Distributed in America by Que Audio, the DA12 cardioid earset microphone ($477) from Australian firm Da-Cappo boasts a unique physical design. Its molded "fleshy" earpiece is designed to fit around the outside of the ear with the microphone itself protruding from the bottom of the earpiece, allowing a more natural angle toward the user's mouth.
Adjusting the length of the microphone is as simple as retracting it through the earpiece. This back-electret condenser micro microphone is available in multiple colors, all of which ship in a leatherette carrying case with a windscreen, cable, and clip.
The microphone is attached to its four-foot cable by a screwon connection; the same connector on the other end connects to the correct adapter for a wireless belt pack or XLR. I tested this omni microphone with its optional XLR adapter (adapters for most belt packs are available).
Starting off with console EQ flat, the omni-directional capsule did a good job naturally capturing the voice. I ran the HPF at approximately 70 Hz to eliminate unnecessary room rumble (a precautionary measure). The included windscreen assisted in eliminating the occasional plosive. The microphone is designed with a gradual boost from 2 kHz to 10 kHz, which drops off significantly by about 18 kHz. The EQ I preferred included cutting some 400 Hz (almost automatic for me) and reducing 8 kHz a bit to fight sibilance.
The mic did not overcompensate in that range; it was more of a cautious move on my part and adjusting for the system in which I was working. When the user started singing, the SPL rating of 140 dB offered plenty of dynamic range. In my experience, the mic seemed right at home with the user going from speaking to full singing voice. The DA12 is offered in single- and dual-ear designs as well as a lavaliere and stick microphone (designed for theater and productions). All three use the same 2.5mm capsule.
The DA12 is durable and well designed, and its earpiece is hard to shake off; it would be a good fit for productions and speaking engagements. Did I mention it is water-resistant? Users that sweat or spit, even situations which actually involve water in a production, will be satisfied to know that the microphone will not let them down, all the while providing a broad dynamic range and full-bodied sound.
Contact: Que Audio | queaudio.com
Dan Wothke is media director for Nashville's Belmont Church. You can reach him firstname.lastname@example.org.