Zaxcom Wireless 2.0 Overview
An Auto-Mixer is a gated mixer that when enabled, and a speaker starts to talk, will automatically open that microphone and add it to the mix. Then when a speaker stops talking that microphone will be attenuated “closed” and essentially be removed from the mix.
Removing unused microphones will result in a lower noise floor giving you a cleaner, better sounding mix without having to manually ride the faders. Manually riding faders in unscripted dialog often results in missing the start of when a person begins to speak.
The Zaxcom Auto-Mixer has no limit on the number of microphones that can be active at one time. The Zaxcom Auto-Mixer also has a last microphone on feature; this means that even if no one is speaking there will always be one microphone included in the mix, which will be the last active microphone. The last mic on feature allows the mix to never go to absolute silence
All of Zaxcom wireless has a unique feature that is not available in any other wireless systems. Each of Zaxcom’s TRX belt pack, plug-on and, camera link transmitter features a built-in two track timecode recorder. This feature allows the inputted audio to be recorded directly to a removable micro SD card.
You can use the transmitter as a standalone recorder. So if you need to record talent for long periods of time or, if they are going to wander off on their own out of reception range, just wire them up and you can cleanly capture hours of high quality timecoded audio. In that situation you can also optionally shut of the RF transmitter portion and use the TRX in record only mode to extend the battery life.
The recorder can also give you the confidence that you can cleanly capture high quality, drop out free audio regardless of how harsh of an RF environment you are in. You can set up the recorder to be in constant record mode where it is recording all the time, or you can set it up to go into record when the scene begins. This system is like having an infinite virtual multi-track where you have no track or range limits.
The recorder is capable of recording 96 hours of full bandwidth 24 bit timecoded audio on a single card. The recorder utilizes Zaxcom’s Mobile Audio Recording Format or MARF. MARF is an ultra stable, loss-less fault tolerant recording system that will give you confidence that in the event of power loss, due to dead batteries, all audio up to the exact point that the TRX lost power will be preserved. The files are recorded as a .zax file extension and can be quickly and easily be converted to both industry standard BWF and MP3 file, while maintaining its timecode and metadata. All that is needed is ZaxConvert, a free utility that can be downloading from the Zaxcom web site.
Zaxcom Digital Recording Wireless Transmitters are protected under patent #’s: 7,711,443 & 7,929,902
Internal Recording Wireless
Timecode is a sequence of numeric codes generated at regular intervals and is used for synchronization, logging and identifying record material in film, video and audio production.
All Zaxcom mixer/recorders recorders, TRX recording transmitters, ZFR miniature recorders, ERX receivers and, QRX receivers with QIFB option feature fully functional timecode readers and generators.
The timecode reader in each of these units will allow it receive external timecode that the unit will lock to. Zaxcom mixers/recorders and QRX receivers also allow you to enter in your own timecode manually.
After inputting, or locking to, an external timecode signal the timecode generator will now take over and generate it own frame accurate timecode. The timecode generator in all of Zaxcom products, with the exception of the ERX, are very stable and use TCXO temperature compensated crystal oscillators that give a clock accuracy of 1.54 PPM which equates to 1 frame out in 6 hours. In the case of the ERX an TCXO chip is not necessary since it is constantly updating its timecode from the source All products can read and generate all standard SMPTE timecode frame-rates: 23.98, 24, 25, 29.97NDF, 29.97DF, 30NDF, 30DF.
Traditional FM wireless audio can be hacked into and listened to by any commercially available scanner. In some situations this isn’t an issue, but there are times where privacy is necessary. For example paparazzi with an inexpensive device can listen in on your set. Or in the case of some corporate settings where there may be sensitive or legal matters discussed and you want to ensure that you have maximum privacy.
Zaxcom wireless systems, both the UHF transmission as well as audio sent via ZaxNet, features full digital audio encryption. Digital encryption is the only way to keep all audio transmission private.
The way it works is if you set an encryption code the transmitter, the audio will be encrypted and can only be listened to if the receiver has the matching encryption code entered. If you are trying to receive an audio signal and the codes do not match, all that will be heard is white-noise or silence.
Zaxcom’s encryption system features two sets of three numbers that form a single six-digit encryption code; this provides a total of 16,777,216 possible code combinations. So when using Zaxcom digital encryption you can ensure that your audio will only be heard by those who you want to hear it.
Mobile Audio Recording Format or MARF is Zaxcom’s lossless fault tolerant recording system. MARF is a very robust recording system where the recorded digital files don’t need to be closed or finalized. So if power is lost during recording, all audio right up to the point where power is lost, will be preserved. MARF’s robustness lends itself often be immune from viruses and corruption that can affect standard recording formats.
All Zaxcom MARF files can be quickly and easily converted to both industry standard BWF and MP3 file by using the ZaxConvert utility. All timecode information and Meta Data is preserved and carried over when using ZaxConvert.
ZaxConvert is available for free and can be downloaded from the Zaxcom website.
Prerecord allows you to hold incoming audio in an internal buffer. You can choose to buffer up to 10 seconds of audio in Deva, Fusion and Nomad and 5 seconds of audio Maxx (some time limitations may exist for higher sample rates – see the products specific manuals for addition details).
From the point the recorder is powered up, any sound coming in from any input is always being processed whether you are recording or not. So when pre-record is enabled, that processed signal can be held in a buffer that is constantly being refreshed. When you press the RECORD key, all audio stored in the buffer will be included the current take with the corrected time code. Since the recorder is always processing the incoming audio no additional battery power is use when prerecord is engaged.
The pre-record buffer is dumped after any of the following settings are changed:
Sample-rate, Time code, User-bits, Frame- Rate, Track count
Zaxcom recorders provide powerful software based effects on every channel.
All of Zaxcom recorders have high pass and two notch filters per channel which are an excellent tool to remove noises such as 60/120Hz hum, lighting ballast noise, motors, wind noise and more. Deva and Fusion add 3-band shelving equalization. The EQ is phase accurate channel-to-channel and totally adjustable.
A full-featured soft-knee compressor is optional on each input channel, record track and output bus. Ratio, threshold, attack, release and makeup gain are all controllable.
The Expander is a great new tool that expands the dynamic range of audio. This function can be used to lower the noise floor of a noisy microphone or recording environment.