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Old July 20th, 2010, 02:34 PM   #1
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new dig. audio recorder wi. time-code: work with EX-1?

Hi there,
I'm just wondering if this little (and I do mean little) audio recorder would work with the EX-1. It has time-code, but aside from seeing cameramen I used to work with sync things up with time-code and their betacams, I've never done this before. I wouldn't want to invest in something like this and then have problems in editing.
I'll try to add a screengrab below.
Regards, Malcolm
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Old July 20th, 2010, 02:59 PM   #2
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It says it can stripe timecode internally or jam sync from an external source including wireless and conventional.

You do realize that it records only to mp3 and it costs $900 US? I understand it is small but...

Coffey Sound, a reputable sound gear outlet sells them. Might want to give them a call.

Coffey Sound

Tascam makes a robust outboard two channel record unit that has phantom power, does timecode generation and sync along with a bunch of other stuff:

Tascam HD-P2 Portable CF Stereo Audio Recorder - B&H Photo Video
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Old July 20th, 2010, 03:41 PM   #3
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Thanks Andrew... I'll check into the links you sent. One thing I'm wondering (about either time-code enabled recorder) is how you lock time-code between EX-1 and recorder (as I remember the cameramen I used to work with doing from one betacam to another with a blue cable).
By the way, I'll google Bowen Island too. I've travelled a fair amount on Vancouver Island, and some of the islands off Vancouver Island, but never got there. I'm sure it's gorgeous.
I appreciate the tip re Tascam - - it does look like a more "robust" unit, as you say.
Regards,
Malcolm
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Old July 20th, 2010, 05:53 PM   #4
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Andrew... just checked the Coffey web site and I see that the Zaxcom, as well as recording mp3, records "24 bit / 48 KHz timecode stamped broadcast wave files". I'm not saying it's not overpriced... but something that tiny could be kind of nice, just to slip into someone's pocket (and this way I could record a third track, without a mixer - - which I don't own). I'll read up on the Tascam too.
Regards, Malcolm
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Old July 20th, 2010, 06:08 PM   #5
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The EX1 does not generate time code.
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Old July 20th, 2010, 06:25 PM   #6
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Chad is right. I forgot that the EX1 doesn't have a timecode port. It does put SMPTE with the video it creates, so it can be lined up in your NLE or regenerate the timecode in the NLE to match your video...

On further inspection, YES, it does do WAVE files at 24bit/48kHz. That does change things for the better.

A selling point of the unit is adjustable "high pass filter" allowing you to get rid of rumble. On the negative the frequency response rolls off at 16 kHz. In theory this isn't great but practically speaking unless you are recording a lot of music with overtones in the high ranges you won't notice unless you are looking for it.

If you do end up getting the unit please report back.
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Old July 20th, 2010, 08:18 PM   #7
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Chad and Andrew forgive me for asking such a basic question. But if the EX-1 doesn't generate time-code (I realize now that I just use the Duration setting, which I guess isn't time code at all) then would there be any way to sync up the audio that the Zaxcom records (with time-code, but so what if it doesn't help you sync) with audio/video that the EX-1 records? Aside from using a clapper or whatever, which I think would be very tricky.
Regards, Malcolm
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Old July 20th, 2010, 08:39 PM   #8
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That's how most people deal with audio. They clap, or get a clap board, then sync up by hand. There is the cool software "Plural Eyes" that does it automatically. Watch the video:

Singular Software

It's about 150.00. It's not perfect, but if you have a lot of clips it helps.

{{{{{EDIT}}}}}
If you don't need the small size, I suggest you get a cheaper recorder, or a better one with more inputs. For 900.00 you could get the very nice Edirol R-44 4 track, or the very cool Tascam DR-680 8 track for 800.00. Google them. Most likely superior sound quality to the little one you showed us.
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Old July 20th, 2010, 08:52 PM   #9
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The thing does look cool.

YouTube - Zaxcom ZFR200 Miniature Flash Recorder At NAB 2010 w/Dale Pro Audio


It's just a bit pricey. Since EX1 users don't have timecode, you may as well put a wired lav to an Edirol R1. It's more bulky but it's doable. Or just get a wireless and go straight to the camera. For 600.00 you can get an awesome Sennheiser G3 unit and save 300.00.
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Old July 21st, 2010, 09:46 AM   #10
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Thanks, Chad, for your advice (I spent all my years before having to take on these technical tasks myself just thinking about pictures, and not sound; now I'm paying the price).
I do have two nice wireless units, and since I only have two XLR inputs, that's my limit, unless I get a mixer.
That's why I was thinking that, if syncing wasn't going to be too hard (I will look at that Plural Eyes software demo) a 'free-standing' record unit might be perfect. Now I'm wondering if I should just get the smallest mixer I can get, which would allow for another audio input.
Again, I appreciate the help, and I will follow your links.
Malcolm
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Old July 21st, 2010, 02:43 PM   #11
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The thing is that a 3 (or more) channel mixer will force you to put more than one voice on one track. That may cause problems when you want to do your audio post. If you already have 2 wireless units, you could have them go to the camera, then get a small recorder (I say Edirol R9 because they aren't too bulky, but the Zoom H4N is very popular) and put a wired lav to the recorder, and the recorder in the pocket of your subject. You can get a Giant Squid lav for 25 bucks, and they sound pretty good! So now you're down to only spending 300.00 and you will have 3 separate channels of audio.

R9
Edirol / Roland R-09HR Portable High-Resolution Audio R-09HR -

Lav
Miniature Microphone Specialists Stereo - Mono - Cardioid - Omnidrectional Giant Squid Audio Lab
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Old July 22nd, 2010, 12:04 AM   #12
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The EX1 does ouput timecode, the issue is it's embedded in the HD/SD SDI signal. There may or may not be some simple way to extract that to whatever the recorder wants.
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Old July 22nd, 2010, 12:51 AM   #13
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Yes Bob, there are HD-SDI timecode de-embedders available. In the 300 to 400 dollar range.
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Old July 22nd, 2010, 08:55 AM   #14
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This is very interesting... so, how would that work?

A time-code de-embedder would attach between the EX-1 and the Zaxcom (let's say), via the SDI output?

Would this then synchronize the time-codes between the two units before the shoot starts, so that whatever audio I record with the Zaxcom could then be easily synced up to the EX-1 video/audio, once I get it into my NLE (in my case, Avid)?

I'm not talking about shooting long, continuous shots with my EX-1, by the way (which would make syncing easy). I stop and start, stop and start. But meanwhile, if I have that Zaxcom attached to someone, it's recording one continuous track. So in editing that would make it harder to sync things up. If time-code could make it easy, that would be great, but I'm still very unsure of the workflow.

Thanks for weighing in on this everyone.
Malcolm
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Old July 22nd, 2010, 02:00 PM   #15
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Then the "de-embedder" would somehow have to be attached to the audio recorder too for the units to by actually synced. I've never heard of an EX1 being synced to any external audio recorder ever. Maybe there is a way, but all I hear is theoretical solutions, nothing that actually works.
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