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Shooting DSLR Audio with the BeachTEK DXA-SLR PRO Audio Adapter

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BeachTEK DXA-SLR PRO Audio Adapter 

How do you use a microphone with DSLR shooting? Audio is just as or maybe even more important to video producing, yet many people (and product developers), seem to forget that. 

How many times have you heard video producers complain about their love-hate relationship with the new DSLR shooting and workflow? Yes, using a DSLR gives you the chance to swap lenses and capture great depth-of-field shots, but then you have to deal with the one big issue that traditional camcorders have addressed for decades: capturing good clean audio.

Many DSLRs can capture professional video with great color and crisp detail, but the audio capturing is on par with the lowest cheapest point-and-shoot camera.

BeachTEK has an elegant solution for DSLRs.The DXA-SLR PRO Audio Adapter docks to the bottom of most DSLRs, using the tripod screw point, giving video producers the advantage of using their favorite professional XLR microphone.

The BeachTEK DXA-SLR PRO is equipped with pro audio mixer features like a VU monitor, left or right microphone mix control, headphone jack, hi/lo gain limiter and the ability to disable automatic gain control (AGC), the bane of many DSLRs and low-priced video cameras. The adapter works with a standard 9-volt alkaline or lithium battery, and running time is around 3 hours using the 9v alkaline or 8 hours on the lithium batt. (not with phantom power.)

BeachTEK DXA-SLR PRO Audio Adapter
Key Features:

The BeackTEK DXA-SLR PRO can handle two mics, each microphone having its own control, so you can record at different levels. Perfect for interviews where you have a booming-voiced reporter talking to a soft-voiced subject.

The mixer can work nicely with phantom powered mics (12 or 48-volt) and will operate with up to 20dB gain on the Hi setting – nice for those [less-]sensitive mics

The DXA-SLR PRO has a limiter setting to keep you from going beyond your allowable peak, which can cause your audio to dip out.

AGC control lets you be in control for those moments when you have a very soft sound in the environment but the auto gain tries to bring it up to the same level as a loud sound. Imagine a barking dog next door causing your interview's audio to keep dipping down or up to compensate for the noise. AGC is bad. Control is a marvelous thing.

Monitoring your audio is important, and most DSLRs lack this ability. The DXA monitoring system allows you to set the audio volume levels separate from the mic levels, enabling you monitor each mic on its own, so you know exactly what each is recording.

Separate VU meters for each mic on the back of the device, right below your camera's LCD screen, gives you a quick at-a-glance look at both audio levels while you're also monitoring your video read-out on the camera.

BeachTEK DXA-SLR PRO Tech Specs:

  • Maximum Input Levels: MIC Level: - 3 dBu, LINE Level: + 14 dBu
  • Output Level: Normal MIC levels
  • Frequency Response: 20 Hz to 20 kHz (+/-0.5 dB)
  • Total Harmonic Distortion: Less than 0.001% @ 1kHz, -30 dBu input
  • Signal-to-Noise Ratio: 85 dB @ 1 kHz, -30 dBu input
  • Gain: LO gain: 0 dB, Hi gain: 20 dB
  • Phantom Power: Dual regulated 12 or 48 volt power supplies, Current to 14 mA (direct shot)
  • VU Meter: -16 to +3 dB in 3dB increments
  • Battery Type: One 9 volt alkaline or lithium battery
  • Battery Duration:
    - Alkaline 9v: 3 hours typical with alkaline battery, (no phantom)
    - Lithium: 8 hours typical  (no phantom)
  • Dimensions (L x W x H): 6” x 3.75” x 1.75” (152 mm x 95 mm x 44 mm)
  • Weight: 18 oz (0.51 Kg)
  • www.beachtek.com  $449 
February 08th, 2013

Comments

slwassets's picture

Why would it make more sense to contend with sync drift, dual system monitoring and added work in post? $439 is nothing if this is your profession. It's less than most broadcast quality shotguns, and about half the price of a pro wireless setup. Of course I say all this, and I've never used the thing. But it looks like a good price to me. If it works as advertised (and lasts a couple hours supplying phantom power to my sony wireless receiver), it will be a godsend -- worth double that price, in fact.