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After a few months of work with the SD833, here are my impressions and some suggestions. This topic is meant to be completed by other users to share their experience and thoughts about this machine, knowing that folks at Sound Devices are reading. First of all, I have to say that the SD833 is a great tool. I loved the 633 and was kind of skeptical at the beginning, not seeing well what were the advantages of the upgrade. But after a while, I have to say that I am completed conviced by the advantages of the 8 series, especially now with the new plugin and developments we can see coming. At the beginning, I was worried by the power consumption, and if indeed the 833 is more power hungry, this is definitly not an issue at all. With a full Audioroot Smart Battery of 98 Wh, I can work more or less five to six hours continuous, depending on channels activated, and with my MCR42’s feeded by the same battery. It’s 30 to 40 minutes less than the 633 in average, so not a big deal. Speaking of power, I miss the Quickboot option of the 6 series. Working mainly in documentary where one have to react very quickly, sometimes I prefer to keep the recorder powered on to not miss any shot. I am shure that with Quickboot, I could lay the 833 in sleep mode and spare my batteries. I love the flexibility of the routing and the 6 mic preamps. With the 633, when using an MS pair, the second channel potentiometer was not used and I had to mix the lavs on the small pots. Now, I put my Mid on channel 3, the Side on channel 4 and I keep channel 1 and 2 for radio microphones. If I need more lavs, I use Dungan that works better than on the 633, or at least, the display is clearer. Speaking of the MS pair, I find very cool to have he gains linked too, but I would love to be able to trim the level of the second channel. Now the gains are perfectly matched, but sometimes, it’s usefull to be able to lower the second channel by a few dB’s. The display, although small is clear and easily readable. But sometimes, when on a cart, I use the iPad app. I don’t know how could this be poossible , but I’d love to have the ability to browse the menus, or to adjust the eq’s on the iPad screen. Regarding the eq’s, that’s a great addition compared to the 633, and one of the main reason to change for me. But I miss the ability to store setups. I mainly use the eq to compensate the lost of High’s when lavs are concealed, or with a wind fur, and also to emulate the LFA filter of the Nagra to compensate proximity effect. If I could store these default setups, that would be a great addition. Same for the input routing. If I could easily change the inputs assignation and names without having to load a complete setup, that would be great and so helpful. Regarding the meters, I miss the balistics settings that were in the 633. We can’t adapt the type of meters like before. I love the PPM, and I can’t change the default setup of VU + Peak hold. The ouput settings are awsome and very flexible, but I can’t send an X1 or X2 Bus to the XLR out. Recently, I had to make a different mix on the recorder and the scratch track on the camera and was surprised that I could not change the XLR out. We were shooting while skiing and I had not my TA3 adaptors… Finally, this message is already far too long, and I am sorry for this, but I would say that I will not go back annd I am looking forward the developments of this great machine. I'll be interested to read what other SD833 users are experiencing or suggesting. Thanks for reading !
Hi, I spent the whole day testing the new SD833. Not in real life yet, but rather an introduction and discovery of the new functions. First thing, no more Quickboot, but fortunately, the initialization of the recorder only takes 8 seconds, rather acceptable for this type of equipment. Regarding the battery life, I tested the 833 with an MS couple of Schoeps microphones powered in 48 Volts, and a Wisycom MCR42 receiver connected in AES 3 on inputs 1 and 2. My Audioroot distribution shows a power consumption of more or less 12 W, or about 6 hours with a fully charged 98 Wh battery. In the end, in a real situation, it will take 2 batteries to last the full day, but it doesn't seem to me to be a fundamental problem, as I always carry spare batteries. On the other hand, what worries me a little is the heat released by the device. After a while, it becomes almost impossible to hold hands on the frame as it is so hot. The box acts as a thermal radiator, but I have some concerns for the days when the recorder is installed in a bag and the outside temperature is high. I hope that Sound devices has anticipated this aspect well, because the 833 will first be used in a bag. I called other colleagues and they observed the same heat release. Despite this concern, I love the features offered by this machine. Thanks to the 6 microphone inputs, I can now connect my MS pair to inputs 3 and 4 and link it to keep the potentiometers 1 and 2 free for wireless receivers. With the 633, I had to use 1 and 2 for the stereo pair and lost the possibility to use the second potentiometer. When the channels are linked, all their parameters are also linked (fader, gain, filter, limiter, etc.). The menus are very intuitive and easy to navigate if you know the 633, and there are some well thought-out shortcuts like the Pan. By pressing the */** switch and turning the encoder, the Pan can be varied continuously and not only switched betweeen the three fixed positions. I also like the integrated EQs to compensate for the effect of a fur on a windshield outdoors for example, the adjustable limiters and filters with lower cut-off frequencies but especially a slope of 18 dB/oct, more suitable for cleaning boom handling noises, in my opinion . The screen is very readable and has a better resolution than the 633. The colored LED rings around the gains could look a bit "disco style", but are indeed very useful as you can see on which channels there is a signal and if the levels are correctly adjusted. I found in this machine, the qualities of the 788 (Led rings, internal SSD) and the flexibility and ergonomics of the Sound Devices mixers. Concerning the sound, the preamps seem clearer to me than those of the 633, perhaps because of the absence of input transformers and a decrease in the distortion rate. This will have to be confirmed after the first shoots in real life situations. The version of the Firmware I installed today seems to solve a Timecode problem and provides CL12 and Mix-assist support (in addition to Dungan). After this first day with the 833, it sems that for run and gun, I'll need to prepare configurations as there are so many things that can be customized. This shows the potential of development and this is exciting as one feel that there is lot to come with this new architecture.