I recently took a position at a University in Ohio. One of my responsibilities is to video tape on campus events, some of which will be done by work study dtudents under y supervision
to date we have 4 minidv cameras and I have ordered XLR inputs for all so getting good audio is a requirement.
What I want to do is create a sort of swiss army knife kit for each camera as far as audio is concerened. Obviously I need XLR cables but I am not sure about jacks and connections. The reason I am asking is because I have tapped two eventsthis summer in which an outside vendor was brought in to cover the sound and I was able to patch into their boards with jacks they had, I want my camera crews to have a selection of jacks sothat if a situation arises we can handle it but I need to know what sizes and types of jacks are fairly common so that I can order them before the Fall Semester
thanks for any help on this
Instructional Media Services
John Carroll University
University Heights, OH 44118
[Todd George]"I need to know what sizes and types of jacks are fairly common"
First, I guess you are asking about "PLUGS" and "ADAPTERS" and not just "JACKS".
Jacks and plugs are similar terms. (Jacks are usually MOUNTED in gear, Plugs fit into them.)
And jacks CAN be a part of adapters, but not all jacks ARE adapters.)
95%-100% of audio Mixer Boards (Consoles) utilize THREE kinds (one, two or all three kinds on any given mixer) of output jacks: XLR, 1/4" PHONE Jacks (*TRS, or just *TS) and RCA PHONO Jacks.
*TRS- Tip, Ring, Sleeve (like a stereo headphone jack/plug)
*TS- Tip, Sleeve (like a guitar input jack/plug)
XLR: 3-pin (Male) jack. OUTPUT: +4 to +8 LINE level. or MIC level
1/4" Phone jack (TRS). OUTPUT: +4 to +8 (balanced or unbalanced) LINE level. or MIC level
1/4" Phone jack (TS). OUTPUT: +4 to +8 (unbalanced) LINE level.
RCA Phono jack (like home audio component input plug). OUTPUT: unbalanced 1 volt consumer LINE level.
Assuming you have "Beachtek" or similar XLR input boxes for your cameras (or the cameras themselves have XLR inputs):
To match the mixers' outputs, you will want to build a separate (rather short, say 10 feet) adapter cable with a matching PLUG on one end to fit each of these jacks. On the other end of each of these adapter cables, you want a (Male) XLR plug.
When needed, you can plug these shorter adapter cables into longer runs of standard XLR cables to reach your camera(s).
You'll need the cameras audio inputs to be able to switch between MIC-level or LINE-level to accommodate various audio mixers output levels.
(If they don't, you can buy XLR "Line-level-to-Mic-level adapters.")
If you need more info, post back
Or (maybe the BEST IDEA) just find a local "audio pro" who can fix you up for a nominal fee!!