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Help with recording audio

Talk about anything audio here. From video narration to podcasting, MP3s to MP4s - whatever your flavor, this is the place.

Re: Help with recording audio

Postby Chuck Engels » Fri Jun 04, 2010 2:07 pm

The answer to both questions is maybe, it will depend on the unit as they have different features.

You can always get an 1/8 - 1/4 adpater to connect a CD player to a 1/4" jack input and there are XLR adapters as well.

Looks like you will have no problems playing audio files on the MR8 as long as it is a WAV file.
USB port for stereo WAV file transfer to and from PC


Here is the Fostex page for the MR8, includes a link to the users manual.
http://www.fostexinternational.com/docs ... _mk2.shtml

Looks like a real nice unit :)
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Re: Help with recording audio

Postby ryan_khoo » Fri Jun 04, 2010 10:54 pm

Thanks Chuck,

I am now trying to find whether I can find this Fostek digital recorder locally here. The only minor gripe I have is that it uses Flash card instead of SD card which is more common here.

Anyway, on a another subject matter, I was told by the store technician that I need to get myself a pop filter. He explained the purpose of pop filter which I think I understand.

The question is the price of the pop filter ranges from anything below 10 bucks to 200 bucks !!

For my purpose, what do you think ? I need to get the expensive one or a cheap one would suffice ?

Thanks
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Re: Help with recording audio

Postby Bob » Fri Jun 04, 2010 11:24 pm

I wouldn't bother with a pop filter. The SM58 has an internal foam filter in the grill that acts as a pop filter/windscreen. I own an SM58 and have never had problems with pops, etc.. The internal screen works very well.

If you should find you really need to get one, get the cheapest you can find. It will work just as well as the expensive ones. In fact, you can make your own. http://www.deansabatino.com/2005/08/21/67/
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Re: Help with recording audio

Postby ryan_khoo » Sat Jun 05, 2010 6:55 am

Bob wrote:I wouldn't bother with a pop filter. The SM58 has an internal foam filter in the grill that acts as a pop filter/windscreen. I own an SM58 and have never had problems with pops, etc.. The internal screen works very well.

If you should find you really need to get one, get the cheapest you can find. It will work just as well as the expensive ones. In fact, you can make your own. http://www.deansabatino.com/2005/08/21/67/


Thanks a million, Bob for your reply & save me some moolah too. :lol: :-D

For a peace of mind, I will just get the cheapest pop filter :lol: :lol: :lol:

I am very excited to know that you owns the Shure SM58 mic. I intend to purchase two of those to get a stereo recording.

I am finding it difficult to get locally here the equipment that Chuck has suggested (unless I purchase online), so perhaps, it may gimme an insight into other alternatives if you can let me know what equipment you connect your Shure SM58 into ? Hopefully yours is not high-end :lol: :lol: :lol:

Cheers
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Re: Help with recording audio

Postby Chuck Engels » Sat Jun 05, 2010 8:15 am

At our church we have 4 very expensive Neumann mics along with a dozen or more SM57s and Sm58s.
Bob is right that they generally don't need a pop filter and that is one of the reasons they are so popular. For overall vocal sound quality they are excellent for the price.

At church we have them connected to some very expensive amplifiers and a $60,000 mixer, that's a bit over the top for your needs but it is only middle of the road for our purposes :)
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Re: Help with recording audio

Postby ryan_khoo » Sat Jun 05, 2010 9:48 pm

Chuck Engels wrote:At our church we have 4 very expensive Neumann mics along with a dozen or more SM57s and Sm58s.
Bob is right that they generally don't need a pop filter and that is one of the reasons they are so popular. For overall vocal sound quality they are excellent for the price.

At church we have them connected to some very expensive amplifiers and a $60,000 mixer, that's a bit over the top for your needs but it is only middle of the road for our purposes :)


Thanks Chuck,

I presented the "plan" and "idea" to the committee yesterday. One of them asked me this question which I do not know the answer for certain.

He asked me if I connect the Shure SM58 microphone DIRECTLY into the VIDEO CAMERA, do I need still need a mic preamp ? He said that if I can connect the microphone directly into the video camera, then I do not have to worry about the video & sound out of sync.

I told him I will check & get revert back to him.

So to answer his question purely on his suggested method, would it be possible to get some decent sound if I connect the Shure SM58 microphone directly into the Video Camera (using a XLR to 1/8 convertor cable thru the 3.5 mm mic input that is on the video camera) ?

Or do I need a preamp for his suggested method ?

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Re: Help with recording audio

Postby Chuck Engels » Sat Jun 05, 2010 10:10 pm

What video camera are you using? You will need to check the specs to see if it will provide power for the mic.
Most professional cameras have XLR connectors with phantom power for the microphones.

This might help
http://www.ehow.com/video_2280218_what- ... power.html
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Re: Help with recording audio

Postby ryan_khoo » Sat Jun 05, 2010 10:47 pm

Chuck Engels wrote:What video camera are you using? You will need to check the specs to see if it will provide power for the mic.
Most professional cameras have XLR connectors with phantom power for the microphones.

This might help
http://www.ehow.com/video_2280218_what- ... power.html


Thanks Chuck for the very educational video.

I am ashamed to say that my video camera is the cheap Std Defintion Panasonic NV-GS230:
http://www.panasonic.com.sg/web/pid/2280

I look at my video camera, as expected it does not have any phantom power. Hahaha. It only has a label saying "mic" with a hole for 3.5 mm jack to plug in.

Does this mean, I need a preamp ? Or does this mean the committee member's suggested method cannot be used totally ?

Thanks again, Chuck !!

Cheers
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Re: Help with recording audio

Postby Bob » Sat Jun 05, 2010 11:51 pm

The SM58 doesn't use phantom power. And, being a dynamic mic, the output signal is very low. They do make camcorder audio adapters which allow you to use professional XLR mics with camcorders that have an external mic jack. See this Beachtek DXA-2T unit: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/buy/Camcorder-XLR-Adapters/ci/8673/N/4291060118. However, the manual for that warns that dynamic mics may prove unsatisfactory because the high amplification necessary in the camcorder may introduce excessive hiss. They recommend condenser mics which have a higher output signal. Professional condenser mics usually require phantom power.

Are you sure you couldn't get by with a quality external camcorder mic compatible with your camcorder.
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Re: Help with recording audio

Postby ryan_khoo » Sun Jun 06, 2010 12:55 am

Bob wrote:The SM58 doesn't use phantom power. And, being a dynamic mic, the output signal is very low. They do make camcorder audio adapters which allow you to use professional XLR mics with camcorders that have an external mic jack. See this Beachtek DXA-2T unit: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/buy/Camcorder-XLR-Adapters/ci/8673/N/4291060118. However, the manual for that warns that dynamic mics may prove unsatisfactory because the high amplification necessary in the camcorder may introduce excessive hiss. They recommend condenser mics which have a higher output signal. Professional condenser mics usually require phantom power.

Are you sure you couldn't get by with a quality external camcorder mic compatible with your camcorder.


Thanks Bob, I really want you to know that I fully appreciate for your response :-5

First thing, to answer your question, I haven't try connecting any microphone to my video camera yet. I am still at the stage of trying to figure out if that route is a possibility and if yes what microphone to buy & whether a preamp is necessary.

Actually, I have been going in circles. At first, I settled on the Shure SM58 because the direction I was going was to record the vocal as a separate track into a mixer/preamp then into computer & then snyc it with the video.

Then I was asked a question, why don't I input the vocal directly from the microphone STRAIGHT into the VIDEO CAMERA ? In so doing, I do not need to sync the vocal with the video.

The video camera I use is a cheap Standard Definition video camera (not those professional video camera), ie a Panasonic NV-GS230 & it has a mic input:
http://www.panasonic.com.sg/web/pid/2280

So now I am struggling to find out whether I can do that ? From what you said, it may seem that because this SHure Sm58 is a dynamic mic it is not suitable ? So I must get a condensor mic which has phantom power ? Can you please recommend me a condensor mic that is suitable for my Panasonic NV-GS230 ?

QUESTION 1:
Is Shure SM58 suitable for Panasonic NV-GS230 in the first place ?

QUESTION 2:
If the answer to Q1 is "YES", then do I need to connect the Shure SM58 to a preamp then to the video camera (Panasonic NV-GS230) ?

If the answer to Q1 is "NO", then what type of microphone is suitable ?

Thanks again, Bob !!

Cheers

P/S: On a side note, I actually owns a Audio-Technica AT2020 USB mic. I think it is a condensor mic (not so sure). I bought it the last time bcos the guy at the Apple shop told me it is a good mic to do voice-over. So I bought it & connect to my Mac system in Final Cut & did a voice over. The first project was okay. But the 2nd time I used it for my 2nd project, the voice level is so low that I am unable to use it. So, I thought the mic was a lousy mic so it has been a white elephant since then. I do not know anything about phantom power at that time .... hmmm maybe I can still use this mic ? :-D :-D :-D
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Re: Help with recording audio

Postby Bob » Sun Jun 06, 2010 2:15 pm

I don't know what to tell you Ryan. I personally don't feel the SM58 is a good choice for use with a camcorder. The impedance doesn't match and the voltage level is low both of which would cause the camcorder to have to amplify the signal a lot -- if it works, it's probably going to have a lot of hiss from the high amplification needed. But, I did some Internet searching and found a number of people that say they use it that way with just a XLR to 1/8 inch adapter. I wouldn't guarantee that it would work.

I'd rather use a mic designed for use as an external camcorder mic. Rode and Sennheiser both make excellant stereo camcorder mics. If you live near a large camera store you may be able to rent a mic and try it out before you buy or, at least try it out in the store with your camera.

I looked up the Audio-Technica AT2020USB USB Condenser Microphone you mentioned. It does use phantom power, but it gets it from the USB port. USB mics have an internal analog to digital converter and don't require a sound card to do the conversion. Windows contains a generic driver for these devices, but some usb mics come with their own driver. If the mic used to work and doesn't now, try pluging it into a different usb port. If that doesn't work, check the device manager with the mic plugged in to see if there is a problem noted.
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Re: Help with recording audio

Postby Chuck Engels » Sun Jun 06, 2010 6:13 pm

Maybe this would be worth looking at
http://www.shure.com/americas/products/ ... tal-bundle

That is if you really don't want to go the digital recorder route.

Here is a pretty good 4 part article on Computer Audio Recording, lots of info
http://www.acousticfingerstyle.com/Comp ... rding1.htm
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Re: Help with recording audio

Postby ryan_khoo » Sun Jun 06, 2010 11:05 pm



Thanks Bob,

I have read the Beachtrex, I think it doesn't have any preamp. So I was wondering what is the difference (besides the price, of course.. Hahaha) between the Beachtek DXA-2T adapter and this http://www.samash.com/p/CYX403%20Stereo ... _-49980247 cable adapter ?


Hi Chuck,

Just for my understanding, even if I use a preamp/mixer method, the output would still be 1 stereo track, right ?

Even this preamp
http://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/US1641 will be one stereo track ?

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Re: Help with recording audio

Postby Chuck Engels » Mon Jun 07, 2010 9:07 am

That Tascam unit connects via USB and comes with its own software so I am assuming you can record up to 48 tracks, at least that's what it says.
There are only 16 inputs so it looks like you can record up to 8 stereo tracks at a time maybe. Might be a good option but the price isn't cheap so be sure to check out the reviews first ;)
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Re: Help with recording audio

Postby Bob » Mon Jun 07, 2010 1:57 pm

I'm not sure that's the case, Chuck. The manual is on the Tascom site and a quick look gives me the impression that the PC recording software doesn't save the individual tracks. You mix down to stereo or mono. I could be wrong, I didn't read the whole thing.

The Beachtek unit doesn't have a preamp, it contains transformers to match the impedance of the mic and the camcorder and isolate the input from the output. Camcorder mic inputs generally have a small voltage present (about 5 volt, I think). The unit also has trimmers to adjust the levels of the inputs. Like I said, it appears that some people are using just a simple adapter with the SM58. I don't have an xlr to 1/8 adapter so I can't do any testing. If it works, I'm guessing it will be pretty noisy from the high gain required. Maybe they are recording a loud rock band -- the louder the source the higher the signal. For my voice, I needed a 60db preamp -- 40db wasn't enough.
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