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Joby Wavo Lav Pro review

With the Joby Wavo Lav PRO mini lavalier mic you can record the audio of ‘talking head’ sequences more clearly and discreetly

Joby Wavo Lav PRO
(Image: © George Cairns)

Digital Camera World Verdict

The Joby Wavo Lav PRO lavalier mic enables you to capture cleaner, louder and more professional sounding audio on your digital camera, and it’s easy to conceal thanks to an ultra small capsule. The 2.5 meter cable enables you transport sound from an interviewee’s hard-wired mic straight to the camera, while giving you the distance to frame up a classic ‘talking head’ composition. The mic also extends the functionality of other sound kits in the JOBY Wavo range.

Pros

  • +

    Crisp, warm and natural voice

  • +

    Discrete, small capsule size

  • +

    Long high-quality cable

  • +

    Complements other JOBY mic kits

Cons

  • -

    Long cable prone to tangling

  • -

    Doesn’t work directly with smartphones

The Joby Wavo Lav PRO is part of JOBY’s recently released suite of sound recording equipment. You can plug it straight into a DSLR’s mic port and instantly improve the quality of the sound that it captures, though it won’t work if you plug it directly into a smart phone’s headphone socket.  

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Although the Wavo Lav PRO can be used on its own to capture sound for ‘talking heads’ interviews, it will also work in conjunction with other newly released audio products in the Wavo range. 

For example, the Joby Wavo AIR (opens in new tab)is a wireless bluetooth set that boasts two mic transmitters and a receiver. Although the Wavo AIR ships with its own lavalier mic, that version is considerably larger than the ultra small Wavo Lav PRO’s capsule (which is a mere 5 mm in diameter).  As a result the Wavo Lav PRO is easier to conceal on your interviewee, making it more suitable for drama and documentary productions.  

If you own both the Wavo LAV Pro and the Wavo AIR kit, then you can plug a lavalier mic into both of the transmitters and capture sound wirelessly via the receiver that’s attached to a recording device such as a smartphone.  This is the set-up we used to record the sound for our test video below:

Specifications

Capsule diameter: 5mm
Frequency range: 20Hz - 20kHz
Polar pattern: Omni directional
Sensitivity: -45 dB +3dBB
Cable length: 2.5m, diameter 1.4mm
Weight: 17g
Connector: 3.5mm plug

Key features

The Wavo Lav PRO’s 5mm in diameter mic clips discretely onto your subject. Its omnidirectional polar pattern picks up their audio. (Image credit: George Cairns)
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You can attach the ultra small Wavo Lav PRO lavalier mic to your shirt or lapel courtesy of a little crocodile clip and plug its 3.5mm jack straight a camera (such as a DSLR), delivering a full natural sound with low ambient noise.

The Lav PRO sports a small removable foam shield to reduce wind noise when shooting outdoors. Due to its 3.5mm, plug the Wavo Lav PRO is compatible with another newly released Joby mic – the Joby Wavo PRO (opens in new tab) shotgun mic. That attaches to a DSLR or compact camera via a shoe mount. 

Here we compare the Wavo Lav PRO (on the left) with the larger lavalier mic that ships with the JOBY Wavo AIR kit. (Image credit: George Cairns)
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The problem with an on-camera shotgun mic is that it can end up being too far away from the interviewee, resulting in poor quality sound. You can plug the Wavo Lav PRO into the Wavo PRO’s additional external mic socket and then attach the lavalier mic to the interviewee for much better and more intimate sounding audio. 

The Wavo Lav PRO has 2.5 meters of super thin (1.4 mm) cable, enabling you to record from a distance from your subject but still hear them clearly. The sound from the distant shotgun mic and the close-up audio from the Wavo Lav PRO are recorded on separate channels so you can choose the best audio track in the edit suite (which in most cases will be the sound from the closer Wavo Lav PRO). 

The Lav PRO also ships with a small leather drawstring bag to keep it safe and free from snagging other objects in your kit bag.

Performance

For our test video we recorded the sound from the Wavo Lav PRO onto an iPhone 13 Pro Max via the bluetooth receiver that comes with the Wavo AIR kit. (Image credit: George Cairns)
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We compared the Wavo Lav PRO with the lavalier mic that ships with the JOBY Wavo AIR. The AIR’s lavalier is noticeably larger and harder to conceal when clipped to the subject. The AIR lavalier’s cable is also much shorter than the Lav PRO’s 2.5 meter cable, but that’s to be expected as it only needs to plug into a transmitter clipped to the subject’s belt. The  Wavo Lav PRO is designed to be hard wired between the subject and a camera so it needs to have a much longer cable. 

When it comes to comparing sound quality from the two lavalier mics we found that they sound very similar. The larger lavalier from the Wavo AIR kit sounds slightly sharper than the Lav PRO, which gave it more distinct ’s’ sounds compared to the slightly less sharp sibilants captured by the Wavo Lav PRO. The differences are very subtle but check out our supporting video to compare the two mics for yourself. 

Verdict

You can plug the Wavo Lav PRO into the external mic socket built into the Wavo PRO shotgun mic. This extends the audio reach of that device. (Image credit: George Cairns)
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The wireless Wavo AIR’s bright red microphones (with their large, fluffy wind shields) are designed to draw attention on social media feeds, making them attractive to Vloggers and influencers. The Wavo Lav PRO lies at the other end of the film making spectrum. Due to its ultra small size it is much more discrete and can easily be hidden on an interviewee so that we can concentrate on what they’re saying rather than being distracted by flashy bits of on-screen audio kit.

This should make the Wavo Lav PRO attractive to film makers who want to elevate their audio production values to a higher level. It also increases the functionality of the JOBY Wavo AIR and the JOBY Wavo PRO, making it a valuable addition to your audio kit bag.

Read more:

Best microphones (opens in new tab)
Best shotgun mics (opens in new tab)
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Best audio recorders (opens in new tab)

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George has been freelancing as a photo fixing and creative tutorial writer since 2002, working for award winning titles such as Digital Camera, PhotoPlus, N-Photo and Practical Photoshop. He's expert in communicating the ins and outs of Photoshop and Lightroom, as well as producing video production tutorials on Final Cut Pro and iMovie for magazines such as iCreate and Mac Format. He also produces regular and exclusive Photoshop CC tutorials for his YouTube channel.