If you’re new to voiceover you’re probably buying your gear and getting set up with your vocal booth, microphone, audio capture device, and computer. One item you will definitely need is a pop stopper. It’s a device that covers and protects your microphone from “explosive” pulses of breath that cause undesirable pop sounds in your recording.
Up until lately, I used a standard $15 pop stopper. One of those with two layers of black fabric stretched over a thick black plastic ring. I’ve had it for years. It works very well. But, when I started doing voiceover, I noticed that it made it hard for me to speak directly into my microphone and also be able to read my copy. I was always moving my music stand around, trying to find the sweet spot where I could see my script and also get a top quality capture. I usually ended up speaking at more of an angle to my microphone than I liked, while straining my eyes uncomfortably off to the right, trying to read. Not good!
I knew there was more than one kind of pop stopper in the world so I decided to sniff around the internet for what was available. I came across a YouTube video called “Which Pop Filter Should You Use” from a voiceover guy who calls himself “Booth Junkie.” He showed a comparison between my fabric pop stopper and the Stedman PS101, which is a metal screen pop stopper.
Both models stop pops equally well, and neither of them reduces the sound quality in a perceptible way. The big difference between them is in the materials they are made of. The Stedman PS101’s screen is metal. That means it doesn’t need the thick black support ring that the other one has. Also, the Stedman PS101’s screen uses a marvelous design that makes it significantly more translucent than the fabric one. The myriad of small holes that are stamped into the screen are shaped in such a way that they redirect the air flow of your breath at a sharp angle away from your microphone. At the same time, allowing the sound of your voice, and much of the light from your script to pass right through it.
The beautiful result is, you can position your mouth right up close, and straight on with your microphone, for the highest quality capture. At the same time you can comfortably turn your eyes, look right through the Stedman PS101’s screen, and easily see and read your script. Wow! Awesome! I love it!
I bought my Stedman PS101 for a good price at Front End Audio and gave my fabric pop stopper to my son. The Stedman costs more than the fabric one but the advantages are well worth it!
That’s it for today! Thanks for reading! James Thompson VO