Country Blues => Performance Corner => Topic started by: Sixstring on September 08, 2019, 10:26:11 AM

Title: Wireless Microphone Query
Post by: Sixstring on September 08, 2019, 10:26:11 AM
I hope this is the right place for this question.

My computer skills are pretty much limited to turning the thing on and off, and grinding my teeth over the complications that the latest Upgrade has induced into my life.  It may be that this question has been answered a dozen times here, but I can’t seem to find anything.

I’m getting up in years, and it occurred to me that I ought to have a record of the stuff I can play now.  It might not be all that great, but it won’t be improved by the rheumatism and absent-mindedness that might come with old age.

So one night I set up my trusty iPad to frame myself in my guitar-playing chair and did a tune.  Playing the video back resulted in a satisfactory visual, but the sound seemed to be coming from the other end of the house.  Any decent sound level required me to sit so close to the tablet that only one hand would show.

In the Good Old Days, I attached my Shure crystal microphone to my Voice Of Music tape recorder and got a listenable audio on the 7” tape reel.  I figured that a wireless mike in my shirt pocket synched up to the iPad might serve the same purpose, and get the video I wanted as a bonus, so I went to the Apple store to inquire if they had anything.  Short answer, NO.  They had two microphones, both of which plugged directly into phones or pads.  The lady said I couldn’t use a cable to get either of them close to me, and would not speculate as to whether they would be any better than the mike already in the iPad.  They had no wireless mikes, and she suggested Best Buy.

So I went home and searched the Net.  A “Ten Best Products For Home Recording” site went over some wireless setups compatible with iPhones and iPads.  The two that seemed most likely to work were the Fulaim MX-20 and the Viewflex Conica CVMWS60.  They both looked pretty elaborate, though, with lots of extra stuff to set up and get working.

As mentioned, I’m not a computer person, and I already have enough stuff that I either can’t get to work or had to endure a half-day of head-banger music On Hold, waiting for the right Apple technician who could understand my poorly expressed problem and whose verbal responses were elementary enough so I could understand him, and who could also solve the problem du jour.  I’d like to make some videos, but I’d rather not buy into any more of that.

Is there anything that can just be turned on and used in conjunction with an iPad 20 feet away, that doesn’t need a technician to set up?  Do either of the above wireless mikes work well and easily?  I don’t  necessarily need “studio-grade” recording, but I would hope it would sound as good or better than my old tape recorder.

I’d appreciate any advice or experiences from anyone here.  Thanks much in advance.
Title: Re: Wireless Microphone Query
Post by: Prof Scratchy on September 08, 2019, 11:03:35 AM
Why does your iPad need to be twenty feet away? Using a plug in mic it could sit a couple of feet away from where you’re playing, couldn’t it?

Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
Title: Re: Wireless Microphone Query
Post by: Sixstring on September 08, 2019, 02:01:24 PM
I can’t fit into the camera field with the thing close enough for recording.  Maybe a shorter distance would work; I guessed 20 feet as maximum.  Anyway, the microphones at the Apple store would not work with a cord, according to the salesgirl.

There’s a cable mike on another section that might work.  It plugs into the USB port.  I couldn’t leave the tablet on charge while recording, which might give me a battery time limit, but it might work.

I just thought that wireless would somehow be simpler.
Title: Re: Wireless Microphone Query
Post by: Stuart on September 08, 2019, 05:32:52 PM
I'm not an Apple user, but I looked around a little and it seems that there might be a powered USB hub option that would both charge an iPad and power a mike while it's charging. (I don't know whether or not the people at the Apple Store and Best Buy you spoke with had a wide knowledge of aftermarket and third party products and apps. Their knowledge might have been limited to what they sell.)

One person at one of the sites I stumbled upon was posting about problems recording a podcast. S/he needed a good wired mike and also enough battery life to get through the entire podcast without it crapping out. You might check the boards. I ran across it searching for "charge ipad through usb hub while recording." You could try it and its variants.

Here's a couple of links that came up. Like I said, I'm not an Apple user, but it's always possible they might help:



In a lot of ways I long for the good old days as well. Maybe it's just the idealized concept of the past on my part, but advances in tech are supposed to make things simpler and easier, not more complicated and difficult.
Title: Re: Wireless Microphone Query
Post by: harriet on September 10, 2019, 04:06:15 AM
Why does your iPad need to be twenty feet away? Using a plug in mic it could sit a couple of feet away from where you’re playing, couldn’t it?

Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

Unless they've come up with something new alot of the better plug and play use the power connector could be one reason. Apple dropped the headphone jack on ipad in 2018 and keeps on revising their connectors.  There's no guarantee also that the mic is going to work with an apple system upgrade.
Title: Re: Wireless Microphone Query
Post by: Sixstring on September 11, 2019, 01:18:16 PM
OK, thanks, all.  This iPad has the headphone jack, for what that’s worth.
Title: Re: Wireless Microphone Query
Post by: harriet on September 12, 2019, 04:09:25 AM
I just replaced mine and got the version before what they are selling now to keep the headphone jack. Even with the connection, I don't know what system you have, Sixthstring, but you might want to double check whatever you are buying with the manufacturer's specs as to compatibility with the operating software on the ipad so the mic is recognized properly. 
Title: Re: Wireless Microphone Query
Post by: jtbrown on September 12, 2019, 11:42:57 AM

I really don't think there's any need to limit yourself to wireless microphones.

My USB microphone, an Audio-Technica AT2020, came with a cable that's about ten feet long. Sitting down, I can shoot a video in which the guitar is fully visible from about four feet away, and if for some reason I wanted to make a video of myself standing up and playing, with my whole body visible, I could do that from about seven feet away with the iPad positioned vertically. The fact that you can't record and charge the iPad simultaneously might be inconvenient if you do a lot of marathon recording sessions, but personally I've never found it to be an issue – at this point, the iPad stays charged up much longer than I do!

I'd recommend you at least consider a USB microphone of some sort, though of course you should follow Harriet's very sound advice and make sure whatever you buy is compatible with your iPad.

Todd Brown
Title: Re: Wireless Microphone Query
Post by: Sixstring on September 15, 2019, 05:21:21 PM
Thanks, harriet and jtbrown.  I sometimes see pictures of directional mikes attached onto iPhones with the mike pointed at whatever the phone camera is covering, and picking up the sound even though the speaker is maybe 15 feet away.  I think next week I'll take the iPad around to the guitar and camera stores and see if they have anything like that that I could try out.

It just seemed that something I could drop in my shirt pocket or clip to the shirt front would be simplest.  Guess not.  And I suppose a few three-minute takes wouldn't drain the battery too badly if it came to that.
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