First Test – Sound Shark Parabolic Microphone for Distance Sound Recording

Earlier today I did a very basic test with the Sound Shark Parabolic Collector that uses a basic LAV mic to record distant sounds. Placing a small speaker 20ft away I compared the difference between the PParabolic Mic setup vs a pretty standard on-camera Azden SMX-30 microphone.

I also recently had the opportunity to test the Sound Shark Parabolic Microphone in a typical classroom setting. I found that it really helped to get that louder volume from the distant speaker when compared to other microphones that I would have traditionally used.

Now while a Parabolic microphone will definitely pick up distant sounds better than any other type of microphone, it should not be considered a replacement for other microphone types. It really should be considered a different type of microphone and possibly one you may want to add to your audio kit. If you're interested in listening to other examples, you can find videos on their website at http://KloverProducts.com/SoundShark.

Product Description
The unique shape of the parabolic collector is used to collect incoming sound (pressure) waves and focus them onto a single point where the microphone converts the collected sound energy into an electrical signal. Because the sound energy from a large area is focused onto a single point, the sound is in effect, amplified. This is the same technology that is used to capture the sounds of the game during professional football games every weekend.


Sound Shark Parabolic Collector

 3 Comments





3 thoughts on “First Test – Sound Shark Parabolic Microphone for Distance Sound Recording

  1. @Chris K. As you state, all parabolic microphones do have a high frequency bias as the high frequency sounds reflect better than lower frequencies. However, the bias is not nearly as bad as you may have heard.

    In addition, the microphone used with the Sound Shark has a significant effect on the frequency response. Lapel mics that have a high frequency tendency like the Sennheisers, which have a bump in the frequency curve on the high end, emphasise the bias.

    Fortunately, the bias is pretty linear so it is very easy to equalize in post processing. (You might want to listen to the various sample clips on our website, or YouTube channel, to hear the Sound Shark with various microphones in various situations.)

    Countryman Associates has mapped the audio characteristics of the Sound Shark and created a custom version of their B3 lapel mic to match those characteristics. Using the custom mic with the Sound Shark will provide audio that requires very little, if any, adjustments in post.

  2. Post author

    @Chris K. - Yes the 'tinnyness' you describe will be caused by the way it collects those higher frequency soundwaves. Which is why i'm suggesting that it should not be considered a replacement for any other type of microphone, it should be considered as a microphone for special use cases where other microphones can't collect those distant sounds.

  3. A more fair comparison would be a lav in the dish and an identical lav without the dish; the Azden may be a less sensitive mic or is amplified less by its power supply.

    The sound, at least in your brief test, is far more encouraging to me than when I looked at these last; I'm wondering if Sound Shark has a pickup pattern for the dish and, better, an audio filter for FCPX or other video/audio tools to correct for the "tinnyness" I've heard is the problem with dishes.

    Thanks for the demo!

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