The US version of comedy-drama series Shameless used DPA Microphone’s 4071 d:screet Miniature Omnidirectional Microphones on set and on location during filming of Season 4. The microphones were selected by Joe Michalski, production sound mixer for Shameless, and Mike Riner, head of production sound at the studio.
“We’d always read good things about the reliability of DPA Microphones and, of course, the clarity and the consistency of the sound of the products,” said Michalski. “We did 12 episodes in Season 4, during which we used eight of the d:screet 4071 mics. I never once experienced a problem with them. With our previous microphones, we noticed that over time the sound started to become different from one to the next, so sometimes we had to use the worst ones just to make sure we had a consistent sound. With the d:screets, I could be using 20 different mics and they all sound exactly the same. That is a definite highlight for me.”
In order to conceal the microphones, the d:screet 4071s were usually hidden on a piece of the actors’ clothing, made possible because of the thin diameter of the mics’ cables. Designed for use as a placement mic, the d:screet 4071 has a low-cut acoustical quality incorporated into the capsule to serve as a built-in pre-amp. It also has a built-in boost to compensate for the loss of vocals when placed at an angle on the actors’ chests.
To protect the d:screet from the wind on location in Burbank and Chicago, the sound crew had to cover up the mic heads. “There were times when my hands and head were freezing, and my headset didn’t work very well,” recalled Michalski. “But, I’d get back to the hotel at the end of the night and play back the audio and I’d realise that the recording still sounded great and was something that the editors could actually use.” The d:screet is built with a resistance to moisture and extreme temperature change.