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The Mic of Champions

Posted on Jun 28, 2024 by Pro Moviemaker

Audio-Technica’s unique stereo shotgun was developed to capture medal-winning performances with clarity

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It can be a difficult choice when selecting a professional-quality XLR shotgun mic for the uninitiated, as many mics look rather similar. But, there can be a huge difference in terms of what they do and their actual performance. That’s certainly the case for the Audio-Technica BP4029, a very different type of mic –  being a stereo shotgun based on models originally developed to broadcast the Sydney Games of 2000. 

While many shotgun mics are used relatively close-up for dialogue, the lightweight BP4029 is perfect for use on a camera for recording distant sounds due to great off-axis noise rejection. It excels at picking up natural ambience without colouration or distortion. The mic measures 9.29 inches and is engineered for high-end broadcast and production use. It features an independent line-cardioid and figure-of-eight elements configured in a mid-side (MS) arrangement with switch-selectable internal matrixing. 

The innovative mic allows the choice of a left-right stereo output (wide or narrow) via the microphone’s internal system or choosing discrete MS signals for later manipulation – a unique feature not available from any other manufacturer.

It is equipped with two independent electret capsules; one configured as narrow cardioid and the other configured in a figure-of-eight MS mode (central-lateral), with provision for adjusting the width of the stereo image in post. You can choose between a wide sound recording angle where the mic captures either more ambient noise, or a narrow sound recording angle where the rejection is greater and ambient noises are mitigated.

A switchable roll-off filter helps minimise unwanted low-frequency noise, while a switchable low-cut filter provides better isolation of unwanted noise and effective wind noise reduction. The mic also comes with the AT8134 foam windscreen and a 24-inch, Y-shaped cable with a 5-pin XLRF to two standard 3-pin XLRM connectors. It is phantom-powered.

Plus, the classy-looking, all-black mic comes with O-rings to make it fit snugly in XLR holders, a stand clamp for 5/8in-27 threaded stands, a 5/8in-27 to 3/8in-16 threaded adapter as well as a custom carrying case.

It’s is made from a lightweight yet sturdy aluminium, allowing considerable usage in harsh environments. Weighing just 103g, it is it also ideal for installing on a boom.

Seeing as it was created for use in busy events with heavy electrical interference, Audio-Technica engineered the BP4029 benefits to be strongly reinforced against radio waves and mobile phone signal to avoid interference when recording. 

It truly is a stunner when used to capture top-quality audio in stereo, on location or in the studio. A real gold-medal winner.  

Vote for us in the Gear of the Year Awards!

The professional-quality Audio-Technica BP4029 has been nominated in the Pro Moviemaker Gear of the Year Awards in the XLR microphone of the year category for its audio accuracy, ease of use and great build quality.  

The winners are voted for by YOU. Cast your vote now!

This feature was first published in the July/August 2024 issue of Pro Moviemaker.

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