External Audio Set up for DSLR Canon 60D
SirReaL
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#1
20th January 2013
Old 20th January 2013
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External Audio Set up for DSLR Canon 60D

Hello ,
I've recently bought a DSLR Canon 60D , it's a great camera and all but as far as audio it has a very cheap Preamp and a builtin mic so I'm looking to replace them with some external hardware in order to get CLEAR and CLEAN sound , I'll be recording outdoor / in door , interviews , live vocals etc... So I kinna need a multi purpose recording chain .

I was told that I shouldn't buy an external microphone and connect it directly to the camera it self since it has a crappy preamp and AGC ( Auto Gain Control ) which could cause lots of hiss .

I'm having a hard time deciding which recording chain I should go for so please help me out .

Portable Recorder '' Zoom H4n '' and connect a RODE Videomic Pro to it
or
Portable Recorder '' Zoom H4n '' and connect a studio condenser mic to it
or
Portable Recorder '' Zoom h4n '' + Rode Videomic Pro + Preamp
or
Portable Recorder '' Zoom h4n '' + Studio Condenser Mic + Preamp
or
Just a shotgun microphone , audio interface and an internal Preamp .
#2
20th January 2013
Old 20th January 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SirReaL View Post
Hello ,
I've recently bought a DSLR Canon 60D , it's a great camera and all but as far as audio it has a very cheap Preamp and a builtin mic so I'm looking to replace them with some external hardware in order to get CLEAR and CLEAN sound , I'll be recording outdoor / in door , interviews , live vocals etc... So I kinna need a multi purpose recording chain .

I was told that I shouldn't buy an external microphone and connect it directly to the camera it self since it has a crappy preamp and AGC ( Auto Gain Control ) which could cause lots of hiss .

I'm having a hard time deciding which recording chain I should go for so please help me out .

Portable Recorder '' Zoom H4n '' and connect a RODE Videomic Pro to it
or
Portable Recorder '' Zoom H4n '' and connect a studio condenser mic to it
or
Portable Recorder '' Zoom h4n '' + Rode Videomic Pro + Preamp
or
Portable Recorder '' Zoom h4n '' + Studio Condenser Mic + Preamp
or
Just a shotgun microphone , audio interface and an internal Preamp .
Some people in indie film use the MixPre-D as preamp. You might want to check it out if you're looking for good preamp.
#3
20th January 2013
Old 20th January 2013
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Zoom is ok if
Its shock mounted on a mic stand,not hand held
Has a proper windscreen and a remote control, with good gain structure and headroom, and most important ,good placement, and attention to battery level
You sync clap it or Plural Eyes it in post.
Pres into a DSLR on 3.5mm jack asking for trouble.
SirReaL
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#4
21st January 2013
Old 21st January 2013
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oh ok , so I'd get good clean vocals quality by using the zoom h4n without an external mic connected to it or a preamp if I just do what you mentioned above ?
#5
21st January 2013
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Is there a way to disable the AGC on this camera?
#6
21st January 2013
Old 21st January 2013
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I would recommend something like these Camcorder XLR Adapters| B&H Photo Video

They basically mount onto your camera and allow you to run 2 separate mics through them. You can disable the AGC with most of them, what they do it pass a signal through that we can't hear and this effectively causes the AGC to turns itself down, allowing you to use the 2 mic pres that are built into it. The bonus of using this system is that you don't then have to sync the audio from something like the zoom with the video of the camera, which can cause problems due to the fact you cant sync the audio recorder and the camera together, so audio can drift out of sync with the video.
#7
21st January 2013
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Mats H's Avatar
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chris319 View Post
Is there a way to disable the AGC on this camera?
Use the Magic Lantern firmware for this

MagicLantern.fm - Home
#8
21st January 2013
Old 21st January 2013
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for audio, I use an ORTF pair of Neumann km184s>scarlett 18i6>thinkpad t410 i7 running reaper. my video is completely separate, and I sync them in post with adobe premiere. I do not see any point in trying to make a dslr camera record your audio. as you progress to more professional video cameras, you start getting much more flexibility in terms of utilizing outboard audio gear and professional level mics.
#9
21st January 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jnorman View Post
for audio, I use an ORTF pair of Neumann km184s>scarlett 18i6>thinkpad t410 i7 running reaper. my video is completely separate, and I sync them in post with adobe premiere. I do not see any point in trying to make a dslr camera record your audio. as you progress to more professional video cameras, you start getting much more flexibility in terms of utilizing outboard audio gear and professional level mics.
If you're recording music, sure. But for a one man, run and gun type of work where you're doing interviews or documentary work, having in camera sound is pretty nice to have. My 550D has around 90 dB of dynamic range when using an external preamp using condenser mics (like the MKH40). It's good enough for a lot of work.
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21st January 2013
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Sep sound is always better
Defeating the on board camera AGC with spurious tones seems agricultural in comparison with even a humble shaver
The mic must be in the right place,that is not on the camera
A zoom on a boom pole, with a second person operating it, would be far superior
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21st January 2013
Old 21st January 2013
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SirReaL
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#12
21st January 2013
Old 21st January 2013
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Thread Starter
Quote:
Originally Posted by chris319 View Post
Is there a way to disable the AGC on this camera?
I dont think so unless you get an external device that does that

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sam Walker View Post
I would recommend something like these Camcorder XLR Adapters| B&H Photo Video

They basically mount onto your camera and allow you to run 2 separate mics through them. You can disable the AGC with most of them, what they do it pass a signal through that we can't hear and this effectively causes the AGC to turns itself down, allowing you to use the 2 mic pres that are built into it. The bonus of using this system is that you don't then have to sync the audio from something like the zoom with the video of the camera, which can cause problems due to the fact you cant sync the audio recorder and the camera together, so audio can drift out of sync with the video.
I've heard good things about those , specialy the juicedlink ! but they're kinna expensive comparing to the h4n .

I don't mind syncing the audio in post as long as I get the same high quality .

Quote:
Originally Posted by jnorman View Post
for audio, I use an ORTF pair of Neumann km184s>scarlett 18i6>thinkpad t410 i7 running reaper. my video is completely separate, and I sync them in post with adobe premiere. I do not see any point in trying to make a dslr camera record your audio. as you progress to more professional video cameras, you start getting much more flexibility in terms of utilizing outboard audio gear and professional level mics.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mats H View Post
If you're recording music, sure. But for a one man, run and gun type of work where you're doing interviews or documentary work, having in camera sound is pretty nice to have. My 550D has around 90 dB of dynamic range when using an external preamp using condenser mics (like the MKH40). It's good enough for a lot of work.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rolo 46 View Post
Sep sound is always better
Defeating the on board camera AGC with spurious tones seems agricultural in comparison with even a humble shaver
The mic must be in the right place,that is not on the camera
A zoom on a boom pole, with a second person operating it, would be far superior
I think I'm gonna try out the zoom h4n first if I don't like it's sound quality I'll get an external preamp and a mic and hook them up to the h4n
#13
21st January 2013
Old 21st January 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SirReaL View Post
I dont think so unless you get an external device that does that
Download the Magic Lantern software. It'll give you a lot of things to tweak in camera. Disabling AGC is one of those.
#14
21st January 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mats H View Post
Download the Magic Lantern software. It'll give you a lot of things to tweak in camera. Disabling AGC is one of those.
Any such firmware for Nikons? Cheers!
#15
21st January 2013
Old 21st January 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mats H View Post
Download the Magic Lantern software. It'll give you a lot of things to tweak in camera. Disabling AGC is one of those.
Just be careful with Magic Lantern, I have had it cause recording issues, for the most part it is very stable and very useful, but it can be a pain when you need it to work and it doesn't want to.
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21st January 2013
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I've had good luck with two Sennheiser ENG mic systems (ME2 elements) into my Nikon D800 (AGC is switched off... meters show on the back screen) via a simple 2 XLRF->miniTRS adapter I built for about $8US. Input gain structure is crucial (into the transmitters) and likewise output gain from the transmitters into the D800.

Careful management yields audio (interviews) no worse than that acquired via Sony Z1 with XLR input capability, and far, far better than using the onboard mic. For anything other than interviews, I'll use an outboard device... Edirol R09HR (2 ch, usually fed by a Rode NT4 or a mix console REC OUT), Apogee Ensemble (8 ch), Mackie Onyx 1640 or PreSonus 24.4.2... direct to HDD, edit, mix, and sync the bounce in post.

Look at the Magic Lantern hacks that Mats suggested. If you can get the AGC off, then careful outboard audio into the onboard port could work, it seems to me.

HB
SirReaL
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21st January 2013
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how do you use that software ? Do you install it on your cam or computer ?
I use adobe premier to sync audio in post
#18
21st January 2013
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so, just how long can you shoot video with a 60D or D800 before the sensor overheats and shuts down? I have avoided trying to use any APS-C or FX sensors due to this problem. I often have to shoot 45-60 minutes at a time for music, and even if I have the chance to stop video between pieces, it isn't long enough to let a big sensor cool down and start shooting again. I assume you guys must be shooting quite short clips and/or have plenty of time between recording to avoid overheated sensor, correct?
#19
21st January 2013
Old 21st January 2013
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I regularly shoot 75-90 minutes at a time on my 5dmkii and t2i's. The biggest source of heat on these cameras are the LCD screens. Magic Lantern has settings that will automatically shut the screen off (as well as power down other components that the camera does not need while recording), this dramatically reduces the heat buildup in the camera. If you're in a reasonably air conditioned space, you can shoot for as long as your memory cards and battery will allow (I use 64gig SDXC cards, and when I can, I use a power adapter instead of a battery). I haven't seen that blasted overheating symbol in ages.
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21st January 2013
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...and that's 75-90 minutes continuously. Using the record restart function of ML. I lose about 3 seconds every 12 minutes or so, but in my multicam setups (which is all I do), that is never a problem.
#21
21st January 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ajcdrum View Post
...and that's 75-90 minutes continuously. Using the record restart function of ML. I lose about 3 seconds every 12 minutes or so, but in my multicam setups (which is all I do), that is never a problem.
I do the same with a couple of 550D (T2i) cameras. I use a battery grip so one of the cameras can record for more than two hours. Other cameras get a battery change in the intermission. They rarely overheat. Last time I noticed an overheat warning was after more than 50 minutes of continous recording with no screen dimming.

Setting the record bitrate to a lower value makes the recording time a bit less of an issue. The files get cut off when they reach the 4 GB limit or when the recording hits 29 minutes 59 seconds, whichever happens first.
#22
22nd January 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jnorman View Post
so, just how long can you shoot video with a 60D or D800 before the sensor overheats and shuts down? I have avoided trying to use any APS-C or FX sensors due to this problem. I often have to shoot 45-60 minutes at a time for music, and even if I have the chance to stop video between pieces, it isn't long enough to let a big sensor cool down and start shooting again. I assume you guys must be shooting quite short clips and/or have plenty of time between recording to avoid overheated sensor, correct?
I run the D800 into a AtomOS Ninja2 with a SSD. So far, an hour and ten minutes, no mess, no foul. Clean HDMI out, it should run until the battery (D800 or Ninja 2) dies. On the SD card, it gets 29 minutes at 720 and 22 minutes at 1080.

Any job requiring longer than 20-minute takes gets the Ninja2 and, usually, a Sony Z1 feeding a AtomOS Samauri on a second angle. Same/same. Runs 'til the drive fills up or the battery dies.

HB
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22nd January 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ajcdrum View Post
I regularly shoot 75-90 minutes at a time on my 5dmkii and t2i's... you can shoot for as long as your memory cards and battery will allow
Please tell me how to do this.

I've experimented a great deal and however I work it my 550D/T2i always shuts off recording at exactly 12 minutes and I regularly get the temperature warning. I have a fast 64GB card.

There seems to be a lot of internet myth about this ranging from something to do with FAT32 filesize limit, to overheating, to stuff about Canon deliberately crippling their DSLRs because they are so good and why would you spend $$ on more expensive video gear with inferior lenses!
#24
22nd January 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by James Lehmann View Post
Please tell me how to do this.

My 550D always shuts off at 12 minutes and I regularly get the temperature warning.
Do update the firmware to the latest version. Also, installing Magic Lantern seems to help.

EDIT: It still stops when the file reaches 4 GB but you can set it to start a new file immediately.
SirReaL
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#25
23rd January 2013
Old 23rd January 2013
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hey guys after some researches it turns out that you can disable the AGC on the canon 60d unlike the 7d and 5D , so what you do you think is the best way to record audio ?

external mic > external preamp > camera
external mic > camera
Zoom h4n > Camera
SirReaL
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23rd January 2013
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it turns out there is ! so any suggestions ?
#27
23rd January 2013
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I think most of the prior posts point to the fact that, as these devices (DSLRs) are still cameras with video capability and have insufficient direct audio recording capability in every instance, that it will not be easy. Nor simple. My suggestion is to choose the mic/mics you need to capture the audio your clients need; then the mic amp/converter chain that will do no harm to that signal; then the capture medium. It might be a Rode VideoMic directly into the camera... it might be a Schoeps ORTF pair into a Sound Devices 702, to be substituted in post to the camera's internal mic's reference track. That choice will be determined by client expectation and your budget.

Transducers are the most important bit... and, so far, you have specified nothing specific... just wanting to know the "best way" to capture audio with this camera. These are several, and varied... so... as the old man in the cave told Indiana Jones...

"Choose... wisely."

HB
SirReaL
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#28
23rd January 2013
Old 23rd January 2013
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the best way to capture audio with minimum NOISE
#29
25th January 2013
Old 25th January 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SirReaL View Post
the best way to capture audio with minimum NOISE
Same answer. One size cannot fit all.

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#30
25th January 2013
Old 25th January 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mats H View Post
Download the Magic Lantern software. It'll give you a lot of things to tweak in camera. Disabling AGC is one of those.
Actually this camera does it on the regular menu.
And I have recorded from the mixer using the line in, its not THAT bad on low gain...

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