The 9 Best Isolation Shields

Updated February 03, 2018 by Ben G

9 Best Isolation Shields
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We spent 43 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top selections for this wiki. When your environment is not ideal, one of these isolation shields can make a huge difference in reducing noise pollution, echo and reverb. Perfect for everything from voice-overs and song vocals to adding a little extra quality while recording instruments, they come ready to attach to a microphone stand or in desktop options. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to support our work. Skip to the best isolation shield on Amazon.

9. LyxPro VRI-30

The LyxPro VRI-30 comes in four distinct sizes, ranging from mini to upgraded. The largest is big enough to take up the entirety of a small desk. As long as you find the right one, it will cover all your sound reduction needs.
  • reduces post-production time
  • mounting hardware is included
  • can be difficult to set up
Brand LyxPro
Model VRI30
Weight 3.8 pounds
Rating 3.7 / 5.0

8. Neewer Portable

The Neewer Portable comes with two different adapters for mounting to microphone stands and holders. The metal alloy build will guarantee that your recordings sound better, no matter what kind of setup you are working with.
  • kills snare drum noise
  • helps attenuate feedback
  • somewhat smaller than others
Brand Neewer
Model FBA_40087676
Weight 3.4 pounds
Rating 3.8 / 5.0

7. Auralex MudGuard v2

The Auralex MudGuard v2 comes with everything needed to attach it to just about any stand, so you can limit external noises bleeding in. The compact design makes it easy to store away, and the convex shape allows it to avoid bouncing sounds around the insides.
  • good for filtering overtones
  • useful for directional mics
  • closed backing lets in bass sounds
Brand Auralex Acoustics
Weight 4.6 pounds
Rating 4.1 / 5.0

6. Rockville RMF2

The high-grade steel of the Rockville RMF2 means it is a solid, durable option for those who need to record on location but don't want to skimp on size or audio quality. It comes with a mic stand and a 5/8" adapter so any setup can be accommodated.
  • five panels for complete coverage
  • attachment for desktop microphones
  • somewhat too heavy for light tripods
Brand Rockville
Model RMF2
Weight 11.3 pounds
Rating 4.1 / 5.0

5. Monoprice Microphone 602650

The Monoprice Microphone 602650 is fairly heavy, weighing in at nearly 12 pounds. That heft will ensure that it stays steady wherever you set it. Using it will cause your recordings to sound cleaner, and you'll look and feel even more professional while you're making them.
  • great build quality
  • perfect for live studio recordings
  • designed for tables or desks
Brand Monoprice
Model 602650
Weight 11.4 pounds
Rating 3.9 / 5.0

4. Pyle Compact

The Pyle Compact is angle- and depth-adjustable, and it includes three soundproofing studio foam wedge acoustic tiles that block out all unwanted echoes effectively. The compact design is perfect for use on top of any level surface.
  • improves audio quality dramatically
  • withstands constant transport abuse
  • quick and easy setup
Brand Pyle
Model PSMRS08
Weight 2.1 pounds
Rating 4.1 / 5.0

3. Marantz Professional Live

The Marantz Professional Live is a versatile option for anyone who needs their vocals to come out clean. It is a little bulky, so mounting it will require some ingenuity, but having it stand on its own is also a possibility.
  • five high-quality metal panels
  • adjustable shape
  • good for overdubbing video
Brand Marantz Professional
Model Sound Shield Live
Weight 7.1 pounds
Rating 4.4 / 5.0

2. SE Electronics Space

The SE Electronics Space has ten distinct layers of materials that help it to muffle room reflections without adding in much sound coloration. That means your instruments or voice will sound closer to their neutral state than other options will provide for.
  • tilts for better mic positioning
  • helps with stereo imaging
  • useful user manual included
Brand SE Electronics
Weight 9 pounds
Rating 4.7 / 5.0

1. Griffin Studio Foam Panel

The Griffin Studio Foam Panel uses sharp 2-inch thick foam and heavy-duty metal shell panels for the best noise reflection reduction. You will always get studio quality recordings without any extraneous noises cluttering the track.
  • arrives ready to use
  • folds closed for easy portability
  • professional studio shock mount
Brand Griffin
Model MDAPS104
Weight 12 pounds
Rating 4.6 / 5.0

How An Isolation Shield Works

Microphones amplify any sound that goes into them, but that can include unwanted audio from around the room. Audiences of live performances expect to hear some ambient noise, but when someone purchases a CD or a recorded version of that, they usually want clean and clear sound. Isolation shields allow performers to deliver studio-quality sound outside of the controlled environment of a recording room. This device is placed behind a microphone and blocks out any extra sound to help produce sharper vocals.

The shield is typically internally padded with acoustic foam similar to the noise blocking variety you find on the walls of a recording studio. The foam works to absorb ambient noise before it reaches the very sensitive microphone. Most models have hard outer shells that trap the sound the user wants to record inside of the shield and eliminates any echoes.

The shields are usually molded into a shape that reduces sound reflections and slightly vented, allowing the microphone to breathe. If the shields were not vented, the result could be a sound that was too harsh on the listener’s ears.

Most shields have angle adjustability, so the user can move them according to where the unwanted sound is coming from. In any live studio environment, like a concert, the direction from where the ambient noise is coming is unpredictable, and the performer may need to block it out on the left, right, or even slightly above them. Some have three panels, creating a miniature room, so the user can be almost totally isolated. These are best for events like horse races or Nascar where people don’t need to see the orator.

Three Famous Recording Studios

Ocean Sound Recording Studio sits in the isolated area of Giske, Norway, overlooking the ocean. From the outside, the studio looks like an old farmhouse, but inside one can find some of the most advanced recording equipment available.

The room features a double-height ceiling meant to enhance acoustics, Studer A-800 two inch recorders and a Neumann U-47, one of the most classic forms of condenser microphones. Ocean Sound also has one of the most esteemed mixing consoles, the Rupert Neve 5088 Shelford Limited Edition.

Real World Studios in Wiltshire, England was a 200-year-old water mill that’s been turned into a recording venue. Along with its beautiful natural landscape, the studio has a 72 channel SSL 9000 KL K Series mixing console and two rooms designed to give either warm acoustics or a larger sound scale.

Real World Studios has living quarters on the site so dedicated recording artists can live where they work. The studio provides a capella and instrumental recording versions of every session to its patrons.

La Chapelle in Belgium is a converted 19th-century hat factory and offers a historical recording experience with its iconic CADAC A series console and analogue Euphonix mixing desk. Marvin Gaye recorded his album “Midnight Love” in the building.

It is one of the largest studios in Europe and is big enough to house a symphonic orchestra. La Chapelle’s trademark feature is its headphone monitoring system that has 16 inputs, allowing every artist to create their own headphone mix.

The History Of The Microphone

The first device that amplified the human voice appeared in Greece around 600 BCE when people would wear masks with holes designed to amplify their speech.

In 1665, an inventor named Robert Hooke created the “lovers’ telephone” which consisted of two cups attached by a stretched wire. When people spoke into either cup, the person on the other side could hear them better than they could without the device.

The German inventor Johann Philipp Reis was the first person to utilize a metallic strip, which he connected to a vibrating membrane. The membrane produced a current that reportedly amplified sound. The man credited with creating the telephone, Alexander Graham Bell, attempted an early form of the microphone in 1876 with his “liquid transmitter.” This included a conductive rod that sat in an acid solution.

Three inventors in different countries unknowingly worked on a nearly identical form of the first successful microphone. David Edward Hughes in England, and Emile Berliner and Thomas Edison in the United States produced a carbon microphone that would become the prototype for models seen today.

Edison received the original patent for the device, but many people maintain that Hughes had been showcasing his model long before his competitor filed for ownership. Edison’s model was used in the first radio broadcast at the New York Metropolitan Opera House in 1910.

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Last updated on February 03, 2018 by Ben G

Ben is a writer from California. He mostly dives into film, videogames, and science fiction literature. Also Hello Kitty. He likes Hello Kitty a whole lot.

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