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iRig PRE & GH4
  • Today must be my lucky day…

    The Panasonic DWM-MS2 condenser microphone has a 3.5mm TRRS plug that connects to the GH3/GH4 body http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/907000-REG/Panasonic_dmw_ms2_External_Stereo_Mic_For.html

    Similarly, the iRig PRE XLR microphone interface also has a 3.5mm TRRS plug http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/840641-REG/IK_Multimedia_IP_IRIG_PRE_IN_iRig_Pre_Microphone_Interface.html

    I wondered if I could use the iRig PRE as an XLR input, pre amp & +48v phantom power source for my Apex420 condenser microphone when connected to a GH4. I decided to roll the dice & connect the iRig PRE directly to a GH4 (via the 3.5mm mic input) for further investigation. DISCLAIMER: I am not an audio engineer. Please take that fact into consideration. I'm not affiliated with IK Multimedia in anyway (the makers of the iRig PRE). I simply saw (what appeared to be) the same 3.5mm TRRS plug between the two aforementioned devices & wanted to see if I could utilize some of the audio gear I already own. I was stoked to discover that I could record video & stereo audio directly to my SDHC card using this setup. The SNR & noise floor (with the iRig's pre amp turned up to 1/3 gain) sounded acceptable for my video/stereo audio recording purposes. Your personal view might differ & I respect that. More testing is needed to determine whether the iRig PRE is a pro-sumer audio solution or a professional audio solution for the GH4.

    SIDE NOTE: the iRig PRE I’m using is NOT hacked. I connected my Apex420 to an XLR cable -> XLR cable to the iRig PRE–> iRig PRE 3.5mm TRRS plug to the GH4 3.5mm mic input. The iRig's pre amp was turned up to 1/3 gain. After connecting all of the cabling I tweaked a couple of settings within the “Motion picture” menu tab (page 6) as follows:

    Mic Level Adj.: 0

    Special Mic -> Manual -> Mic. Directivity Adjust: adjusted to the right side of the scale (cardioid) -> set. All special mike modes worked excluding the “stereo” setting.

    Mic Level Limiter: On

    The previous setup worked for me & I hope a similar setup utilizing the iRig PRE & GH4 works for you too. Please post your findings/gear setup/audio menu settings here.

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  • Here's a specs screenshot from the http://www.irigpre.com website. I personally wonder how the Sennheiser MKH-416 would sound paired with the iRig PRE & GH4 (or any cardioid/super cardioid condenser mic for that matter. I'm currently saving up for one myself). The iRig PRE could be a low cost solution for providing high quality sound directly to the GH4, but I need the PV community to help in the investigation.

    Screen shot 2014-05-13 at 8.21.40 AM.jpg
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  • @Sunscreen. Search could help you to find tread here on P-V with video: GH3 Irig with NTG3

  • I just bought an iRig PRE a few days ago, and am planning to modify it when it arrives. I will use it with a Rode NTG-2 for on-camera sound on a docu project soon, and will post my thoughts.

    I'm especially curious about how it'll affect noise floor. I'm not aware of a test like this yet, so maybe I'll stage one myself:

    • NTG-2 directly into a camera (internal mic battery for power, simple XLR to TRS cable)

    • NTG-2 into camera via iRig PRE (internal mic battery for power)

    • NTG-2 into camera via iRig PRE (phantom power from iRig)

    • NTG-2 directly into a field recorder, in my case a DR-60D

    My hunch is that the iRig pre-amp will be good enough for on-camera sound, better than plugging mic directly into camera and using its internal battery, but not as good as running the mic it into a decent field recorder using phantom power.

  • @konjow I saw your iRig PRE + GH3 thread & videos. I really like how you recorded the different mic levels & organized the clips in your edit for comparison. Very insightful! Both the Rode VMP & Ew112 sounded good to me! I read that you had to use the iRig hack (3.5mm jack to jack cable) to record sound directly to your GH3. Did you ever try plugging the 3.5mm TRRS plug on the iRig PRE directly into the mic input on the GH3 & testing for sound? I'm curious if you can get sound to your camera without using the 3.5mm jack to jack cable. Might be worth investigating.

    @CFreak Thank you very much for the link! I need as much help as I can get!

    @Sangye All the best to you on your docu project! Your testing & findings are greatly appreciated. I look forward to your post regarding the results! I'm a huge fan of having a condenser boom mic plugged into a quality field recorder (when the budget to rent that setup for a paid gig allows). I really hope your hunch is right!

  • Interesting, I just tested the GH4 with an iRig Pre yesterday and the levels were very low and muffled compared to when I used a TRRS to dual TRS adapter (as is usually necessary with the iRig).

    I suppose I'll have to test it again.

  • @Jive Please check again by plugging the iRig PRE TRRS plug directly into the GH4 mic input =) In addition, please post your equipment setup/GH4 audio menu settings in detail when following up. Perhaps you could post your findings (in a video) using both the iRig PRE hack setup & iRig PRE without the hack on the GH4 for comparison.

    BTW @Jive ... Aren't you the chap that made the "Panasonic GH4 audio buzz test video"/created a website describing the GH4 buzz issue ... Etc, Etc? If so ... your findings involving the iRig PRE are potentially already null in void. You (if it was you) have already proven to the world that your GH4 has an audio "buzz" issue. Where as the GH4 in my possession doesn't have the "buzz" issue you (if it was you) described in detail on multiple sites online.

    Regardless, I look forward to your feedback. I can only hope that your testing will be as thorough as all the testing you (if it was you) performed to prove the presence of the "buzz" in your GH4. Cheers.

  • Yes, I made a video testing the GH4's buzzing issue. Not sure why having a GH4 with the buzz nullifies how the GH4 works with the iRig. If anything, the iRig's TRRS plug is what Panasonic says will resolve any buzzing. Glad you don't have a GH4 that buzzes though.

    Tested the iRig again today. Sorry, no time for a video at the moment, but here are the setups:

    Test 1: iRig TRRS directly into GH4 mic input

    • Mic: Rode VideoMic Pro (connected to iRig Pre via Rode VXLR adapter) @ 0dB (no boost)
    • GH4 mic level: -12dB
    • iRig Pre level: 50%
    • Result: Very low levels, barely registers on GH4's audio levels

    Test 2: iRig TRRS into GH4 mic input via TRRS to dual TRS adapter

    • Mic: Rode VideoMic Pro (connected to iRig Pre via Rode VXLR adapter) @ 0dB (no boost)
    • GH4 mic level: -12dB
    • iRig Pre level: 50%
    • Result: Good levels, comparable to Rode VMP plugged directly into GH4

    Test 3: Rode VMP directly into GH4 mic input

    • Mic: Rode VideoMic Pro
    • GH4 mic level: -12dB
    • Result: Good levels

    Note: The above tests yielded the exact same results on the GH3. A stock iRig Pre did not provide good levels when plugged directly into the GH3/GH4 mic input. A TRRS to TRS adapter was necessary.

  • I used the iRig Pre with a TRRS to Dual TRS adapter as well with my GH3. I have not tested it with my GH4 yet since I just got it.

    Just found a new TRRS to TRS adapter from rode:

    http://www.rodemic.com/accessories/sc3?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=May+eNews&utm_content=May+eNews+Version+A+CID_cec43d40915eea59d540d1fec9babba7&utm_source=eBlast%20Campaign%20Monitor&utm_term=SC3

    Did anyone ever consider to check how the iRig Pro would work? It does have a mini midi out and I haven't seen any adapters or reviews yet.

  • Me think soldering one wire its much better solution.

  • It wouldn't work with an iPhone then, right?

  • I don't know and hopefully will never have to know:)

  • The iRig Pro looks interesting because of it's (advertised) low noise floor and large gain knob, there's no analog output. It's an analog to digital converter meant for sending digital data to a computer or iOS device. This means there's no way to get the audio out of this thing and into the camera's mic input.

    It might be interesting if they came out with an iRig Pre Pro that improved the noise floor and moved the gain knob to the top, but if it's going to cost $150 per channel, you might as well just get a Juicedlink or Beachtek preamp and call it a day.

  • I ran across some measurements of the iRig Pre's noise performance: http://www.avisoft.com/recordertests.htm

    • A-weighted EIN: -113 dBu

    • unweighted EIN: -111 dBu

    That puts it in the same range as the Zoom H1 (A-weighted EIN -111 dBu: http://zoomforum.us/viewtopic.php?f=15&t=15488), i.e., decent for a small and cheap device, but not as good as many field recorders and preamps. The thing is only $30 now. I think you would need this kind of adapter: http://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_odkw=iphone+adapter+%22PC+headset%22&_osacat=0&_from=R40&_trksid=p2045573.m570.l1313.TR0.TRC0.A0.H0.X%22iphone+headset%22+pc+adapter.TRS1&_nkw=%22iphone+headset%22+pc+adapter&_sacat=0