Often the forgotten cousin of video footage creation and treated as an afterthought, audio is generally overlooked as being the lesser of the two mediums when it comes to making moving pictures.
Is this because it is too hard? Or for the beginner, vlogger, “family documentary” maker etc, too finicky and difficult to understand all this wireless lavalier microphone malarkey stuff and so to hell with it, set the iPhone on record audio an’ that’ll do for now?
Well if you are in the latter group, then Sennheiser has now well and truly got you covered with the new XSW-D Portable Lavalier Set. It’s rather good for pros as well just quietly.
It comes with a teeny, tiny transmitter you plug the included Lavalier mic into and then stick in a pocket or attach to a belt say. The transmitter not the mic of course.
The equally miniscule receiver mounts onto your camera or camcorder’s cold shoe point and then has a cable to plug into the camera’s audio in port.
All pretty straightforward stuff (except for the size; these really ARE small I kid you not!)
Then you turn it on. And bugger, me, it works! You see, those smart folk at Sennheiser have pre-paired the units at the factory, so even if you know nothing about audio, pairing frequency rates, grommet wave lengths, what channel number Q&A is on or whatever, you no longer have to.
It just works!
But these are no kiddy toy mics with the quality of a tin can and butcher’s string.
The quality matches anything Sennheiser do – I mean they have a HUGE reputation to live up to after all. The mic for instance, is not a cut down unit made to a price, but the well respected ME2-II and the world wide “safe” 2.4GHz wireless band is used so a) you are totally legal and b) won’t have the shipping report from the Isle of Wight or Dogger Bank interrupting at regular intervals.
And the system selects the best operating frequency and automatically switches to a clean channel to provide reliable transmission at a distance up to about 75 metres line of sight.
Want to expand the system later? No problem, by simply complementing XSW-D series transmitters and receivers, as your needs evolve. Adding the XSW-D XLR female plug-on transmitter allows you to connect a dynamic handheld microphone for street-style interviews for example, or you can add a self-powered shotgun to create a boom mic system.
For noisy environments, simply substitute a Sennheiser-compatible headset mic. Oh, and up to five separate systems can be used inside the same environment with no clashes.
There is no need to carry a billion AA or AAA batteries around with you either as an included USB-C recharges the enclosed Lithium-Ion batteries. 1 hour gives you 50% battery to get you back up and running, and total battery life is said to be around 5 hours – you can be recharging while in use too.
And the price? Shop around and you’ll get change from $600.
Brilliant we say!
What’s In The Box
- XSW-D 3.5mm (1/8”) transmitter
- XSW-D 3.5mm (1/8”) receiver
- ME2-II clip-on lavalier mic
- 3.5mm (1/8″) coiled cable
- Cold shoe mount
- Belt clip
- USB charging cable