As I find myself wanting to put microphones in various places where space is tight (yes, cars), I'm on the lookout for small omni condensers, like for example the Schoeps CCM 2 series.

The price of these things make me hesitant of putting them inside hot engine bays and under the car at high speeds. I'm afraid lavs are too fragile, but maybe I'm wrong about this?

The mini XLR plug and thin cable of the Schoeps is a plus, though not absolutely necessary.

Does anyone have some experiences to share about mics that are a bit cheaper than the schoeps but similar in size?

alt text http://schoeps.de/IMG/product_categories/small_ccm2h-ng.gif

(you might wonder: why don't you ask your colleagues, surely you're not the first that wants to put a mic under the car? The thing is, measurement microphones require special preamps and they are designed for producing nice graphs and measurement data, not nice sound)


DPA lavs are the way to go. The cables may be fragile, but that's what gaff tape is for. They sound excellent on cars. Here's an example.

  • be aware of Max SPL options with the PDA: 6040 vs 6041 vs 6042 - thats what I would go for, whichever DPA is suitable for the extremes of SPL eg F1 car vs a V8 vs a generic 4 cylinder.... – user49 Jan 27 '12 at 7:21
  • (DPA not PDA!?) – user49 Jan 27 '12 at 7:21
  • Wow, sweet video! Ok, all the recommendations for lavs have convinced me. Good tip on the SPL, I'll need to get an up-close SPL measurement of a loud engine under load to determine which version is appropriate. – EMV Jan 27 '12 at 17:11
  • Update: We have several sets of 4060 and 4061 in use, they are great. – EMV Sep 25 '14 at 9:05

How about lav mics like the DPA 4060:


or the Rode Lav:


I know you said you think lavs are too fragile, but they're omni, and are super easy to get into small places where conventional mics (even ones like the Schoeps CCM 2 Series) can't reach easily, if at all.



  • Thanks for the suggestion, you've and everyone suggesting lavs (DPA or Sanken, or Rode) have convinced me. – EMV Jan 27 '12 at 17:14
  • Do these RODE lav's use the same connector as the DPA 4060's? The small golden type... The DPA accessories are so expensive, but if the RODE stuff fits as well, i'd be very happy :) – Arnoud Traa Jan 28 '12 at 15:41

COS-11's I've read sound matched for engine, mechanical vibrations.


I've used the COS11 in that sitaution a fair amount. Rode Lav would probably sound great as well. NT5s are also nice for that application, though they're a little larger and not omni.

  • ...but they have Omni capsules as an addon – Olle Sjöström Jan 27 '12 at 8:34

Check out Karma Mics K-Micro


You can get 7....(yes..... 7 !!!!) for about $100..... they actually sound pretty good, and, if screw one up, you just throw it away and buy another set :)

Sound on Sound reviewed them a few months ago too.

  • Hah, I'll order these as kamikaze-mics! – EMV Jan 27 '12 at 17:18
  • Update: I have these at home and at work now, they are not bad at all on Engine sound. Solid, small and cheap, with reasonable sound quality. On voice though, they need EQ-ing to even out some dips and bumps. – EMV Sep 25 '14 at 9:04

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