XL2.

Jonathan's connections for the multiple mics are correct, as long as the wireless mic's output does not overload the XL2's rear XLR inputs which are designed for low level only. If the wireless output is too high, you could use the line-level RCA jacks instead of the XLRs.

Once you have your 4-channel audio recording, you might want to purchase Scenalyzer to capture it into your PC for editing. It is quite simple to use and very effective.

Richard
Richard Hunter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 10th, 2005, 10:20 AM   #6
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Oakdale, Pa
Posts: 51
Hello Johnathan,
How do you "convert all the audio for matching bitrates prior to editing"?

I have Pinnacle editing software but I do not see this conversion capability in Pinnacle. Or is this something on the XL2 to convert the audio, if I use a wireless mic?
Ed Bicker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 10th, 2005, 02:28 PM   #7
Major Player
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Enterprise, AL
Posts: 857
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ty Ford
Hi Lisa,

You can, but you have to use both rear XLR inputs. You can reroute the camera mounted mic with a shortie XLR.

Regards,

Ty Ford
Ty,

Obviously you don't have to use both rear XLR inputs, the XL2 can record both the stock fron mic and another input from the rear XLR. It details exactly how to do it in the manual and I've done it. I think that's what Jonathan indicated in his post, so what part of it did you not agree with when you replied "Good luck with that"?

Why would anyone reroute the stock Canon mic to the XLR on the rear? Can you point to a pre-built connector for converting the dual prong Canon mic plug to XLR? Unless you needed four mic inputs, one to each channel, I see no advantage to creating a mono feed out of a stereo feed, except that you could stay at 16bit recording since you'd only be using two channels instead of three.
__________________
Fear No Weevil!
Patrick King is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 10th, 2005, 03:20 PM   #8
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Baltimore, MD USA
Posts: 2,323
Dear Fear,

Fear Not. My respnse was not reproachful. You give me undue credit for animosity that did not exist. The description sounded somewhat circuitous and challenging, hence my wish for good luck.

On the 12-bit thing; for audio quality reasons 12-bit is something I'd rather not do. You or someone else wants to do it, fine. I don't have a say in that.

I was on a shoot last week with several XL2 camcorders. One camera op wanted to use a wireless in one channel and the camera mounted mic on the other. The camera mounted mic was plugged into the front jacks.

From the way he explained it, we couldn't use front and back in 16-bit mode. I had an XLR shortie and used that with my much better Sennheiser MKH 416 shotgun mic (wrapped in a bit of napkin and gaffers tape to fit the larger mic holder) so he could stay in 16-bit mode and have wireless receiver and shotgun going into separate rear channels.

Regards,

Ty Ford
Ty Ford is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 10th, 2005, 03:45 PM   #9
Trustee
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Healdsburg, California
Posts: 1,138
"From the way he explained it, we couldn't use front and back in 16-bit mode."

And that is pretty much right on target - as we noted that the onboard mic (plugged through the front) takes up 2 channels (in stereo) - and that is all that is allowable in 16 bit mode. If you are needing both the front and the wireless but need to stay in 16 bit mode, than what Ty suggests about finding the right adapter, and sending it as a mono signal to one of the XLR's should be the workable solution.

I don't mind using the 12 bit for numerous shoots like the vocals in a wedding shoot. For things like live music capture and such, I use a dedicated system for 16 bit for better response in variable wave scenarios
Jonathan Jones is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 10th, 2005, 03:53 PM   #10
Trustee
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Healdsburg, California
Posts: 1,138
"How do you "convert all the audio for matching bitrates prior to editing"?

"...is this something on the XL2 to convert the audio, if I use a wireless mic?"

No the XL2 doesn't do the conversion onboard. There are several ways to do this using either outboard gear or quite easily through software. Some editing programs may have this feature, but not all, and I don't know off the top which do or don't overall. Quite, simply, you can find freeware or shareware sound editors that can provide this conversion - such as audacity for the Mac. Quicktime Pro for $29 is quite capable, and is available for Mac or Windows. You can choose to export to aiff and then select appropriate settings.

Just note that converting a 12 bit to 16 bit doesn't mean you have a pristine 16 bit on par with native 16 bit - you still have the quality of the original 12 bit capture just converted up to play well in the 16 bit arena - the average listener will generally not know the difference, especially depending upon the quality of the recording and the style of the sound (music, spoken word, etc), as well as the method for final rendering and playback (VHS, DVD, webcast, etc)
Jonathan Jones is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 10th, 2005, 04:52 PM   #11
Major Player
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Enterprise, AL
Posts: 857
Ty, Mea culpa.

I understand your aversion to kneeling to 12bit, you can never get that quality back - you can approximate it in post, or clean it up in post, or in some cases, you can just live with it in post.

But again, does anyone know of a pre-built connector to make the stock Canon mic connect to the rear XLR?
__________________
Fear No Weevil!
Patrick King is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 10th, 2005, 10:10 PM   #12
Trustee
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Lipa City Batangas, Philippines
Posts: 1,110
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ed Bicker
How do you "convert all the audio for matching bitrates prior to editing"?
Ed, every time I have used 4 channel audio, I have never had to convert the bit rate. After capture using Scenalyzer, Windows apparently sees the files as 16 bits. Certainly, just by importing these files into apps like Sound Forge or Vegas, they are already in 16 bit format.

What you might want to convert is the sampling rate, from 32KHz to 48KHz, in case your NLE does not like to mix files with different sampling rates (or if it does not do the sample rate conversion well). Sound Forge is excellent at sample rate conversion.

Regarding the 12 bit/16 bit sample depth, it should be remembered that the 12 bit sampling is non-linear whereas the 16 bit sampling is linear. Of course 16 bits is better, but if you record with healthy audio levels, (around the middle of the range where most of the bits are allotted) 12 bits will give very good results too. It's when the levels are very low that the quality suffers most.

Richard
Richard Hunter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 11th, 2005, 07:17 AM   #13
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Baltimore, MD USA
Posts: 2,323
Richard,

Thanks for filling in the extra fact; the 32 kHz versus 48 kHz sample rate. I'm not so much bothered by the sample rate differences. My first DAW ran at 16 bit 32 kHz and even during some patchup work I did on some music tracks for an album, no one (including myself) noticed. However, I do know that some editing and/or transfer systems may not be engineered to recognize 32 kHz.

The 12-bit versus 16-bit thing concerns me more. I do know that I heard a big improvement in audio when I switched from 16-bit to 20 and then a bit more to 24 bit.

The circuitry used to convert from analog to digital (regardless of bit rate and sample rate) is also important. Not all 16-bit is the same.

Regards,

Ty Ford
Ty Ford is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 11th, 2005, 08:08 AM   #14
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Baltimore, MD USA
Posts: 2,323
Quote:
Originally Posted by Patrick King
Ty, Mea culpa.

I understand your aversion to kneeling to 12bit, you can never get that quality back - you can approximate it in post, or clean it up in post, or in some cases, you can just live with it in post.

But again, does anyone know of a pre-built connector to make the stock Canon mic connect to the rear XLR?
Pat,

No I don't. That mic is an unbalanced stereo electret condenser. The 1/8" TRS has left and right on T & R (tip and ring) and ground on the S (sleeve).

If you only took one side to input to one rear channel, you'd get sound from one side because it's a stereo mic.

Theoretically, if you combined the two to a mono signal with some sort of plug, it would still be unbalanced mono and you'd have to convert it to balanced mono ending with an XLR.

This would be made even more tricky because phantom power and unbalanced mics don't mix. In fact, you can destroy some unbalanced mics by connecting them to a mic input with phantom power.

I you want a stereo mic to feed the rear inputs, my professional advice would be to step up to a better mic. If you like the flexibility of having a stero mic and a mono shotgun, I'd suggest the AT 835ST or Sanken CSS-5. e.g.

Sanken CSS-5 Shotgun Stereo Mic

Ty Ford
Baltimore, MD

The first thought I had about the concept Sanken's CSS-5 shotgun stereo mic
($1,995) was, "Wait a minute. You're supposed to use shotgun mics to isolate
distant sound sources. Doesn't a stereo mic defeat that purpose?" Well, yes it does. But the CSS-5 is a shotgun stereo, not a stereo shotgun. The difference being that the CSS-5 has three patterns; Mono, Normal and Wide. So the idea here is you've got a multi-purpose mic; a mono shotgun and two spreads of stereo.

The CSS-5 is a system of five rectangular DC-biased condenser elements. Three for the mono shotgun and two more for the stereo patterns. The mic has a five-pin XLR connection that requires a Y-cable with a five -pin XLR and two three-pin XLRs. Phantom power must be applied to both sides of the Y.

The CSS-5 has the same sort of natural sound that the CS-3 has. The 2dB peak at 8KHz is very narrow, resulting in a very natural frequency response with a low end that gently starts rolling off at 1KHz and is 10dB down at 30Hz. The built-in low end roll-off may seem severe, but in the outside world, you'd be reaching for a roll-off somewhere else unless you were miles away from humanity or on a soundstage.

In Mono, the CSS-5 acts much like Sanken's CS-3 shotgun. At a distance of nine feet, the high frequency response pattern is only about a foot wide. That's not to say you can't hear anything if you're outside that one foot area, you can hear a lot. You just lose clarity in the top end. You probably won't notice how tight the spot is unless you're listening directly to the mic preamp with a good set of cans. Any closer than two feet and the CSS-5 gets a bit nasal sounding. If you're thinking about trying the CSS-5 as a close VO mic, a la the Late Ernie Anderson, you'll have to reach for a Sennheiser MKH 416 or do some EQ work.

The Normal stereo pattern is designed to be used to pick up targeted sounds in a stereo perspective. The Normal stereo perspective adds a moderate amount of stereo information, and also makes it more difficult to hear when the targeted sound source is moving out of the hot spot. If you're used to a shotgun, the Normal stereo setting may be wider or and more distracting than you'd like.


Success at maintaining a stable stereo perspective depends a lot on the acoustic environment, and whether or not you're moving the mic. Hard walls, ceilings and other highly reflective surfaces can make the stereo image very unstable; you know the sound sources are in a "space", but you're not always sure where. Moving the mic during stereo recording can cause motion sickness, but hey, you might like it as an effect.

In a properly damped environment, like Flite 3's main audio studio in Baltimore, engineers Louis Mills, Mark Patey and I took turns listening in the control room and moving about the stationary CSS-5 in the studio. We found the Normal stereo image to be satisfactory. With eyes closed in the control room, we could accurately track the position and movement any sound source in the studio across a 150 degree arc. Any sounds past that point just sounded farther away and became impossible to locate. In the Wide position, the pattern peeled back a few degrees more. As it did, sound sources maintained their relative positions of the Normal
pattern.

The Wide pattern noticeably expands the stereo spectrum, giving an obvious sense of space. The side to side noise also increase slightly. At a distance of 12 feet, the pattern's hot spot is still only about a foot wide, but the extra stereo information makes the "shotgun effect" less apparent.

IN THE MUSIC STUDIO
Back at my studio using two channels of GML mic pre, I set the pattern to Wide and placed the mic about two feet from (and shooting directly into) the sound hole of my Martin D28S. I got a very wide guitar sound that spread across the monitors on playback, with a slight depression (not quite a hole) in the middle of the stereo image and virtually no high-frequency cancellation when I summed the channels together in mono.

Moving the CSS-5 to within two inches of the sound hole made the bass less
distinct and the treble a bit peaky. Moving the mic over the bridge dulled the sound appreciably. At a distance of 12 to 14 inches, shot straight into the sound hole, the sound was very natural, even in frequency response and taking up a nice space.

I was disappointed when I tried the same setup at Mark Davison's Cubic Studios. We plugged the CSS-5 into a pair of Demeter VTMP2b tube preamps and brought the pair up on his Sony MXP 3000 console to a set of Genelec 1030s. Mark's Yamaha FG300 six string had an "in hole" pickup, which may have been part of the problem. The E and A strings sounded reasonable, but the D and G strings were weak and the top was too bright. I got a better sound when I re-aimed the mic to a spot between the sound hole and the top of the body, but it was obvious that there were better solutions.

Given the natural nature of the sound, my next experiment will be to use one of the stereo spreads on a group of Madrigal singers. The plan is to position the singers, three to a side in an arc, all facing the CSS-5. I'll leave a space of a foot or so in the middle to compensate for the mono elements' reach.

IN CONCLUSION
The Sanken CSS-5 combines unique circuitry and useful features. The sound is quite good and the flexibility of having both shotgun and stereo patterns in the same mic mean you have one less thing to carry.

The CSS-5 is one of many mics I have reviewed and those reviews are posted on my online archive.
Ty Ford is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 11th, 2005, 12:03 PM   #15
New Boot
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 8
One more thought...

Lisa,

I have that same Azden (until I generate more funds) and an xlr
adapter. I've found it much easier, however, and just as good, to
use a short cable (xlr male & 1/8th female) for connecting the
Azden wireless to the rear xlr cable. I'm definitely critical of 12
bit, but I've had more than adequate results using it with the
abovementioned set up for different performances: speeches,
magic shows, interviews, etc. I do, however, spend quite a bit
of time in Final Cut Pro adding on various audio filters. But my
advice is to scrap the xlr adapter. Call me crazy, but I thought
the adapter weakened the sound quality a little. Can anyone
(anyone interested, that is) explain that phenomenon?

Cheers,

Van
Van Berghe is offline   Reply
Reply

DV Info Net refers all where-to-buy and where-to-rent questions exclusively to these trusted full line dealers and rental houses...

Professional Video
(800) 833-4801
Portland, OR

B&H Photo Video
(866) 521-7381
New York, NY

Z.G.C.
(973) 335-4460
Mountain Lakes, NJ

Abel Cine Tech
(888) 700-4416
N.Y. NY & L.A. CA

Precision Camera
(800) 677-1023
Austin, TX

DV Info Net also encourages you to support local businesses and buy from an authorized dealer in your neighborhood.
  You are here: DV Info Net > Canon EOS / MXF / AVCHD / HDV / DV Camera Systems > Canon HDV and DV Camera Systems > Canon XL and GL Series DV Camcorders

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

 



Google
 

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 10:15 AM.


DV Info Net -- Real Names, Real People, Real Info!
1998-2017 The Digital Video Information Network