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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 March 28th, 2006, 08:38 PM   #1
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Best audio for video - A1 or HC1?

Would the A1 and its included mike be the better choice for a non-broadcast, instructional video?
Or could the HC1 provide just as good audio with an added Sony mike or lav?

Thanks!
Dorothy
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Old March 31st, 2006, 01:06 PM   #2
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When I tested the HC1 demo unit at Best Buy, the audio on the cam was was not up to snuff, of course. My guess is that even if you went unbalanced from a wireless set or mike, you'd still get some substantial noise above the floor, and that would be a chore to edit in post.

Even with my XL1s, if I go unbalanced from a balanced system I get unwated noise that's higher than -42db and cuts into the vocal range. The entire system needs to be balanced. Getting the HC1 will require capturing audio to another device, or from another cam that is balanced. Unless your shooting near Niagra falls : ) I plan on getting an external recorder for all my audio work, so it's a mute point for me.

Most folks, from what I read, are picking up the HC1 over the A1U because audio was not a factor, it was the image alone that sold it.

Sorry that no else has chimed in with an on the job experience. My gut feeling is that if audio on the camera is an issue, then it's the AIU you should be looking at.

Pete
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Old April 1st, 2006, 10:24 AM   #3
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Hi Dorothy

In my opinion, although the A1U has more options for audio given that you can use a very broad range of balanced mics with it that use XLR connections, I think that something like the Rode Videomic used with the HC1 will give very nice audio and be perfectly fine for your use.

I have read that the Videomic with HC1 provides really much better sound than the A1U *with* it's included Sony external mic. It may of course be different if you buy a much better external mic for the A1, but as it comes, with it's rather average Sony ext. mic, it's 'beaten' on audio by an unbalanced Rode Videomic.

You'll need an L-bracket to mount Videomic on the HC1. Get a Bescor VB-50 bracket for 10dollars (prominent USA online retailers can supply) and the Videomic for around 150dollars and you're set for some great audio with HC1. (of course Videomic will work equally well with A1U, and you won't need the VB-50 bracket either on the A1U as the Videomic will mount straight onto the cold-shoe in place of the XLR module).

rgds
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Old April 2nd, 2006, 02:20 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter Ferling
When I tested the HC1 demo unit at Best Buy, the audio on the cam was was not up to snuff, of course. My guess is that even if you went unbalanced from a wireless set or mike, you'd still get some substantial noise above the floor, and that would be a chore to edit in post.

Even with my XL1s, if I go unbalanced from a balanced system I get unwated noise that's higher than -42db and cuts into the vocal range. The entire system needs to be balanced. Getting the HC1 will require capturing audio to another device, or from another cam that is balanced. Unless your shooting near Niagra falls : ) I plan on getting an external recorder for all my audio work, so it's a mute point for me.

Most folks, from what I read, are picking up the HC1 over the A1U because audio was not a factor, it was the image alone that sold it.

Sorry that no else has chimed in with an on the job experience. My gut feeling is that if audio on the camera is an issue, then it's the AIU you should be looking at.

Pete
Hi Peter,

Much appreciation for your advice which helped me decide on an A1. Thank you!! Unfortunately, when I called B&H to order on Friday, they had already closed a half hour ago and the $500 rebate ended that very day :-((

Perhaps Sony will extend the $500 rebate, otherwise, I'll purchase an HC1.

In terms of physical differences between the two models, is there more room between the viewfinder and battery on the A1 so that the battery isn't butting against one's nose, as reported on the HC1?

Thanks, again!!

Dorothy

Last edited by Dorothy Engleman; April 2nd, 2006 at 10:23 PM.
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Old April 2nd, 2006, 02:26 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stu Holmes
Hi Dorothy

In my opinion, although the A1U has more options for audio given that you can use a very broad range of balanced mics with it that use XLR connections, I think that something like the Rode Videomic used with the HC1 will give very nice audio and be perfectly fine for your use.

I have read that the Videomic with HC1 provides really much better sound than the A1U *with* it's included Sony external mic. It may of course be different if you buy a much better external mic for the A1, but as it comes, with it's rather average Sony ext. mic, it's 'beaten' on audio by an unbalanced Rode Videomic.

You'll need an L-bracket to mount Videomic on the HC1. Get a Bescor VB-50 bracket for 10dollars (prominent USA online retailers can supply) and the Videomic for around 150dollars and you're set for some great audio with HC1. (of course Videomic will work equally well with A1U, and you won't need the VB-50 bracket either on the A1U as the Videomic will mount straight onto the cold-shoe in place of the XLR module).

rgds
Hi Stu,

Many grateful thanks for your helpful advice! I'm happy to hear there are workable alternatives for external audio on the HC1.

Dorothy
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Old April 2nd, 2006, 09:42 PM   #6
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Hey Dorothy, I've only tested the HC1. However, I've heard the A1U is the same body style, so don't count on it. I cannot vouge for the rode mic or any mic on the HC1, as I've never had the chance to use it. If you have an XLR wireless system, you could venture to the local Best Buy and demo it yourself. However, as a rule of thumb, there is a reason why we have balanced microphones.

I'm going to wait and see what crops up at NAB.
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Old April 2nd, 2006, 10:32 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter Ferling
Hey Dorothy, I've only tested the HC1. However, I've heard the A1U is the same body style, so don't count on it. I cannot vouge for the rode mic or any mic on the HC1, as I've never had the chance to use it. If you have an XLR wireless system, you could venture to the local Best Buy and demo it yourself. However, as a rule of thumb, there is a reason why we have balanced microphones.

I'm going to wait and see what crops up at NAB.

Hey Peter :-))

I'll report back as soon as I hear if Sony extends the A1's $500 rebate (fingers crossed!)
Thanks, again!

Dorothy
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Old April 3rd, 2006, 05:35 PM   #8
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Good news! The HVR-A1U rebate was extended to 9/30/2006!

Hi Dorothy,

Good news, you can still get the better camcorder. The HVR-A1U rebate was extended to 9/30/2006.

I copied this information from the Sony HVR-A1U Rebate Site:
https://www.rebate-zone.com/default....DirectID=10680

---------------------------------------------------------------------
Promotion Details

Promotion Name Sony HVRA1U HDV Camcorder $500 Rebate
Promotion Description Receive $500.00 mail-in rebate for the purchase of a Sony HVR-A1U HDV product.
Promotion Number 060010A
Start Date 4/1/2006
End Date 9/30/2006
Hardcopy Postmark Date 10/31/2006
Customer Service (866) 881-1114 or Email Customer Service

Click next to confirm your selection.
---------------------------------------------------------------------

--Dave
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