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Low audio levels EX-1

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Chris Conroy
Low audio levels EX-1
on Jun 25, 2008 at 6:08:23 pm

I'm finding low audio levels when I bring my EX-1 footage into Final Cut. We've worked in a variety of situations – using the built-in mic, using a hardwired lav directly into the camera and with an audio tech (having calibrated to tone).

I'm finding that the levels in Final Cut are just too low. I can't raise them sufficiently to get a good, consistent level. I have to export everything to Soundtrack Pro to make it work.

I'm not having this problem with footage acquired with our Betacam.

Any suggestions?

Thanks,
Chris


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Noah Kadner
Re: Low audio levels EX-1
on Jun 25, 2008 at 6:13:38 pm

From what audio source and what are you levels on the EVF in the camera? You might need a powered mic or a mixer to get the proper levels. In general I've found FCP levels are pretty much identical to what I expect when they're set properly in the camera.

Noah

My FCP Blog. Unlock the secrets of the DVX100, HVX200 and Apple Color and Win a Free Letus Extreme.
Now featuring the Sony EX1 Guidebook and Sound for Film and TV.
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Chris Babbitt
Re: Low audio levels EX-1
on Jun 25, 2008 at 7:08:10 pm

No problem here. In fact, I've found the levels to be a bit higher than from my old DSR-300 DVCAM.



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Jim Watt
Re: Low audio levels EX-1
on Jun 25, 2008 at 8:18:13 pm

We've shot about 70 hours on our EX-1 in a variety of locations, with a phantom powered Sennheiser, and Panasonic camera mic and RF units from Lectrosonics to Sennheiser Evo 100 and 500 RF mics. Only thing we've seen is we must turn down the input trim levels in the camera to -50 to keep the Evolution receivers from clipping.

jw

Producer/DP, HD series, "Discoveries...America", "Discoveries...Ireland", "Discoveries...Spain",
"Discoveries...Argentina"


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Chris Babbitt
Re: Low audio levels EX-1
on Jun 25, 2008 at 8:21:46 pm

What is the RF out on the receiver set to?



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Jim Watt
Re: Low audio levels EX-1
on Jun 25, 2008 at 8:25:27 pm

-24 on the receiver and -20 on the transmitter.

Producer/DP, HD series, "Discoveries...America", "Discoveries...Ireland", "Discoveries...Spain",
"Discoveries...Argentina"


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Chris Babbitt
Re: Low audio levels EX-1
on Jun 25, 2008 at 8:32:50 pm

That's interesting. I've gotten very clean results with the receiver at -18 without changing anything in the camera.



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Jim Watt
Re: Low audio levels EX-1
on Jun 25, 2008 at 8:44:58 pm

We started at the default -41. Audio was useable, but you could hear and almost feel a little clipping. Lowered the trim and the sound improved immensely, but my partner Kelly who is a network caliber mixer hears everything, so to my ear I really didn't hear it so much as feel it, but even to my 'tim' ear it sounds better with this setup.

Producer/DP, HD series, "Discoveries...America", "Discoveries...Ireland", "Discoveries...Spain",
"Discoveries...Argentina"


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Chris Babbitt
Re: Low audio levels EX-1
on Jun 25, 2008 at 8:54:59 pm

Hmmmm...
I'll pay closer attention.



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Michael Slowe
Re: Low audio levels EX-1
on Jun 25, 2008 at 9:45:27 pm

Chris, that's odd, I find the levels are tending to 'clip' at the camera default settings. With most mics I have to reduce the menu settings to around -38 to -40.

Michael Slowe


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Rick Diamond
Re: Low audio levels EX-1
on Jun 26, 2008 at 12:49:27 am

What am I missing? If the audio levels are recorded at the standard -12 or -20db they end up being low in FCP at 0bd. Can FCP be set differently? In my situation, levels are always low.

Rick Diamond


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Rick Diamond
Re: Low audio levels EX-1
on Jun 26, 2008 at 1:13:54 am

FCP brings all audio in at the levels they're recorded at. Field audio is very often recorded at -12 or -20db. In FCP, which is set at 0db, levels will be low.

Rick Diamond



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Steve Wargo
Re: Low audio levels EX-1
on Jun 26, 2008 at 4:23:45 am

we set the camera audio switches to AUTO and sent tone to the camera. We noted what the camera thought was normal. There are no numbers on the scale. We've used what the camera told us and everything's been pretty normal.
No, we don't use AUTO for anything other than this test unless we're recording reference sound on B-roll.






Steve Wargo
Tempe, Arizona
It's a dry heat!

Sony HDCAM F-900 & HDW-2000/1 deck
5 Final Cut (not quite PRO) systems
Sony HVR-M25 HDV deck
2-Sony EX-1 HD .


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Carelton Holt
Re: Low audio levels EX-1
on Jul 22, 2008 at 3:17:10 pm

We are experiencing the same problem with low audio levels recorded directly into our EX1. We have tried several mic options and audio that sounds pretty good in the camera in the field, is about -18db in Adobe Premier. we are now at the -53dBu on the trim in the EX1 and still have to turn the audio levels up to 9 or 10 to get reasonable audio levels. Is this normal?



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Craig Seeman
Re: Low audio levels EX-1
on Jul 23, 2008 at 9:48:20 pm

What Mic?

Not all mics are the same. Some are hotter than others. I'm using a Sony 680S shotgun and there are times I'm down to - mid teens dBu, the peaks are so hot.

If you're using wireless you may have to consider what's happening from end to end too for example.



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Carelton Holt
Re: Low audio levels EX-1
on Jul 24, 2008 at 1:13:20 pm

We are getting pretty much the same result with three different mics: Sennheiser G2 wireless lavaliers, Audio Tecnica wired lavaliers (model number unknown)and an Audio Tecnica AT897 Shotgun. All three of these mics are professional level products and have performed very well with previous cameras.

We have moved the trim to -56dBu and are getting better results. we are going to try to carve out some time for additional testing. It just seems strange to me that the Sony manual states that a with the trim at the default of -41dBu and a volume control knob level of 5 should produce 0dB and a volume control knob setting of 10 should produce +12dB, when we are having to boost the trim 15dBu and are still not quite at these levels using a broad aray of professional level mics. In theory, this represents an 18dB boost to get full sound. We are concerned that boosting the trim much further will result in excessive background noise pickup and/or clipping. I will try to post up results after our testing session.



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