R/E/P > Klaus Heyne's Mic Lab

Pop Filters: Which Work? Which Suck? The Lowdown

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Maybe that just lets the bass wavelength develop more?

This suggestion can be delicate even if you are producing because you donít want to lead an artist to a place that undermines confidence or gets them in their head... but if a singer makes a smile with their mouth on plosives, it can tend to bring them down quite a bit.

I can guess from the sound of it what happens when a singer is right in the pop shield. There is no chance to develop a serious LF wavefront. Instead we get the sound of compressed air hissing through foam, or mesh, or fibre. Pfffft. Some singers have included it into their trademark singing style. e.g. Glen Hansard, SM58.

I guess once the air flow gets to the other side of a pop shield it gradually regroups and with more and more distance reunites as an actual high pressure front.
The effect is quite dramatic, even with a 58.

I often demonstrate this to young singers at gigs. Eating the mic or almost so, is fairly harmless. But pull back and gradually extraordinary low subs kick in.  I have heard of the smile thing before, nice one, although none of my singers is happy........

I read somewhere that the Beatles were taught to 'flash' an open palm between mouth and mic if troublesome P's or Ss occurred. Karate singing!
Also a pencil taped to the front of the mic is supposed to break up the pop, perhaps like the bulb shaped bow of a large ship.

In old pics of U47s we see clip-on small metal mesh pop shields. I susect these were engineered to work well. If so, it seems a shame they have been abandoned.

Derek Samuel Reese:

--- Quote from: klaus on June 26, 2020, 02:49:52 AM ---Try the filter as the distancing device.
Rather than putting the popper stopper close to the mic (which inevitably makes you want to lean in, because the bass proximity effect is so enticing!), put it 6" from the front of the mic, and get close to that. A double layer of pantyhose at that distance from the mic should in most cases do the job.

--- End quote ---

You said the right word Klaus, enticing lol.

I’ve been wondering when it’s ok to sing really close to the mic ?
Yes you get that beautiful warm proximity effect, but it almost becomes too much to sing an entire song that close.
But the moment I back up I lose that warmth, but it’s certainly easier to eq, I almost don’t even use eq on my vocal when singing 6 inches away :-)

In my experience 3 inches is the most critical distance for generating the pop effect.
This even means the filter should not be at that distance in front of the microphone.

Interestingly a second filter at a distance does not double the pop damping.

With headphones on, in front of the mic, it's easy to interactively test what works best.

My most effective shield is a modified, circular holes perforated, metal sheet from SE, with gooseneck and clamp to mount on the stand.
The mod doubles the metal sheets with an angle inbetween, to reduce comb filtering, using a slightly different kind of metal sheet for the 2nd.

The most neutral is thin nylon pantyhose, stretched over a 6mm wire ring.
Cheap enough to use new ones, the foot part is best to use, if you buy those without enforcement at the toe part.


--- Quote ---My most effective shield is a modified, circular holes perforated, metal sheet from SE
--- End quote ---

Make sure the metal does not resonate when pinged.


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