When it comes to amateur filmmaking, sound is perhaps the most important aspect of a video. It’s easier to watch a 480p video on YouTube than to watch a 4K video with terrible audio. That is, unless you are muting your device.
Recording sound is not an easy task, especially when it’s windy outside. That’s why solutions such as the Rode Blimp Mk II exist. We’ll see in this review if this device is a must or an overkill.
A small introduction to microphone
In this section we won’t go in depth into what is a cardioid microphone or how it works. We’ll only write about why do you need extra gear to make your microphone reliable.
Microphones records shocks
Whenever your microphone receives a shock, the recording will pick it up. That’s why the regular microphone holder isn’t particularly adapted for anything other than a fixture.
Even then, once in a while, some shocks, movements, or vibrations can happen in the microphone stand, the table, or even the floor.
That’s why the socks and microphone, even for radio or podcasts, are mounted on a support with elastic rubber bands or a more advanced system. We call these shock mounts.
Noise is often associated with the movement of air. These movements of air can create contact with the microphone membrane, creating a popping noise. Especially while speaking B’s and P’s.
Plosives are air bursts that originate in the speaker’s mouth. That’s why the microphone comes with the black foam that is called an anti-pop filter or windscreens. They actually redirect the air around to avoid these noises.
Microphones catch wind noise
You can blow into the microphone with a bit of force to understand what I am talking about. Even with an anti-pop filter, the wind will make the air particulate move the membrane of the microphone, picking up the friction and translating it into bass.
What is a Blimp?
The Blimp is the ultimate windshield and shock mounting system for RØDE shotgun microphones, as well as any third-party shotgun microphone up to 325mm in length. It features a Rycote® Lyre® suspension system for superior isolation from handling noise, plus an ultra-lightweight and ergonomic handle.Rode official presentation
This product is essentially a huge shock absorber for shotgun microphones mounted on a plastic structure with a giant dead cat on it called a dead wombat, although it’s synthetic fur in reality.
It’s an all-in-one solution for field recorders using a boom to record outside in extremely windy situations.
The Shock mount
The shock mount is basically a gun with some sort of adjustable rail and a flexible PVC mount that acts like rubber but is much more durable.
Inside this grip, you basically have an XLR connector or extender to connect your device, letting the base of the cross act as the XLR input.
The structure of the tube is made out of a plastic shell that has a honey cone shapes with some sort of elastane inside it.
The tube can be opened on each side with a simple screwed dome for each side. Overall, the Blimp Mk II is quite light since it’s made mostly out of durable PVC.
This tube that is enclosing the handle of the blimp is used as a giant windscreen. With it most of the wind noise will be gone already.
The dead wombat
The dead wombat is the ultimate solution against very strong wind. If you are on the coast on the beach or in a storm this dead wombat will remove any friction noise surrounding the microphone.
It’s quite amazing, actually. I have the regular Rode NTG2 foam and Deadcat, and there’s a night and day difference with the Rode BLIMP.
I think the regular foam and Deadcat are enough for interior recording, but for exterior recording, the BLIMP is a must.
9.0 out of 10.
I think every boom operator in the world owns one of the Rode BLIMPs. They are still the best solution to wind noise, and they’ve been around for a very long time.
This piece of gear cost 259 euros, which is quite a lot, but it has become a non-negotiable tool for getting good-quality audio in exteriors.
It will have a much bigger effect on the quality of the recordings than upgrading your microphone or recorder.
In conclusion, I highly recommend this product, which has become a reference in the industry.
Rode BLIMP Mark II
Official Website: https://rode.com
Official page: https://rode.com/fr/accessories/windshields/blimp
Our Video Production : https://www.neonnight.fr/en/