Channel One and Channel Two Audio In The Twilight Zone
Ever thought you were actually in the Twilight Zone? This is like having a UFO land in your backyard, have the little guys come in you house, take a six-pack from the fridge, sit on the couch drinking all the beer while watching an episode of The X-Files, get back in their ship and and zoom away, and then try telling your wife about it when she comes home and sees all the empty cans on the floor. "No, really honey, these little guys landed and then came in the house and well, um....and....they....um...you see, it was like this....never mind....I'll clean it up, sorry."
This is what I feel like. I have a XH-A1s. One of the reasons I waited for the "s" model to come out before I bought an XH A1 was that a new feature was the ability to set channel one at one level with one xlr mike and have that one mike go on channel two with a lower level. Standard trick to make certain that if somebody spikes with a laugh or scream, you have another track to use that is at a lower level and not distorted.
This camera is really prone to distorting really bad if you hit that red mark. When I got the camera I set it up this way so I had a safe track to switch over to in case channel one distorts. Worked great.
Then I discovered bad pixels and had to take it to Canon for service. When I got the camera back, it was reset to factory defaults and I could not for the life of me get it back to be able to set separate levels for channel one and channel two. The manual makes no sense when it comes to this feature and does not really explain how to do it (which Canon acknowledges that it does not know how to do - see below.)
Lived with it like this for a year or so. Never could figure it out or find anybody on any forum that could explain how to set it up. Then I discovered new bad pixels. Back to Canon main service center in Irvine. While there I asked them to tell me how to set the levels as above or see if it was broken.
They couldn't tell me how to do it and said it maybe needed to be repaired. Got the camera back by FedEx and it is exactly like I gave it to them. No explanation for what they did, how to set the menu system to do this, nothing about it at all, but they charged me to "Fix" this issue. Also, they don't give you receipts for the work they do. No itemized list off work or parts. Just a big charge and you have no clue as to what work they did, if any.
So I call the Canon Professional Services Hotline to have them walk me through it. After 35 minutes of them not being able to set it on the camera they have in front of them and not being able to figure out the manual they have in front of them either (I had to explain what page the audio section was on in the manual in front of them), they tell me that after checking with everybody in the office, this is not a feature of this camera and it can't be done!
I really felt like I was going nuts. While on the phone, I get on the internet and read to them from the Canon product web page the list of features of the new Canon XH-A1s, which one of them is the ability to set separate levels for one mike on the two different channels. They say, "Oh, really, it says that on the Canon products web page?...Well.. sorry, but we can' help you, we don't know about that feature. Never heard of it. We just have the manual that you have and it does not explain how to do that." This is the freaking Canon Professional Services Hotline!
Nobody at Canon will admit that this is something you can do on this camera (even hough I had it working, but I don't know how) and even though all over Canon's website and product information this is touted as one of the features. Made me feel like Rod Serling was in the room.
Anybody that can walk me through this and has done it should be working at Canon or give a training class to them.
And if any of you are thinking about getting this Camera, it can shoot some really nice stuff, but I'd look at Sony or Panasonic first. Canon's service is sub par and every Canon camera I've had has had bad pixels.
So, can anybody actually walk me through this or point to a web site where they show you how. I've googled it in every way I can think of and found nothing other than announcement and press releases from Canon about this being one of the new features of this new "s" model.
Get me out of this Twilight Zone!