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Olympus Pen E-P2 The second Micro Four Thirds system camera from Olympus, this time with a clip-on high resolution viewfinder.

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Old 8th February 2010
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Need help with external microphones for video use..

Ask me photography questions - I can usually answer them But I need help with my EP-2 video setup; on the audio side. How can I use two separate microphones (tie-clips, let's say) to record an interview? Is there some kind of simply two into one microphone input device available?

Any help and advice gladly received!

Ian
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Old 8th February 2010
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Re: Need help with external microphones for video use..

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Originally Posted by Ian View Post
Ask me photography questions - I can usually answer them But I need help with my EP-2 video setup; on the audio side. How can I use two separate microphones (tie-clips, let's say) to record an interview? Is there some kind of simply two into one microphone input device available?

Any help and advice gladly received!

Ian
The pro method would use a mini mixer (in fact a mini mixer/recorder run in sync with the camera). Its the thing in the shoulder bag that the sound man with the rat-on-a-pole carries.

In your case some basic (jack plug type) audio mixer should be the answer: But I can forsee a problem. A lot of the electret (mini tie clip) mikes depend on power from the camera/Minidisk recorder and without power the mike doesn't work.

Real pro mikes (stage vocalist Shure SM58) don't need power but use thick cable and 3 pin mic plugs. That's not the right solution either.

I figure you need a mixer with jack or mini jack inputs that has mike power

You might try Canfords??

Hope that helps

Pete
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Old 8th February 2010
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Re: Need help with external microphones for video use..

Thanks Pete, I have one mono and one stereo tie clip mics and both require batteries. Will they need additional power?

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Old 8th February 2010
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Re: Need help with external microphones for video use..

By mini-mixer - do you mean something like this?:

http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/4-8-INPUT-2-CH...item51905c0702

Ian
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Old 8th February 2010
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Re: Need help with external microphones for video use..

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Originally Posted by Ian View Post
By mini-mixer - do you mean something like this?:

http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/4-8-INPUT-2-CH...item51905c0702

Ian
No, if they have some kind of in line battery pack, then you are ok, they should not need other power.

That mini mixer looks pretty good, though basic.

If you ever wanted to change to to more pro mikes or you want to do more complex mixing then something like this is better;
http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/BEHRINGER-EURO...item3359e6a42f

It has two convetional (3 pin) mike inputs, but you can use a line jack for your existing mikes instead. It also takes a stereo line in (CD or MP3 for those fancy videos...) These come in various sizes, this is the smallest. They go for £20 to £30 - however, thay are mains powered.. that might be a no-no for you.

Hope this helps..

Pete
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Old 8th February 2010
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Re: Need help with external microphones for video use..

Quote:
Originally Posted by snaarman View Post
No, if they have some kind of in line battery pack, then you are ok, they should not need other power.

That mini mixer looks pretty good, though basic.

If you ever wanted to change to to more pro mikes or you want to do more complex mixing then something like this is better;
http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/BEHRINGER-EURO...item3359e6a42f

It has two convetional (3 pin) mike inputs, but you can use a line jack for your existing mikes instead. It also takes a stereo line in (CD or MP3 for those fancy videos...) These come in various sizes, this is the smallest. They go for £20 to £30 - however, thay are mains powered.. that might be a no-no for you.

Hope this helps..

Pete
That looks a bit complicated

Mains power isn't really any good for me for this application, but I'll bear it in mind.

The alternative is to use a compact gun mic attached to the camera - I'm going to try an Olympus ME-31;

http://www.olympus.co.uk/consumer/25...hone_20250.htm

Ian
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Old 10th February 2010
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Re: Need help with external microphones for video use..

I've been doing more homework on using microphones. It looks like my stereo tie-clip mic. does need extra power. It has a single AA battery battery box, but trying it out on my PC there is very little output. It's an electret condenser mic (Yoga EM-8), and I think these need 48V 'phantom power' to work properly? PC sound cards don't usually provide such power.

The SEMA-1 add-on for the E-P2 and E-PL1 does come with a stereo tie-clip mic, but I'm not sure what kind of microphone it uses.

I've seen in-line phantom power dongles - anyone tried these?

Ian
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Re: Need help with external microphones for video use..

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ian View Post
I've been doing more homework on using microphones. It looks like my stereo tie-clip mic. does need extra power. It has a single AA battery battery box, but trying it out on my PC there is very little output. It's an electret condenser mic (Yoga EM-8), and I think these need 48V 'phantom power' to work properly? PC sound cards don't usually provide such power.

The SEMA-1 add-on for the E-P2 and E-PL1 does come with a stereo tie-clip mic, but I'm not sure what kind of microphone it uses.

I've seen in-line phantom power dongles - anyone tried these?

Ian
I would be surprised if an electret mic needed 48v, they are usually happy with 1.5 to 6v. However, if it has an inline preamp then it could need phantom for that.

If you are going to do recordings into a pc, and there is usb available, then M-audio do a nice cheapish USB audio preamp that handles phantom and proper pro mikes..

http://www.m-audio.com/products/en_us/MobilePreUSB.html

Pete
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Old 10th February 2010
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Re: Need help with external microphones for video use..

Pete is right, condenser mics usually run off a 1.5v cell. Sometimes the cell is in the micrpophone, sometimes in a separate in-line box or commonly the 3.5mm mic in socket on the equipment can supply the voltage.

Steve
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Re: Need help with external microphones for video use..

Quote:
Originally Posted by snaarman View Post
I would be surprised if an electret mic needed 48v, they are usually happy with 1.5 to 6v. However, if it has an inline preamp then it could need phantom for that.

If you are going to do recordings into a pc, and there is usb available, then M-audio do a nice cheapish USB audio preamp that handles phantom and proper pro mikes..

http://www.m-audio.com/products/en_us/MobilePreUSB.html

Pete
I'm still learning

The mic says 'electret CONDENSER' - but I guess there are more types of condenser than I realise

I'm not that hopeful that a SEMA-1 kit for the E-P2 will be available in time for PMA (I'm flying on Friday-week). So I have a backup plan - I have just dug out and dusted off an Olympus WS-320M digital voice recorder. It has 1GB memory and connects to a PC as a USB dongle. It records in WMV and even in best quality mode (which seems more than adequate) there is over ten hours capacity - much more than I need. I have tried the ME-8 tie-clip mic on it and it works perfectly (much better than the recorder's built in mics). I will probably get a cheap portable mini-mixer just in case I decide to use two mics, or I can use the Olympus ME-31 compact gun mic that is hopefully on its way to me!

Copying the audio from the recorder to my video editing software will add a bit of time to the process, but I'm determined not to be beaten by bad acoustics on the show floor!

But I'm always open to suggestions and if anyone has a better idea - do speak up

Ian
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Old 10th February 2010
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Re: Need help with external microphones for video use..

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wreckdiver View Post
Pete is right, condenser mics usually run off a 1.5v cell. Sometimes the cell is in the micrpophone, sometimes in a separate in-line box or commonly the 3.5mm mic in socket on the equipment can supply the voltage.

Steve
As I said in an earlier post, I can't get a decent level through the mic port on my desktop PC (haven't tried with the laptop it has to be said) using the ME-8 tie clip mic, but it does work fine on a little Olympus digital voice recorder that I've had for several years (WS-320M).

Doing a bit more homework, it seems professional condenser mics are designed to use 48V phantom power.

Ian
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Old 11th February 2010
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Re: Need help with external microphones for video use..

Ian

I have just shot a video for my NCTJ photojournalism course. Using, sin of sins a 7d, much cheaper to borrow a mates camera than convince the misses to let me buy an E-Px. I have used a Marantz recorder to record the audio at a higher quality than the 7d is capable of, it takes a standard CF card and is usable even by monkeys I believe. Then when editing you just use the inbuilt audio to synch the Marantz recording then mute the in camera before exporting the finished article. The Marantz can record mono or sterio and has an XML (I think, 3-pin) input. Easy way to high quality audio and video.
Might be worth thinking about.

Zach

Edit: Marantz are a little expensive but the theory works with any high quality digital recorder.
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