FMX- DSLR XLR audio adapter (1 of 9)

I just got the Azden FMX-DSLR XLR audio adapter in for testing. Similar in design to the Beachtek DXA-SLR, the FMX-DSLR offers up 2 XLR inputs, independent gain control, powered monitoring, AGC disable (if you have a camera that requires that)  and 48V phantom power.  Both units also have the same selection of AUX/XLR inputs and the two units are within a 1/4 inch of being the same size. There are 3 major differences between the two units. First the Azden FMX-DSLR runs on 4x AA batteries (Beachtek used a 9 volt), the Azden’s case is made out of thick plastic (Beachtek is in a metal case), and the Azden is currently priced at $261, while the Beachtek is at $285. It’s also good to note that both of these units are far less expansive than the Juicedlink Riggy RM333 (and much easier to use).

FMX- DSLR XLR audio adapter (9 of 9)

Controls on the Azden FMX-DSLR are pretty straight forward. You have independent source select of MIC 1, LINE, and MIC 2, as well as LOW/HI gain switches for each channel with easy to use volume control knobs below. On the right hand side you can select between mono and stereo output to the camera as well as monitoring sources for the included headphone amp. Pretty much everything you’ll need to use is right there ready to go.

FMX- DSLR XLR audio adapter (8 of 9)

Inputs are mostly straight forward on the Azden FMX-DSLR. XLR inputs are pretty much self explanatory set each channel source selector to “MIC 1” and you’ll get the XLR input signals sent to your camera, the “output” jack is the feed for your camera or audio recorder, the “phones” jack is for headphone monitoring, and the RTN is designed to monitor return audio from your camera or other input if needed. The “AUX (R)” input is designed to connect an unbalanced device with a mini-plug output cable and sends audio directly to the right channel bypassing the right XLR input.

Were the Azden FMX-DSLR surpases the Beachtek is in the “MIC 2” input. This stereo input allows you plug something like the Rode Videomic pro directly into the unit. Then using the MIC 1/LINE/MIC 2 selector switch on the front of the unit you can choose to feed audio to the Camera’s right channel, left channel, or both at independent volume levels. This plug also provides 3.5 volt input power which can be very handy if you are trying to use a powered lav mic or something like the Rode Videomic go.

FMX- DSLR XLR audio adapter (4 of 9)

On the bottom of the unit, you’ll find the 48V Phantom power controls, 1/4 20 mounting point and AGC disable features. The only thing I’ve found slightly confusing about the Azden FMX-DSLR XLR audio adapter is the note on the bottom that says “Camera AGC switch, ON: enables the AGC function, OFF: disables the AGC function”. When I first read this, I thought “ON” meant that the unit was sending out an AGC disable signal to the camera and “OFF” removed the signal. In actuality it’s the opposite and “ON” actually means the camera’s AGC feature is left alone. So keep that in mind if your camera doesn’t require the AGC disable signal.

I’ll post some audio test and more thoughts on the Azden FMX-DSLR XLR audio adapter as I get a chance to spend more time with it. If all goes well I’ll be putting together a show down between the Azden FMX-DSLRBeachtek DXA-SLR, and Juicedlink Riggy RM333 over the next few weeks so keep an eye out for that. In the meantime, if there is anything you’d like to see tested between these three adapters let me know.

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