Step Up To the Mic
Unique mic apps
First is the HHB Flashmic (DRM85), which is built around a Sennheiser omni-directional condenser capsule. In the body of this mic is a 48kHz/16-bit digital audio recording device. It records to an internal 1GB flash memory. Linear (WAV) files or MPEG 1 Layer 2 files can be recorded and then transferred up to 90x real-time via a USB cable to a Mac or PC. Two AA batteries can power the Flashmic for six hours. This looks interesting for news or sports gathering.
And speaking of sports, AKG offers a line of professional level headsets derived from its K171 and K271 headset line. The HSC171 and HSC271 feature condenser mic elements, a flexible mic arm that will swivel through 270 degrees for use by lefties or righties, and noise-free microswitches used for mic muting.
Microphone preferences are so subjective that you should try different mics for yourself. I have provided only a few ideas about types and manufacturers. It is a good idea to audition multiple mics at the same time, hopefully in the same studio environment, so that at least some of the external factors that affect the sound will be the same for the mics under test.
Mics with a different character — whether it's their sound or their look — can go a long way toward giving your station a unique feel with listeners and a unique look for jocks and other staff.
Audio Engineering Assoc.
Cad Professional Microphone
Pearl Microphone Lab
Sound Performance Lab
Irwin is director of engineering for Clear Channel Radio Seattle.
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