by Olaf von Voss | 28th November 2016
Saramonic has just released yet another audio device. This time, it’s a tiny 2-channel mixer with 48V phantom power designed for those mirrorless and DSLR cameras which lack a headphone jack, as well as for use with smartphones. Meet the Saramonic SmartRig Plus! Saramonic SmartRig Plus Shooting with small cameras these days can often be problematic when it comes to audio. Quite a few cameras lack a proper headphone jack and smartphones usually don’t have any audio section at all. The Saramonic lineup of affordable audio adapters and mixers are here to help tackle these issues. The new SmartRig Plus offers a lot of features for its form factor and price point, namely four inputs in a variety of different connectors, 48V phantom power and two output channels. Features In terms of connectivity, the SmartRig Plus doesn’t leave you in the rain. Two XLR combo inputs let you connect either a XLR source or a 1/4″ source per channel. On top of that, the unit is equipped with a 3.5mm mini jack input per channel, which adds lots of possibilities there. That way, it’s even possible to connect up to four sources at the same time, but remember that since the SmartRig Plus is a two-channel device, it will mix down two channels down to one respectively. The gain on each channel can be adjusted individually with some decent sized knobs just like you would expect from a proper audio mixer. The incoming signals can be set to stereo, resulting in a baked in stereo file. When set to mono, though, each channel can be controlled independently. 48V phantom power can be switched on and off, and there is also a switch for setting up the output of the SmartRig Plus for camera or smartphone use. What this does is basically route the signal to the correct segments of the hard wired output mini jack, be it TRS (Tip-Ring-Sleeve) or TRRS (Tip-Ring-Ring-Sleeve) often used in smartphones. You can see the different type of connectors below. comparison between TRS and TRRS style mini jack connectors Next to the output cable, you can find the headphone jack which you so desperately miss on your Sony a6300 / Sony a6500! While being able to monitor your incoming audio, this headphone jack can also be used as a second output if you happen to need more than one outgoing signal. The whole unit is powered off a single 9V battery which will last up to six hours. To mount the unit, there is a standard 1/4″-20 mounting point as well as some convenient strap holders attached to the bottom of the SmartRig Plus, allowing you to tie the unit to a tripod or handheld rig. Really nice! Pricing and Availability The Saramonic SmartRig Plus is available as of now, but stock still seems to be a bit limited. You may have to wait a few more weeks until you can pick it up at your retailer of choice. It is priced at $99.95. (a little bit less then the $120 Jennifer is mentioning in the video). Read more about the SmartRig Plus on Saramonic’s website. Are you struggling with decent audio quality on your existing cameras? Maybe this tiny thing can improve it, big time! What do you think? Let us know in the comments below.Read more
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