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Microphone screen

Michael4000Michael4000 STREAMING PRO Posts: 992
Does anyone on here use a microphone screen? Is it really necessary for beginners, or is this something you start using when you "get good"


  • You mean a "pop filter"? or wind screen?

    Pop filters are good to use for anybody. beginner, or professional. It keeps the P's from popping. I use one myself.

    Wind screens are good for outdoors, or as somebody suggested using them to protect your teeth if you're active with a mic.

  • Michael4000Michael4000 STREAMING PRO Posts: 992
    I think I mean pop filter. The thing you see Ken and his students using on their recordings in his Studio. This is all new to me.
  • Yeah, that's a pop filter. I use one with my Large Diaphragm Condenser mic.

    If you are recording with a sensitive mic it's good to use one. I never use one with my hand held mics even though I use my sm57 quite a bit for recording my vocals.

  • doc_ramadanidoc_ramadani Administrator, 2.0 PRO, Facility Management Posts: 3,978
    Hi folks,

    I own a large diaprragm condenser mic (RODE NT-1A) and certainly MUST use a pop filter. Else the recordings are not usable. Maybe I don't need it anymore when I learned to only use consonants very lightly.

  • Michael4000Michael4000 STREAMING PRO Posts: 992
    edited December 2018
    So here's a question. Why don't singers use pop filters during live performances, only in the recording studio. One explanation I read was that many microphones have something built in that does what the pop filter does. But if this is case, why use a pop filter at all if your microphone has the built in feature? I have a Shure SM58.
  • Mics are made different for certain applications.
    You have Cardioid, condenser, dynamic, and ribbon types.

    Some are more sensitive than others. The more sensitive studio mics record less noise from your lips, and breath when you use a pop filter. (lip smacks, P pops, etc.....)

    Your live mics aren't as sensitive, and are built to take some concussion into the mic.

    I would suggest looking up the different types of mics, and how they are used.

    Peace, Tony
  • Michael4000Michael4000 STREAMING PRO Posts: 992
    @videoace thanks, I will research this further. @doc_ramadani How do you like the RODE NT-1A? Do you think it really makes your voice sound that much better than an average hand held mic like the Shure SM58 I have?
  • highmtnhighmtn Administrator, Moderator, Enrolled, Pro, 3.0 Streaming Posts: 15,346
    The SM58 has a built-in pop filter and is designed to be used in close proximity.
    If you screw off the metal cage on the end, you will see that it is lined with foam rubber. That's your pop filter.

    Most studio mics do not have pop filters built-in. Pop filters slightly alter the sound, especially in the low end, and some (thick foam ones) also attenuate the highs a little bit. So recording engineers and producers like to use the external (hoop screens) when in the studio, so they can experiment with the placement and see what gives the best results for the recording. Hoop screens tend to block the view of the singer's face, so they aren't the best for music or vocal videos, but they work well for preventing plosives (breath pops).

    Also, pops are more likely at close range. Some vocals are recorded "close mic" and others are recorded with the mic about a foot away, and not in direct line with the sound from the singer's mouth. This prevents most plosives, and also gets a little bit of the "sound of the room" combined with the sound of the voice itself. It's just a matter of preference. Up close, many mics exhibit what is known as the "Proximity Effect" which basically means the closer you are, the more bass (low frequencies) the mic will pick up.

    The SM58 has a proximity effect. You can hear it when it's right up against your mouth, vs a foot away, has very little low boost at a distance. So pop filters are required (built-in or external) when singing up close to a mic, straight-on.
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