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microphone levels with MX02?

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Ian MacLean
microphone levels with MX02?
on Feb 20, 2009 at 9:24:08 pm

I could use some advice.

In a small studio setup, I'm going to record HD SDI from a Panasonic HVX170 to a Matrox MX02, and from there to an 8 core Mac Pro, FCP, ProRes 422 HQ.

I just bought a Sennheiser ME66/K6 and, rather than attaching it to the camera, I want to setup a mic stand and put the mic 3 or 4 feet away from the subject, above and in front at a 45 degree angle.

I'm under the impression that running the mic's XLR output directly to the MX02 would be preferable to running it through the camera. However, if I ran it through the camera, I would be able to lower the Mic Gain.

I don't know if I'll have that capability with the MX02, and I don't know if I'll have the need.

My concern is that MX02 software will only affect the signal AFTER it's been through A>D conversion, and this will leave the signal vulnerable to clipping.

Any advice would be most appreciated.


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Ty Ford
Re: microphone levels with MX02?
on Feb 21, 2009 at 12:07:09 am

What's an MX02?

Ty Ford

Want better production audio?: Ty Ford's Audio Bootcamp Field Guide






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Ian MacLean
Re: microphone levels with MX02?
on Feb 21, 2009 at 2:51:03 am

http://www.videoguys.com/mxo2_faq.html


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Ian MacLean
Re: microphone levels with MX02?
on Feb 21, 2009 at 2:55:22 am

The new Matrox MXO2 is the first truly portable device that gives you broadcast-quality input/output, monitoring, and up/down/cross conversion to streamline your workflow with Apple Final Cut Studio 2. It’s MacBook Pro and MacPro compatible, fits in your laptop bag, can run for hours off a field battery, and weighs under 3½ lbs. It lets you work seamlessly in any format you want.

http://www.matrox.com/video/en/products/mxo2/competitive_postioning/


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Ty Ford
Re: microphone levels with MX02?
on Feb 21, 2009 at 3:28:17 am

Hello Ian and welcome to the Cow Audio Forum,

The spec sheet for that unit doesn't say the two XLR inputs either offer phantom power or operate at mic level. So I'm guessing you would be unhappy with the combination.

Regards,

Ty Ford

Want better production audio?: Ty Ford's Audio Bootcamp Field Guide






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Ian MacLean
Re: microphone levels with MX02?
on Feb 21, 2009 at 5:52:59 pm

Thanks for the welcome and help. I'm assuming that 'mic level' is low / sensitive, and unless the inputs are labelled for that, the mic output won't be compatible.

Okay, so I'll need a piece of equipment in between the mic and the MX02, and I've been told to look at field mixers.

I am on a budget, and it seems I don't really need to 'mix,' I need to monitor / adjust levels, and boost signal to a higher level.

I'm under the impression that older analogue devices with physical needles are outdated and I need something with digital meters. I'm a bit lost in the woods here, and would appreciate any advice on what kind of audio equipment I need. Many thanks for the help.

imm


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Ian MacLean
Re: microphone levels with MX02?
on Feb 21, 2009 at 8:31:12 pm

So, there is mic level and line level. Any others?

It seems I need something that inputs mike level, and outputs line level. Is this right? I also need to adjust the level. Would that piece of equipment be a mixer? Even if I don't need to mix? I'm only interested in getting clean mono dialogue.

It seems BEHRINGER makes some equipment in my price range. Any thoughts? At the prices I've seen, I wouldn't be surprised if there's some huge cost in quality. Such as? Many thanks for help.

ps You really can't edit a posting?


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Ty Ford
Re: microphone levels with MX02?
on Feb 22, 2009 at 3:15:54 pm

[Ian MacLean] "So, there is mic level and line level. Any others?

>>Hello Ian, yes, mic level varies per mic but it's down around -40 dB. Consumer line level, from those little RCA jacks on the back of CD players and home entertainment gear, is -10. Pro gear can be 0, +4 or +8.

It seems I need something that inputs mike level, and outputs line level. Is this right?

>>Yes.

I also need to adjust the level. Would that piece of equipment be a mixer? Even if I don't need to mix? I'm only interested in getting clean mono dialogue.

>>My suggestion would be the Sound Devices 302 mixer. It's a solid sounding, small, location audio mixer with a limiter that will allow you to amplify mic level signals to one or both inputs of your gear.

It seems BEHRINGER makes some equipment in my price range. Any thoughts? At the prices I've seen, I wouldn't be surprised if there's some huge cost in quality. Such as? Many thanks for help.

>>I don't like Behringer. It's MI (consumer band gear) grade, not really pro grade. The price is right, but the quality isn't there.

ps You really can't edit a posting"


Apparently not. :)

Regards,

Ty Ford



Want better production audio?: Ty Ford's Audio Bootcamp Field Guide






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Ian MacLean
Re: microphone levels with MX02?
on Feb 22, 2009 at 8:27:19 pm

Ty,

Thanks for the help. If I could impose just a bit more, I'd like to know more about the different capabilities of the 302 and the MixPre. The specifications for each are outside of my knowledge, and I'd like to get a grasp on this. If there's something I need, and it's not in the MixPre's specs, I'd love to understand what that is.

Don't get me wrong, I've read up on the 302, have been very impressed by it, like its looks and design, and most importantly, can see the value down the road once I want to do more than just my limited mono small studio setup. I will probably end up buying it, even though it'll be shifting budget resources away from lights.

Should I end up with the 302, I'm also thinking it would be a good idea, once my little studio is setup, to hire a soundguy to help me with an optimal setup. It looks like the 302 has enough variable settings that without experience, I'd worry about having one or more not be optimal. Or do you think just reading the manual would do the job?


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Andrew Commiskey
Re: microphone levels with MX02?
on Feb 23, 2009 at 7:41:29 am

Just jumping in, the 302 has better metering, an extra channel, extra line inputs and outputs and in general a nicer more adaptable mixer. Does it sound better than the MixPre? No. Is it simpler to use? Yes. Will you wish you had bought the 302 a year from now? probably. As far as understanding the sound technical stuff, you obviously have learned enough about FCP to start up a system. The same will happen with the sound. If you are like me there will be some trial and error. So, plug the stuff in and make some noise.
Drew

Chaos is the beginning of everything.


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Ian MacLean
Re: microphone levels with MX02?
on Feb 23, 2009 at 7:56:50 pm

Hi Drew

Thanks for jumping in. I have no doubt how nice the 302 is, our how nice it will be in the future for location shooting.

For my current small setup (and budget) however, shooting one person at a time and only doing dialogue, I think what I really need is a single channel mic pre-amp to bridge my Sennheiser ME66 and Matrox MX02. Maybe a lower cost than the 302. But clean.

I'd like to be able to read the specs a little more fluently. Regarding dB levels, for example: "...mic level varies per mic but it's down around -40 dB. Consumer line level, from those little RCA jacks on the back of CD players and home entertainment gear, is -10. Pro gear can be 0, +4 or +8."

Is that scale linear?

As well, how much do I need a tone generator?


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Ian MacLean
Re: microphone levels with MX02?
on Feb 24, 2009 at 9:30:54 pm

Moderators: feel free to delete this thread. I needed really basic info, I've got it now, and the thread is too specifically labeled to be useful. I may post a 'basic mic info' thread on what I've learned, but this one can go. Many thanks for the help.


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