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EX1 audio clicks

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Bob Pierce
EX1 audio clicks
on Aug 3, 2008 at 10:35:35 pm

Hey Everybody,
I know this question came up before, but I haven't heard anyone's solution. Using an external mic, I get a faint ticking sound on the recording. It happens with a variety of mics and regardless of whether it's mic level or line level input. I'm recording 720 p59.94, HQ mode.

Anyone else come across this?
Thanks!
Bob Pierce

Mac Pro 2.66 - 8GB memory - Mac OS 10.5.2 - Quicktime 7.4.5 -
Mac Book Pro 2.33 Duo -
FC Studio 2 (Final Cut 6.0.3) - Kona Lhe
Adobe Production Suite CS3 -
Sony Multiformat 14" - Panasonic 42" Plasma -
Ikegami HLDV7 - PVW EX-1



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Craig Seeman
Re: EX1 audio clicks
on Aug 3, 2008 at 11:01:32 pm

I've used the internal camera mic, mounted shotgun mic, wireless handheld, wireless lav, wired handheld and have not had any clicking. I would think if such clicking were being recorded I'd see it in the waveform display in my NLE and audio editing program.

Check the waveforms in a good audio editing program. If you're seeing clicking maybe there's a problem your camera's preamp.



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Noah Kadner
Re: EX1 audio clicks
on Aug 3, 2008 at 11:45:19 pm

Sounds like a reason to send in for warranty repair.

Noah

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Jeremy Loftus-Hills
Re: EX1 audio clicks
on Aug 4, 2008 at 12:06:54 am

I hear that sound too. To date I have been trimming back the mic until it is inaudible, but then audio always needs to be boosted in post which is a bloody nuisance.



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Don Greening
Re: EX1 audio clicks
on Aug 4, 2008 at 2:22:01 am

Bob and Jeremy,

You're not alone. I had the problem on my original EX1 and still have it, though not as obvious, on my replacement. So far there has been no joy with getting an answer from my particular Sony repair facility. The tech I deal with there knows about my audio issues but has yet to hear about a fix from the head office here in Canada.

There's an "electronic chirping" sound present if the levels are set to anything approaching normal volume for recording purposes with 3rd party mics and no amount of fiddling with the sensitivity levels gets rid of it entirely. I've taken my EX to other local camera stores I deal with and they have no idea what's wrong. One day we tried about 7 or 8 different mics with the same result. Even this particular store's rental EX had the same issue, much to their surprise.

- Don






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Jeremy Loftus-Hills
Re: EX1 audio clicks
on Aug 4, 2008 at 5:44:14 am

The odd thing is now when I set the camera up in my (post production) studio the audio is as clean as. I haven't tested it for months, I just have the trim set permanently below the threshold - about minus 32 DB. So maybe it's dependent upon a variable of some kind. I usually use cabled Sennheiser K6 mics (ME66 & 64), with AGC separated, tone on and wind filters off.

If I have to I use the Sony UHF radio system - WRT-805, with XLR adapted to the old style mini jack.

I have heard the ticking on all. I don't know if it records to the card, I've assumed it does (in other words it could be in the monitoring amplifier I suppose).

Or could it be external - phone towers or something?

Anyway if someone finds out the cause I would love to know.

In the meantime I'll try to isolate when and where it occurs, and try recording it.

Jeremy



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Denis O'Keefe
Re: EX1 audio clicks
on Aug 4, 2008 at 2:18:26 pm

This may be a long shot, but are you wearing a blackberry while shooting? We've been battling the clicks that come with them for years, trying to get producers to stop using them during interviews, etc.
I use an iphone now, and either turn it off or get it pretty far away from the camera while working.
The betacams were metal and had professional shielding; even then the clicks and chirps came through. I suspect the plastic cases on the smaller cameras make it all the more susceptable to outside interference.




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Craig Seeman
Re: EX1 audio clicks
on Aug 4, 2008 at 2:35:49 pm

When I produce or otherwise shoot, I tell everyone on site that cell phones must be OFF. Not on silent or vibrate but completely off.

For those who hear this issue, look at the waveform of the captured video. If it's recorded then you should see the clicks as well as hear it.



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Denis O'Keefe
Re: EX1 audio clicks
on Aug 4, 2008 at 8:13:54 pm

Hi Craig, I tell them too - along with "ten hours is portal to portal", "even if we did eat yesterday, we still need a meal break today", "a bathroom break isn't really optional", etc etc etc.




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Bob Pierce
Re: EX1 audio clicks
on Aug 5, 2008 at 2:03:40 am

Thanks to all for the input. I do always have everyone turn off their cell phones. This problem reappears every time I shoot with external mics (interviews), so I'm pretty sure it's not some kind of environmental thing. I guess I could exchange the camera, but I'm very hesitant - this in my second EX1, the first one had to be exchanged for a serious focus problem, and I'm starting to think I should stick with the devil I know.

The clicking is only audible wearing headphones. Perhaps it's a more widespread problem than people realize.

Bob

Mac Pro 2.66 - 8GB memory - Mac OS 10.5.2 - Quicktime 7.4.5 -
Mac Book Pro 2.33 Duo -
FC Studio 2 (Final Cut 6.0.3) - Kona Lhe
Adobe Production Suite CS3 -
Sony Multiformat 14" - Panasonic 42" Plasma -
Ikegami HLDV7 - PVW EX-1



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Craig Seeman
Re: EX1 audio clicks
on Aug 5, 2008 at 2:36:01 am

But do you SEE it in the waveform of good audio editing software?



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David Smith
Re: EX1 audio clicks
on Aug 6, 2008 at 3:50:46 pm

[Denis O'Keefe] "Hi Craig, I tell them too - along with "ten hours is portal to portal", "even if we did eat yesterday, we still need a meal break today", "a bathroom break isn't really optional", etc etc etc. "

Brilliant, Denis! Oh, and that meal break, it's ON the clock.






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Bill Kimzey
Re: EX1 audio clicks
on Aug 7, 2008 at 12:55:05 pm

Yes, clicking is definitely there. Some updates from my previous post on this topic.

With 2 rented cameras, the problem was present on both, even when no audio was recorded, that is, mic off.

The clicks are absolutely visible in waveforms.

Recording in other modes (can't say definitively all other modes, but all other modes we tried) did NOT give this problem. In other words 1080i seemed just fine. This may explain why not many are noticing it - I don't know how many are shooting in this mode.

Since 720 p60 HQ was what we wanted to shoot, we had to use double system sound to get a clean recording.

Also, since the clicking either appears or disappears at the 4GB boundaries, unless doing long form recording, it may or may not be present. You may have to record longer than 13 minutes to get it. In tests, I recorded for 30 minutes at a time so as to have 2 boundaries.

The firmware on the cameras, was, I believe, an earlier version, so I can't say if this is a persistent problem on later editions.

I'm also curious if the problem remains in the EX3, so if anyone has that info, I'd be happy to hear that this is fixed.


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Don Greening
Re: EX1 audio clicks
on Aug 7, 2008 at 6:05:23 pm

Bill,

Thanks for taking the time to post your findings. I'd like to forward your info on to the tech guy I know at Sony Canada, as he is looking for clues and user reports regarding this issue. Your info may help to narrow things down a bit.

- Don


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Bill Kimzey
Re: EX1 audio clicks
on Aug 11, 2008 at 1:00:31 pm

This is a repost, since the first time I posted this, it disappeared (after appearing briefly).

Sounds good.

One other thing of possible significance - we can't hear the clicks in the Clip Browser, but only after it has been turned into a QT file.

So, we are inclined to think that the recorded audio may be fine, but the conversion creates the problem. In other words, the camera may not have a problem, but the software might be the culprit.

By the by, we did not do any testing in the PC world, so I don't know if this problem exists only on the Mac side of things or not.

Thanks, and if you hear anything about a solution from the Sony guy we'd like to know it, as we are interested in the EX3s.

Thanks.


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Don Greening
Re: EX1 audio clicks
on Aug 11, 2008 at 4:42:01 pm

[Bill Kimzey] "Thanks, and if you hear anything about a solution from the Sony guy we'd like to know it, as we are interested in the EX3s. "

I haven't heard anything from the Sony repair place yet but I'll keep you in the loop.

- Don



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Roger Akers
The Solution
on Sep 16, 2008 at 1:47:12 pm

I did not read this whole sub-thread but I do know the problem. There is a bug in the clip browser software (that apparantly can be avoided by using version 1.01) with 720/60p. I went to a shoot in San Jose and shot a whole weeks worth of interviews and had the clicking problem. Other modes do not seem to be effected such as 1080i or 1080p. My solution was to download Cineform Neo and convert all the unwrapped mpeg files in the BPAV folder. I have since purchased NEO as it does an incredible job and producing uncompressed quality video at small file sizes.

Anyway, try to steer clear of shooting 720/60p if you need the audio.



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Chad Johnson
Re: The Solution
on May 9, 2009 at 11:23:30 pm

It's 6 months since the last post on this thread.

Can anybody say if the EX1's firmware update has fixed this clicking sound problem? I plan on buying this camera, and the uncompressed audio is a major reason I am spending the extra money for it. I don't want to make the purchase, then get into a black hole of waiting for Sony to address the issue.

What's the status boys?

Thanks


Chad

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