Street magic

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by C J, Sep 13, 2018.

  1. Hey theory 11 forum crew I have a question for the street performers.

    Over the summer I did street shows and that was an amazing experience. However I didn't have a mic. I have already asked the local businesses and there fine with me using a mic. I am looking for a small mic that I don't have to use my hands to use for under 150$. If anyone has any suggestions that'd be great.
  2. Hey CJ!

    So there are of course a lot of options here like I’m sure you’ve been looking through.

    The first thing you want to think about is if you want a lavalier microphone (which would attach to your shirt or jacket under your chin). Rode makes some really great (in my opinion) lavalier microphones well within your budget. They are meant to be plugged into a smartphone, so they have the wrong adapter to go into a wireless transceiver but you can fix that by picking up a converter which can then plug in. I use these microphones for filming interviews and documentaries on my job so I can vouch for them.

    Another option (and my preferred for performing) is the headset/cheek microphone which are like their names lifted up over the ear (they use these in theatrical perfances to mic actors because they are out of the way and do not suffer from clothing causing additional noise). For this style I would suggest looking at Samson because they provide excellent quality for the price. They have four different types, and if you don’t have the wireless packs to use them then you can purchase the kits as well (although that may push a little out of the budget you listed). Right now you can get the SE10 (just the microphone) for a steal in my opinion, and it like all of the Samson microphones it should come with the adaptors for various inputs so you are covered.

    If you are getting the wireless equipment (the belt pack and the receiver) for either of those kits above you will want to plan for another $150 or more in budget - especially if you want better quality and the opportunity to adjust channels, which you may need.

    The next up in quality of sound for microphones is probably Shure, Countryman, and Sennheiser (and at that level you are paying considerably more than your budget, and I feel that if you aren’t recording movie theater multi-million dollar audio they aren’t needed).

    As for the which style debate, folks in my SAM group, including myself, tend toward the headset setup. I will say though, that one of the mentalists in the group doesn’t like headsets because of a perception of having audio pumped into your ear... like an in-ear monitor of sorts like musicians can use. So they choose lavaliers. Also consider how much you move while performing, because lavaliers will pick up all kind of rustling noises from your clothes as you move around the stage. If you sit at a table and keep minimal movements while performing, then there would probably be less rustling.

    A question for you directly: What audio system are you using (i.e. PA system, or speaker setup)? If you don’t have one already, sometimes those come as kits including their microphones, wireless packs, speakers, stands, etc. (I know the Samson ones do).
    C J likes this.

  3. Currently I don’t have a microphone that I use for street performing. When I started at the beginning of the summer I used a stick mic and as you can imagine that didn’t work out so well :p. So I am just starting out looking for a mic. I’ve seen other people using the cheek microphone and that worked out really well for them. So I think I’ll try that.

    Thank you for the good advice and the sources.

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