Nikon Coolpix 3700 audio sync problem report

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by AiryFairy, Aug 31, 2004.

  1. AiryFairy

    AiryFairy Guest

    The Coolpix 3700 has a problem with movie recording where the audio
    lags the video on playback. This is widely acknowledged on the
    internet, but seems to be completely unacknowledged by Nikon and
    camera retailers. Some people say the problem goes away when using a
    high speed SD card. My experience may be of interest...

    I can't get rid of the auido lag with ANY of these SD cards:
    - Sandisk standard (16MB and 256MB)
    - Sandisk Ultra II (9MB/s? write, 256MB)
    - Panasonic Super High Speed (10MB/s write, 256MB)

    My findings are (evaluated on camera and PC downloads, using highly
    scientific tapping finger and talking head tests):
    - ALL cards exhibit a constant audio lag at 640/30fps.
    - ALL cards exhibit a constant audio lag at 320/15fps.
    - The lag seems to be about the same for ALL cards/modes.
    - The lag is noticeable, for me unacceptable.
    - The lag has been variously quantified by others
    as about 9 frames and 266 milliseconds.
    - The lag occurs with even short 3 second clips.
    - The lag occurs without using pause during recording.
    - The lag occurs with version 1.2 firmware.

    I suspect the whole 10MB/s card thing is a furphy. The 3700 manual
    mentions it not in relation to audio lag, rather drop out (buffer
    overrun?), page 43:

    "To prevent TV movie 640* from ending unexpectedly, use card rated for
    10MB/s or more".

    Incidently, I recorded an entire 256MB standard Sandisk card at "TV
    movie 640*" without drop out.

    Whether or not it's a deal breaker depends - you can resync in an
    editor, or just live with it. The lag is really obvious and
    off-putting to me. It's a very good snapper despite this, but for me
    the TV video mode is a major selling point and justification for it
    being one of the most expensive 3 megapixel/3x optical auto-only p&s
    ultracompacts on the market. Might just keep it anyway. YMMV, be
    interested to hear...
    AiryFairy, Aug 31, 2004
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