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Canon 7D what External microphone are you using?

Richard Bowen , Dec 06, 2009; 09:18 p.m.

I am getting my 7D about two days before I leave for vacation so I won't have alot of time to test it first, so asking here. What microphone are you connecting to the 7D? I am sure all you 5DMII folks can chime in as well. I am specifically looking for a microphone that I can tether away from the camera to remove shutter noise as winter waterfalls, and winter scenes are what I will be shooting this trip. I can see something with a stand or something I can connect to a portable tripod being avantageous. So, what are you using?

Responses

Michael Liczbanski , Dec 06, 2009; 10:03 p.m.

For winter waterfalls and winter scenes you'll need a better setup than any vDSLR provides: AGC sucks big time and stop-gap solutions (Magic Lantern firmware, Beachtek box) are only marginally better. Even with a decent shotgun microphone (with good off-axis rejection) you are still stuck with automatic gain control. I'm puzzled why Canon didn't include manual gain control and/or line-in audio in in their vDSLRs, not even in 1D4.
The best solution is an external solid-state recorder: you may want to investigate mid-range Audio Technica shotgun mics connected to something like Edirol or Marantz recorder and sync in post (just make a loud on-camera noise at the beginning of each take for easier sync.) You'll get good 24 bit/96 kHz fully editable audio. Many people also use Rode video microphones (both mono and stereo.) Make sure that you get a suspension mount and decent wind protection ("dead cat" or a full blimp) or even the slightest wind/movement will be recorded.
Edit: if you use an external recorder or a Beachtek box, you can use both XLR connectors and phantom-powered mics, BTW.

Puppy Face , Dec 06, 2009; 10:38 p.m.

Last week I used an Audio Technica one-point stereo mic (AT825) and Marantz flash recorder to record a classical concert. It was easy to sync the video with the sound track. I can't say my video skill on the 7D is worth a damn but the resulting sound was very good.

The Rode stereo mic is even better but, of course, costs twice as much. If I wasn't so lazy I would have used a matched pair of KM 184 but I was bogged down with gear as it was.

Arie Vandervelden , Dec 07, 2009; 11:15 a.m.

Zoom H2. Not saying it's the best solution. It's what I have.

Jeff DeLisio , Dec 07, 2009; 05:43 p.m.

Arie -
Can the Zoom H2 be set to record to the camera's card or do you have to mix the sound in yourself in post process?

Arie Vandervelden , Dec 08, 2009; 10:20 a.m.

Yes there's a line-out on the H2.

Michael Liczbanski , Dec 08, 2009; 12:14 p.m.

So what that there is line-out on the Zoom recorder..? Canon vDSLRs don't have line-level inputs so - unless you "cheat" with an external box - you are still stuck with AGC.
Standard solution is to record only quick and dirty sound from a mic connected to the camera and "good" sound with an external rig, if you need good sound that is (sometimes the sound from camera is all you need, camera/lens noises et al.) You may try an off-camera mic connected to the camera but auto gain control tends to ruin the recording (esp. "environmental" sounds) and you'll still record many unwanted external and camera noises unless you use a long boom/cable and have a good miking technique. Again, if you need/want high quality sound, at the moment there is no other option than using an external recorder with a vDSLR.
For more info on audio with Canon vDSLRs visit for instance http://www.cinema5d.com, http://www.dvinfo.net/forum/canon-eos-5d-mk-ii-hd/, etc.

David O'Brien-Monk , Jan 26, 2010; 03:55 p.m.

I use a Sennheiser G3 EW100 wireless set-up which works well using either a lavalier with the body pack transmitter or an AKG D5 handheld super cardoid with the Sennheiser XLR plug-in transmitter.

It took a bit of setting-up to get right, but for interviews, it works well.

If the 5D MkII is 'Camera B / C /D' etc, then yes its started and stopped at frequent intervals, though to save the hassle of clapped hand syncronisation (which certainly can't be used everywhere anyway), I use a plug-in for Final Cut Studio called 'PluralEyes'.

Quite possibly it's the single most useful piece of software I've ever found and on multi-camera set-ups it saves me hours and hours of mucking about trying to syncronise tons of ad-hoc footage.

http://singularsoftware.com/pluraleyes.html

Go to their website and click the 'Movie' button to see what it's about.

The other sound recording 'surprise' is an iPhone 3G or 3GS which if used with the right application, reveals a stunning built-in mic. I use an program off the App Store called 'FourTrack'. This allows me to use the iPhone as a pocket recorder and the files can be sent easily by WiFi back to FCP for editing. (Guess what I use.. 'PluralEyes').

Regards

David

C. Kemal Eksen , Mar 06, 2010; 05:04 a.m.

I'm planning to get a Zoom H2 recorder with my Canon purchase in near future. Is there an accessory to attach H2 on a Canon? I have read that H2 has a tripod mount so I thought I could attach it to the hotshoe of Canon with a small accessory either purchased or built by myself. I think this is the most practical way to carry a sound recorder while recording HD video and especially if I'm walking meanwhile.
Am I missing some drawbacks, what would you recommend?

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