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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » F/X » » If you use a headset wireless mic... (1 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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RJE2
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If you use a headset wireless microphone in you shows, what do you get a volunteer to speak into when they are on stage and you are asking them questions?
Amazing Magic Co
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I have a second handheld wireless mike that I either have on a stand, hand to them or hold. I also have a back up wired mike if ever needed.

Dan.
Ray Pierce
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If it's a girl, I have her stand as close to my lips as possible! It really depends on the routine. If it's non critical information, you can pick up quite a bit just by leaning in to them when you ask a question but I also prefer a hand mike to get the best results.
Ray Pierce
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RJE2
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Thanks for the input. However, if you pass them a handheld, why not then just use the handheld yourself in a neck collar of some sort and pass it back and forth?
Donal Chayce
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Quote:
On 2011-09-30 16:50, RJE2 wrote:
Thanks for the input. However, if you pass them a handheld, why not then just use the handheld yourself in a neck collar of some sort and pass it back and forth?


Because it's cumbersome and looks dorky.
RJE2
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Jeez Donal, what a coincidence. I've always thought that the magicians that wore the headset looked a little dorky. They remind me often of rock star wanna be's or MacDonald's drive through workers. I think people can use whatever mic system they want.

Back to the question though, I was curious about the headset and that's why I asked. I didn't know how someone wearing a headset could banter with a volunteer on stage. Now I know. Thanks Ray and Dan.
MikeDes
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Headset mics have gotten much smaller and they now come in flesh color so they are very discrete. The good thing about these mics is that you can usually get louder output without feedback then with a lavalier. I find handheld mics too cumbersome to use as you are tied to the mic stand. I also don't care much for the look of collar holders.

I rarely find that I need a mic for a volunteer. If I did, I think a handheld mic would be the way to go.
Amazing Magic Co
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I would echo Mike's comments. Current headsets are extremely small, have a great range and completely free your hands. I used to think I would not use them for smaller shows, but it easily enables you to speak above the ambient so everyone can always hear you. My MiPro 2.0 has the UHF receiver built right into it (along with an MP3 player,) so it is simply a matter of turn the transmitter on and I am always good to go with voice & music.

Dan.
RJE2
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Thanx guys. Currently in our show, my wife and I both use wireless sticks. My wife operates our PA system and handles all the music queues for smaller shows and we just plug our IPod into house sound systems in theatres and give the sound person a list of queues.

I wear one of the wireless sticks in a collar (my wife just holds her when she needs to speak) and its never been a problem for me. However, I have been curious about the headsets. I have seen the smaller and flesh colored ones you are talking about. They certainly are less obvious and there is some appeal to it.

In my shows I do like to banter with any volunteer I get up on stage. That was why I was curious about the headset. I was interested in exploring whether or not I would find if there might be any reason for me to look into obtaining one.

I find the stick slips in and out of the holder easily and can be held up to the volunteer when needed regardless of what type of show I'm doing or costume I'm wearing. If I used a headset, then I would still have to have a stick handy to talk to them. So for now, I think I'll just stick to the stick. But, thanks for the information.
g0thike
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Change your microphone to a omnidirectional pickup pattern instead of directional. That will pickup the volunteer better, though a handheld mic would be best.
Gary Shelton
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I you "Must" to use a hand held while you perform I suggest the Gim-crack hands free mic holdper.

http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewt......orum=192
Michael Messing
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Wait, you think it's dorky to wear a headset mic (which people are very familiar with because they are worn by singers, sports broadcasters, etc.) but you don't think it's dorky to have a handheld mic hanging off your chest? Smile

In my early years (from 1981 - 1994), I used lavalier microphones. First, I used a hard wired lav and then a wireless lav. When full headset mics began getting popular for magicians, I avoided them because I did think they looked dorky on a magician. Then, I tried one out and found the clarity was far superior to a lavalier and it was far easier to avoid feedback. I switched to headset mics and never went back to a lav. I still wear a full headset mic although my Sennheiser headset is much smaller than the Audio-Technica one I started out with. I've been tempted by the earset mics (the thin flesh-colored mics) but have held back for two reasons. One is price (a Countryman E6i) is fairly costly and two because they are more prone to feedback. (I've tested a few.) Plus, the headset mic still provides a superior vocal reproduction.

When I'm in a situation where I need the spectator's voice to be amplified, I used a handheld mic on a stand that I put in front of him.
Donal Chayce
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Quote:
On 2011-09-30 18:45, RJE2 wrote:
Jeez Donal, what a coincidence. I've always thought that the magicians that wore the headset looked a little dorky. They remind me often of rock star wanna be's or MacDonald's drive through workers. I think people can use whatever mic system they want.


You asked was I assumed was a non-rhetorical question and I gave you my answer. No need to take it personally.
RJE2
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Relax guys, I don't think any of the mic's look dorky. Smile There's only personal preference. Mine for now, after getting the answers (thank you for that) from the members here will be to stick with the stick.

Donal, your apology is accepted. Truth be known, I think guys in skirts look dorky. Smile
charliecheckers
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RJE2 - you are dating yourself quite a bit if you think headsets makes one look like a rock star wanna be. Welcome to 2011. By the way, people don't use cell phones just to try and look cool either. Sorry to say - in less you are some sort of auctioneer, you look "dorky" wearing your hanging mic. If money is a factor - certainly that is understandable, but you indicate you are playing in larger venues where you have stage crew involved. Take the advice of those here and at least experiment with some of the suggestions. I use a Countryman E6. It provides a good balance between freedom of movement, low visibility and low feedback issues (there are others that are better at avoiding feedback - but then you comprimise a bit more in the other dimensions). The Countryman E6 is also pricey - as mentioned above. There is good advice on past threads about the technical differences in microphones. Dan McLean aka Magic Roadie used to post here and provided an extensive review. It is a bit dated, but I think includes most of the current options. To answer your original question - I use a Shure Handheld mic when needed for audience participation.
RJE2
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Hello Charlie

I bet you are a very nice guy and mean no harm. In fact your post is obviously meant to be helpful and informative.

As to personal choice, I understand perfectly that everybody has one and some will choose one thing and some will choose another. But to say a person's choice is "dorky" is being a little harsh, or at least it comes across that way.

For instance, your avatar shows a performer who has a sense of pride and care in how their on stage character looks. Now, if I thought that cowboys were losers (I don't think that by the way) because I live in the urban north east, it might be seen as rude of me to make a blanket statement that "Cowboys are dorky."

As to the technology, and thank you for the great explanation of the Countryman E6, I think I'm going to stick with my stick after getting the answer to my original question (which was not intended to be provocative). I asked the question because I did want to know the answer and I was considering looking into a headset.

However, I don't feel dated when I use the stick and collar to perform. I don't believe it takes anything away from the performance either. I believe the stick "disappears" into the costume and performance and is not a distraction to the audience the same way a T.T. disappears in a competent close up performer's hands. I've never had a single audience member approach me after the show and say anything about it at all.
charliecheckers
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You are correct. The word "dorky" is a bit harsh. I meant no harm. I definitely think being dressed as a cowboy is very dorky - I just do it to offer my audience a different character. There are things I do in my show that work for me so I stick with them as well.
Starrpower
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Of course, the bottom line is a big ol' mic dangling from your neck IS dorky.

I have a friend who solves this issue by using a lav mic, but instead of a "real" mic clip, he uses a simple safety pin through which he threads the mic wire. It's not noticeable as anything other than a small lav mic, but when he has someone on stage he can pull the mic with his fingers and handle it like a handheld (12"-18" of wire, I'd guess.) When he puts it back, the cord retracts into his shirt.

I don't suppose this is the optimal situation, but it works for him.

As for the handheld mics, I think they have better sound, which is why I would guess is why RJE uses them. Working around a mic and stand is an art in itself, and it's one I have never completely mastered; I respect those who have.

I use a wireless handheld for hypnosis shows, and lav for other shows. I have tried hangers/holders for the handheld and found that there was a swing, or dangle, effect that I did not like. Plus, in today's world, it's dorky. Since I prefer to have my hands free for magic, I can think of no really strong advantage to using a handheld mic over a lav.

After reading this thread, I think I need to revisit the headset mic, as it appears many are satisfied with them.

Just an observation: As I read it, Donal did not apologize to anyone. He merely explained his reason for stating an opinion (which, of course, he has the right to do. That is the point of this forum.)
Michael Messing
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Just for clarification, a handheld mic does provide the most clarity and gain before feedback but I don't think that is the case when you wear hanging from a clip on your chest. It's that way when you hold up to your mouth as they are intended to be used. When used in a Gim Crack, my bet is that headset mic would have better clarity and gain before feedback. Dan McLean gave the order of gain before feedback in a post a long time ago and has it on his website now:
http://www.magicroadie.com/ (click on the link for Audio.)

In a nutshell, handheld mics can be turned up louder before feedback occurs, followed by headset mics, earset mics and finally lavalier mics.
RJE2
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On 2011-10-02 15:59, Starrpower wrote:
Of course, the bottom line is a big ol' mic dangling from your neck IS dorky.

Your opinion is valid in that it is your opinion and I certainly respect it as such. However, your opinion might be better served if it were not stated as if it were a fact. The discussion of headset v. stick collar is subjective without right or wrong, only choice.

My only objection to any of the thread is the "perceived" attitude that the words used at times reflect a sense of snobbery or elitism. However, I certainly have no problem with people who have different points of view than my own and I appreciate that members have taken the time to address my question with anecdotes, technical information and their opinions. I've found it very informative.
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