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Audio levels from XDCAM transfer too low in FCP

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David Sandwisch
Audio levels from XDCAM transfer too low in FCP
on May 13, 2011 at 1:51:08 am

Hi,

I have an XDCAM PMW-EX1 camcorder that I am shooting and transferring files into FCP. When I shoot, I make the audio level a nice high volume and even let it clip a little on non-important stuff. When I do a simple log and transfer into FCP and then play the file back in a new sequence where my sequence settings match my file exactly, the audio meters show my loudest volume as -6dbfs. It sounds clipped as it should where the camera's meters hit the top and went into the red but FCP does not go into the red.

This makes me think somehow FCP is dropping my audio by 6 db for some unknown reason. I can raise the volume on the fader in the audio mixer for the appropriate track and get more gain out of it but I shouldn't have to do that.

My audio levels should transfer exactly 1 for 1 from the camera so my loudest part should be 0 dbfs but it's not. I am not a FCP wizard but I am an audio one. This perplexes me since moving the file from the camera and into FCP should not change it.

Ideas as to why my audio is coming out 6 db too quiet? I am not changing any sequence or audio mixer settings. I simply want it to be as loud as I recorded it.

Thanks,
David

I'm on FCP 6.06 on a dual quad core Mac


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Michael Kammes
Re: Audio levels from XDCAM transfer too low in FCP
on May 13, 2011 at 2:07:36 pm

Wrong Forum, try the FCP forum - not FCP X.

However....

Could the difference be that the camera is monitoring on an analog scale, not a digital one? That shouldn't change the physical volume, but may alter the way it is interpreted on the display.

Could the camera being monitoring the sum (or both tracks as center panned), whereas FCP is panning the tracks out? The volume would certainly be higher if the audio was center panned as opposed to panned outward.

FWIW, Log and Capture doesn't change the volume level with any audio.

~Michael



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Andy Mees
Re: Audio levels from XDCAM transfer too low in FCP
on May 13, 2011 at 2:17:35 pm

Are you working with Stereo or Dual Mono grouping? If Stereo then try center panning both channels and see if raises it back up by 6dB. If Dual Mono then see if setting the Downmix to 0 for each channel instead of the -3db default.


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Inanc Tekguc
Re: Audio levels from XDCAM transfer too low in FCP
on Sep 17, 2011 at 10:02:36 am

Andy, how do we do what you suggested?
I am on FCP 7 and having the same problem. (Stereo sound as far as I understand).

realize it is wrong forum, but already started anyhow :)


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inanc tekguc
Re: Audio levels from XDCAM transfer too low in FCP
on Sep 17, 2011 at 11:20:27 am

Andy, how do we do what you suggested?
I am on FCP 7 and having the same problem. (Stereo sound as far as I understand).

realize it is wrong forum, but already started anyhow :)

Inanc
Visual Anthropologist 'n photographer wannabe


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Andy Mees
Re: Audio levels from XDCAM transfer too low in FCP
on Sep 18, 2011 at 7:45:30 am

Hi Inanc

Look in the Sequence Settings window, under the Audio Output tab.

Cheers
Andy


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inanc tekguc
Re: Audio levels from XDCAM transfer too low in FCP
on Sep 18, 2011 at 2:14:21 pm

Thanks a bunch!

For the record,
I am just playing around with the below options and choosing what is best:

-Tools> Audio Mixer
-Sequence settings> Audio Output tab
-Copy paste audio tracks on sequence, to multiply their effect.
-Raise audio levels.

Inanc
Visual Anthropologist 'n photographer wannabe


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