By site editor Dan Chung:
juicedLink audio adapters have become quite popular amongst DSLR shooters over the past few years and the company has just released four new pre-amps in its Riggy line. They all feature dual XLR audio inputs and are designed to sit on top of or under your camera when shooting. They connect directly to the minijack connection of compatible cameras and use the internal audio recording rather than sending sound to a separate audio recorder. This is better than using a microphone directly into the camera because the juicedLink has better low noise pre-amps than those in most DSLRs or cheaper video cameras. The internal audio gain (recording level) of the camera can be kept to a minimum, leaving the juicedLink’s high quality pre-amps to do the hard work. In technical terms this means the audio will have a better signal-to-noise ratio, meaning a cleaner recording with less hiss.
The RA222 adapter is essentially a two-channel variant of the existing two-channel RA333, with two high quality phantom powered XLR inputs, headphone jack (for cameras without integrated headphone monitoring), audio level meters and AGC disable functions. This is best suited to cameras like the Panasonic GH2, Canon 5D mkII and EOS-1D X which don’t have headphone jacks built in.
The smaller RM222 is similar to the RA222 but dispenses with the headphone jack, audio meters and AGC disable – so is designed more for cameras which already have a headphone jack and on-screen audio level meters, like the Nikon D800, Canon 5D mkIII and Sony NEX VG-20 and 30. Because there is no headphone monitoring or meters the RM222 is more power efficient and therefore has longer battery life than the RA222.
The RM202 and RA202 are similar to the 222 models but without the phantom power option. This saves some money for users who already have battery-powered mics or radio mics and don’t need to use phantom power.
Robert Rozak of juicedLink reckons the Riggy-Micro range will prove popular with news shooters using DSLRs or camcorders without internal XLR solutions.
“The juicedLink Riggy-Micro preamps are the perfect tools for the video journalist, who is continuously on the go, on a deadline, shooting mission critical work, and needs to submit work with excellent audio quality.”
I’ve been using the RM333 on the Canon C300 when I need a lower profile for run and gun. It is more discreet than Canon’s own Monitor/XLR jackpack and I can’t tell the difference in sound quality, even though the juicedLink is connecting through the minijack.
According to juicedLink these are the main advantages for news and documentary production:
– ON THE GO: Travel light with a preamp that’s small (much smaller than a Zoom H4n audio recorder), lightweight, power efficient (so you don’t need to bring more batteries than necessary). Easily mounts to camera or rig. ‘Riggy’ so you can take advantage of the valuable real-estate mounted next to your camera, and mount mics and wireless receivers, etc using juicedLink’s custom brackets.
– ON A DEADLINE: Save time not having to sync audio in post.
– MISSION CRITICAL WORK: Better mission critical production flow than external recorder: 1) Boot time is instant 2) You won’t forget to record audio by neglecting to hit ‘record’ separately on a recorder 3) The audio output bracketing feature offers camera overload protection by recording the same signal at different levels on left and right audio channels.
– EXCELLENT AUDIO QUALITY: Easily and quickly dial in signal levels with front panel potentiometers (instead of going into the firmware of the camera). Better signal-to-noise than handheld external recorders like H4n.
For more info head over to the juicedLink website.