Buyers Guide: Microphones

For every audio niche
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For every audio niche
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DPA Microphones d:fine

The DPA d:fine is an in-ear broadcast headset microphone targeted at presenters who use in-ear monitors to communicate with their producers backstage or to hear foldback from people interviewed outside the studio. With this model, ear pads in two different sizes are included, and the mic is designed to reduce audio leakage between the in-ear drivers and the microphone capsule, which can be either omnidirectional or directional. The unit incorporates two cables—microphone and earpiece—that run parallel.

The d:fine has a steel spring construction at the ear hook to offer quick mounting around virtually any ear, while the cable to the integrated in-ear plug can be lengthened or shortened to suit the user. Any excess cable can be wound up around the plug or placed behind the outer ear. The unit can be adjusted to fit and, by choosing between left and right ear orientation, it is even possible to give the on-camera host a “camera-blind” side.

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AKG’s CS3 discussion system offers a variety of gooseneck microphone options that can be expanded up to 120 units. The CS3 provides users with a plug-and-play, easy-to-use professional system. The CS3 BU is a 19-inch 2-RU transmitting interface device that controls up to 60 delegate stations. The base station can work alone or be remotely controlled by a PC. Multiple working modes enable free or controlled speech as needed during a conference.

The CS3 CU (chairman unit) is the system’s microphone station, with options to mute all delegates and activate the “next-in-line” feature. The base unit connects to all relevant devices and systems, such as PA, recording, external audio sources and camera control systems. Different operating modes enable automatic or controlled conferences, even without PC remote.

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The Shure SM58 vocal microphone is designed for professional vocal use in live performance, sound reinforcement and studio recording. Widely used for its reliable sound quality and durability, it is a frequent choice for on-stage use and at podiums. A built-in spherical filter minimizes wind and breath “pop” noise, and a unidirectional (cardioid) pickup pattern isolates the main sound source and minimizes unwanted background noise.

The SM58 has a frequency response that favors vocals, with heightened midrange and bass rolloff. A built-in pneumatic handling system reduces handling noise, and the SM58 is supplied with a heavy stand mount adapter.

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The Audio-Technica U891Rx cardioid condenser boundary microphone features an activation switch that can be set to three modes: press-on/press-off, press-to-talk, and press-to-mute. The phantom-powered microphone is equipped with an installation-friendly rotating output connector and an LED status indicator. The U891Rx is designed to minimize radio frequency interference, and the unit has interchangeable elements for cardioid, hypercardioid and omnidirectional polar patterns.

With an 80 Hz low-cut filter, the A-T U891Rx reduces pickup of low-frequency ambient noise. The microphone’s heavy die-cast case and silicon foam bottom pads minimize coupling of surface vibration to the microphone. The unit’s self-contained electronics eliminate the need for an external power module.

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The Azden SGM-PDII is a professional mini shotgun microphone with a hard wired three-pin XLR output cable. Designed for broadcast and prosumer cameras that supply phantom power, the SGM-PDII includes shock mount holder with shoe and flocked-foam windscreen.

The SGM-PDII is a high-performance shotgun microphone that operates via phantom power (11-52VDC) only. Designed to fit right into the microphone clamp/holder of today’s popular mid-range professional cameras, the SGM-PDII offers directional pickup that strongly rejects sound form the sides. The frequency response is tailored to give maximum intelligibility to voices, making the SGM-PDII a good choice for interviews and news shooting. Similar to the Audio-Technica SGM-PII, the SGM-PDII has a hard wired output cable while the SGM-PII has an XLR connector at the end if its body, allowing the use of any length high performance microphone cable.

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RØDE RødeLink

The Røde RødeLink is a wireless mic for video and film production. Using a series II 2.4GHz digital transmission with 128-bit encryption, it is able to constantly monitor and hop between frequencies to maintain the strongest possible signal level at a range of more than 300 feet. The The RødeLink Filmmaker Kit provides everything you need to start shooting video wirelessly, including a receiver, transmitter and broadcast-grade lavaliere microphone. The receiver (RX-CAM) features an OLED display with information on level, battery status (receiver and transmitter), mute and channel selection. The unit can be mounted on a standard camera shoe mount, 3/8-inch thread or belt-clip, and for added versatility the shoe mount can be located in one of two positions.

The lightweight transmitter (TX-BELT) can be fitted to a belt or clothing and features a locking thread to ensure the microphone connection is as secure as possible. Røde’s omnidirectional lavaliere microphone is included in the kit, and it provides clear and natural sound quality.

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The Sennheiser ADN-W wireless chair station microphone offers high speech intelligibility and a simple, user-friendly interface. With twin loudspeakers and a modular gooseneck mic equipped with a variety of Sennheiser mic capsules that ensure intelligibility and clarity. Chair stations feature a “Next” key to allow speaking privileges and a “Priority” key to deactivate all active conference stations, in addition to a microphone on/off button.

Available in four configurations (supercardioid or lobar capsules in two different lengths), the included hot-swappable ADN-W BA rechargeable battery pack offers more than 20 hours of operation time. The Sennheiser AND-W wireless chair station uses digital transmission for undistorted sound. It can be positioned up to 100 feet from an ADN-W AM antenna module, which in turn connects to the Sennheiser ADN CU1 central unit.