More often than not, when considering the proper microphone to be used for an installation, the focus is on the sound quality of the microphone. This month, however, we want you to also consider how the microphone might be used, or misused, so that you can also see the importance of focusing on the construction quality of the microphone.
For one reason or another, either by accident or on purpose, some people can’t help themselves and knowingly, or unwittingly, end up damaging or destroying microphones. Here are just a few examples of what we've seen or heard happened.
In one case we’ve seen, a manufacturer’s field technician literally walked across the
client’s boardroom table to perform maintenance on a projector. While he might have
thought he was doing a good job, he accidentally stepped on (and flattened) the grill of a
through table boundary microphone. Ouch!
Then there’s the case of the misused and abused microphones. We had a call from a
teacher a few years back who said he was missing all of the grills from his
classroom's through table boundary microphones. After some investigation, it turned out
that the students were getting creative and making filters out of the grills, and using them
as part of, let’s just say, an inventive smoking apparatus for select legal/illegal herbs…
Then there’s the story of the misplaced pen. Here, people decided to convert the grills of
a through table boundary microphone into their own "inkwells". Yes, people actually took a
pen and stabbed it into the grill of the microphone and made it a very expensive pen
holder. On the brightside, we took this information (and since necessity is the mother of
invention), we created a new model, the C012E-RF, or better knows to our internal teams
as the “Assault Version” of our through table boundary microphone. This mic was built to
be vandal proof. Even the microphone capsule is strategically placed, making it
inaccessible if someone tries to destroy it.
Perhaps one of our favorite stories that talks about the robust manufacturing of our
mics, was about the time we provided microphones for the Iowa Primate Learning
Sanctuary (click here for that case study).
At the Learning Sanctuary we were challenged to build a microphone that the primates
would not or could not easily find in their environment and that would be difficult to
dismantle or destroy. This project was truly monkey business, but Clockaudio’s omnicondenser microphone, a water-resistant product that was chosen for the project held up
well. In fact, our C007-WR microphones were made of Delrin, a very sturdy plastic, so the
build quality was excellent for the habitat’s purposes. In addition, because this product
was originally designed for surveillance and recording in sensitive areas, it had an
extremely low profile, keeping them out of the monkey’s curious eye.
These are just a few of the many stories we’ve heard over the years. We hope that it helps
you to see the value in understanding the “climate” you are working in and the “inhabitants”
that will be interfacing with your equipment.
In understanding both of these variables, you will be able to better identify and choose the
right microphone for any given application. Since vandalism of your equipment can occur
almost anywhere, even in the most prestigious companies, classrooms, courtrooms and
habitats, it is wise to make the investment into better built microphones.
As for Clockaudio, you will not find sturdier, more rugged microphones than ours. So, if
you’re thinking of saving money by installing less-quality microphones with the idea that
your visitors, students or boardroom users are angels, think again! We suggest you go for
the more durable, robust Clockaudio option and save money in the long-run! Your results
will most definitely be...Clearly Different!
That’s a wrap for the month of May!
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