Pop filters, also called pop shields, are nylon- shield or metal- shield screens often placed a few inches in front of microphones to reduce or eliminate ‘plosive’ sounds. Have you ever encountered situations where you hear sudden pops during an announcement or a live singing performance? The pop filter is designed to prevent those irritating pops. But what exactly are they and how do pop filters prevent them?
- 1 What are pop filters and what do they do?
- 2 Pop filters vs windshields (foam covers)
- 3 Best pop filters for Blue Yeti (pop filters reviews)
- 4 Best pop filters for rap vocals recording
- 5 Tips on getting your room ready for recording
- 6 Conclusion
What are pop filters and what do they do?
In vocal recording, little pops or thumps are usually captured by the microphone when the vocalist speaks or sings ‘plosive’ sounds, or sounds that start with letters like ‘b’ or ‘p’. These pops and thumps are caused by the vocalist expelling air forcefully when speaking or singing the ‘plosive’ sounds.
During vocal recording sessions, the vocalist is typically just a few inches away from the mic, which amplifies these pops and thumps and further affecting the recording quality. This is because the air blast is the strongest when the vocalist is close to the mic, causing a sudden air flow into the mic diaphragm and inducing a disproportionately strong output signal. The result is a sudden, loud, and oftern disrupting pop or thump in the recording.
Pop filters eliminate these pops and thumps by causing the air blast to break up and become dissipated, therefore no longer able to create a sudden strong output signal. The sound coming through these pop filters experiences just a little cut on the high frequencies, but the ‘plosive’ sounds are dramatically reduced.
Some companies even produce double pop filters, which are pop filters with two layers of mesh seperated by a thin layer of air, which makes the pop filter effective against even the worst plosives.
It is crucial that pop filters are placed a few inches in front of the microphone, to make sure there is a thin layer of air between the fiter and the mic capsule. This will allow the air blast to become fully dissipated.
Pop filters vs windshields (foam covers)
Windscreens are often made of foam material and designed to fit over the microphone element casing. Pop filters, on the other hand, are usually a mesh placed a few inches away from the microphone.
Windscreens are known to dampen higher frequencies more than pop filters do, so they tend to produce duller sounds compared to pop filters.
Windscreens are also less effective against plosives compared to pop filters. They are more useful in recording outdoors, to prevent too much wind noise from being captured.
Best pop filters for Blue Yeti (pop filters reviews)
Auphonix 6-inch Pop Filter For Blue Yeti Microphone
Ever experienced difficulties in fixing a pop filter onto your Yeti or Yeti Pro due to their unique stand design? Want to attach a pop filter without drilling a hole into your beautiful microphone stand? The Auphonix 6-inch Pop Filter might be perfect for you.
Specifically designed for the Blue Yeti and Blue Yeti Pro, the Auphonix 6-inch Pop Filter simply clamps onto the microphone stand. No hole drilling required!
The double pop filter also takes care of the most annoying and stubborn plusives in your podcast, giving you a clear, natural and smooth podcast, screencast or voice over recording. What’s more, it ensures the untouched quality of your voice, keeping your high frequencies minimally affected.
The Auphonix Pop Filter also fits perfectly with other USB and desktop microphones, regardless of the shape of the stand: tubular, square or rectangular.
Blue Microphones ‘The Pop’ Universal Pop Filter
If you are looking for a classy pop filter to clamp onto your Blue Yeti mic stand, “The Pop” is the solution. Blue Microphones’ very own signature design has become their pride in the pop filter market.
Featuring a sturdy wire mesh, “The Pop” filters out the destructive plosives in your vocals without interfering with the overall quality of your recording.
Best pop filters for rap vocals recording
Stedman Corporation Proscreen XL
Made with a special exclusive patented material, the Proscreen XL pop filter by Stedman Corporation has been praised to eliminate the most stubborn plosives while leaving your vocals uncolored.
If you are a rap vocalist, you’ll probably understand the struggle and annoyance of discovering how your recordings are especially prone to plosives. The Stedman Proscreen XL is a major problem solver that will reduce dramatically the amount of pops in your rapping. For maximum satisfaction, be sure to put the wire mesh a few inches away from the mic to ensure most of the plosives are stopped dead.
Avantone PS-1 PRO-SHIELD
What makes the Avatone PS-1 PRO-SHIELD special compared to the other pop filters is not only its ultra-sturdy metal wire mesh, but also its curved surface design that allows it to fit snugly around your microphone.
This special curved design is not only aesthetically pleasing, it is also a perfect solution for rappers who tend to move around slightly during the recording session, which may cause variations in volume and the amount of plosives being filtered out.
To clean the PRO-SHIELD, simply rinse it once with a little soap and water, and you are ready to record the next major rap hit!
VocalBeat Pop Filter for Professional Sound Recording
An affordable, easy-to-install pop filter that does exactly what a vocalist needs, the VocalBeat Pop Filter is an extremely beginner-friendly pop shield that can nevertheless please even the pros. Featuring a metal mesh layer, a sturdy gooseneck and adjustable clamp, the VocalBeat Pop Filter gives you crystal clear, plosive-proof vocal recording at an ultimately affordable price.
Golden Flair Media Microphone Pop Filter
Sick of getting spit on your precious microphone? It’s all in the past with the Golden Flair Media Microphone Pop Filter. The high quality, extra strong metal wire mesh prevents damage to the mic from the salt in your saliva, keeping your microphone like new for longer. The highly effective metal wire mesh also gives you clear, hit-worthy rap vocal recordings, free from those annoying plosives.
AudioRose Dual Screen Pop Filter
Unique with a lightweight design and flexible yet sturdy gooseneck, the AudioRose Dual Screen Pop Filter offers great flexibility and adjustability. You can freely adjust the distance between the pop filter screen and your mic to suit your rapping needs. The double pop filter screens also offer extra protection against destructive plosives, giving your recording a clear, crispy and clean quality.
LyxPro MOP-28 Dual Layer Microphone Pop Filter
Featuring a dual layer to remove the most annoying plosives and hisses, the LyxPro MOP-28 Dual Layer Microphone Pop Filter is especially effective when used with a large diaphragm condenser studio microphone. Easy to adjust with a flexible and sturdy metal goose, and with an easy-to-clip-on clamp, the LyxPro MOP-28 will work on most styles of microphone stands. Easy to position, sturdy once in place, and effective against plosives, the LyxPro MOP-28 is definitely a choice worth considering for professional rappers.
Tips on getting your room ready for recording
Soundproofing vs acoustic treatment
Soundproofing refers to stopping sounds coming in and out of the room, keeping the room quiet and free from external noise and disturbance. Acoustic treatment, on the other hand, refers to adjustments made to the furniture to absorb excessive ambient sound and make the overall quality of recording better.
Ideally, to ensure you get the best recording quality possible, it is best to give your home studio both soundproofing and acoustic treatment.
How to soundproof your room
Soundproofing your room is not particularly cheap, but there are some lower cost solutions:
- If your door is hollow, replace it with a solid-core wood door. Mass is critical in soundproofing so one common way to start is to make sure the door is as solid and massive as possible.
- Replace cheap windows in the recording room with double glaze glass door, for the same reason as with the door. You’d want the glass to be as thick and sturdy as possible.
- Adding an extra layer of drywall to your existing single-layer wall can make a huge difference in keeping the room quiet and preventing sounds from coming in and out of the room.
- For extra effective soundproofing, sandwich a layer of noiseproofing compounds like Green Glue between two layers of drywall or plywood, to create an effective sound barrier.
- A room within a room: while this option is not cheap, it is by far the most effective way of soundproofing a room. It involves creating extra walls inside your existing ones, and a mounted “floating” floor and ceiling above and below your existing floor and ceiling respectively. This method works based on the concept of decoupling, or the process of blocking the transfer of sounds by isolating the contact points. This creates a layer of still air between surfaces, such as between two layers of walls or between the existing floor and the floating one, hence preventing sound from being transferred from one piece of furniture to another.
- Fill up any air gaps with a sealant such as Green Glue noiseproofing sealant to prevent sounds from travelling in and out of the room through the air gaps.
If you ever want to conduct live recording, getting a quality pop filter goes a long way in improving the sound quality. Hopefully, this guide has been useful to let know how to buy the best pop filter for the money.