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Author Topic: Headset mic and beltpack question  (Read 2626 times)

Guy Morris

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Headset mic and beltpack question
« on: February 12, 2015, 12:38:03 pm »

Hi

I use a lot of DPA product and it performs without question however on a  recent conference event I have experienced two puzzling issues which I wondered if anyone else had encountered,the mention of DPA is only to confirm that the systems are good quality not budget which would offer an easy answer to the perceived problems!

Event is conference

1. Headset 1 comes off stage after a few flawless performances and gets refitted onto the the next delegate speaker, once on stage we start to get what sounds like the cable generating noise from rubbing against clothes (DPA are one of the most silent cable assemblies out there and up to that point no issues with all the suits and shirts) but it only happens when he moves, once he had finished we took the pack and headset backstage fitted it onto a crew member and tried to emulate the problem but no noise. The headset went back out on stage with a female delegate wearing and there was no further issue. All connections were solid (microdot /sennheiser plugs) all cables intact and the fitting is the same for everyone using the small clip to attach the cable to a collar for isolation. (delegate had this intact when he came off which was our first thought it may have popped off or he dislodged it) The mic is directional and was not touching the speakers face. (did not sound like foam popshield rubbing)

2.  Another delegate went up using another same type headest no 4 and this time there was a definite difference in levels as he spoke (like someone was turning the gain up and down!) no popping as with Ps and Bs  it was just an undulating level, the headset appeared to be correcly positioned but when he came off for a minute during a co-presentation we slid the mic boom back another 1 cm  and it seemed to fix the problem. It was in the right position when we got the problem (to the side cheek 1.5cm off skin and 1.5cm back from corner of the lip).

We were running 6 systems and they all performed fine except for these two issues which did not repeat or appear previously.  Usually there is a pattern or an obvious reason why problems occur but I cannot figure what happened so would be interested in hearing from others on the subject.

Useful info

System DPA D:Fine single ear. Senheiser G3s /combiner amps and directional shark fin antennas.  Rx 0db   TX sensitivity -24 ( I know many prefer -30 upwards so maybe a factor on the level problem?) Desk Yamaha running with low compression ratio  3:1 and HA gain at + 24

I did hear somewhere about a person's body chemistry affecting systems or possibly pacemaker /phones.  Most speakers usually keep their phones with them and ask for the belt pack to go in their jacket pocket's rather than on their belts (fast and less intrusive) which was the difference with the women speakers who attached the BP to the back of their dress (no jacket)

Thanks in advance for any input.

Guy
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Mark McFarlane

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Re: Headset mic and beltpack question
« Reply #1 on: February 13, 2015, 04:49:21 am »

What were you doing with the 5 unused transmitters when the problems occurred?  Were they stacked on a table next to each other? Where any of them they turned on?  How far was the guy moving, i.e. was he at a lecturn or walking cross the stage?

http://www.prosoundweb.com/article/print/whoa_you_cant_do_that

For the record, I'm not an RF guy, but I have a show coming up with 10 wireless mics, so I'm studying....
« Last Edit: February 13, 2015, 04:53:26 am by Mark McFarlane »
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Erik Jerde

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Re: Headset mic and beltpack question
« Reply #2 on: February 13, 2015, 08:00:32 am »

I've seen issue #1 before.  DPA dFine omni on ULXD, bad scratching sound.  It was beard stubble.  The mic was well fitted, experienced speaker, but it moved or something between fitting and show time.
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Kevin Maxwell

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Re: Headset mic and beltpack question
« Reply #3 on: February 13, 2015, 10:30:15 am »

It is a good idea to read the link that Mark referred to. It could be many different things from RF interference to mechanical issues. Check the nut on the jack on the Sennheiser G3 body pack if they get loose I have heard similar noise. I have had a persons clothing (I think they were wearing silk) cause a noise that was really hard to trace.

Donít forget proper frequency coordination in the environment. Donít trust what the manufactures say is a good combination.

I consistently test all of the wireless body pack mics that I use before they are put out for the actors. While wearing headphones I cue up each one and talk into them listening for anything that is not normal. I then hold the pack up in the air with the mic dangling and I run my fingers down the wire. If there is a problem and many times if there is one that is about to develop a problem you will hear it when you do that. While listening I manipulate (wiggle) the antenna and the mic connecter making sure everything is tight on the pack, like the loose nut thing I mentioned. I then talk into the mic again and if all checks out ok it is considered good to go for the show.

Could you be having sweat problems? Also I would never let a person have another wireless device like a phone on them. Have you ever heard what the iPhone handshake issue sounds like? I canít remember ever having a presenter refuse to let us clip the pack on their belt. This was before ear set mics, we used MKE2 mics on Lectrosonics packs. And we usually real neatly rigged the mics on their clothing.

There was this one presenter who always came wearing a dress and I would hand her the mic and pack and send her off to the bathroom for her to attach it to were it worked for her. And she would come back with the mic sticking out near her neck and I would deal with mic placement. I remember one time after she was done she wanted to get the pack off without having to go back into the bathroom so in the corner of the room I stood with my back to her blocking any ones view and she removed the pack and handed it to me. I remember the pack being very warm. The funniest part was every time she would see me to get wired up it was like she was just remembering she was wearing something that required her to go thru this routine to get mic-ed up.         

I once had to mic up one guy (I am pretty sure he is or was one of the riches men in the world) and he was a handful. He was so hyper and fidgety it was a challenge to get him to stand still enough. I just felt like telling that story.
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Erik Jerde

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Re: Headset mic and beltpack question
« Reply #4 on: February 13, 2015, 10:38:09 am »

I've had to deal with the bra strap thing a few times.  The actor/theater/dancer types are almost always much more comfortable with just having you put it on them or take it off.  Probably has a lot to do with the level of professionalism you exhibit. 

Probably the more consistent issue I've had with women speakers than the wardrobe issue is the earring issue.  The people I work with regularly know to only wear studs when they're going to be speaking or they will have to remove their earrings.  Other people though, man have I gotten some looks when I explain that the noise is from those gigantic dangly earrings they are wearing or when I request they remove them before the issue appears.

Kind of a topic swerve, but anyone ever had someone with ear proximity issues when they were trying to fit them with an earset?  I've never had that but I could see it coming up some day.
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Kevin Maxwell

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Re: Headset mic and beltpack question
« Reply #5 on: February 13, 2015, 11:07:21 am »

I've had to deal with the bra strap thing a few times.  The actor/theater/dancer types are almost always much more comfortable with just having you put it on them or take it off.  Probably has a lot to do with the level of professionalism you exhibit. 

Probably the more consistent issue I've had with women speakers than the wardrobe issue is the earring issue.  The people I work with regularly know to only wear studs when they're going to be speaking or they will have to remove their earrings.  Other people though, man have I gotten some looks when I explain that the noise is from those gigantic dangly earrings they are wearing or when I request they remove them before the issue appears.

Kind of a topic swerve, but anyone ever had someone with ear proximity issues when they were trying to fit them with an earset?  I've never had that but I could see it coming up some day.

What do you mean by ďear proximity issuesĒ? Is this someone that doesnít like someone near their ear? Like touching them there?

And yes the professional performers are hardly ever a problem with mic-ing up. I always tell them everything I am doing as I am doing it. But I actually havenít really had to deal that much with that lately, I usually have other people that do that part.   
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Erik Jerde

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Re: Headset mic and beltpack question
« Reply #6 on: February 13, 2015, 11:41:22 am »

Yeah, someone who freaks out when you get near their ear.  I figure they gotta be out there.
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Kevin Maxwell

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Re: Headset mic and beltpack question
« Reply #7 on: February 13, 2015, 12:07:22 pm »

Yeah, someone who freaks out when you get near their ear.  I figure they gotta be out there.

Stop blowing it their ear and they wonít freak out so much.  ;) ;) ;)

Actually I wouldn't be surprised if we were to encounter that someday but it is more likely that they just donít want anyone too near them and they donít like to be touched. But usually someone with those kinds of issues arenít going to be someone that would be getting up in front of a lot of people and talking.
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Guy Morris

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Re: Headset mic and beltpack question
« Reply #8 on: February 17, 2015, 06:31:11 am »

I've seen issue #1 before.  DPA dFine omni on ULXD, bad scratching sound.  It was beard stubble.  The mic was well fitted, experienced speaker, but it moved or something between fitting and show time.

That would explain why there was no problem with the female presenter! :D  speakers do have a habit of doing things prior to going on stage like removing jackets or the belt pack to elsewhere which does seem to be the reason for issues suddenly manifesting. I have taken to ensuring the micis positioned so that even if knocked it won't touch the face, the downside is when knocked outwards so it sticks out with no level,had that happen before or people just fiddle!
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Guy Morris

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Re: Headset mic and beltpack question
« Reply #9 on: February 17, 2015, 06:33:28 am »

What were you doing with the 5 unused transmitters when the problems occurred?  Were they stacked on a table next to each other? Where any of them they turned on?  How far was the guy moving, i.e. was he at a lecturn or walking cross the stage?

http://www.prosoundweb.com/article/print/whoa_you_cant_do_that

For the record, I'm not an RF guy, but I have a show coming up with 10 wireless mics, so I'm studying....

Yes that was a very interesing article which I read prior to posting and an eye opener. I will be getting some baking trays!
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