Lapel microphones, A.K.A. lavalier microphones, are the smallest non-spy mics. Compared to handheld mics you get superior convenience, small size, unrestrictive fit on a person and the sound quality they can back up your performance, speeches or recordings. They are truly special. In fact, because of the super small size, lots of people have never seen them, for rookies, we clarify that lapel microphones are the small clip-on mics usually seen on newscasters’, sports anchors’ jackets.
One of the advantages of small size – these are used for very special applications, like theater, dance, and aerobics. On the other hand, if you know the difference between condenser mics and dynamic ones, lapel mics being dynamic should tell you something. As they are small, you may run into a $10 one in a local store but here we are about the best ones.
Our Top Pick of Wireless Lapel Microphones
A budget-friendly option, even a few bucks cheaper than some cable solutions. It’s an omnidirectional stereo mic and has quite a solid build. ECMCS3 offers great sensitivity and overall pickup. In fact, users keep it somewhat far from the person (around the chest is recommended). You can use it with a portable audio recorder and then just sync the audio later. That would amount to an affordable wireless solution. If you want a cheap Sony solution – this is the way to go.
Audio Technica AT829CW
The AT829CW is a quality lapel mic designed specifically for the Audio Technica body-pack wireless transmitter. Of course, you can get the mic together with the transmitter. They are an excellent combination good for any purpose. AT829CW doesn’t have any external modules, like XLR mics. It uses a more compact four-pin connector that does not require so much phantom power and plugged directly into a transmitter to make a more efficient system.
AT829CW is generally a semi-professional mic that delivers an excellent quality/price ratio. The captured voice retains good clarity and accuracy. In fact, AT829CW has enough sensitivity to capture everything from a whisper to a song.
It has to be pointed more or less precisely for best performance as this is a directional mic with a cardioid pattern. The collar is the best position for it. AT829CW can even work moderately loud stages requiring higher gain before feedback. One minor setback is it’s made of plastic.
A solution that comes wireless from the start. Pyle-Pro PDWM96 is extremely affordable and is a nice solution for those who need a wireless mike and some cash saved. For about $13 you get a low-cost setup that gets the job done. The package includes a bodypack transmitter with a clip-on lav mic and batteries. The 60 feet range transmitter has a volume control.
Pyle-Pro PDWM96 is the cheapest and, therefore, the easiest wireless answer. This piece of hardware is extremely cheap for wireless anything, call it “belt mic” or whatever. There are definitely not enough settings on the mic or transmitter, so users have to do all the adjustments via the camera settings.
Sennheiser Pro Audio Ew 100
For sound engineers and musicians, the Sennheiser brand is firmly associated with reliability and quality. The EW100 kit is an uncompromising solution for those who want the perfect sound.
Part of the system is an omnidirectional ME 2-II microphone with a wide spherical pattern. It is used both for interviews and for sound. EW100 has a function to find the best recording frequency where interference and sound loss is minimal.
The system’s working distance is 100 meters. The receiver can be attached to the top of a video camera or DSLR-camera. A 3.5 mm jack is provided for headphones. For this system, Sennheiser offers an XLR adapter for connecting a handheld microphone.
The BOYA range includes many different loop microphones. This wireless model appeared relatively recently but has already managed to establish itself among customers.
The device perceives frequencies within 35-14000 Hz, its sensitivity reaches 76 dB. The battery lasts for about 3 hours of continuous operation. There are various options, including a set with furry wind protection, a clamp, and a mini tripod.
The device connects to almost all existing models of camcorders and smartphones, including the iPhone. Setup is complex, but there are many reviews and articles on the Internet with detailed information. The packaging is great: even if the box is crumpled, the content remains intact.
Shure BLX14/CVL-H10 Wireless System
The Shure BLX14/CVL-H10 Wireless System looks beyond serious. It could be one of the things Men In Black wear if they needed to make speeches. The receiver is not actually smaller than the above models. This particular model is only a single channel, though. There is an option to upgrade to a dual-channel function if need be.
The controls with three buttons on the front are easy. Two convenient indicator lights show that the gadget is ready for two main things – being linked to a microphone and getting connected to the bodypack.
The actual lavalier mic is quite compact, no problem with hiding on a person. But you do have to run the one long cable down to the body-pack.
The Shure BLX14 also impresses with its operation range of 300 feet in line of sight. At a shorter range, it can shoot through several walls.
We could not do this list leaving out the Saramonic SR-WM4C. Compact, cheap and lightweight, this VHF wireless microphone system is worth your cash as well. In fact, besides those adjectives there is one more superlative – the longest range of 60 meters is for you with this Saramonic. The high-band VHF is not for nothing. At that distance, there is always some interference but SR-WM4C’s 4 switchable channels keep the interference at bay.
The detachable, flexible antennae can be rotated 360 degrees. The high-band VHF also provides pure and detailed sound.
The real-time monitor feature will keep you confident through the most emotional interviews or performances. mixing/monitoring circuitry is not onboard, though. You monitor the sound through your own recording device.
You always know your AAA battery situation thanks to the LED charge indicator. But you have to get your batteries, though. Besides the omnidirectional lavalier microphone, the package includes a belt-pack transmitter and a camera mountable receiver.
The minor disadvantage is that it doesn’t work with DSLR cameras, only with Canon 6D, 600D, 5D2, 5D3, Nikon D800, and Sony DV DSLR Camcorders.