OT: Edirol UA-1EX opinions for laptop editing

Cliff Etzel wrote on 12/27/2007, 5:41 PM
Anyone ever use one of these for laptop editing? I tried doing some voice recording through the mic jack on my laptop and I have a noticeable hum and thought it might be the mic. Did a test record on my camera and the mic sounds fine.

Now I'm wondering if it isn't the laptops integrated sound card causing the problem.

I'm considering this one due to its size for mobility with field editing on a laptop.

Cliff Etzel - Solo Video Journalist


farss wrote on 12/27/2007, 10:31 PM
Anything is usually better than the integrated stuff.
I'd try for something with a balanced mic input. I'm pretty certain there's heaps around. Or if all you need is microphone why not Rode's Podcaster mic. It's a pretty decent mic that has a USB interface. If it's a bit too expensive Behringer do something similar.

Cliff Etzel wrote on 12/28/2007, 7:48 AM
The reason I was looking at this is that I use this laptop for editing when shooting stories on location. I use the laptop not only for editing video, but as a portable recording studio. I did test the mic on my camera and didn't have the hum I had when recording to the laptop so I'm almost positive it has to do with the integrated sound card. The mic isn't TOTL, but it will suffice for the time being - the size is crucial for being as mobile as I can be when shooting solo run and gun stories.

I went ahead and ordered one of the UA-1EX's from B&H - I think it will fit very well into my customized lightweight field editing kit.

Cliff Etzel - Solo Video Journalist
Goji wrote on 12/28/2007, 8:39 AM

Did you have the laptop powered by a/c at the time? I've found that I get mic hum when using a/c, but not when I don't.
Cliff Etzel wrote on 12/28/2007, 9:04 AM
Yes it was plugged into the AC power supply.

Cliff Etzel - Solo Video Journalist
Houston Haynes wrote on 12/28/2007, 6:24 PM
I have a UA-1EX that I used for some Vista testing before dedicated drivers were released for my TASCAM FW-1884. If latency is not an issue (and I presume you could use direct monitoring) then you can get by with it. But it makes me wonder if you should be using a real mic pre-amp and balanced line input. The UA is definitely a cut above the integrated audio I/O, but I truly wonder if it's the right tool for the job.
Cliff Etzel wrote on 12/28/2007, 10:56 PM
I understand where you're coming from, but I'm shooting short pieces and needed something that would provide a workable solution for editing on a laptop on location.

The unit is small and I think will provide something better than using the integrated mic input.

Cliff Etzel - Solo Video Journalist
farss wrote on 12/28/2007, 11:47 PM
all the units we've suggested do what you're talking about.
There's so many units available it's hard to know which one to recommend but a very quick look found:

Two balanced mic inputs with phantom power.

One balanced mic input, no phantom power

I run the M-Audio Firewire 410 both in the office and in the field. It's a bit bigger and more expensive than the units above. Has worked flawlessly for years, recorded VOs, singers, instruments etc in the field and at home. Easily fits in the laptop bag.

Even some of the small field recorders (Zoom H4) will work as a balanced mic adaptor for USB and you've got a standalone reporters recorder as well.

Houston Haynes wrote on 12/30/2007, 6:12 AM
The UA-1EX works well enough. If that's the most your budget can tolerate at the moment it should get-er-done.