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Old April 14th, 2015, 04:19 PM   #1
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Those fraying lavalier mic wires...

I love my Sennheiser G3 kit. It is extremely reliable, easy to use, and provides excellent sound quality.
There is one consistent problem I have noticed over the years:
No matter how much care I exhibit in usage and storage, the wires always fray near the connection port of the lavalier wire. I haven't found a good method of preserving the longevity of these wires. The black coating always splits apart, exposing the copper wiring beneath and thereby forcing me to pop another $140 for a replacement.

The good news is that Sennheiser offers a two year warranty on these microphones, but I would rather save myself the trouble and arrive at a protective option. I've tried wrapping the base with electrical tape, but the tape eventually loosens and shifts.
Has anyone experienced this problem? Has anyone found a good work-around?

I called B&H today and they do not offer any special accessory or protective add-on to save this from happening.
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Old April 14th, 2015, 11:07 PM   #2
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Re: Those fraying lavalier mic wires...

As wedding videographers, our G3 bodypack transmitters take a beating as grooms and officiants often remove them after the ceremony before we can get to them. The result is most commonly cord damage. So here's a simple idea that works.

Starting where the cable comes out of the connector, form a gentle loop about 1" in diameter with the cable. Use a teeny mini zip tie to tightly secure one side of the loop to the plastic barrel of the connector and trim end off zip tie. If you like, you can trap a teeny tiny piece of high density foam between the zip tie and cable to cushion the cable before you tighten it up.

This takes the stress of the point where the cable enters the flex portion of the connector. Periodically cut the zip tie off and replace, securing a slightly different part of the cable to avoid premature wear to any one spot.

Cost ~$0.18 per zip tie.

Hope this helps.

John

Summerfield Films | Toronto Wedding Videographers
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Old April 15th, 2015, 01:09 AM   #3
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Re: Those fraying lavalier mic wires...

In theatre, mics are considered disposables, and the damage is inevitable, so to give a bit more life and reliability, many people heatshrink the end. It's simple to do and cheap, and when the heatshrink eventually cracks, remove it and replace, before the cable fractures. That said, we damage the other end far more often and then it's a bin job! I even have forms for the sound guys to keep track of the damaged items, because using DPAs and countryman mics, breakages make a big impact on budgets. In a ten week run, we are talking a couple of grand, and that's pounds, not dollars! A few pennies spent on heatshrink is good value.
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Old April 15th, 2015, 03:06 AM   #4
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Re: Those fraying lavalier mic wires...

I started buying these:

Amazon.com: Pro Lavalier Lapel Microphone JK MIC-J 044 for Sennheiser Wireless Transmitter - Omnidirectional Condenser Mic: Musical Instruments

I keep 2 on my two G3s, I keep two new-in-box spares with me at all times, and anytime I notice one starting to wear, I throw it away, rotate in a new one, and (I kid you not) pull out my phone, go to the Amazon app, and order a new one right then and there, so I don't forget.

IMHO sound is the same as the Sennheiser - build quality is slightly less and I get a little less time out of these than I did out of the $140 ones.

Edit: be aware that JK makes several MIC-J's in various numbers. 044 is the "best" one, and closest to the original G3 mic. All the rest are bigger, clunkier, and... probably better for some application, but I'm not sure what that would be.
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Old April 15th, 2015, 01:11 PM   #5
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Re: Those fraying lavalier mic wires...

When mine have suffered cable damage, I send them back to Senny and for around $60, then send a replacement they have repaired.
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Old April 15th, 2015, 02:51 PM   #6
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Re: Those fraying lavalier mic wires...

Quote:
Originally Posted by John Summerfield View Post
As wedding videographers, our G3 bodypack transmitters take a beating as grooms and officiants often remove them after the ceremony before we can get to them. The result is most commonly cord damage. So here's a simple idea that works.

Starting where the cable comes out of the connector, form a gentle loop about 1" in diameter with the cable. Use a teeny mini zip tie to tightly secure one side of the loop to the plastic barrel of the connector and trim end off zip tie. If you like, you can trap a teeny tiny piece of high density foam between the zip tie and cable to cushion the cable before you tighten it up.

This takes the stress of the point where the cable enters the flex portion of the connector. Periodically cut the zip tie off and replace, securing a slightly different part of the cable to avoid premature wear to any one spot.

Cost ~$0.18 per zip tie.

Hope this helps.

John

Summerfield Films | Toronto Wedding Videographers

John,
I like this idea :)
Would it be hard for you to post (or email) a picture of this setup? I'd love to see an example of this solution.
Thanks!
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