October 14, 2016 at 3:41PM


Rode Videomic Pro into the Zoom H1

Hey everyone, this is my first post, not entirely sure how this all works, but it looks fairly straightforward.

Anyways I'll get right to the point: we're shooting a short film, and for audio we have the rode videomic Pro on the Rode boom Pole, with a cable plugged into the zoom H1.

Now my question is, which of these two has the better preamps? What I mean is, I can turn the input up to 100 on the zoom H1, and have the Rose videomic Pro at -10 decibels, or I could do the opposite and have the rode videomic pro at + 20, and the zoom H1 input level of about 30. I tested both setups, and I can't find any differences to my naked ear. However, I know one of them must be superior, and I cannot find that information on the internet, so I was hoping someone here would know.



Disclaimer: I could be wrong, I'm not a sound guy, so If someone suggests otherwise i'd follow there advice over mine. But I do not think the Videomic Pro has a Preamp, those settings I believe are just level attenuation, which aren't actually changing the audio through the Preamps just increasing the sensitivity of the mic itself so that the audio from the mic can go in to a camera or Recorder and have lower noise on lower quality preamps. But I could be wrong, I'm a Camera guy not a sound guy!

I've not used the H1 so i'm not super sure how high quality it is, I use an H6 and use XLR cables to a boom mic, But since I don't think the Video Mic pro has a preamp in it, having it at the highest setting should not have any negatively adverse effects except power expenditure. Plus that would allow you to make level changes on you H1 instead of worrying about fussing with the audio level by changing the level attenuation on the mic itself during a clip with a sudden audio change. If i'm wrong I'd love to hear why, but thats the logic thats standing out in my brain, hope its useful to you!

October 14, 2016 at 6:41PM

Kent Harkey
Director of Photography,

Thanks for the help. I'd imagine you are correct, I'll do the test suggested below and let you know.

Evan Friesen

October 19, 2016 at 9:55AM

I suspect that setting your Rode Video Mic Pro to +20 dB will produce a lower noise floor than setting your H1 recorder's input gain to 100. The reason I say this is that every low cost recorder I've used ( Zoom H1, Zoom H2, Zoom H2n, Zoom H4, Zoom H4n, Olympus LS-10, Olympus LS-11, Sony PCM-M10, Sony PCM-D50, Tascam DR-07 Mk2, DR-40, DR-100 Mk2, DR-70D ) always get quite noisy once the recorder's gain is set higher than 60 percent of it's maximum.

You can test this by placing your Rode Video Mic Pro in a sound-proof container ( anything that can hold the mic and won't transmit much sound will do, which could even be a cooking pot stuffed with a towel ), then make two recordings using the settings you described in your original post. The idea here is to make recordings in complete silence ( which is why you want to place the mic in a sound proof container ), then when finished you take your two recordings and open them with your sound editor ( or even video editor ), and see where the recorded "silence" sits on the audio meters. I strongly suspect that the +20 dB setting with the H1 set to a recording level of 30 will produce the lower noise-floor, which means that it's producing the better recording because it will have more dynamic range. This is an easy test to perform and I would be very curious to see how the two settings compare when it comes to having the lowest noise-floor in your recording. Please post your results in this thread if you can.

- Guy

October 14, 2016 at 8:53PM

Guy McLoughlin
Video Producer

Good thinking, I will do this test and post my results.
Thanks for the help.

Evan Friesen

October 19, 2016 at 9:53AM

I have both the zoom and the rode vmp and I can tell you for sure to put the +20db preamp from the rode vmp, it is way better than the zoom preamp, just be carefull in noisy places as you can saturate easier. It's a great setup you will have very good sound with it.

October 18, 2016 at 6:10AM, Edited October 18, 6:10AM


Thanks for the response! I too hope we have great sound!

Evan Friesen

October 19, 2016 at 9:54AM

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