Sony has announced a new, weatherproof wireless microphone that doesn't just transmit wirelessly – it ditches wires altogether, as it doesn't even need to be plugged into the microphone jack. Instead, it communicates via the hot shoe for completely cable-free audio recording.
The Sony ECM-W2BT Wireless Microphone employs the manufacturer's Multi Interface Shoe (MI) technology, which is supported by cameras including the Sony A7C and the Sony ZV-1 vlogging camera. Not only does this prevent the mic jack wire obstructing the visibility and movement of rear screen, it also eradicates cable signal interference for clearer all-digital audio.
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Working in a very similar fashion to the Røde Wireless Go (which, although wireless, does require an analog wire to be connected to the microphone jack), the receiver sits on the camera's hot shoe and receives signals from the transmitter – about the size of a large cigarette lighter, which clips to the subject's collar or sits on a table like a dictaphone.
This features an omnidirectional mic capsule to pick up audio regardless of what direction it's coming from, with a three-step attenuator that enables you to easily adjust recording levels to 0dB, 10dB or 20dB.
The low latency Bluetooth connection delivers transmission up to 600ft / 200m ("in a location with good visibility without obstacles"), with up to 9 hours of battery life when mounted on an MI-compatible camera.
Of course, the device doesn't just work on MI cameras; you can connect it to any camera with a microphone input via a standard 3.5mm mini-jack.
The setup pairs perfectly with the new Sony ECM-LV1 Stereo Lavalier Microphone – which, at just 32 x 11mm, is much more discreet than the chunky transmitter unit of the ECM-W2BT. And, like the ECM-W2BT, it features an optional wind screen to cut out noise when shooting outdoors.
Both devices will be available in April, with the Sony ECM-W2BT Wireless Microphone retailing for $229.99 / £210 (approximately AU$298) and the Sony ECM-LV1 Stereo Lavalier Microphone selling for $29.99 / £32 (AU$38).