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Thread: xlr to mini jack

  1. #1

    Default xlr to mini jack

    Can someone tell me if i buy an xlr to mini jack adaptor what the difference in sound will be, if any.

    ie i have a canon xm1 and would like to input an external mic into it and would rather use xlr mic

    Thanks
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  2. #2
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    This job is best done with soemthign like the items on this page http://www.audiogear.co.uk/acatalog/...amcorders.html

    (no reccomendation of web site intended. Just the first page google came up with for the product when I searched).

    This is what I use on my FX1 and the results are great. Difficutl to know exactly whether it's the beachtek box of the mic doing it but the difference between external mic and internal is LOADS.

  3. #3
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    You could always do it cheaper though with one of the adpators here. http://www.audiogear.com/Audio-Adapters-Xlr.html (again no vendor recommendation intended!)

  4. #4
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    I use an adaptor and it works ok but it looks precarious as the adaptor is large and heavy and the socket is sooo small, gaffer tape reccomended.

  5. #5
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    you could aslo try Maplins

    also take not af Mark's advice - a large attachment comming out of a small jack can result in disaster if not sufficently supported.

    The alternative is to buy a cable adapter with a mini jack on one an xlr on the other.
    Last edited by irishmark; 02-27-2007 at 02:38 PM.

  6. #6
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    ' The alternative is to buy a cable adapter with a mini jack on one an xlr on the other. '

    DOH - obvious really innit ! Off to maplins tomorrow.

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    A warning... Make sure that the XLR mic you buy doesn't need 48v phantom power. Your Canon can't supply it. Camcorders with built-in XLR sockets can.

  8. #8

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    Thanks all for your responces. Guru sorry to be a bit dump here but what is 48v phanton power? I play in a band and have nothing to do with mic set up etc, but i do know that there are some mic's that have a battery in them and some that don't. Any help on this matter would be appreciated
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  9. #9
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    There are two main types of microphone: dynamic and condenser.
    Dynamics (The Shure SM57/SM58, Sennheiser MD421 are two you might have in the band) don't need power. The diaphram vibrates a magnet and it produces its own small current. Condensers need a power supply to magnetise the diaphram. Some condensers have a battery to do this, others take their power from the mixer or camcorder. Nowadays nearly all microphones which take their power from the mixer/camcorder, work on a system called 48v phantom. The 48v is obvious (48 volts) but the "phantom" means that the power is delivered to the microphone along the microphone cable. The same cable sends electricity from the mixer to the mic and then gets the signal back from the mic to the mixer.

    If you have a condenser microphone it will need power. If there's no battery, this power has to come from somewhere. 3.5mm jack plugs on consumer camcorders can't supply this power. Just something you need to check. It's not a problem though, there are stand-alone units which supply 48v phantom power for this purpose.

  10. #10

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    I am almost at the limit of my technical knowledge, but be aware that some of the cheaper XLR to mini jack adapters do have some functionality missing.

    An XLR (or should that be A XLR???) plug has three connectors as part of a balanced system. A mono 3.5 jack only has two and is unbalanced (or sometimes floating). An expensive convertor will have a transformer or electronics to convert between balance and unbalanced, a cheaper one will join some wires together. You wil find that usually/often "joining some wires together" will be satisfactory. But sometimes you will get interferance that you can't identify.

    Additionally, when using the "join some wire together" option, the engineers at work often add a small capacitor in the XLR, this is because some domestic kit (mini discs particularly) put 1.5 volts into the mic cable to power electret mics. We use Dynamic mics and they sometimes object to this voltage and hum. The capacitor cuts it out. If you have a cheap convertor a dynamic mic and hum, you may need to add a capacitor! (Or buy a better convertor).

    John

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