Beeping Audio on URSA Mini Pro + SD Cards

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Peter Furia

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Beeping Audio on URSA Mini Pro + SD Cards

PostSat Apr 01, 2017 10:55 pm

I'm sad to report an audio issue with the URSA Mini Pro 4.6K: when recording to SD cards and using Sennheiser G3 wireless lavs, there is a high pitch and rapid *beeping* that is audible in headphones while shooting and, more importantly, baked into the resulting footage.

You can download a sample here: https://www.dropbox.com/s/ww0duet7uzc01 ... g.aif?dl=0

I've increase the audio gain to make it more audible in relation to ambient noise and the crew talking on-set.

It only begins once the record button is pressed. It disappears when recording to CFast 2.0 cards. This occurred while shooting on the highest rated, Blackmagic-supported, SD card:
SanDisk Extreme Pro UHS-II 300MB/s SDXC 128GB.

The beeping occurs in all modes, from 1080p24 ProRes Proxy (the lowest quality the camera can shoot) all the way up to 2160p24 RAW 4:1. As you increase the quality of the recording, the beeping speed intensifies until it's a constant high pitch squealing when shooting RAW.

I'm well-aware that the SD card I used is only supported as high as 2160p30 ProRes HQ (not RAW), but the issue occurs in all modes.

@BlackmagicSupport are you aware of this issue?
Thanks
Last edited by Peter Furia on Tue Apr 04, 2017 7:39 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Peter Furia

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Re: ISSUE: Beeping Audio on URSA Mini Pro + SD Cards

PostSat Apr 01, 2017 11:10 pm

I also ruled out a bad SD card by testing a second identical SD card. Both were purchased new from B&H.


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Xtreemtec

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Re: ISSUE: Beeping Audio on URSA Mini Pro + SD Cards

PostSun Apr 02, 2017 10:18 am

Peter Furia wrote:@BlackmagicSupport are you aware of this issue?
Thanks

This is a user forum.. There are a few people from BMD in here.. But if you really need to flag this as an issue you should file a support ticket on the website..

Did you try it with a normal mic ? I mean maybe when you start recording on SD cards it influences the G3 mic receiver in anyway..
Daniel Wittenaar .:: Xtreemtec Media Productions ::. -= www.xtreemtec.nl =-
4K OBV, ATEM TVS HD, 1M/E 4K, 2M/E Broadcast Studio 4K, Hyperdeck Studio Mini, SONY FS7 4K, Ursa Broadcast 4K
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Emile Kelly

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Re: ISSUE: Beeping Audio on URSA Mini Pro + SD Cards

PostSun Apr 02, 2017 9:54 pm

I have had the same issue recording prores to Cfast cards on 2 recent shoots. I am also using sennheiser G3s but had a sennheiser shotgun mic on the other channel which had the same issue even worse.

I just tried to recreate the problem at my studio and was unable to, which had me working on the theory that it was a response to some variable like cell phone interference?!
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Peter Furia

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Re: Beeping Audio on URSA Mini Pro + SD Cards

PostMon Apr 03, 2017 7:18 pm

Did some further testing and have some interesting findings:

- Beeping does not occur with on-camera mic (but this doesn't fix the problem obviously)
- Beeping occurs with Sennheiser MKE600 shotgun mic when using it's AA-battery power
- Beeping does not occur, however, with MKE600 shotgun mic when using UM46Pro's Phantom power
- Beeping is louder when shotgun mic is in XLR input 1 than when it's in XLR input 2

All this leads me to believe this is something related to the SD card ports interacting with the XLR ports negatively (and the physical proximity of the SD ports to the XLR ports matters). Perhaps someone with more knowledge would know why using Phantom power (instead of AA's) eliminates the issue.

The bummer is that the Senneiser G3 lav mics cannot run on Phantom power (battery power only), so that means you cannot use wireless mics when writing to SD cards on the URSA Mini Pro. :(

This is a user forum.. There are a few people from BMD in here.. But if you really need to flag this as an issue you should file a support ticket on the website..


Right, well I'm of course very interested to hear if others are having this issue, but it's nice when BMD replies to threads since it's visible to others.
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Xtreemtec

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Re: Beeping Audio on URSA Mini Pro + SD Cards

PostTue Apr 04, 2017 11:35 am

Well that was a good suggestion and a good test with intresting results then :geek:

When you ran the shotgun mic and G3 set on battery's Was the housing of the mic / g3 touching the metal of the ursa body? #Groundloop maybe?? Or maybe when it is touching the ursa body does it deliver different results? Because i have the feeling there is some shielding / grounding issue here what interference with the audio when using SD cards.. But not with Cfast cards..

I just now saw you had an audio clip to listen too.. This sounds like "data"
(You can hear this sorts of distortions too if you have a big audio set plugged into the 3,5mm TRS on your computer.. You hear digital noise coming from the mainboard, power supplies etc.. )

CFast is based on the SATA protocol interface. This is a differential pair LVDS interface. Also the Cfast cards are shielded it its own i believe.. (Sheet metal housing?)

The SD card is a plastic housing and the interface to a SD card is SPI Which is a 3.3V TTL 1 line for write and 1 line for read.. (with some clock lines and other stuff) So yes these are quite different in interface and so can have different outcomes on the audio.. As in this case is shown.

As a hardware software engineer this is a very intresting topic :idea:
Daniel Wittenaar .:: Xtreemtec Media Productions ::. -= www.xtreemtec.nl =-
4K OBV, ATEM TVS HD, 1M/E 4K, 2M/E Broadcast Studio 4K, Hyperdeck Studio Mini, SONY FS7 4K, Ursa Broadcast 4K
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Emile Kelly

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Re: Beeping Audio on URSA Mini Pro + SD Cards

PostTue Apr 04, 2017 4:20 pm

I'm having the same issue with Cfast cards!
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Paul Kramm

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Re: Beeping Audio on URSA Mini Pro + SD Cards

PostTue Oct 24, 2017 6:17 pm

Its Oct 24, 2017.....
any fix for this bad audio!!!!!!
still getting beeping sound!!!!!
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Paul Kramm

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Re: Beeping Audio on URSA Mini Pro + SD Cards

PostTue Oct 24, 2017 10:38 pm

come on!!!!!
no one has any news on this audio thanggg
all I get is Crickets.....
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Xtreemtec

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Re: Beeping Audio on URSA Mini Pro + SD Cards

PostWed Oct 25, 2017 1:16 pm

Paul Kramm wrote:all I get is Crickets.....
Were you recording on a summer night while light was fading? :lol:

Yes things should get fixed.. But have anyone of you filled a ticket at support?? ;)
Daniel Wittenaar .:: Xtreemtec Media Productions ::. -= www.xtreemtec.nl =-
4K OBV, ATEM TVS HD, 1M/E 4K, 2M/E Broadcast Studio 4K, Hyperdeck Studio Mini, SONY FS7 4K, Ursa Broadcast 4K
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DavisEngeler

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Re: Beeping Audio on URSA Mini Pro + SD Cards

PostMon Nov 06, 2017 4:58 pm

Have you sorted this issue? I'm having the exact same problem with our wireless Sennheiser EK-100 going into the XLR. Like you reported, it's much more severe on XLR 1 than XLR 2, and only seems to happen when I'm actually recording.

At the moment, we're recording to SD cards, but I'm about to try with C-Fast. Just updated the camera's firmware and it seemed to affect the sound of the pattern, but that could have been a coincidence. The audio sounds clean with the wired XLR mics we've tried so far. About to open a ticket with Blackmagic.

Please post any results or new information here if you can. Thank you!
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Denny Smith

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Re: Beeping Audio on URSA Mini Pro + SD Cards

PostMon Nov 06, 2017 6:15 pm

Sounds like radio frequency interference on the wireless mics. See if it still is there with CFast cards, and is the beep present on the headphone monitor jack while recording? If so, the camera is generating some type of interference.
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Peter Furia

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Re: Beeping Audio on URSA Mini Pro + SD Cards

PostMon Nov 06, 2017 6:31 pm

Blackmagic are aware of this issue say they may be able to fix it in firmware (updated). Here's what they said to me (they said it's okay to post this here):

We are aware of the issue, try enabling the -20dB padding and let me know if that alleviates the issue. Additionally, when using XLR input 1, either enabling -20dB padding or limiting the gain level to under 80% will in most cases remove the beeping.


Unfortunately, I wasn't able to test this yet, as I encountered the "white screen of death" https://forum.blackmagicdesign.com/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=60242 just a couple days ago, and sent my UMP in for RMA. Rough week... Bottom line - just record audio separately.
Last edited by Peter Furia on Wed Nov 08, 2017 6:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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DavisEngeler

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Re: Beeping Audio on URSA Mini Pro + SD Cards

PostMon Nov 06, 2017 11:04 pm

Tested with C-Fast and did not experience the problem. This seems to be exclusively tied to SD card recordings for us. It is very audible when monitoring with headphones (but only when actually recording). It remains in the final footage when viewed dumped to the computer. :cry:

This is a bit upsetting. Blackmagic offered for us to send in the camera for repair or replacement, but this is unfortunately not an option for us and our current schedule. We can't be without the camera for more than a week.

I ordered from B&H and they suggested we buy another one and just return this unit for a refund. Is this going to be a fundamental issue shared between all URSA Mini Pros, or are there just lemons floating around? I'm worried the replacement will have the same problem.
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Peter Furia

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Re: Beeping Audio on URSA Mini Pro + SD Cards

PostMon Nov 06, 2017 11:53 pm

DavisEngeler wrote:Tested with C-Fast and did not experience the problem. This seems to be exclusively tied to SD card recordings for us. It is very audible when monitoring with headphones (but only when actually recording). It remains in the final footage when viewed dumped to the computer. :cry:


I found it was present with CFast as well, but only at the highest settings (4.6K, ProRes4444 or RAW). You might crank the volume and see if it's there as well. No idea if it's an issue with all cameras or only certain ones.
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Mattwright

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Re: Beeping Audio on URSA Mini Pro + SD Cards

PostFri Nov 10, 2017 12:51 pm

Same issue for me yesterday, Using RodeLink Wireless Mic System, Whilst recording to CFast card. We were filming at 4.6K proRes 422HQ.

I'm gonna send my camera back under RMA. I had to go through every clip we shot and try and Noise Reduce the buzzing. I just don't think this is acceptable for a professional camera.

Our camera has already spent a month on BlackMagic's bench having it's LCD Screen fixed for flashing.

Not good Blackmagic !!!!
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Luca Rocchini

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Re: Beeping Audio on URSA Mini Pro + SD Cards

PostWed Dec 20, 2017 3:21 pm

I have just done some tests, you can download them here:

http://www.lucarocchini.com/SOUND_TESTS_URSAMINIPROV4.5_1217.zip

Any thoughts welcome!
Luca Rocchini DOP

URSA MINI PRO 4.6K, EF, PL, SSD Recorder, BM VA 4K, Nikon AIS

http://www.lucarocchini.com/
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Luca Rocchini

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Re: Beeping Audio on URSA Mini Pro + SD Cards

PostThu Dec 21, 2017 11:56 am

Just got a reply from a soundman friend of mine.
He simply suggested me to increase the radio mic receiver to +12db so in order to balance the -20db from the URSA pad and get a "more robust signal".
Need more sound people in this community ;)
Luca Rocchini DOP

URSA MINI PRO 4.6K, EF, PL, SSD Recorder, BM VA 4K, Nikon AIS

http://www.lucarocchini.com/
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acsmyth

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Re: Beeping Audio on URSA Mini Pro + SD Cards

PostWed Jan 10, 2018 3:18 pm

Did Blackmagic ever fix this?
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Adrian Musto

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Re: Beeping Audio on URSA Mini Pro + SD Cards

PostMon Jan 15, 2018 11:01 pm

I have this issue on my camera too, but with CFast cards and a Sennheiser EW-112P G3 wireless mic. This is potentially a huge problem that needs to be fixed.
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Sebastian RYE

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Re: Beeping Audio on URSA Mini Pro + SD Cards

PostWed Aug 29, 2018 4:50 am

I solved the audio noise problem on my MINI URSA 4.6 K
By turning off the ( PAD XRLR 1 -20dB )
It is located on the AUDIO MENU on the Second page.
I only have the problem with lappel radio mics plugged in.
The noise starts as soon as i plug in an XLR Cable from the Lappel even if the mic is turned off.
And the Audio gets worse when i hit record, static noise and a squeaking beeping noise.
Hope that helps
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Peter Furia

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Re: Beeping Audio on URSA Mini Pro + SD Cards

PostWed Aug 29, 2018 4:39 pm

I ended up getting the URSA SSD Recorder (since CFast is dead), and a byproduct of that was no longer having the beep (since the SSDs are disconnected from the audio in's).
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Denny Smith

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Re: Beeping Audio on URSA Mini Pro + SD Cards

PostWed Aug 29, 2018 5:03 pm

Peter, why do you think CFast is dead? While it is not as widely adopted as SD, it is being used in more Pro cameras than XQD, which Sony has adopted instead of CFast for their Pro Line Cameras, but CFast is in wider use the XQD, which until now we’re ony in a few Sony and Nikon Cameras, and Sony and Lexar are the only manufacturers making them. CFast is in wider distribution with more card makers, including market leader SanDisk.

I know the upcoming CFExpress will offer even faster data throughput, with its PCIe 3.0 interface. But their are not any cards being made yet, and the good news they will fit in the XQD slot, which also uses thenPCIe 3.0 interface with a FW upgrade only required.

That said, more csmeras are using CFast than XQD, so while CF cards are going away, CFast is going to be around for a while. BM has included CFast in its new PC4K, if anything, I would have thought the smaller XQD would have been a better fit for a small camera, but XQD/CEExperss acceptance is still a ways off. The on,y new camera using XQD, is Nikon’s new Z7/6 system, but they start at $1995, for the Z6, and no Resolve!
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Denny Smith
SHA Productions
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Peter Furia

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Re: Beeping Audio on URSA Mini Pro + SD Cards

PostWed Aug 29, 2018 5:22 pm

I based my statement mainly off this article about CFast dying: http://resourcemagonline.com/2016/10/th ... ast/68002/

And then seeing the news of Lexar being shuttered: https://petapixel.com/2017/06/27/r-p-le ... ory-cards/

There are certainly plenty of CFast in the market, but the guy makes a compelling argument. More importantly, the price per gigabyte of SSDs vs CFast is no contest. Switching to the Blackmagic SSD Recorder completely changed my life at shoots. No more worrying about filling up cards and no more feeling like I was tied to an unnecessarily expensive media.
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Denny Smith

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Re: Beeping Audio on URSA Mini Pro + SD Cards

PostWed Aug 29, 2018 6:45 pm

Yes, the coast per MB of storage, and the larger size SSDs is a good reason on its own. I had not seen that article, I gave it a quick read, but I think CFast is going to be around until it is replaced by CFExpress.
Yes p, the article you referenced basically says the same thing, CFExpress is the future, but thst is a year or more off. XQD has the advantage of being uogradeable with its PCIe interface. CFast is SATA, capped at 600MB tesnfer rates, but we are at 400MB transfer rates right now on most cards, and 500+ on a few newer ones, which are more than enough of 4K Raw (compressed) and ProRes. Interesting enough Sony is now making a CFast 2 Card 510MB write Speed, so they are spreading their market share also.

I like the concept behind XQD cards, BM would have been wise in selecting this as the media for the new PC4K, but wanted to keep recording media in line with their other cameras, so went with dual CFast (to work with Ursa Mini Pro csmera users (who would balk at having to buy yet another card format) and SD UHSII p, which is used on the other 4K recording equipment BM makes, and allows existing Pocket camera users to keep their fast SD UHSI cards in use.

Pro recording media has never been inexpensive, and Lexar has had its share of issues with several of their cards, not just CFast, so not surprised they are in trouble, but that has nothing to do with CFast market in general.
Cheers
Denny Smith
SHA Productions

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