Riggy-Assist Dual-XLR Preamplifier with Metering (No Phantom Power)
Part #: RA202
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2XLR inputs low-noise preamp. "Riggy-Assist" means that it has added features to the Riggy-Micro to assist with cameras which do not have headphones, meters, or manual control. It is Riggy in that it has numerous mounting and accessory options (patent pending). Audio output bracketing (patent pending) for camera overload protection. Alkaline/LiPolymer operation (patent pending). Selective power-down mode (patent pending). The JuicedLink Riggy-Assist Dual-XLR Preamplifier with Metering (No Phantom Power) takes all of the great features found in the Riggy-Micro RM202, and adds AGC Disable, Headphones, and Meters.
The Riggy-Assist incorporates Audio Output Bracketing (patent pending) for camera overload protection. All of the microphone signals are combined, (by setting the MONO/STEREO switch to MONO), and sent to both the the left and right output channels. The copy on the right output channel is then attenuated to a safe lower signal level (about 16dB lower, by turning ON the Rpad switch). So, if you blow out the main audio channel on the left, you have a back up that you can pull from in post on the right.
This approach has advantages over other types of overload protection, such as limiters. First, Audio Output Bracketing consumes no power from the battery, and also adds no noise or distortion to your audio. Second, every camera gain setting (and, every different camera) will have a unique signal level at which clipping will start to occur. So, if you were to attempt to use a limiter approach, you would need to re-calibrate the point at which the limiter would kick in for each different gain setting of the camera (and, each different camera). Be careful, because not all manufacturers even provide you with the ability to set the limiter threshold setting. Audio Output Bracketing needs no calibration for different cameras or different camera gain settings. The backup channel is always there at ~16dB lower signal level, regardless of the camera or camera gain.
The Riggy-Assist uses a 9V battery, and is a high-current device when all of the elements are in operation. However, the Riggy-Assist has a number of features to allow you to optimize your battery life. Portions of the preamp can be selectively powered down if not being used (patent pending), to reduce the current and extend the battery life. If you are doing a fair amount of running-gunning with only one mic, you can power down 1 of the XLR channels (patent pending). If you are using a camera that has meters visible while recording, you can power down the meter (patent pending). Furthermore, there are very high capacity lithium-polymer batteries on the market, which also have the convenience of being rechargeable.
The low-battery indicator can be switched between alkaline or lithium-polymer threshold, so you can use either chemistry without leaving unnecessary capacity in the battery (patent pending). Battery estimates below. The Riggy-Micro series of preamps (RM202) will get considerably longer battery life, as it does not have the headphone, meter, or AGC Disable circuitry (and, it will be smaller and lighter). The Riggy-Assist is designed to be used with cameras which do not have manual control, meters, or headphones. The preamp adds AGC Disable, meters, and headphones that are missing in the camera. If your camera already has those features, then check out the Riggy-Micro line of preamps. The Riggy-Assist can also be used as a XLR front end to digital audio recorders. Here are some of the many companion devices used with the Riggy-Micro.
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