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Old November 1st, 2004, 07:39 PM   #1
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Mike problems - GS400

Hi. I'm not sure if I should be posting this on the GS400 forum or the microphone forum. Since it's specific to the GS400, I'll try here first.

Found out last night that my cheap Shure SZM mike won't fit the hotshoe of my GS400. Which isn't that big of a deal, but I noticed a big problem that worries me. The Shure sounded fine on my now defunct Canon ZR20, but on the GS400, it makes a massive hiss in both telephoto and cardoid modes. I'm wondering if it's because the GS400 is designed to take a hotshoe, power-compatible (non-battery) mike and not a battery-powered mike -- and that the electric current and the battery are working against each other and screwing up the sound. Does that sound right? Or is it just because it's an el-cheapo mike?

If the mike's not compatible, can anyone recommend me a good (and hopefully) expensive mike that would be compatible with the GS400. I can't find one specifically mentioned on the Panasonic site or at B&H. Since my last short had such horrible sound, I'm trying to do as best as I can within my budget.

Thanks for any help.
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Old November 1st, 2004, 08:06 PM   #2
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Robert:

I'm assuming you meant to say "inexpensive" mic - if so I had a Sony ECM-MS908C stereo microphone (battery-powered) on my GS400 and it worked well w/no hiss. I picked it up for about $40 on ebay for the money it's a great value.
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Old November 1st, 2004, 09:07 PM   #3
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Robert,
I'm not familiar with the Shure, but there should be no problem with noise on the audio channels of the GS400 if you make sure the mic jack is firmly connected. If the Shure drives the audio circuits too hard, then switch to manual and adjust the audio volume.

I have tested the Rode NT3 studio mic with the GS400 and it provides exceptional sound quality. If you are thinking about changing mics, you should take a look at the Rode.
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Old November 2nd, 2004, 11:24 AM   #4
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Guy and John, thanks for the replies. I had a couple other strange, possibly stupid questions -- I'm still quite an amateur with this stuff -- the mikes I currently possess both have a plastic shoe mount that don't fit in the GS400 mount. I'm not sure why -- I thought they would be universal, but the mounts are too thick, and won't slide in. Do the mikes you mention come with a thinner metal shoe mount? Or will I need to buy some other accessory? I'm looking at the B&H, and they say it comes with a standard video mount -- but I'm not sure what that means.

Quote:
if so I had a Sony ECM-MS908C stereo microphone (battery-powered) on my GS400
The specs on B&H don't mention how the "shotgun" capabilities of the mike. Do you happen to know how far a subject could be and still get good sound? I tend to shoot from a distance, and a zoom in to fake filmic depth of field.

Quote:
If the Shure drives the audio circuits too hard, then switch to manual and adjust the audio volume.
Guy, I'm definitely going to try this. I found though that the Shure only records on one audio channel, so a new mike may be in order. But I have yet to test the manual audio functions on the GS400.
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Old November 2nd, 2004, 11:56 AM   #5
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Robert,
I'm not sure about the shoe mount issue. The 3 or 4 shoes I have tested fit ok. Are you trying to mount from the rear of the shoe after pulling the eyepiece out away from the shoe? The shoe should slide right in.

Any mono mic will only record on one channel. If you want to record on both channels, get a mono to stereo adapter at Radio Shack.
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Old November 2nd, 2004, 01:41 PM   #6
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Robert:

If you need a shotgun or zoom mic than the Sony ECM-MS908C wouldn't work for you as it has no mono mode. Although somewhat pricey you might want to look at Panasonic's GS400 VW-VM3 hotshoe stereo-mono-zoom mic.
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Old November 2nd, 2004, 01:51 PM   #7
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<<<-- Originally posted by Guy Bruner : Are you trying to mount from the rear of the shoe after pulling the eyepiece out away from the shoe? The shoe should slide right in.-->>>

D'oh! Now I feel like an idiot. :) Hadn't tried pulling the eyepiece away. Didn't even realize that was possible. Thanks.
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