Best audio input on the Sony FX3

Which audio input on the Sony FX3 gives the best quality?

When shooting with the Sony Fx3 we have multiple audio input options to work with. On the top audio handle there’s two XLR inputs with a full set of controls as well as a 3.5mm input with a level control. If not using the audio handle there’s a 3.5mm input on the side of the camera body with levels controlled in. cameras menu or you can also connect a microphone or wireless system to the MI (Multi Interface) Shoe on the camera where the levels are controlled within the external device.

Comparing the FX3 Inputs

In an effort to have a better understanding of how all these input options compare I decided to do a controlled test. I created an audio sample using a high quality voiceover from BigFish Media along with a music track from Artlist. This audio was sent via my Sony UWP D-26 Wireless System so that each input would receive exactly the same signal and then compared the results to see which one provides the most accurate recording with the lowest noise floor.

Sony FX3 Audio Input Shootout - Which One Sounds The Best?
Sony FX3 Audio Input Shootout - Which One Sounds The Best?

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Table of Contents

These links open the relevant section on YouTube

00:00 – Intro
02:08 – Testing Montage
03:03 – Sound Quality Tests
03:19 – Original Source Audio
04:28 – Audio Handle XLR Input
05:41 – Audio Handle 3.5mm Input
07:05 – Camera Body 3.5mm Input
08:28 – MI Shoe – Analogue
09:54 – MI Shoe – Digital
11:36 – Final Play Through & Thoughts
12:51 – Noise Floor Tests
16:29 – Test Conclusions

Products Shown

The following are affiliate links, if you use these and go on to purchase something then I make a small commission. Thanks for supporting my blog.

Sony FX3
Sony UWP D-26 Wireless System
Sony SMAD P-5 Digital / Analogue Adapter
Sennheiser MKH-416 Shotgun Mic

 

2 Responses

  1. Tom Jeffers says:

    Hi Paul I’m not sure if you can help me. I work for the broadcasting company and they’re having a load of problems ingesting IPCM tone. Since FX3 update I have a feeling that Sony changed even 2 channel 24 bit sound to IPCM sound.
    Can I record two channel sound in PCM sound with the handle? And how can I check this?. I’ve been using catalyst browse and it’s saying everything is PCM but that’s not true. 🤷🏻

    • Paul Joy says:

      Hi Tom. I think you asked this elsewhere as I recognise the question. As far as I’m aware the FX3 has always recorded sound as LPCM so I don’t think the update changed that. Let me know if you’re still having problems.

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