FORUMS: list search recent posts

metering difference for mini dv cams and big dbeta & beta cams????

COW Forums : Audio Professionals

<< PREVIOUS   •   VIEW ALL   •   PRINT   •   NEXT >>
the1ktone
metering difference for mini dv cams and big dbeta & beta cams????
on Oct 7, 2005 at 6:12:28 pm

hi, good day everyone. I'm a fairly new freelance location sound mixer all the way from South East Asia. I've been working mainly with mini dv cameras like pd150,170, dvx100A and the sorts.

I was recently contracted to do a reenactment drama video on a Sony Beta SP camera. So what I did was I set my 1K tone to 0dB on the FP33 mixer and -20dB marking on the Beta camera. As I always do when doing location sound mixing with those mini dv cameras, I kept my signal pretty much 'out of the red'. However a few days later, the director called up the cameraman who contracted me and said that the levels were kinda low.
Now my question is, is it the norm to keep our levels on these cameras around the red??? (as opposed to keeping them outta the red on mini dv cameras because of their lower headroom?)

I'm kinda perplexed because I've got another interview job coming up soon in a couple of days and it's on Beta. I dunno if I should just keep the levels outta the red or let it reside around the red. Or should I just change the -20dB 1k tone reference mark to -12dB or so??

Thks alot for your help in advance. I really appreciate that there's such a helpful forum catering to inexperienced crew like me.


Return to posts index

Thax
Re: metering difference for mini dv cams and big dbeta & beta cams????
by
on Oct 7, 2005 at 7:29:46 pm

[the1ktone] "because of their lower headroom"


(Mini)DV digital audio is the "same" 48kHz info as DigiBeta.
There is no more or less headroom in either.

The input electronics (preamps) in some DV camcorders may have less ability to deal with higher incoming levels, but digitally, "Zero" is still "Zero" on either device.

[the1ktone] "should I just change the -20dB 1k tone reference mark to -12dB or so?"

That should make things closer to the "norm".

If you were PEAKING at -20, you had some pretty low levels for the editor to deal with.

I never have trouble even with miniDV if I set my levels so the top PEAKS hover around -6.


Return to posts index

the1ktone
Re: metering difference for mini dv cams and big dbeta & beta cams????
on Oct 7, 2005 at 7:36:55 pm

Thanks for the reply. & Sorry I didnt make myself clear enough, Thax. What I mean to say is, there's difference in metering headroom between the mini dv cameras and betacams, due to setting a different level of 1k tone for e.g. dvx100A & a Sony Beta SP camera at -20dB.

So what you are suggesting is I should set my 1k tone reference point to something between -12 and -6dB? would that cause distortion on the betacam SP even if my levels are safely outta the red on my mixer?

Thks


Return to posts index


Thax
Re: metering difference for mini dv cams and big dbeta & beta cams????
by
on Oct 7, 2005 at 9:06:44 pm

[the1ktone] "I should set my 1k tone reference point to something between -12 and -6dB? would that cause distortion on the betacam SP even if my levels are safely outta the red on my mixer?"


I'm talking PEAKS.

Tone should not be set to maximum peak level.

-12 to -14 is a good level for your tone.

Then watch your levels so they don't spend too much time in the red.

If this is MONO audio, you could adjust the camcorder's inputs to record channel one's reference at -12 and channel two's at, say, -18... that way you're covered at either end.




Return to posts index

the1ktone
Re: metering difference for mini dv cams and big dbeta & beta cams????
on Oct 8, 2005 at 5:23:30 pm

[Thax] "If this is MONO audio, you could adjust the camcorder's inputs to record channel one's reference at -12 and channel two's at, say, -18... that way you're covered at either end."

thks alot for this piece of advise, I've seen it done b4 for a single interviewee. Will definitely bear this in mind. However, the nxt job I'll be doing involves an interviewer and 2 interviewees.

[Thax] "-12 to -14 is a good level for your tone."

okay so does this mean that I should ignore the -20dB mark on the Sony Beta SP camera that I'll be using, and use something around -12 to -14 instead? I'm just wondering why they highlighted -20dB as the mark there for the camera instead. Is there any particular reasons?

Thanks alot for your help, Thax. I really appreciate it.


Return to posts index

Seth Bloombaum
Re: metering difference for mini dv cams and big dbeta & beta cams????
on Oct 8, 2005 at 6:59:06 pm

BetaSP is FM analog, not digital - the same rules don't apply. It's a longitudinal stripe on the video tape.

Back in the day I would set 0 to 0 and usual peaks at 0 or a little lower, instantaneous transient peaks sometimes over 0. Granted, I was a little more aggressive than many others. A more conservative approach is to set 0 to 0 and usual peaks to -3, transients to 0.

Do listen to a little playback. If you've never heard what a peak over 0 sounds like in analog you should acquaint yourself with it.


Return to posts index


Rick Mac
Re: metering difference for mini dv cams and big dbeta & beta cams????
on Oct 9, 2005 at 5:33:29 am

To properly set levels you must first understand that you have two types of audio recorders out there, Analog (Beta SP) and Digital (DV camcorders, digital beta).

In the analog world you can hit peak audio level higher than 0vu without distortion, and you must get a decent level to tape or you will have a noisy recording. Analog has some headroom above 0vu digital does not. Analog has tape noise (hiss) digital does not. Tape noise when recording analog is why recording -20 to -12 levals is considered low. Your recorded audio will have audible hiss in it. This is why it's important to send good level to analog tape.

Digital recording has no headroom above 0vu. When you hit 0 you get a hard clip and somtimes pops in your recording.This is called a digital over. However digital does not have tape noise like analog, so you can record lower levels and still get a clean recording. Because of digital's lack of headroom above 0vu -12 is considered to be the same as 0vu in the analog world.

So, when recording to a digital device set your mixer tone to 0vu and your recorder to -12, then while recording ride your meters on your mixer to average between -7 and 0 and you will have good levels.

When recording to analog set your mixer tone to 0vu and your recorder to 0vu and run you program level between -7 and 0 on your mixer meters.

One more thing to be aware of is the output level of your mixer and your input settings on your camera. If you try to send a +4 line level signal into the mic level input of a camera you will get lots of distortion. This is because you are overdriving the input electronics of the camera. Simply turning down the pot on the camera will not help you. Some field mixers have a mic level output, use that one into the mic input on your camera and you will be Ok.

hope this helps...later...Rick.


Return to posts index

Peter Groom
Re: metering difference for mini dv cams and big dbeta & beta cams????
on Oct 18, 2005 at 8:33:56 am

The accepted line up levels are -18db (usually uk) and I belive the US often use -20. This is for digital meters only. Either way, the rules are that 1k tone goes at -18 (or -20db) and the audio that follows it should peak at +8db above that. There is no advantage in attempting to utilise the capacity between -10 which is wher the audio should not exceed and 0 (the point weher all digits becom 1's aand distortion occurs. Only problems as the audio effect of digital clipping is very offensive and you gain nothing by attempting to go high.

The word headroom should be completely forgotten when talking about digital.
Peter


Return to posts index

Mark Frazier
Re: metering difference for mini dv cams and big dbeta & beta cams????
on Oct 21, 2005 at 2:01:20 pm

If you happen to have a field mixer that will not output to mic level, the Betacams can switch their input levels to line or mic.


Return to posts index

<< PREVIOUS   •   VIEW ALL   •   PRINT   •   NEXT >>
© 2017 CreativeCOW.net All Rights Reserved
[TOP]