View Full Version : ALL: XLR versus 3.5 mm connector with adapter
05-15-2012, 02:23 PM
Is there any loss of quality from a microphone that outputs to a 3.5 mm connector versus the same one that would output to an XLR connector?
i.e. Do we lose something plugging in a 3.5 mm pin to a "3.5 mm to XLR" converter?
05-15-2012, 03:42 PM
To some extent, that depends on the specific items in question. The main disadvantage of using an adapter for an on-camera mic is that the 3.5mm connection is another possible point of failure. 3.5mm plugs are not the most reliable plugs out there. XLRs are usually extremely reliable. The other advantage comes in when you are using a long cable. A mic designed to connect via XLR is usually a balanced design which means less likelihood of interference over a long run.
In your situation, I'd just fit a XLR plug to the mic (along with a couple of resistors to attenuate the signal), but electronics is my job so that sort of thing's a no-brainer for me.
05-15-2012, 05:44 PM
I converted both my Rode VideoMics to XLR and as long as you can solder, it's a simple process!!! Simply follow the curly cable (yeah the annoying one!) back into the mic circuit board and you will find it goes to 3 terminals on the board ....just note these and then prepare a new cable (decent quality) that also has a screen and 2 cores and solder the screen red and white to the board. Then solder the XLR plug on the other end ... red to Pin 1, White to pin 2 and the Screen to Pin 3 ....On the Rode you don't need any attenuation resistors as it already has attenuation switches for -10db and -20db built in!!
05-15-2012, 05:51 PM
On the Rode you don't need any attenuation resistors as it already has attenuation switches for -10db and -20db built in!!
Excellent. That will be an easy fix for the distortion problem next time he shoots a rock band.
05-15-2012, 06:46 PM
Clear instructions, I now have the confidence to do it ! Thank you both.
05-18-2012, 09:54 AM
I checked this out with a sound expert - the advice was aside from a possible loose connection at the adaptor, there will be no difference in sound quality.
The disadvantage to re-wiring as Chris has done is that 10 year Rode warranty could terminate if any problems were to arise.
I will probably make the change and take my chances because I don't like a large adapter sticking out the side of the camera.
If anything does go wrong, I will buy a mic that is wired for direct connection to the camera.