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Author Topic: Choosing lavalier mics? (Shure WL 183/184/185)  (Read 15255 times)

dave moldover

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Choosing lavalier mics? (Shure WL 183/184/185)
« on: July 26, 2011, 09:31:31 pm »

I own Shure PGX wireless systems body pac transmitters & receivers. I need to purchase 2 clip on lavalier mics to use with them for a lecture. This is for an indoor event, audience of about 200 people, not much background noise. The presenters will be both seated and walking around during their speeches.

Which is the better mic choice for this application?:
Shure WL 183 omnidirectional
Shure WL 184 supercardioid
Shure WL 185 Cardioid

Thanks.
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Justin Dodd

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Re: Choosing lavalier mics? (Shure WL 183/184/185)
« Reply #1 on: July 27, 2011, 11:35:59 pm »

I use the 184 as our standard. Works great especially when the presenters are walking all about. I would stay away from the 183 for feedback reasons.



I own Shure PGX wireless systems body pac transmitters & receivers. I need to purchase 2 clip on lavalier mics to use with them for a lecture. This is for an indoor event, audience of about 200 people, not much background noise. The presenters will be both seated and walking around during their speeches.

Which is the better mic choice for this application?:
Shure WL 183 omnidirectional
Shure WL 184 supercardioid
Shure WL 185 Cardioid

Thanks.
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Brian Ehlers

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Re: Choosing lavalier mics? (Shure WL 183/184/185)
« Reply #2 on: July 28, 2011, 01:19:51 pm »

Your best bet is to audition some and decide for yourself.  Honestly, the disadvantages of directional lavs outweigh their (perceived) advantages.  The cardioid and supercardioid are move vulnerable to handling and rubbing noise and expecially plosives, breath, and wind.  And while they will pick up a little less room noise, their directionality is not necessarily an advantage for the source: they pick up as much muffled sound from the chest of the orator as an omni does, and if they get pointed away from the chin you lose the upper frequencies you need for intelligibility.  Also, while any lav (even an omni) will get louder and softer as the orator lifts and drops his head, the directional lavs exagerate the difference because of their proximity effect, causing the tonal character to change with head movement, too.

I made the switch from the WL185 to DPA 4061 several years ago and have not regretted it.  Of course, as with usage of ANY lav, it really helps if your loudspeakers have good directionality and your orator has a good speaking voice.

Have you considered a head-worn mic?

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John Livings

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Re: Choosing lavalier mics? (Shure WL 183/184/185)
« Reply #3 on: July 28, 2011, 01:37:29 pm »


"Have you considered a head-worn mic?"

We went that way a while back, and kicked ourselves for not doing it sooner. (I use 10 wireless mics)

We choose between the Shure WH 20 and the Shure WH 30. (Depending on the Talent)

You really do solve many of the Lav issues by going to a head worn mics.

Regards,  John

 
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dave moldover

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Re: Choosing lavalier mics? (Shure WL 183/184/185)
« Reply #4 on: August 16, 2011, 05:50:37 pm »

"Have you considered a head-worn mic?"

We went that way a while back, and kicked ourselves for not doing it sooner. (I use 10 wireless mics)

We choose between the Shure WH 20 and the Shure WH 30. (Depending on the Talent)

You really do solve many of the Lav issues by going to a head worn mics.

Regards,  John

Thanks for the input. We have headsets for dance instructors that do ok. I need the lavs for situations where we don't want the mics to be as visable on camera. We've done some recording with directional shotgun mics in the studio but need the lavs for live presentations. Maybe the 185 is the best compromise?
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Steve Ferreira

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Re: Choosing lavalier mics? (Shure WL 183/184/185)
« Reply #5 on: August 16, 2011, 10:46:19 pm »

I use the 185's all the time, my main gig is corporate. Speaker placement and an inserted eq on a group is key to making them sound good.
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drew gandy

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Re: Choosing lavalier mics? (Shure WL 183/184/185)
« Reply #6 on: August 17, 2011, 01:10:55 am »

Maybe the 185 is the best compromise?

I think you're making a good guess.  Also, I find that these usually need a bit of cut around 500hz to sound balanced and avoid feedback.  Of course this will vary with all the usual suspects.

-drew
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Chris Davis

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Re: Choosing lavalier mics? (Shure WL 183/184/185)
« Reply #7 on: August 17, 2011, 05:40:29 pm »

I own Shure PGX wireless systems body pac transmitters & receivers. I need to purchase 2 clip on lavalier mics to use with them for a lecture. This is for an indoor event, audience of about 200 people, not much background noise. The presenters will be both seated and walking around during their speeches.

Which is the better mic choice for this application?:
Shure WL 183 omnidirectional
Shure WL 184 supercardioid
Shure WL 185 Cardioid

Thanks.

Agreed with Brian on this one.  The 183 is actually not a bad mic.  Keep in mind that, if worn against the body, an omni mic will not exactly have an omni pattern.  Also, a tighter pattern mic may inadvertently work against you if the position is just a little bit off.  Whereas the position of an omni is overall less critical. 

I have used all these mics, and in all cases you should avoid using them in close proximity to the loudspeakers.

Also, head-worn mics have an excellent amount of gain before feedback (the mic is so close to the speaker's mouth).  The Countryman E6 is a serious contender.  I would use these whenever possible.  If you decide to get these, be sure to get the Countryman cord with the Switchcraft TA4F mating connector for your Shure PG bodyback.

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Jim McKeveny

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Re: Choosing lavalier mics? (Shure WL 183/184/185)
« Reply #8 on: August 17, 2011, 11:58:53 pm »

If this helps: Of those 3 mics, the NYC corporate event sound crowd likes the 184. Much of the success in any lav situation is a knowing deployment of the speaker system and reasonable & consistent dressage of the "talent".
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Kevin Maxwell

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Re: Choosing lavalier mics? (Shure WL 183/184/185)
« Reply #9 on: August 18, 2011, 06:36:52 pm »

Thanks for the input. We have headsets for dance instructors that do ok. I need the lavs for situations where we don't want the mics to be as visable on camera. We've done some recording with directional shotgun mics in the studio but need the lavs for live presentations. Maybe the 185 is the best compromise?
If you have to put the mic on their tie, a trick someone told me a few years ago is to have the person look down at their chest and move the mic up the tie till they canít see it (the top of the mic) anymore, at this point move it back to where they could last see it. This is the placement that seems to be the best for a mic on a tie. Try it, it gives a much more consistent sound. I should mention that this is for men only; on a woman you can put the mic much higher without the problems that would be present on a man. On a woman I can clip an omni directional mic right at the neck and it will work fine. I have had excellent results using omni mics (MKE2) on men and women, even in corporate work.
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Re: Choosing lavalier mics? (Shure WL 183/184/185)
¬ę Reply #9 on: August 18, 2011, 06:36:52 pm ¬Ľ


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