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Old March 6th, 2013, 10:42 PM   #1
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Microphonics - ME2 and AT899

Hello — I'm a first time poster. Thanks in advance for your input; this forum is awesome!

I own two Sennheiser ME2 wireless lavs (part of the G2 wireless kit) and one wired AT899. The AT899 mic, which I just bought used, exhibits microphonics (electronic crunching noise) when I rub the wire between my fingers. I tried the trick of tying a loop in the cable near the capsule, which reduces but does not entirely eliminate the microphonics. In normal use (stationary interview situations), it doesn't seem to be a problem, but it is kind of annoying to know it's there. The salesman claimed that all decent lav mics will exhibit this issue and that i should just do the loop trick and not worry about it.

One of my ME2s exhibits the same issue. But here's the strange thing: the other ME2 (actually a Pearstone generic clone) exhibits no microphonics at all.

I have a replacement plan for the noisy ME2 and the AT899 is under warranty. Should I replace/return them?
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Old March 7th, 2013, 04:40 AM   #2
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Re: Microphonics - ME2 and AT899

The simple cure is to loop the cable and trap it behind the mic. clip.

This is what stops the handling noise reaching the mic. capsule.

Also tying a loose knot in the cable (not the loop) can also help.

The Pearstone is not an ME2, it's either a fake or a different mic. - if it does not have the handling noise it's because the manufacturer has done something inside the capsule to minimise this.
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Old March 7th, 2013, 09:28 AM   #3
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Re: Microphonics - ME2 and AT899

Thanks for the reply ... I did try the loop trick, which reduces the microphonics but does not entirely eliminate it. I guess I'm understanding that it's just an issue with the mic model and that I shouldn't worry about it.

That said, are there other lav models that are known for not having microphonics?
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Old March 7th, 2013, 09:44 AM   #4
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Re: Microphonics - ME2 and AT899

I think the ME2 is a good chew toy for a small pet. :-)

The Sennheiser MKE2 and ME-102/104 do not exhibit the microphonic problem you mention, but considering their considerably higher cost I would be very upset if they did. Personally these are the only lav mics I spend *MY* money on. Many of the shows I work on also use Sony ECM-77 or ECM-88, also microphonic free.
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Old March 8th, 2013, 03:48 AM   #5
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Re: Microphonics - ME2 and AT899

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Originally Posted by Greg Bellotte View Post
I think the ME2 is a good chew toy for a small pet. :-)

The Sennheiser MKE2 and ME-102/104 do not exhibit the microphonic problem you mention, but considering their considerably higher cost I would be very upset if they did. Personally these are the only lav mics I spend *MY* money on. Many of the shows I work on also use Sony ECM-77 or ECM-88, also microphonic free.
LOL

But I agree with you.

But there *are* two versions of the ME 2 - the ball-shaped one and the oil-barrel shaped one; I prefer the latter.
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Old March 9th, 2013, 10:06 AM   #6
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Re: Microphonics - ME2 and AT899

The 'ball shaped' mic pictured is the cardioid ME4. Both are pieces of sh__ IMO. The ME4's clip is about the worst I've ever seen, even more useless than the mic itself.
One of systems I purchased mistakenly came with the ME4 instead of the ME2. I didn't plan to use the OEM mic anyway, so no-harm-no-foul.
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Old March 9th, 2013, 10:22 AM   #7
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Re: Microphonics - ME2 and AT899

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Originally Posted by Rick Reineke View Post
The 'ball shaped' mic pictured is the cardioid ME4. Both are pieces of sh__ IMO. The ME4's clip is about the worst I've ever seen, even more useless than the mic itself.
One of systems I purchased mistakenly came with the ME4 instead of the ME2. I didn't plan to use the OEM mic anyway, so no-harm-no-foul.
Sorry - you are TOTALLY WRONG!

Please get your facts right before you post.

The ball-headed mic pictured is an ME 2 - the ME 4 is a larger ball and shaped slightly differently.

It is very obvious that the mic. pictured is an ME 2 as it has no rear entry slots for the cardioid pattern.

Round ME 2

ME 4

You can see the difference in the pictures above.

But I do agree with you about the clip supplied with the round ME 2 and the ME 4.

But these microphones were designed down to a price to keep the kits affordable - the MKE 2, supplied with the more expensive sets, is vastly superior.
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Old March 9th, 2013, 10:42 AM   #8
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Re: Microphonics - ME2 and AT899

If you say so John.
But the one pictured appears identical to the one that was sent to me ans specifically states, ME4 cardioid.
I'm well aware of the superior MKE series mics.
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Old March 9th, 2013, 05:34 PM   #9
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Re: Microphonics - ME2 and AT899

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Originally Posted by Rick Reineke View Post
If you say so John.
But the one pictured appears identical to the one that was sent to me ans specifically states, ME4 cardioid.
I'm well aware of the superior MKE series mics.
Cheers, Rick
The original picture was *definitely* a round ME2.

It's easy to tell the difference - the ME2 is sealed on the rear and the ME4 is larger and has mesh on the rear to allow the rear entry to get a cardioid mic.

(I did work for Sennheiser UK for 25 years, so I *do* know the difference) ;-)
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Old March 9th, 2013, 05:51 PM   #10
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Re: Microphonics - ME2 and AT899

I stand corrected. Thanks for the clarification.
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Old March 10th, 2013, 08:16 AM   #11
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Re: Microphonics - ME2 and AT899

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Originally Posted by Rick Reineke View Post
I stand corrected. Thanks for the clarification.
But I *do* agree with you that the round ME2, the ME4 and their clips are pretty horrible.

The "oil barrel" ME2 is better, though, and has a much better clip.

Though, personally, I would use an MKE 2 or a DPA 4060.
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Old March 10th, 2013, 10:55 PM   #12
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Re: Microphonics - ME2 and AT899

Sherng-Lee - just wondering, would a ferrite do any good?

Just a few weeks ago I picked up a used AT899 and used it for the very first time just about 3 or 4 days ago and it seemed to me to work well in that I didn't notice any of that noise you mentioned; however, maybe my conditions weren't the same.

Could the noise be due to a cable problem? The cable for these things is really small and you'd think it could be damaged fairly easy. If there was just a break in a conductor and the ends were just touching each other, could that result in such a noise problem?

One thing I noticed the first time I went to use them, was the spot where the cable is attached to the various clip accessories is really tight and this is a real concern for me. You really have to push the cable into the rubber holder really hard. Perhaps doing this could cause a cable problem.

If it isn't the cable then back to the ferrite question.
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