Author Topic: Zoom recorder nad Magic Lantern best setup  (Read 11277 times)

vetec

  • New to the forum
  • *
  • Posts: 3
Zoom recorder nad Magic Lantern best setup
« on: July 07, 2012, 12:04:51 PM »
Hi!

I have Zoom H1 connected to my eos 60D via stereo 3.5 plug (both ends). I want to setup, both Zoom and Canon camera for audio so I dont have to care about sound when I am recording. I use auto gain control in ML and my Zoom is set to not pick up noise when I am rotating zoom and focus rings( 18-135 mm IS). My work range from point and shoot, live gigs, interviews. Sound is not bad and sometimes over clicked, but I want to know your settings, please.

Thank you!
Canon eos 60D, ML, Edius 6.x

aegisdi

  • New to the forum
  • *
  • Posts: 8
Re: Zoom recorder nad Magic Lantern best setup
« Reply #1 on: July 09, 2012, 10:13:39 PM »
I only use the Zoom H1 to run a lavalier mic, so I can't tell you the exact gain to use for camera use.  It depends alot on the situation, location, and audio quality, but I usually set gain between 30-50.  You want normal human conversation to work right around the -12 Db mark.

For in camera audio I use the Rode Videomic perched on top of the camera and feeding into the side mic jack on the T3i.  I also use the Azden SGM-2X shotgun mic on a boom recording into the TASCAM DR-40.  For room tone, I use the older Zoom H2 set on a tripod. 

Kinda overkill, I know, but it gives me lots of options on audio.

Malcolm Debono

  • Global Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 707
  • Cinematographer
Re: Zoom recorder nad Magic Lantern best setup
« Reply #2 on: July 09, 2012, 10:20:18 PM »
The Zoom's built-in mic might not be ideal for interviews and similar scenarios since it captures all the ambient noise around you (it's ideal for run & gun situations though). For such scenarios, your best bet would be to have your recorder as close as possible to the source (such as the person being interviewed) so that you reduce noise and ambient sounds as much as possible, use the in-camera mic as reference audio and sync both tracks in post (either manually or with Pluraleyes).

For run & gun scenarios (mainly wedding reception & events) I found the Rode VideoMicPro to be an excellent addition to my kit. I also use a Sennheiser G3 plugged into a Zoom H4N when recording interviews, wedding vows or speeches since it's the nearest way to the subject while remaining portable.
Wedding & event cinematographer
C100 & 6D shooter
New here?  Check out the FAQs here!

Leigho

  • New to the forum
  • *
  • Posts: 15
Re: Zoom recorder nad Magic Lantern best setup
« Reply #3 on: July 30, 2012, 07:29:34 AM »
So why have you plugged the Zoom into the camera?

If the zoom is just a microphone then why record onto the camera when the sound card cannot compare.
And if the camera is the microphone why record onto the zoom when using the terrible pre-amp in a DSLR?

Your best bet would be to base your audio levels on what the zoom is reading. For monitoring while rolling you should just approximate where your levels appear on the zoom and try to match that on screen using manual audio gain.

Keep your audio between -20 and -10.

Led

  • New to the forum
  • *
  • Posts: 31
Re: Zoom recorder nad Magic Lantern best setup
« Reply #4 on: August 09, 2012, 03:41:32 AM »
Turn the auto gain off in ML. It makes levels inconsistent as it tries to level out the sound but lags and you end up with levels all over the place. Set a good level as mentioned here. If you need to turn any parts up you can do it in post.

DFM

  • Freshman
  • **
  • Posts: 86
Re: Zoom recorder nad Magic Lantern best setup
« Reply #5 on: August 09, 2012, 09:18:51 AM »
The H1 is a great device but has limitations - the internal mics are crossed for stereo separation but it makes them terrible for directional recording on a camera - in the mix you are actively ignoring what you're pointing the device towards and enhancing the room tone and background clutter from either side of your scene. For a live gig and a locked FOH camera that may not matter as you'll be aiming each mic at the PA stacks, but as soon as you pan the camera your stereo mix will be ruined.

For voice work the mic should be as close as possible to the talent and aimed to reduce everything else, for example in a 2-up interview it could be placed standing up on the floor or table between them (junk on the table such as cups, vases etc are useful to hide behind) or hung from the ceiling (gotta love fishing twine). Lav mics will give better signal/noise and you can plug two into the Z1 by using a stereo-mono splitter cable (use the same brand so the levels match). A studio-quality lav is expensive, even more so with radio links, but the Z1 will work just fine in someone's pocket, plugged into a hardline lav mic. The cheapest ones are hideous but to get decent quality isn't expensive either - around $20 each.

If you're keeping the Z1 near the camera and you need to pan, I'd suggest mounting it to the tripod sticks instead of the camera rig (magic arm and a clamp). For live gigs if we're shooting handheld I tend to clip it to the ceiling beforehand and mains power it through the USB port (the battery dies long before the SD card is full).

Personally I never record audio on a DSLR - not only can you push the data rate higher with silent video, but the internal storage on the Z1 is far better quality and isn't limited to 15-min chunks (there's still a 4GB limit but you can stuff several hours into that). Without sync you'll need to clap each scene so there's something to line up (with a clapperboard or literally a clap of your hands in front of the lens), and it's important to either slate the scene* or match the date/time of each device so you know which audio file goes with which video. Slates are a pain to write out if you're shooting a live gig, but timecode matching is easy once you've got the hang of it. You don't have to be second-perfect, just close enough to tell which file goes with which. If there's only a couple of shots per session, simply count your claps (one for scene one, two for scene two, etc.)

*slating is a visible 'clapperboard' card showing the camera what's in the scene, but you must also read it out loud for the audio track.

SeldomHere

  • Just arrived
  • *
  • Posts: 1
Re: Zoom recorder nad Magic Lantern best setup
« Reply #6 on: October 04, 2012, 10:23:18 AM »
First things first, I am a hobbyist not a pro and have learnt almost everything I know from getting things wrong.  That is not to say I use the best way or the right way, just the best way that I have found so far ;o)

I have a pretty lean run and gun setup with the zoom mounted on a hotshoe mount on top the DSLR.  I have a single to dual output adapter on the headphone out socket on the zoom with one output going to the DSLR mic input and the other used for monitoring the audio with headphones. 

I usually setup the mic levels on the zoom for whatever I am going to record then adjust the headphone volume on the zoom till it is comfortable and I can effectively monitor what is going on.  I then go into the DSLR and adjust the gain manually till the levels match that of the zoom.  This way I can make my sound adjustments using the mic level on the zoom and it is consistent across my headphones and mic input on the DSLR.

I am eying up a set of Sennheiser G3 Lav mics to get better SNR for dialogue but they don't come cheap so may be some time before I take the plunge.

As a side note, I have played with using the Zoom as just a mic and also recording on it as well and have not noticed a huge difference between the two, but I was interested about the comment of more bandwidth for video without audio recording in camera.  I think I may do some testing to check this out in more detail at some point.

ilguercio

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 843
Re: Zoom recorder nad Magic Lantern best setup
« Reply #7 on: March 10, 2013, 03:28:37 PM »
Can i just also add the H1 is built like crap? The SD card door has come off already and i haven't used it that much, the microphones have discoloured a bit (not that it matters...) and the hole unit feels so cheap.
Since we got audio capable DSLRs shall we get the topic running again and discuss about the best options to have a decent audio for our videos?
Also, the H1 sticks out too much and i have to dismount it from the hotshoe when taking pics via the viewfinder.
Canon EOS 6D, 60D, 50D.
Sigma 70-200 EX OS HSM, Sigma 70-200 Apo EX HSM, Samyang 14 2.8, Samyang 35 1.4, Samyang 85 1.4.
Proud supporter of Magic Lantern.

Malcolm Debono

  • Global Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 707
  • Cinematographer
Re: Zoom recorder nad Magic Lantern best setup
« Reply #8 on: March 10, 2013, 04:36:25 PM »
The only pros of the H1 are its size (compared to other recorders) and its price. For weddings, I find it quite handy to have it attached to a wired AudioTechnica lav for recording speeches.
Wedding & event cinematographer
C100 & 6D shooter
New here?  Check out the FAQs here!

ilguercio

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 843
Re: Zoom recorder nad Magic Lantern best setup
« Reply #9 on: March 10, 2013, 10:29:10 PM »
I don't think any other product felt as cheap as the H1 in my hands. Also, how much "audio quality" we lose by plugging the mic directly into the camera instead of recording on its own and then syncing?
Canon EOS 6D, 60D, 50D.
Sigma 70-200 EX OS HSM, Sigma 70-200 Apo EX HSM, Samyang 14 2.8, Samyang 35 1.4, Samyang 85 1.4.
Proud supporter of Magic Lantern.

1%

  • Developer
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 5936
  • 600D/6D/50D/EOSM/7D
Re: Zoom recorder nad Magic Lantern best setup
« Reply #10 on: March 10, 2013, 10:57:19 PM »
Wouldn't you just have a sound guy with field mixer and good boomed mic? Recording already good output from a field mixer seems better than trying to have H1 or camera power the mic and record it.

ilguercio

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 843
Re: Zoom recorder nad Magic Lantern best setup
« Reply #11 on: March 10, 2013, 11:19:49 PM »
Well, if it was a professional environment that would make sense but i am still talking about one man show.
Canon EOS 6D, 60D, 50D.
Sigma 70-200 EX OS HSM, Sigma 70-200 Apo EX HSM, Samyang 14 2.8, Samyang 35 1.4, Samyang 85 1.4.
Proud supporter of Magic Lantern.