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Sony HVR-Z1 / HDR-FX1
Pro and consumer versions of this Sony 3-CCD HDV camcorder.


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Old December 8th, 2006, 05:49 AM   #1
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headphone volume

i recently had to send my z-1 in for service. when i first used it after it came back the headphone volume was so low i could barely here the dialog i was trying to monitor. if you turn the input level all the way up you can hear, but now you have considerable distortion. is there any way to adjust the headphone volume.

Last edited by Champ Kaufmann; December 8th, 2006 at 06:52 PM.
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Old December 8th, 2006, 07:24 AM   #2
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Try the volume control on the vcr panel.
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Old December 8th, 2006, 02:55 PM   #3
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The headphone output level is pretty low. Try using closed back headphones.
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Old December 14th, 2006, 09:42 PM   #4
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Go to the audio menu and make sure it is set to "Chan1, Chan2"
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Old December 15th, 2006, 04:32 AM   #5
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When you record audio, you should always try to ensure that it's about -18db on your audio monitor. Increasing the input will cause it to distort, and be very unpleasant to listen to.

Therefore, set your input correctly to begin with and us the volume control on the camera to increase the volume of what you actually hear. As Mark suggests, use closed back headphones as this will block out any unwanted background sound that isn't being recorded.
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Old December 15th, 2006, 09:20 AM   #6
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by James Lundy
When you record audio, you should always try to ensure that it's about -18db on your audio monitor. Increasing the input will cause it to distort, and be very unpleasant to listen to.

Therefore, set your input correctly to begin with and us the volume control on the camera to increase the volume of what you actually hear. As Mark suggests, use closed back headphones as this will block out any unwanted background sound that isn't being recorded.
-18dB could, and usually will, ensure that levels are exceptionally low depending on the subject. With HDV audio, one cannot afford to have low levels, as this is leaving already challenged bits on the table.
Find yourself concerned about peaks, not setting a lowest value point for best results. This holds true for any camcorder, but is more important when the medium is HDV/MPEG audio.
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Old December 15th, 2006, 01:08 PM   #7
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What level would you recommend Douglas?

It's just that I've always tried to record at around -18db, then use the NLE to increase the volume as I please. This always gives me a nice clean sound, which never seems to suffer from being over modulated. I usually try to have my audio playing in the edit a little bit louder though, peaking at around -10db.

If you can suggest a better way I'm all ears. Audio isn't my strongest point, and if you can provide any tips, I'll be more than happy to try them out mate.
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Old December 15th, 2006, 05:22 PM   #8
 
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Work the peaks, not the averages. Peaks should be at/around -6dB for safety. If your subject is exceptionally dynamic, then use an outboard compressor to smooth out the peaks.
Fixing levels in the NLE is *generally* the last thing you want to do, it's much easier to get it at acquisition.
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Old December 19th, 2006, 04:10 PM   #9
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Cheers Douglas.
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Old December 19th, 2006, 05:36 PM   #10
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Hi

Agree with Douglas. I try to peak between -12db and -6 db and don't suffer many problems. -18db seems to be a little low.

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Old December 19th, 2006, 05:39 PM   #11
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Can I just point out that I wasn'tr peaking at -18db, but rather trying to keep that as as sort of constant. Perhaps I've been doing what we've been talking about all along.
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Old December 19th, 2006, 05:57 PM   #12
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Hi James

Sorry I didn't read your post properly. If you are averaging -18 db and peaking around -12 to -6 that sounds fine. I'm just sitting here trying to burn 120 dvds for tomorrow of a school show I filmed last week. I have 60 done so I am halfway there.

PS

I am also over half way through a bottle of red wine.

Cheers

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Old December 19th, 2006, 06:09 PM   #13
 
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Peaking to "around -12dB" means you are leaving a lot of bits on the table. It's like shooting half res video when you've got full rez available. It's all a numbers game, and you want to feed the highest level of audio possible without brickwalling, for best results. Peaking at -6dB with max hitting -3dB still leaves plenty of headroom for post, and gets you proper levels without normalizing. Unless your subject is a pulpit-thumpin' whisper to screamer, +/- 6dB of dynamic is in the groove. Subject content is of course, a big part of this. If you've got the whisper to screamer, 18dB of dynamic won't be enough. This is where an outboard compressor comes in very handy.
Remember, HDV is a compressed audio format. It's already compromised. It's not a bad compromise, but the less you feed it, the more likely it is to bite you.
Additionally, you might want to go into system menu and set your output to 2v rather than 1v, if that's what the factory reset the output of the system to be.
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Old December 21st, 2006, 03:41 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Douglas Spotted Eagle
Peaking to "around -12dB" means you are leaving a lot of bits on the table. It's like shooting half res video when you've got full rez available. It's all a numbers game, and you want to feed the highest level of audio possible without brickwalling, for best results. Peaking at -6dB with max hitting -3dB still leaves plenty of headroom for post, and gets you proper levels without normalizing. Unless your subject is a pulpit-thumpin' whisper to screamer, +/- 6dB of dynamic is in the groove. Subject content is of course, a big part of this. If you've got the whisper to screamer, 18dB of dynamic won't be enough. This is where an outboard compressor comes in very handy.
Remember, HDV is a compressed audio format. It's already compromised. It's not a bad compromise, but the less you feed it, the more likely it is to bite you.
Additionally, you might want to go into system menu and set your output to 2v rather than 1v, if that's what the factory reset the output of the system to be.

Excellento Info Douglas! Props to your tutilage....
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Old January 10th, 2007, 09:12 PM   #15
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Headphone Output on Camcorders

There are several things to consider when monitoring camera audio w headphones. #1. The impedance of the phones. #2. The power output
from the camera. #3. Type of phones, closed type recommended. #4. The amount of level you need to be able to monitor the recording.

I use Sennheiser 280's. They are agood quality closed type headphone with good isolation from the outside world, impedance 64 ohms. The ability of the cameras headphone jack to deliver enough undistorted power to adequately drive the phones at a decent level is a joke. It would surprise me if the power output from most professional camcorders would exceed 30 mw.

What is needed is a small battery powered amplifier that can deliver at least 100 mw. or more.
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