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Entries in on the road (2)

Wednesday
Jun222011

Beau Weaver confirms CEntrance MicPort Pro works with iPad

 

Thanks to our technological bushwhacker, Beau Weaver, we've got confirmation that you CAN use a MicPort Pro with the iPad, with a few extra bits-n-pieces...

Take it away, Beau!!

 

Friends,

I recently talked to the techs at CEntrance, maker of the MicPort Pro, who reported that the addition of an inexpensive USB battery will now make it possible to record on the iPad with the MicPort Pro and the 416 or other XLR mic requiring 48v phantom power!   

 

Photo courtesy of Beau Weaver

 You will need: 

 

1. Camera Connection kit USB adapter:   ($29)

http://store.apple.com/us/product/MC531ZM/A

 

2. Tekkeon MP1860A TekCharge Dual Port Power Pack ($49)

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004OC0122/ref=pd_lpo_k2_dp_sr_2?pf_rd_p=486539851&pf_rd_s=lpo-top-stripe-1&pf_rd_t=201&pf_rd_i=B0017KH6OU&pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_r=0ZGK7RAMZJC8D97FR084 

 

3. USB A (male) to A (male) cable ($5) 

http://www.amazon.com/Type-Male-Cable-Version-Black/dp/B000I9B2AU/ref=sr_1_2?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1308771658&sr=1-2 

 

4. CEntrance MicPort Pro ($149)

http://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/MicPortPro/?utm_source=Google&utm_medium=PPC&utm_campaign=audio&utm_term=micport_pro&gclid=CIDdj_eiyqkCFQEHbAodBDZaMQ 

 

5.  Connect the microphone to the MicPort Pro.  Connect the USB mini to USB A cable to one of the USB ports on the Tekkeon Power Pack.  Connect the USB A to A cable to the other USB port on the Tekkeon Power Pack.  Connect the remaining end of the USB A to A cable to the apple USB adapter from the Apple Camera Connection Kit.  Power up the Tekkeon, and you will see the MicPort Pro light up.  Remember to turn on the phantom power on the MicPort Pro with the tiny push button on the end, near the USB port.  

 

Twisted Wave for iOS will use the MicPort Pro automatically when it is connected with no further change of settings or configuration.  

 

Audio quality is exactly comparable to that of the MicPort Pro on a full blown mac.

 

here is a comparison audio file:   

https://beauweaver.box.net/shared/7b3ckzj58l4oqyonc88k - Beau_Weaver-ipad-macbookair-bigstudio.mp3

1.) on iPad   2.) on macbook air OSX   3.) home studio with expensive preamp

 

Editing is a dream with Twisted Wave.  You can integrate with Dropbox, or upload to ftp servers.  And, you can even upload files to Twisted Wave's dedicated server, and receive an email link to an .mp3 file on send to your client.  This circumvents Apples restriction about exporting .mp3 files.

 

It works great.  Personally, I will continue to use the MicPort Pro with my macbook air 11 inch, rather than the iPad.  I prefer the flexibility of a full-on computer.  You can multitask with the iPad....that is to say, record in the background while reading a script from email or Pages......but it is a little klunky for my taste.   When I am operating remote, I want efficiency and ease of use.  But you may prefer the iPad.

 

 

CAUTION:  Turn the Power ON (on the 

Tekkeon Power Pack) BEFORE plugging the USB adapter into the iPad 30 pin connector.  If the iPad sees the MicPort Pro without it's battery power on, it gives you an error message and will refuse to work.  A reboot of the iPad seems to reset it.  But earlier versions of iOS would refuse to work with an offending device ever again!  Don't chance it!   Just make sure you do not turn the Tekkeon off while it is plugged into the iPad.  When you are finished, close Twisted Wave, and then unplug the white USB adapter before turning off the Tekkeon battery.

 

ONE MORE NOTE:   The white USB adapter from the camera connection kit, wants to unplug itself.  It is an awkward design.  Be careful that it is fully seated into the iPad.  It will work loose very easily if the cable is moved at all.  This sucks.  Watch.

 

YET ANOTHER NOTE:   This does NOT work with iPhone 4.

 

There are three other devices that will make working with pro XLR microphones much easier.

 

1.  The Alesis iO Dock  shipping in a few weeks  

 http://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/iODock 

 

2.  The Apogee Mic for iOS  (no ship date yet)  And this one claims that it will work with iPhone 4 as well.  

http://www.apogeedigital.com/products/mic.php 

 

 3.  Another awesome interface, I cannot name yet.  Sorry.   So stay tuned.

 

 

That's it from the bleeding edge,

 

Beauregard

 

Monday
Aug092010

IMPORTANT INFO for Source Connect and AudioTX users on the go

It's been a rough week for some voice actors who are traveling during the busiest vacation season we've seen since we've started supporting the needs of voice-overists on the road.  Connectivity problems and other glitches when reaching hotels and other destinations have gotten in the way of important ISDN bridging sessions.  In most every case the problem could have been avoided with better preperation. 

Here are the important things you must check before you plan your trip.

1. Before you book your travel, will the Internet access at every destination during your travels be adequate to support your connectivity needs?  Here's a check list:

  • Speed test-  Fast enough download AND upload?  Ask a representative at each destinatation to check this for you.  We recommend using speedtest.net  Source Conncet?  At least 300kbps up/down.  AudioTX, at least 140 kbps up/down.
  • Ping test- Speed is only part of the equation, quality of connection is not all about speed.  After you check the speed and it is good, use Pingtest.net to ensure the lowest "jitter" and "ping time" possible.  The longer the ping time, the worse the delay.  The higher the jitter, the greater number of glitches in the audio stream you'll hear.
  • Ethernet-  Are you forced to rely on WIFI?  Ethernet is always recommend and far more reliable, no matter how fast it seems the connect is.  
  • Firewall or Proxy-  Is the Internet access protected behind a firewall or proxy that can't be disabled?  Clues include if there is a very slow "ping time" (latency) during the speed test, or the speedtest.net map shows the nearest location to the test location as somewhere far away.  Also, Marriot hotels employ a proxy service at all of their hotels and chains.  SOMETIMES this can be rectified by the IT department, which a call can clarify in advance. 

2. Before you pack your gear, test your entire system in the configuration you'll use during the trip.  Do this early enough to allow for fixes, especially if you are borrowing or renting equipment from someone else.
Hook it all up, test it, shut down, and test it again.  

3.  As soon as you arrive at your first destination, setup your equipment and arrange a test with your ISDN bridging service or another studio you plan to work with.  Source Connect users can connect to the "echo" contact at anytime and do a self test.  If you connect and hear yourself clearly looped back to you with no glitches, you are in good shape.

4. Make sure your agents and/or clients have your contact info.  It's crucial that everyone been well informed of how they can connect with you, so be sure to have any ISDN or user account info you'll need.  Also, please have your agents contact the bridging service in advance of the session to ensure preparedness and availability. 

We hope you get to travel as much as possible this year, and by following these steps you'll have a worry and troublefree trip and still make your clients (and agents) happy!