Canon XA20 External Micrphone Size Question

Started Aug 31, 2013 | Discussions
PTMcCain
New MemberPosts: 4
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Canon XA20 External Micrphone Size Question
Aug 31, 2013

Hey everyone, just purchased a Canon XA20 and got a Rode external shotgun microphone for it, but...it appears to be too narrow in diameter to be able to be fastened tightly into the handle unit for the XA20 with microphone holder.

Any suggestions, or am I just missing something here?

Thank you.

Jim oc_2
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Re: Canon XA20 External Micrphone Size Question
In reply to PTMcCain, Aug 31, 2013

Maybe go to a bike shop and get pieces of used inner tubes?

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silyn
Regular MemberPosts: 380
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Re: Canon XA20 External Micrphone Size Question
In reply to PTMcCain, Sep 1, 2013

PTMcCain wrote:

Hey everyone, just purchased a Canon XA20 and got a Rode external shotgun microphone for it, but...it appears to be too narrow in diameter to be able to be fastened tightly into the handle unit for the XA20 with microphone holder.

Any suggestions, or am I just missing something here?

Thank you.

Use neoprene 'O' rings - you can get something suitable from DIY stores. Very cheap. Pick a size that needs to slightly stretch to roll onto the mics body. Shotgun mics vary in size. Sometimes I use just a piece of foam. Anyway, placing an external mc on XA (or any other cam) will ngo dive you any significantly advantage.

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PTMcCain
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Re: Canon XA20 External Micrphone Size Question
In reply to silyn, Sep 4, 2013

Sorry, I was a bit confused by your last comment. Did you intend to say placing an external microphone on an XA will not provide any significant advantage in audio quality?

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silyn
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Re: Canon XA20 External Micrphone Size Question
In reply to PTMcCain, Sep 4, 2013

PTMcCain wrote:

Sorry, I was a bit confused by your last comment. Did you intend to say placing an external microphone on an XA will not provide any significant advantage in audio quality?

Yes, that's what I meant to say. No significant advantage. You can get some advantage if you use better mic (or mic more suitable for your shooting situation) than using internal mics, but I would not expect significant improvements.

I use XA25 (same audio as XA20) very extensively (mostly in typical run and gun situations while filming these days a documentary which involves a lot of action and totaly unpredictable situations and no control over environment), and one of my first attempts to improve sound was to place an external mic on XA. I used two, the first, AT8xx (do not remember exactly what it was - I do not use AT much) was total disaster. I switched to Sennheiser MKE600 - much better, but still while comparing what I was getting, I did not see a significant change. I suspect that some mics will do better. I had strong temptation to start using MKH416 (Rode NTG-3 was another option) but both would drain the battery in no time.

So, in most cases I go now with what XA25 can offer.. Where possible I use an assistant with boom (with this documentary we never extend it) or simply a recorder which we try to place in the proximity - as close as possible to the source of sound. Another "technique" I use is to go with cam as close as possible - at times very close. Really close.

I can see that in some situations external mic placed on XA can be much better - when environment is not too noisy and you have better control over everything. But if this is the case, than why to place your external mic on cam? Place it closer to the sound - that where you really will get a significant improvement..

Finally, I am not going to say that I like the sound coming from XA25. I often use audio filters in post. But with all trade-offs that's what has worked better for me. And also, I do not use XA when I have more control.

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ryan2007
Veteran MemberPosts: 9,290Gear list
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Re: Canon XA20 External Micrphone Size Question
In reply to PTMcCain, Sep 5, 2013

PTMcCain wrote:

Hey everyone, just purchased a Canon XA20 and got a Rode external shotgun microphone for it, but...it appears to be too narrow in diameter to be able to be fastened tightly into the handle unit for the XA20 with microphone holder.

Any suggestions, or am I just missing something here?

Thank you.

I have a stereo shotgun mic for my XA-20 and I use Sanken ROCS Rubber O-Rings for CS-1 (10/package)

Place the mic in the mount and note the spacing you have where the wind screen ends and the bottom of the mic which is close to (usually) where the XLR contacts at the bottom would be.

Place/roll on two rubber rings. One in front and one behind. The weight of the XLR cable would also help to pull the microphone into place.

You can also not attach that holder and get a shock mount, I have the Pearstone DUSM-1 Universal Shock-mount that goes on the cold shoe.

I also bought the J-Cube from the company J-Rod via B&H. It gives a compact way to attach three items.

I decided on the Audio Technica BP-4029 for the XA-20. I bought and returned the Rode NT-4, too big for this camcorder. The AT mic is nice, it has three pick up patterns in one. I have to use it with the XA-20 handle since this mic needs the +48 switch engaged to work for power. If not you are using the internal mic.

Just FYI on that, be sure you have the correct switch/mode engaged or you are not using the external mic regardless if it is connected.

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