QUESTIONS & ANSWERSAsk BCM a Question
What is the recommended way to weatherproof a D500x microphone?
The external mic is essentially weatherproof so long as you do not point it up so that it can collect water. So pointing horizontally should be fine. The only problem with vertical would be that you can't record through the water- there is less concern that the water would hurt anything. The directional horn can be removed and would allow water to not collect in the vertical position.
The connection to the cable should have some protection from soaking rain, but I think a minimalist configuration as shown in the attached will serve to protect and clear the airspace around the microphone. I made this one from 1/16" x 1" aluminum angle. I bent the angle at about a third the length to give me the option of mounting with a shorter or longer horizontal reach. You can get releasable cable ties to attach the mic to the angle. Please see the bottom of this article for photos and further explaination.
And BCM has been shipping mic protector tubes for some time now. These cleverly slip over a D500x mic and have a cap to minimize dust during storage, then the tube is reversed for actual deployment. See this illustration for proper use.
What type of CF cards should I use? And what size should I use?
The manufacturer currently recommends Sandisk Ultra/Ultra II CF cards, or Sandisk Extreme/Extreme III CF cards. These are the ones with the gold labels rather than silver. Sizes up to 32GB have been successfully tested.
We've tested CF card sizes up to 32GB. However, the Pettersson D500x has a total of (4) storage slots, allowing a total of 128GB of combined storage. Things like expected nightly bat activity, insect noise, recording length, and length of time between detector service checks are just a few of the main things to consider when it comes to making sure you have enough storage. As a general rule, try to stick with a single 16GB card for deployments lasting a few nights or a 32GB card for a week. You’ll have more flexibility in terms of when you’ll need to offload your data, and are usually large enough to accommodate a few busy nights of bat activity. One large card is better than 4 tiny cards; one large card will be faster to post-process.
(1) What is the mass of the Standard Edition D500X. with c-cell batteries, microphone, microphone protector, 25 foot extended cable, and pouch? (2) In comparison, what is the mass and outside dimensions of the complete Grab N Go setup with Standard Edition D500X recorder? Does that include a long-range external battery? And if so what is the mass of the long range external battery? (3) We will be transporting detector setups up to 12 miles into Olympic National Park backcountry. Do you have experience to recommend a lighter weight option for weatherizing the D500X in the event we choose to forego the weather-resistant case.? Thanks so much.
Hello- the Grab N Go D500x in the plastic transport/storage/deployment box is about 8 lbs measuring 7x13x9 inches, without an external battery.
By itself the D500x/25' cable/microphone/internal batteries is about 6.5 lbs.
A 6v, 20 ah SLA battery weighs 8 lbs. and measures 6.18"L x 3.27"W x 4.92"H. This battery can fit inside the Grab N Go case. Depending on bat and ambient noise activity, this battery has powered D500x for over a month and still had charge; however your milage will vary and we do not recommend such a long service interval of -any- bat detector system.
To reduce pack size and maintain weatherproofing, you can set the D500x running in a dry bag, then roll up the bag normally with the microphone cable protruding. Shield this from direct sun as overheating will cause any detector to shut down, as there is no venting with the dry bag.