Pro video blog…Produced by Philip Johnston DoP/Editor


Having been working in the video business since 1988 I have amassed a great amount of knowledge of both the kit and production values over the last 30 years.

18 thoughts on “Oversized lapel mic used on a BBC FIFA story…A Sennheiser MKE40-4

  1. Not sure exactly what make of mic that is but the style is very common on French TV, where, for some reason they tend to mic presenters with one of those massive mics on each lapel.

    I assume that the size is due to the size of the wind gag more than anything else, but it does look for all the world as though the interviewee is about to be eaten by a massive bug…

  2. Yes, it was a major scandal and therefore required a very large mic

  3. It’s a Sennheiser MKE40. It’s a fairly small capsule, actually: the large cylinder you see it’s the windshield (it generally comes in two colors: standard black and white in order to disguise it better when clipped on people wearing bright shirts). I don’t know about England or Scotland, but here in Italy it’s the standard for lavalier mics, especially for RAI (the state television). It’s a pretty good microphone, albeit not as discreet as some of the smaller, pin-sized lavaliers Sennheiser and other manufacturers do offer for higher figures.

  4. not sure but judging by the round clip mount (most likely magnetic) it looks like a DPA, used by the major broadcast in Europe (I see them in studio and also outside on the Italian RAI)

  5. sennheiser mke40
    magnetic clip on allows for quick and reliable set up. This mic is ideal if time is limited and cloths are problem. Not invisible but reliable mic sound.
    we used it, but expensive.

  6. it is big because the capsle is sealed from mechanical wera and so less noise through clothes friction etc..

  7. It is not a microphone. It’s a new piece of equipment required for all interviews involving officials and politicians conducted by, or made for, the BBC. Made by the French company Alcatel, people who certainly know about that, it is called an MBS detector. The MBS stands for Massive Bullshit.

  8. How strange that you picked this up Philip! I was watching the same news item and found myself looking at her tie mike with interest. I know FIFA is against new goal video technology but does this apply also to sound too!

  9. In Belgium this is the mic you use in studio environments.
    I am not an expert myself but I think that due to it’s bigger pick up diaphragm you can have a better audio quality, deeper audio.

    This this way in studio productions you do not need the table stand microphones anymore and presenters can move more freely.

    I would never use this microphone outside the studio because it is indeed not very discreet, and will pick up A LOT OF wind noise.

    Also you need clothing which is made of a thick tissue, otherwise this microphone will just drop to the ground by its own weight…


  10. Hehe I remember those from many years ago. Remember how difficult the bulge was to conceal when you wanted to hide them!!n 🙂

  11. MKE40-4 is absolutely a great mic. Once you unboxed it, and connected it to my iPhone I was really shocked at the quality of the playback.

    Lol! The first image.

  12. I’m not sure why European broadcasters prefer this mic. It’s the size of a small child.

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