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17 Ways to Hide a Lavalier Mic

Logan Baker

The latest video from Aputure offers an extremely fun and helpful tutorial on how to properly mic up wildly different costumes.

Recording good, clean audio is one of the hardest things to do in filmmaking. Setting a lavalier microphone on a bulky, scratchy, or nonexistent costume is one of the trickiest feats out there. Luckily, this in-depth tutorial from Aputure gives us everything we need to know (like the best gear to use), plus some handy examples and extremely helpful advice.

We recommend checking out Aputure’s YouTube channel for more helpful content with production and filmmaking.

Major Highlights

17 Ways to Hide a Lavalier MicImage via Aputure

Ted Sim and Stephen Harrod discuss some of the many ways to efficiently mic your subject, regardless of their costume, and cover the challenges of working with latex, chain — and no costume at all. Harrod lists several different items available to help conceal and secure your lav, items that are easy to find and very affordable. For example:

Moleskin Plus

This Dr. Scholl’s product is cheap and helps create separation between costume and microphone, avoiding that muffled scratchy sound you’ve inevitably picked up before.

Vapon Topstick

For sticking the mic securely on the talent, Harrod recommends this easy-to-use pain-free adhesive.

Rycoat Overcovers

This tiny dead cat is perfect for preventing rustles and scratches from clothing. These are crucial when the talent is wearing multiple layers of clothing.

Helpful Hints

17 Ways to Hide a Lavalier Mic: HairlineImage via Aputure

Hiding in the Hair

Working with spaghetti straps and tank tops can be a challenge. Harrod suggests trying to hide the mic on the sternum or in the cleavage. And if that doesn’t work? Try hiding the mic in the hairline!

Dress Shirts

Taping the mic on the sternum, in between the buttons of the shirt, should guarantee security and quality audio. However, if a tie is being worn, consider placing the mic in the knot of the tie instead of on the sternum.

Sew the Mic In

For narrative endeavors, never rule out extensive pre-production with your costumes. Harrod dives into the possibilities of sewing the mic into the fabric and how beneficial this strategy can be.

Helmets Galore

Though it might seem obvious, anytime a subject wears a helmet, you’ve got a clear shot for good audio. The helmet will provide a great place to attach our mic with little to no chance of being seen.

Ditching the Lav

It’s inevitable. Sometimes wardrobe and audio just aren’t going to work well together. When in doubt, get the boom out.

Consider the Camera

This might seem like the most obvious hint, but always mind the camera’s blocking and position at all times. A receiver sticking out at the bottom of the screen is never a good look.

Combinations Covered

17 Ways to Hide a Lavalier Mic - In the Tie KnotImage via Aputure

You might not encounter some of the big-budget challenges Harrod covers in the video, but his advice is crucial for approaching difficult situations. From leather cowboy garb and chain-mail armor, to Batsuits and birthday suits, a reasonable lavalier solution can be found.

Know of any other sneaky spots to hide the mic? Let us know in the comments!