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Old June 17th, 2006, 06:02 PM   #1
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Headset for Boom Operator

Hey,

Right now I'm looking into new headphones for monitoring the sound at the recording location. Mostly for the guy using the boom. It's gotta have good "sound cancelation" for noisy enviornments, so I can hear the sound the mic is picking up more acurately. Right now I'm using a Sony studio pair of headphones. They are real good, but not so much at isolating the ears from surrounding noises.

I'm curious as to how the "boomset headets" work, because they all seem to have microphones too. What kind of cables do they have, and how does that all work? I probably don't need that, but I'm more curious as to how it all works.

I've been looking at some Sennheiser ones, and I don't know if I should go for one of those Boomsets, or the Noise Cancelling, or the Proffessional ones.
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Old June 18th, 2006, 12:28 AM   #2
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Pick up a pair of Shure earbuds. The sound quality is amazing, and you can have a train pass by and you wont hear anything. They also fit into your pocket.
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Old June 18th, 2006, 04:22 AM   #3
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Noise cancellation headphones work best when the noise is consistent. Such as an engine running at a set RPM.

What you might be interested in is a pair of isolation earphones, such as those made by Futuresonics, Shure and others.

I tried both Shure and Futursonics. Shure sounded bright but thin. Futuresonics -- the cheaper ones -- were warmer but not as crisp. But still better overall than the Shures as these gave me better warning about wind rumble.

I lost the Futuresonics in Brownlee Reservoir (between Idaho and Oregon) a couple of weeks ago! So I'm replacing them with a pair of XtremeMac FS1's. Same company but I think the drivers are supposed to be improved. Lousy reason to upgrade but a valid reason nonetheless. :-)
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Old June 18th, 2006, 05:15 AM   #4
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Don't have a pair but I've heard strong recommendations for Etymotics in-ear isolation phones.
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Old June 18th, 2006, 08:59 AM   #5
 
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I use Etymotic ER-4's and ER-6's. I love both. I use the 4's for most things. One production I'm working on now is entirely in an aircraft, using a short boom and hyper. I'd be a mess without my 4's.
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Old June 18th, 2006, 01:57 PM   #6
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Ety's are good, Shures too, I am yet to try the Futuresonics. I always have my boom operators use Sony MDR7506's - a nice consistent sound that everyone is used to. I know someone makes better isolation headphones with the 7506 drivers in them. When I need more iso, I run a splitter, with Shure in-ears and then a pair of Sennheiser HD280's - they fit a little tighter blocking more noise. Athough it looks funny, it works nicely.

I wonder what you mean by "boomset" headphones, do you mean the type with a small boom comming off of one side with a mic on the end?

Well it can work different ways. I buy mine from a Sennheiser dealer. They are altered HD280s', they slap on a E608 (I think) and I order mine with "pigtail" end, which means the ends are unterminated or have no connectors. For the computer, a 1/8" mini-stereo on both the mic and headphone end, for sports and stuff, a male XLR for the mic output, and Sony/Sennheiser style
1/8" stereo w/ screw on 1/4" TRS adaptor.
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Old June 18th, 2006, 05:35 PM   #7
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i have a pair of the really good earbud headphones but for boom operation a pair of the sony 7506 headphones has a lot of blocking of external noise.

i would just go with those.

it would be a lot more of a hassle having to take out the earbuds if the person needed to talk to anyone vs. just talking off the 7506's or sliding them up onto his head.

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Old June 18th, 2006, 06:14 PM   #8
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For great isolation, you can get Shure or Ety earbuds and put noise cancelling headphones (like Bose or something) on top of them. You don't need to run sound into the noise cancellers, just turn them on and let them do their work.

For most applications, a pair of 7506s or HD280-Pros is all you need. For flying, I just bring Shure earbuds though. Much smaller and lighter than the other solutions, and the isolation is better than most.
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Old June 19th, 2006, 06:06 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Douglas Spotted Eagle
I use Etymotic ER-4's and ER-6's. I love both. I use the 4's for most things. One production I'm working on now is entirely in an aircraft, using a short boom and hyper. I'd be a mess without my 4's.
For some unknown reason XtremeMac sent the earphones I ordered (on June 5) via Global parcel post instead of priority mail as I requested and they haven't arrived yet -- isn't Hawaii part of the US? According to customer service at XtremeMac, it could "take weeks" to arrive here.

As there's an assigment coming up Wednesday I can't afford to wait anymore and got a pair of Etymotic 6i's from the neighborhood Apple Store. Doug's advice was "spot on". :-)

They sound very good and provide significant isolation, just what I'm looking for. Certainly sound better than the Futuresonics I had -- they're crisper. And the bass response is better than the Shure E6.

The XtremeMac FS1's probably would have sounded good, too, but right now timing is important. I need to monitor sound in the presence of boat engines, wind, etc.
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Old June 20th, 2006, 04:52 PM   #10
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If you've seen the headsets that the boom operator is wearing on "Making of" sorts of things, that microphone you are seeing on the headset is for communication with the Sound Mixer back at the cart. It's one of those things that varies wildly from one mixer to the next since there are a variety of ways for the mixer and the boom operator to communicate, and I don't consider it essential for the boom operator.

The high isolation version of the 7506 is made by Remote Audio. You can find more info at www.remoteaudio.com
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Old June 25th, 2006, 12:53 AM   #11
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Thanks for clearing that up Ralph (on the Remote Audip 7506)

I have an IFB (Lectro) setup I use when booming, and two way radio system made by Sensaphonics and Motorola. They are great, I also had some custom ear pieces made for my Shure E2's by Sensa.

All the guys I know have a pair of Shure E2's, Ety's, or Sensa's. The Shure's are easiest to service, and they come with 3 different sizes of buds in 3 different forms. I dont want to spend as much on the E6's as they are right now.

Usually there isnt a return on the boom end of the talkback, just something to hear. I dont want my soundies talking back to me! (ha ha ha)
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Old June 26th, 2006, 09:14 AM   #12
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Thanks for all the help guys. Those 7506 High Isolation headphones from remote audio look like exactly what I want.
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Old July 3rd, 2006, 06:01 PM   #13
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I'm kind of in the same boat as I've been using the 7506 cans for a while and find them decent, but not perfect. Sound does creep in from outside unless you really crank the phones, which seems dangerous. So I was also looking at the Remote Audio version of the 7506 as it would block out more exterior sound and enable me to turn down my cans.
But I also noticed the Ultrasone cans claim to do much the same thing (i.e. reduce ear fatigue). Ultrasone seems to have 2 models, one of which claims to be similar to the 7506, and another model which is supposed to better. I was just wondering if anyone's tried them out and has an opinion of them compared to the Remote Audio cans.
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