October 13, 2014

7 Great Techniques for Hiding Lav Microphones

This fantastic video from Izzy Hyman is great not just for filmmaking, but for any time you need to mic somebody up and the lav can't be in the shot. I'm not a huge fan of lavs, even less so when they have to be hidden, but if you shoot video, or you're getting into audio, at some point you're going to have to do some of these techniques. The triangle tape trick has been one of the most useful to me, and if you've never seen it or used it before, you should absolutely try it the next time you need to hide a lav. You can also use little adhesive discs or mic concealers that are made specifically for this purpose like these here and here, though there are plenty of times where some regular old tape can do the trick just fine.

If you've got more techniques not mentioned in the video, be sure to share them in the comments!     

Your Comment

31 Comments

Oh man, genius! I feel like there's a real lack of handy audio techniques, such as this, online. That's probably why the soundie is always the one guy on set getting paid when everyone else is volunteering.

Love this stuff, keep it coming. I'd love it if NFS could run a series on practical sound techniques. You know, workload permitting :)

October 13, 2014 at 6:27PM

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Ben Howling
Writer / Director
641

I really value this information. Its seems so simple but its another tool to add to the bad. Keep them coming NFS!

October 13, 2014 at 6:40PM, Edited October 13, 6:40PM

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Rex Warner
Digital Storyteller at The Arbinger Institute
266

Thanks for sharing my video, Joe! :)

October 13, 2014 at 6:52PM

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Thanks for making it! Some of these can be lifesaving when you need them.

October 13, 2014 at 7:25PM

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Joe Marine
Camera Department

Very helpful! Thanks! You're a brave man putting that tape on your chest!

October 13, 2014 at 8:13PM

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matt
771

Can someone share with me what mic is he using? :)

October 13, 2014 at 8:21PM

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Sam K
72

It's a DPA 4061 lav mic. :)

October 13, 2014 at 10:11PM, Edited October 13, 10:11PM

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October 14, 2014 at 9:49AM, Edited October 14, 9:49AM

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No mention of mole skine?

I would think that is a better solution than the tape triangles as they can fall off easily.

October 14, 2014 at 3:29PM

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This cleared up a lot of questions for me. So many times I watch videos and films and try to figure out how they captured the audio. Very helpful, as awkward as it got at times.

October 14, 2014 at 9:10PM

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Adam Wright
Filmmaker
106

My favorite comment was right at the beginning: "Don't hide the lavalier." I am so happy when the producer says that either the shot is a closeup or that he doesn't care if the mic shows. The sound is so much better and the speaker feels far more comfortable. For interviews, I would rather just rely entirely on the boom than attempt to hide a lavalier. It's just not worth it.

October 14, 2014 at 11:48PM, Edited October 14, 11:48PM

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Casey Preston
Videographer
218

You can allways hide the lavallier in post. Should not be the hardest of jobs.

October 16, 2014 at 10:01AM

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Spoken like a guy who can't spell "always".

October 18, 2014 at 4:33AM

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very helpful information. thank you izzy!

October 15, 2014 at 1:42AM

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Very helpful. But I interview a lot of women I want a female version of this but not only mentioning the bra solution LOL. Too much compromising when you interview a female politician.

October 15, 2014 at 5:59AM

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Just man up and stick that lav between the boobs. It is by far the best place. If the actress has to show cleavage, tape the lav on her back, hide the wire with flesh colored moleskin or medical tape and run it up her neck, into her hair and hide it behind the ear.

October 18, 2014 at 4:32AM

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I use this for the bra solution lol. Works EVERYTIME! https://youtu.be/oOm91JTiwjI

May 17, 2016 at 6:26AM

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My favorite is to just put it behind the button. If you are using a countryman b6 or OST TL-40 just tuck it right behind it so if the talent looks down they can see it but the camera cant.
The main thing to keep in mind is that even with the same talent in the same wardrobe what works one day may not work again the next. Make sure to listen during rehearsals because once they start take one it is very hard to get a chance to adjust later.

P.S. The boom will sound better 90% of the time So always boom it unless you are shooting with a 12 mm from 30ft away.

October 15, 2014 at 8:45AM, Edited October 15, 8:45AM

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Will Youngman
Sound Mixer
203

There are a few tricks that i don't know... thanks.

October 15, 2014 at 11:40AM

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Ragüel Cremades
Film producer and director
7167

this is EXACTLY what I needed for the shoot in 2 days. Thanks!

October 15, 2014 at 8:00PM

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Alex miller
Writer/Director/Editor/Actor
74

Great tips in this quick tutorial. Will definitely have to try the triangles on our next interview. Mahalo!

October 16, 2014 at 3:23PM

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Brad Watanabe
Director
74

Great video! Very informative--thanks much.

October 16, 2014 at 3:51PM, Edited October 16, 3:51PM

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Barbara P. Flees
Director / Producer
81

It's going to be like 40-year-old virgin when he takes that tape off.

October 16, 2014 at 4:31PM

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John Hrindo
Editor
171

Thanks Izzy for the helpful video and thanks for posting Joe. The gaffer tape triangle technique is a good one because gaffer tape is usually available on set. However, sometimes two triangles of tape are just too thick and cause a noticeable pooch - especially with a T shirt. Double face tape patches are much thinner and hypoallergenic. A cheaper version of the Rode double face tape is "toupee tape" which can be sourced at a wig store. It's cheaper and very effective since it is designed to hold hairpieces in place on sweaty bald heads. When taping to bare skin, first use a strip of medical tape that is water resistant and apply it to the skin as a base. Then apply the double face toupee tape to the medical tape. Secure the lav against the toupee tape avoiding the grill. Then put another piece of toupee tape on top of the lav to hold the lav firmly in place and stick to the inside of the clothing. Toupee tape works great with clothing as well.

October 20, 2014 at 5:40PM, Edited October 20, 5:40PM

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Randolph Sellars
Director of Photography
293

That's awesome, thanks for sharing that! I'm going to look into that right now.

October 20, 2014 at 8:40PM

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Joe Marine
Camera Department

Ridiculously helpful video! Thank you for this.

October 30, 2014 at 7:56AM

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Andy Lunt
Filmmaker
74

Thanks for sharing. Audio is the cardinal sin, but so little is said about how to fix it. Thanks. Hope this is one of many.

November 11, 2014 at 5:42PM

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Erik Stenbakken
Videographer & Photographer
257

Awesome post! Does anyone know what kind of lav was being used in the video?

August 16, 2015 at 4:40PM

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Jeff Payne
Writer/Director
161

aweome video

August 17, 2015 at 6:44AM

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This is awesome, however it's also sexist. Please do a video about women and the various attire/materials and outfits, including dresses!

August 19, 2015 at 6:05PM

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This is another great way I like to do it using double sided sticky tape. https://youtu.be/oOm91JTiwjI

May 17, 2016 at 6:32AM, Edited May 17, 6:32AM

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