XLR Module and Balanced microphones on A1 at DVinfo.net

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Sony HVR-A1 and HDR-HC Series
Sony's latest single-CMOS additions to their HDV camcorder line.


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Old November 25th, 2005, 11:39 AM   #1
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XLR Module and Balanced microphones on A1

Hi,

My first post here.

I'm planning to get an A1 or HC-1. I started looking at the A1 over the HC-1 mainly because of lack of a normal shoe. I'm not a pro but I am concerned about audio, and I already have a Rode Videomic I'm happy with.

This brings up some questions on the audio side to help me decide. The basic question is about balanced vs. unbalanced, and if the XLR module is worth it.

Specific questions:

1. I believe the Rode Videomic is unbalanced (it is designed for a standard mic 3.5mm socket). I know I can get a connector that adapts the 3.5mm plug to an XLR plug. Would there be any advantage of connecting the Videomic via XLR?

2. How good is the mic that comes with the A1, and is it likely to be better or worse than the Videomic?

If I go for the A1 it is already breaking my budget; I don't want to have to get yet another mic to use the XLR and be better the Videomic. So I'm thinking that unless getting the XLR module will improve the audio (either with the provided mic or the Rode Videomic), then I'd be better off to solve the shoe problem via an adapter on the tripod mount (even with added hassle of tape changing).

Help!

Mark
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Old November 26th, 2005, 01:48 AM   #2
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Hi,

excuse me my bad english......

1. No. Symmetric XLR is only better for long distance (for sound). But the 3,5 socket in the HC1 is electronic switching, if the microphone-impedanz not correct the extern micro is not connect to the hc1 or only half....than original micro in hc1 is recording with the external!!


2. i have a HC1 and i buy from ebay for little money sennheiser microfon's (ME 40, ME80), that's very good sound over the 3,5 socket. The best is a Do-it-yourself microfone..20-20000Hz +-1,5dB !!!..this microfone is in stereo and recording from my ear! All microphones ON the camera recording quiet noises from the drive assembly. Only if the frequency is cut below 400 Hz is microphones on the camera noise-free.
a sample from my soundtest:
http://www.fxsupport.de/hc1/daten/kapseltest.mp3 here switching i from original HC1 to my DIY IN-the-ear micro.... my ear-micro is louder.

http://www.fxsupport.de/hc1/daten/weserpark.mp3 in this sample a going from parking place in a store with the micro in my ear and the hc1.

please hear these examples over headphones! then orientation is large. in this sound it gives even in front and in the back, above and down.

See my DIY Microfone: http://www.fxsupport.de/hc1/hc1_5.html (see 24.11.2005 14:28) this site is in german.... in future (next week's) the full story to build this micro is in english.....
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Old November 26th, 2005, 05:59 AM   #3
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Wolfgang,

Thanks - you've answered my first question, and given some alternatives for non-balanced microphones. They seem good, but as I said I already have a Rode Videomic I'm happy with.

I'm still trying to understand what the XLR module gives me - it seems it is only an advantage if using long cables, is that correct?

I'm trying to justify to myself the difference in price of A1 over HC1... and for my use I'm struggling. The XLR and the mic seem the major items; I know there are some extra features and options on the A1 but not sure I'd use those.

But I'd really like a proper accessory shoe...

Mark
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Old November 26th, 2005, 02:38 PM   #4
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Well, my standard operating mode is HVR-A1, Sennheiser ME64 cardiod mic with fuzzy windscreen, and a Sennheiser Evolution wireless so I can really hear what people are saying. I have the setup with both the lav and XLR transmitters. I have an EV omni mike attached to the XLR transmitter so that I can use the EV as an interview mic, or hide it near to the action. I use a foam bicycle grip on the EV to reduce handling noise and a suspension mount and a small 6" tall mic stand so that I can mount it on the floor or table near to people I'm shooting. The Sennheiser wireless receiver fits perfectly on the hot shoe mount on the XLR module, and the level of the ME64 is perfect, even in ALC mode when you switch in the 10db pad.

The sound of the wireless lav mic is really clean and sounds a lot more natural with a little ambience from the camera mic mixed in. The camera mic alone is too ambient though.

When I'm not using the wireless, I send the ME-64 to both channels with at different levels: one hot one safe. I've tried the Rode Videomic on the hotshoe mount of the A1 and it sounds great (better than the stock mic by quite a bit). If the H1 had a shoe mount, I might have considered it but I hate pieced together systems with screwed on appendages. The lack of a proper shoe mount is the worst thing about the H1 IMO.
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Old November 27th, 2005, 04:37 AM   #5
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Laurence,

Thanks very much for the reply. From it I conclude that if I'm just using a shotgun mic then I'd be best off with my Videomic.... so the stock mic and XLR module won't help. But if I was to later upgrade to a more elaborate mic setup (as you have) then the XLR connections would be useful. And of course the proper shoe is useful.

As I have "budget approval" from the wife I'm leaning towards the A1, but still fear that with my use the difference in price is hard to justify. Or to put it another way, if the HC1 had a proper shoe I'm pretty sure I'd go for it. So that leaves me paying a lot of money for a accessory shoe.... hence the stuggle with my conscience.

Mark
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Old November 28th, 2005, 04:52 PM   #6
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Yeah, I know what you mean. For me, being able to conveniently work with shotgun and wireless at the same time is a necessity. I probably would have gone with the FX-1 otherwise for the extra low light ability. As is often the case, you can get 80% of the way there for 60% of the price! It sucks, but that's the way it is.
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Old November 28th, 2005, 09:40 PM   #7
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Hi Laurence,
I am new to the site but have been reading for months so I am learning a lot. I have an A1 on it's way as we speak. Which mic exactly do you have? I am looking on B&H's site and they have a lot of variations of the ME64.

Thanks.......JD

Quote:
Originally Posted by Laurence Kingston
Well, my standard operating mode is HVR-A1, Sennheiser ME64 cardiod mic with fuzzy windscreen, and a Sennheiser Evolution wireless so I can really hear what people are saying. I have the setup with both the lav and XLR transmitters. I have an EV omni mike attached to the XLR transmitter so that I can use the EV as an interview mic, or hide it near to the action. I use a foam bicycle grip on the EV to reduce handling noise and a suspension mount and a small 6" tall mic stand so that I can mount it on the floor or table near to people I'm shooting. The Sennheiser wireless receiver fits perfectly on the hot shoe mount on the XLR module, and the level of the ME64 is perfect, even in ALC mode when you switch in the 10db pad.

The sound of the wireless lav mic is really clean and sounds a lot more natural with a little ambience from the camera mic mixed in. The camera mic alone is too ambient though.

When I'm not using the wireless, I send the ME-64 to both channels with at different levels: one hot one safe. I've tried the Rode Videomic on the hotshoe mount of the A1 and it sounds great (better than the stock mic by quite a bit). If the H1 had a shoe mount, I might have considered it but I hate pieced together systems with screwed on appendages. The lack of a proper shoe mount is the worst thing about the H1 IMO.
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Old December 31st, 2005, 11:49 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Bryant
As I have "budget approval" from the wife I'm leaning towards the A1, but still fear that with my use the difference in price is hard to justify. Or to put it another way, if the HC1 had a proper shoe I'm pretty sure I'd go for it. So that leaves me paying a lot of money for a accessory shoe.... hence the stuggle with my conscience.
I hope this isn't too late, being a month after the original discussion.

I won't say whether it will fit your circumstances, but if a universal shoe mount is the only thing you need, you can get that through an adapter made for cameras that don't have a shoe mount. Canon SA-1 and Bescor VB-50 are two inexpensive and nifty products that you could use. I have both and they are both pretty nice. The down side is that they are external components that take space to the side of the camera. The Canon is sturdy but also folds to a compact size for better packing, the Bescor has a handle and two shoe mount points.

Canon SA-1
Bescor VB-50 (center of page)

Last edited by Jeff DeMaagd; December 31st, 2005 at 12:47 PM.
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Old January 8th, 2006, 12:50 AM   #9
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Hi Mark

I have the HC1 with the Rode Videomic and have found this mic on this camera to be unusuable as it picks up the camera motor noise. The internal mic worked much better.

I am now having to consider getting rid of my Rode Videomic and buying an XLR adapter ($460) and new mic. For the record, in hindsight I wish I had have purchased the A1.

Tracey



Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Bryant
Hi,

My first post here.

I'm planning to get an A1 or HC-1. I started looking at the A1 over the HC-1 mainly because of lack of a normal shoe. I'm not a pro but I am concerned about audio, and I already have a Rode Videomic I'm happy with.

This brings up some questions on the audio side to help me decide. The basic question is about balanced vs. unbalanced, and if the XLR module is worth it.
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Old January 8th, 2006, 01:00 AM   #10
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Hi Wolfgang

I also have the HC1 and have had a noise problem from the drive assembly.
I went to your site on how to build your DIY mic for the HC1 but it is all in german. Please let me know when you have the English version up as I am most keen to see it. Thanks!

Tracey



Quote:
Originally Posted by Wolfgang Winne
Hi,

2. i have a HC1 and i buy from ebay for little money sennheiser microfon's (ME 40, ME80), that's very good sound over the 3,5 socket. The best is a Do-it-yourself microfone..20-20000Hz +-1,5dB !!!..this microfone is in stereo and recording from my ear! All microphones ON the camera recording quiet noises from the drive assembly. Only if the frequency is cut below 400 Hz is microphones on the camera noise-free.
a sample from my soundtest:

See my DIY Microfone: http://www.fxsupport.de/hc1/hc1_5.html (see 24.11.2005 14:28) this site is in german.... in future (next week's) the full story to build this micro is in english.....
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Old January 8th, 2006, 02:46 AM   #11
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@Tracey Lee
For the moment I have much work and come not to to translate. I make a suggestion for you: I send you the ear worm to test simply too. The post office dispatch from Germany to Australia determines one while take however the dispatch with DHL is still payable for me.

Importantly is with the earworm which you with film into the same direction look exactly as the hc1. Otherwise comes the sound from the wrong direction. To mark still, that is the ear worm 15 railways of sensitive is as the original microphones in the Hc1. therefore is recommendable a manual tone from price increase.
Some users of the Earwurms report, which is nearly already even the stereophonic sound over a cinema amplifier (Soundprocessor dolby digital enhanced) 5,1 cinema tone. That comes from the excellent stereobasis and probably also the human cap. In the meantime some TV-stationen bought the ear worm with me for their fx1.
I did not invent this sound recording principle, did not sell already before 30 years to Sennheiser such a microphone as art head microphone. At that time the (bad) microphone caps were built into a plastic head. I use now for it your head, that it's.
A similar solution gives it already, but this does not function to the HC1 or FX1. The microphones internal resistance is not correct and it gives no tone or only a bad sound.
Up to now the ear worm is only in Europe well-known and I believes the ear worm would like also times to Australia. ;-)

if you have interest, communicate to me your postal address. my email is wolfgang@winne.de

Babelfish translate:
The EAR WORM is a stereo microphone with very good sound characteristics (20-20.000Hz) and little background noise. It carried like the name it already says, in the ear. Thus both hands are free and also from the noises of the recording machine separate when noting. In addition, completely practically if a microphone at the photograph place would disturb, the ear worm looks optically like headphone!

Finally no more zoom shot noises with video cameras! But the ear worm can do still more! It can at all devices e.g. Minidisc, tapes, acoustic measuring instruments be used. It must rest only against the microphone socket also the voltage supply from 1,65 to 10 V, that is with nearly all current Japanese devices the case. In addition, a solution for unstressed Micron entrances is to be had soon. Mailen if necessary please me.

The EAR WORM is extremely easy and padded, sits much and lets themselves hour in the ear be carried. If it goes, listens to you the examples over headphones!! Like dramatically human sense of orientation with EAR WORM is not to be described is satisfied. It gives not only on the left and on the right, but also above and down - in front and in the back!!! Finally my Sennheiser hp 650 gets also correct sound material around its abilities to prove! In addition, during a normal loudspeaker rendition the stereoeffekt wins substantially and the sound is enough to 500 euro the microphone! The correct HighDef clay/tone equipment...
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Old January 8th, 2006, 09:07 AM   #12
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Using language tools on Google, here is link to translated version -

http://translate.google.com/translat...language_tools

(Note: everything between the <> belongs in one line on the URL.)
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Old January 8th, 2006, 09:48 AM   #13
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To make a long URL "clickable", don't use the < > characters. Use this instead

[ url ] put_your_very_long_url_between_the_tags.com [ /url ]

However, you need to leave out the whitespace from the above example to this to work. I fixed the link in your post above using this technique.
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Old January 8th, 2006, 10:40 AM   #14
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Is the translate (google or babelfish) from german to english good enough for understanding?
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Old January 8th, 2006, 04:51 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tracey Lee
Hi Mark

I have the HC1 with the Rode Videomic and have found this mic on this camera to be unusuable as it picks up the camera motor noise. The internal mic worked much better.

I am now having to consider getting rid of my Rode Videomic and buying an XLR adapter ($460) and new mic. For the record, in hindsight I wish I had have purchased the A1.

Tracey
Tracey
- I know what you're talking about on this. The Rode Videomic is a VERY sensitive mic and can pick up all kinds of noise that you hardly knew even existed. I have a Videomic and use it with my Sony HC1000 and i got a faint pickup of tape-motor noise when shooting in a very quiet environment.

I solved this almost completely by simply purchasing an L-bracket cold-shoe extender that screws into the tripod socket. The Videomic then screws into the new cold-shoe and this doubles the distance between the tape-drive and the mic. REsult = no more tape noise. This should work equally well with your HC1.

The bracket i got in Hawaii but the identical bracket is available on B&H Photo site. It's a Bescor bracket :
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/cont...goryNavigation
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