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10-15-2014, 09:20 PM - 1 Like   #1
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Experience with Rode VideoMic Pro shotgun

I recently shot a video documentary on an environmental estuarine process: the tidal bore of the Qiantang River in China. This tidal bore can be a 'monster' with the attached photograph showing 3-m high 'wall of water' entering the Qiantang river. Definitely not surfeable: too dangerous at that location for the best tidal bore surfers.

I wanted to record the sound generated by the bore. The tidal bore can be heard between 30 to 60 minutes before it passes an observer, and the rumble sound is somehow similar to the ruble noises of trains and drums. Basically a low frequency noise which can travel over very long distance.

On the rumble noise a tidal bores, a scientific article in a leading international journal: The rumble sound generated by a tidal bore event in the Baie du Mont Saint Michel - UQ eSpace.

Using my K-3, I tested both the internal mic and an external microphone: the Rode VideoMic Pro shotgun. (Note that I have no vested interest.) The recordings were done mostly at night to reduce the interferences caused by noises of spectators, machinery, cars, ...

To sum up:
-The internal mic of the K-3 was crap. Simply its lowest frequency range was about 100-150 Hz and it could not detect the low rumble frequencies, typically within the range 60-100 Hz.

-The Rode VideoMic Pro shotgun works extremely well. Its frequency range [40 Hz-20,000 Hz] was perfect for the job. The microphone is a shotgun which must be aimed to the source. It is very light (80 g without battery) and ideal for travelling. It was also integrated shock mounting. The con: the buttons are small and almost impossible to use at night. In particular the On/Off button has 3 positions, On, Off and On with 80 Hz cutoff. I got caught up once setting the 80 Hz cutoff by mistake.

Overall I would highly recommend the Rode VideoMic Pro shotgun as an external microphone for the K-3. The small size and light weight are perfect for travelling.

I hope that the experience may assist others.

PS: I posted my review of the Rod VideoMic Pro shotgun at: https://www.pentaxforums.com/accessoryreviews/rode-videomic-pro-shotgun.html

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Last edited by hcc; 10-16-2014 at 05:23 PM.
10-15-2014, 09:53 PM   #2
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Cool, is the article yours?
10-15-2014, 11:37 PM   #3
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I do hope I'm referring to your model. Apologies if I'm not.

That's the model I didn't buy. I had my credit card out and it was going to be a done deal. I had read that some people had trouble with the elastic bands its suspended with. So I asked them to load the battery (9volt) so I could see how it was done. For a start we couldn't close the battery door and we made a mess of the elastic bands. I left the camera sales man with the mess and purchased the cheaper Rode videomic which also has a 9volt battery. I like my Rode mic. However I had to change the dip switches to get more volume out of it. I couldn't find the instructions or if I actually got any.

Glad to hear your mic is working well. maybe I should have got it and sorted out the problems. I do like have a long lived 9 volt battery.
10-16-2014, 03:45 PM   #4
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I work in an organization with 4 rode shotgun mics. 3 have the red plastic springy mount that isolates the vibration and one with the rubber bands. I prefer the rubber bands as it is more compact. A small packet of extra bands comes with the set. No practical issues with any of the devices as they work as advertised.
We use them on video cameras not dslrs. There was anissue with the zoom function button on one camera being inoperable when the mic was fitted. Had to use a hot shoe mounting block accessory to provide extra space.

10-16-2014, 05:10 PM   #5
hcc
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Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by Arjay Bee Quote
I work in an organization with 4 rode shotgun mics. 3 have the red plastic springy mount that isolates the vibration and one with the rubber bands. I prefer the rubber bands as it is more compact. A small packet of extra bands comes with the set. No practical issues with any of the devices as they work as advertised.
The VideoMic Pro shotgun that I got comes with rubber band shock absorbers and there is a pair of extra rubber bands. Thus my review and comments are related to the smaller model that you use.

---------- Post added 10-17-2014 at 10:12 AM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by Bob from Aus Quote
I do hope I'm referring to your model. Apologies if I'm not.

That's the model I didn't buy. I had my credit card out and it was going to be a done deal. I had read that some people had trouble with the elastic bands its suspended with. So I asked them to load the battery (9volt) so I could see how it was done. For a start we couldn't close the battery door and we made a mess of the elastic bands. I left the camera sales man with the mess and purchased the cheaper Rode videomic which also has a 9volt battery. I like my Rode mic. However I had to change the dip switches to get more volume out of it. I couldn't find the instructions or if I actually got any.

Glad to hear your mic is working well. maybe I should have got it and sorted out the problems. I do like have a long lived 9 volt battery.
Bob
The model that I use has no problem with the battery door nor with the elastic bands. I bought online the unit at DCW and it was all ready to use. I only had to insert the battery. We may be talking to different model.
hcc

Last edited by hcc; 10-16-2014 at 05:22 PM.
10-19-2014, 07:57 PM   #6
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Interesting read, thanks
11-11-2014, 03:22 PM   #7
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An interesting account.
I've got another mic from Rode (a large-diaphragm condenser, not for photography ) and it's a very good mic for its price.
Plus, they manufacture them in Australia and don't outsource work abroad.
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