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Mid range lav/headset mic recommendations


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There's been lots of discussion around cheap headsets recently, and of course we all know the likes of DPA at the other end of the spectrum. 

I've just lost a few DPA's on a show, and am looking for something to replace them with. I probably can't afford more DPA's but something around the £200-£300 mark would work well for me. I have plenty of CPC's and other cheap ones, but don't know heaps about the middle of the market. 

I'm aware of the Sennheiser HSP Essentials headset. I've previously bought and liked the Microphone Madness ones (and their new waterproof models look really interesting). These will probably be my route of choice if nothing else suitable gets suggested. I'm not completely against buying second hand if some good ones come along, but would prefer new.

They'll get used as headsets eventually, but I'm happy making lavs up in to headsets if needs be. 
Any other suggestions gratefully received. If there's an absolute gem of a cheaper mic that I can buy more of then even better, but I'm not expecting miracles! 

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A friend had a Rode headset a few years ago with their Kevlar reinforced cable. It died on the first outing! May have been a one off, but it always put me off!

I've just remembered the offerings from Voice Technologies, sold in the UK through Canford. They're very interesting pieces of kit;


Not much in the way of reviews out there for them though. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

I am also in the hunt for some middle of the range mics. I love a good DPA but they become costly to keep running on shows (especially local theatre groups etc). The CPC/pulse do fine for small things, but the floor noise on them I always find is huge. Interested in the Voice Technology headsets. Has anyone used them?

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I understand the budget constraints, and considering your experience with Microphone Madness, you might find their new waterproof models suitable. Additionally, you could explore the Sennheiser HSP Essentials headset or consider second-hand options for cost-effective choices.

As for Voice Technology headsets, I haven't personally used them, but seeking reviews or user experiences might provide insights into their performance in various settings.

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I've been in contact with Voice Technologies. I was particularly interested in the differences in sensitivities across their range, and why they've opted for an additional VT Duplex Vocal model, with higher SPL handling. Seems that singing was proving a problem for the standard VT-Duplex - sounds to be more suited to speakers and presentation usage. The vocal one is a lot more money though, so I think probably out of my price range. The dual size headset frame is in one way a bonus, but for people like me who are constantly between different productions I think it'd become a faff, and I'd prefer something I can just bend to shape. To be honest I still haven't bettered the CPC frames in this respect. 

Have heard mixed things about the HSP Essentials. Reviews seem to suggest they're maybe prone to damage. Yet to hear one in real life, but at this stage any purchase to try something out is simply money wasted if they turn out not to be right. 

I think I'll go back to Microphone Madness. Would love someone in the UK to become a dealer for them! My usual recipe is to buy their single ear version and then straighten it out and Hellerman sleeve it to an old CPC frame. This gives by far the most flexible solution (I find their own headsets to be a bit too flexible - they're great for getting comfortable on a single performer, but need completely reshaping every single time). Going to grab one of their waterproof ones this time round to try too, and to have in the arsenal for those occasional very sweaty performers. 

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