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Old March 18th, 2003, 02:16 PM   #1
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XL1-S On-board mic - hum pick-up

I'm sure this topic has been raised many times, but as a new XL1S owner I just wondered if there have been any recent developements in the way of a solution. The motor hum and zoom servo pick-up are very noticeable when recording with a quiet back-ground - so much so that recordings of natural sounds eg. bird songs etc. are pretty useless. The obvious answer is to use an external mic - which I do whenever possible, but this is difficult in fast moving hand-held situations. Would appreciate any ideas.........
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Old March 18th, 2003, 02:25 PM   #2
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Welcome Alan!

Indeed, this is a frequent question. Use our Search function to see quite a variety of discussions on the topic. The issue is two-fold. The mic can pick-up both the radiated sound of the lens' servo motor as well as its transmitted vibration during extremely quiet shots.

In brief, an external on-cam mic mounted to an isolation device is the common solution for a 1-man crew. Lightwave Systems makes one such rig. BeyerDynamic also makes a nice shock mount that connects to the camera's shoe.
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Old March 18th, 2003, 07:09 PM   #3
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I have used Lightwave Systems MM-XL1 and it works great with the stock mic. You can search the posts as there are plenty of info on this. Also you can check out The MM-XL1 Universal Mini-Mount from Light Wave Systems article on this site.
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Old March 18th, 2003, 07:47 PM   #4
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Also, be sure that the standard mic mount screw is not turned down too tight. If you make it too tight, the damping material in the mount gets compressed and will couple more vibration from the camcorder body to the mic.
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Old March 20th, 2003, 12:16 PM   #5
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Thanks Ken, Nathan and Don -- very useful advice.
The Lightwave Minimount looks like it will do the job. I've also found, as suggested that slackening the fixing screw reduces the hum pick-up quite a bit. The Lightwave 'Spacer/isolator' also looks interesting as this also helps with 'shoulder-mounting' of the camcorder by moving the viewfinder forward approx. 6 cm.------ again-- many thanks
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Old March 26th, 2003, 04:32 PM   #6
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I bought the Mini Mmount and the System Isolator and it didnt get rid of the motor sound. What I have realized is that when you're in a silent room with the AGC on it will still pick up the motor noise. The best solution is to turn off the AGC and manually set the volume control and you won't hear the Zoom.
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Old March 26th, 2003, 04:44 PM   #7
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I had the same problem. I found that sliding the mount for the viewfinder/mic, as far to the right as possible, helped some. This places the mic further from the tape drive and lens. Then again, I only used the cam's audio when I had no other option, or as background.
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Old March 30th, 2003, 01:52 PM   #8
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I record a great deal of nature sounds, mostly birds. The stock mic is inadequate to get high quality sound. I use the Lightwave isolator and a true shotgun mic and have no problem with AF or motor noise.
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