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DIY Pop Shield Article

Thursday, March 23rd, 2006

This will be appearing on my new web site with pictures I’m going to take at the weekend…

If your getting popping sounds when recording vocals for use in Daz Mimic, your Pod Casting or whatever you record singing or speach for you need a pop shield (sometimes called a breath shield). This disperses the low frequency blast of air at the start of “B” and “P” sounds getting rid of the pops. You can buy one for £10 to £60 but its quite easy to make one cheaply yourself.

You’ll need a circular embroidery hoop, an old metal coat hanger and some nylon fabric. The embroidery hoop can be found in an embroidery shop, a craft shop, a sowing shop or the haberdashery in a department store. The nylon should be a lightweight material like that used to make stockings or tights. You can get this by buying a cheap garment from a pound shop or somewhere similar (a quick note for men: using one of your girlfriend’s best stocking for this will cause you no end of grief. Ask for an old pair first or pluck up your courage and buy them yourself. Don’t e-mail me to tell me you’ve tried them on before making the pop shield. I really don’t want to know that kind of detail). You want ones without large holes or patterns in the fabric. Fishnets are not going to do the job at all well.

The embroidery hoop should consist of two concentric rings with a mechanism to tighten the outer one so it grips the inner one. Take the embroidery hoop and open it. Stretch a single layer of nylon over it so that it covers the circle and down over the sides. Put the outer ring onto the hoop and tighten it so it holds the nylon in place stretched over the ring. Cut the surplus nylon off and trim the ring to neaten it. Keep the remaining nylon in case you make a hole in the pop shield. Now mangle the coat hanger into a stand for the pop shield.

To use the shield place it in line between the vocalist and the microphone around 8cm (3 inches) from the front of the microphone. The vocalist should be about 30cm (12 inches) from the microphone. You may need to play around with your set up to get the best results.

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