I have been trying to record folding clothes with a zoom H2 and obviously I get more noise than the signal and then when I try to eq the noise the signal also get very weak. What would be a better microphone to record this at home?


6 Answers 6


Are you trying to do this as foley? If so, I would say to stop "folding" the clothes and do more handling noise. Rub the fabrics together, snap them, get any kind of louder sounds you can out of them. These will be far more useful to you as a source of foley, as you can always decrease their volume to have them better fit what you're mixing them in to.


I'm assuming this is for sound to picture? Because chances are that your folding sounds in your mix will also be pretty soft compared to the rest of the sounds and so you don't need to crank up the gain. If you only have a Zoom H2 at hand then you can easily make that work for you.

Also, if you want to have the sound of folding cloths, then chances are you do not need the actual sound of folding cloths, but pick louder fabric and "perform" them louder, then bring it down in your mix later. As I'm typing this, I see @Shaun just wrote the same thing... haha.

You can also use a parametric EQ to hone in the frequency of your noise. I know my mic/recorder setup usually gets that pre-amp noise around 10KhZ.

Hope this helps.

  • They say great minds think alike ;) Sep 14, 2010 at 21:35
  • @shaun haha. Sir Shaun and Andrew - answering your questions in sync. Sep 14, 2010 at 21:46

Here's a previous SSD thread that may help you a bit:

How to capture very low volume sounds?


Agree with the others, best to record louder sounds than trying to record sounds that are too quiet.

Quiet sounds = need microphone close = proximity effect, or distant = noise floor.


Solid, or even mediocre shotgun mics, I've found, are the best for recording that type of low dB foley. If you're getting a lot of background noise, just build yourself a little "booth" and cover it with a blanket if you have to improvise.


In all honesty, this is a good example of Good Mic + Good Mic Preamp + Good A/D Comverters (+ Good Skill) = the sound you're looking for. There truly is no substitution for a good signal chain.

Early on in my recording days I had a crappy Yamaha 16 channel mixing board and an Audio-Technica 4033 mic. After a while I purchased an Avalon 2022 mic pre and Neumann U67 mic. After that Eureka moment of "ohhhhhhhhhh.....so THIS is what it should sound like" I never went back to cheap gear again.

Now, we all record with the best possible gear we can get our hands on and an unfortunate reality of our line of work is that we can never have enough variety of microphones, mic preamps, etc. I would love to own one of everything but my wallet disagrees.

The louder the sound source the less "work" your mic and pre have to do. That translates to less electrical noise in your signal chain.

  • Thanks a lot all! these were some really helpful suggestion, actually I am not recording a foley, this is for an art video installation and all thats happening in the video is clothes being folded and thats the only sound, and the idea is to bring these subtle sounds to audience's attention. You can see an example of what I am talking about here vimeo.com/13875345 But I guess I need to go to a quieter space and try using a shotgun instead since the sound needs to be fairly in sync with the actions.. thanks again! –
    – Ssaraf
    Sep 15, 2010 at 7:07

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