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Old August 10th, 2004, 11:43 AM   #1
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Low end camera with line-in audio

First post. Yayyy.

I'm looking for a Panasonic camera to be used as a recording deck more than a camera. Image quality and low light are not issues for this application. When the camera is switched to line-in recording, is there an AGC with the audio? My audio will be coming from mixer (thus I don't want AGC).

I want to stick with a Panasonic brand because my main camera will be the Japanese GS400, and having a bag of the same batteries for all my gear is simpler to deal with.

What models should I be looking at? I need it small as possible, but also cheap (so I can buy two).

Thanks folks.

-John
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Old August 10th, 2004, 01:03 PM   #2
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The GS120 has line in (AV in-out) and uses the same batteries. If that is too expensive (and it seems so IMO), your next best bet is to look for a lesser model with AV in or an older, used model. I don't believe any of these cams have the ability to adjust the audio level and I don't believe AGC is used on the line in jack.
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Old August 10th, 2004, 07:09 PM   #3
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Re: Low end camera with line-in audio

<<<-- Originally posted by John Kamchen : I'm looking for a Panasonic camera to be used as a recording deck more than a camera. Image quality and low light are not issues for this application. When the camera is switched to line-in recording, is there an AGC with the audio? My audio will be coming from mixer (thus I don't want AGC).

I want to stick with a Panasonic brand because my main camera will be the Japanese GS400, and having a bag of the same batteries for all my gear is simpler to deal with.

What models should I be looking at? I need it small as possible, but also cheap (so I can buy two).
-->>>

If you are looking for line-in level in audio, without AGC, you will have to go to a better model. The GS400 might be one, certainly but lesser priced cameras will not allow you to disconnect the AGC.

Line level audio is a problem though, as most consumer cameras have no such capability. You should then attenuate your mixer outputs, though some mixers have a mic level option.

What I found out is that a good level mic output should mostly disable the AGC from working, diminshing "pumping", but do some tests over that.

The RCA connectors on the back of the cameras should only work during editing, not during recording.


Carlos
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Old August 10th, 2004, 09:07 PM   #4
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GS50
GS55
GS70
GS100
GS120
GS200

all use the same type of batt as the GS400.

What price level are you looking at? It may not be too much of an inconvenience to carry different types of batts or cam makes as long as they're compact enough (and of course, if the price is right).

don't you think cam-to-cam transfer is better done through firewire?
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Old August 11th, 2004, 12:54 AM   #5
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I'm using the cameras to record multi-track audio for a 5.1 DVD project. The cost of a 'real' multitrack digital recorder is $10,000 (for an 8 track 96khz 24bit HD based unit). Other's I've seen are 4 channel, but even those are thousands of bucks.

So the idea is that my main camera (the GS400, which we'll be dealing with this week) records the images and 1 or 2 channels (mic input) and the other two cameras record video-out from the main camera (with super & timecode) plus line-audio from the other mics.

So my kit will be 3 DV cameras, 5 or 6 microphones, a 6 channel mixer, maybe a small video DA and lots of tapes.

The extra cameras idea is the best I could come up with for the type of project this is (I'll have to lug this gear around and be _very_ far from AC).

I'm a hard-core DIY, buy building my own 8 track DAR... I don't have the time.
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Old August 13th, 2004, 05:52 AM   #6
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<<<-- Originally posted by John Kamchen : I'm using the cameras to record multi-track audio for a 5.1 DVD project. The cost of a 'real' multitrack digital recorder is $10,000 (for an 8 track 96khz 24bit HD based unit). Other's I've seen are 4 channel, but even those are thousands of bucks.

So the idea is that my main camera (the GS400, which we'll be dealing with this week) records the images and 1 or 2 channels (mic input) and the other two cameras record video-out from the main camera (with super & timecode) plus line-audio from the other mics.

So my kit will be 3 DV cameras, 5 or 6 microphones, a 6 channel mixer, maybe a small video DA and lots of tapes.

The extra cameras idea is the best I could come up with for the type of project this is (I'll have to lug this gear around and be _very_ far from AC).
-->>>

You mean you would be recording separate audio tracks in different cameras to later edit them all in a 5:1 mix?

If that's so it won't work, sorry to say. You will have loss of sync between the tracks. You may have sync for a very short time, but they will slip away.

That arrangement would not be the solution to your problem, and I can't think of any other that would work short of a multi-track recorder.

Are you recording music? Because if it's not the 5:1 is done later, during sound editing.


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Old August 14th, 2004, 03:32 PM   #7
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Ya, it's for a 5.1 mix. I don't think I'll have audio slip issues, because the main camera is providing a 'sync' signal for the other's to record.. video with time code burn-in.

If anything, it might be out a fraction of a second, but I can still use a clapper and line up with waveforms later.
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Old August 14th, 2004, 05:38 PM   #8
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<<<-- Originally posted by John Kamchen : Ya, it's for a 5.1 mix. I don't think I'll have audio slip issues, because the main camera is providing a 'sync' signal for the other's to record.. video with time code burn-in.

If anything, it might be out a fraction of a second, but I can still use a clapper and line up with waveforms later. -->>>


I am sorry to insist. If you are going to record multi mic positions on music setups and intend to mix that later on, it will not work. No time code burn in or sync signal or clapper will solve the problem: the mics will eventually get out of sync.

You may hold sync for a few seconds, maybe up to thirty, but it will get out of sync. That is one camera from the other.

I repeat: this is only valid for music situations, where you will be using other cameras as if they were mixer channels. It will not work. It would be OK for dialogue, or for sound effects, but not for multi-channel music.

To make it work you would have to cut frames in the audio channels or (worst) add, which would ruin the music.

In my opinion you should go a different way, like using a Mackie mixer or something. You can use a DC-AC converter to power it from batteries and get excellent results.


Carlos
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