[Callers] Proper use of vocal mic by caller

Donald Perley donperley at gmail.com
Sat Feb 25 11:09:14 PST 2012

Short answer is it depends on the microphone.

First, they have different patterns of how sensitive they are as you
go off the center axis.  Some are omnidirectional,
some you really have to point at the sound source (sometimes called a
shotgun mic)

A common compromise is called a cardioid mic, because a graph of it's
sensitivity looks like a heart.

The mics that work with the ice cream cone grip are likely omni or cardioid.

Second, some are noise cancelling (may have "nc" in the model number).
 These mics take the difference in signal between the front and back
of the microphone, which will be much larger if  you speak right next
to the mic, and rejects sounds from farther away.  I've used some mics
where your lips pretty much have to be touching the screen. THat
extreme is not my favorite at all, but I guess it helps eliminate

I looked up the G3,  and it looks like you can switch the sensor in it
for different patterns.  So hard to say what you are working with now.


On Sat, Feb 25, 2012 at 1:26 PM, Rickey Holt <holt.e at comcast.net> wrote:
> Hi all,
> I have 3 questions about best mic use when teaching and calling at a public
> contra dance:
> 1.      What is the proper distance to the mic?  I have been told that
> several inches is best, and I have seen one caller who is always clear
> measure that distance by placing her fist, with thumb and  pinky extended,
> between her mouth and the mic. I have also seen other highly respected
> callers rest it on their chin.  What are your feelings?
> 2.      I have been taught to speak down the axis of the mic and not hold it
> like an ice cream cone, yet many prominent callers do not seem to do this.
> How important do you think that this is?
> 3.      I have a good wireless mic (a Sennheiser Evolution G3), which I like
> to put on its stand when I can. When I scan the room, sometimes turning my
> head from side to side, how important is it to move the mic so I do not
> change the angel between me and the axis of the mic?
> Thank you, Rickey Holt, caller, Fremont, NH
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