What Does a Pop Filter Do? [And Other Pop Filter Tips]

If you want to improve your microphone without spending hundreds of dollars, a pop filter is a great way to do that. But, if you aren’t familiar with the tool, you might be asking the question: what does a pop filter do?

A pop filter is a screen between you and the mic that catches “puh” noises. Reducing this noise lets you relax when using “p” noises, letting you focus more on a better deliver. It helps you improve your sound quality.

Now that we know what a pop filter does, we will go over how a pop filter works, whether or not they make a difference, and the benefits of using one.

How Does a Pop Filter Work?

Pop filters use porous materials wrapped around a circular frame to help reduce popping sounds likely to occur while recording. They can help eliminate loud, distracting popping sounds using harsh consonants like P, B, T, D, K, and G.

A pop filter is also known as a pop shield or pop screen. It works as a noise protection filter for microphones. These filters are typically used in recording studios.

Pop filters can eliminate popping sounds or any background noise caused by the mechanical impact of fast-moving air on the microphone, which naturally happens when you speak into a microphone.

These filters also can reduce the effect of sibilance, the hissing sound made by air passing through someone’s teeth. This happens when saying certain consonants like S and Z.

How to Use a Pop Filter

Most pop filters include a mounting clamp to attach to your microphone stand. Adjust your mic stand and tighten it to the correct position. Then, simply attach the pop filter to the arm of your mic stand next to the microphone.

There’s usually an adjustable gooseneck that connects your pop filter to your mounting clamp, so make sure to adjust it until the pop filter rests a few inches from your microphone. Maintain a 2 to 6 inches distance between the microphone and the pop filter.

When using the pop filter, keep it directly between the microphone and your mouth. Depending on the sound you want and your microphone, stand 3 to 10 inches away from the filter. So, treat the pop filter like it isn’t there.

Benefits of Using a Pop Filter

There are many benefits to using a pop filter when it’s used correctly. It’s important to know the advantages of pop filters so you can decide whether or not a pop filter would be a good investment for you. Some of these benefits are listed below.

  • Great for indoor use.
  • Ability to filter out unwanted sounds and frequencies.
  • Eliminate popping sounds from fast-moving air.
  • Minimize plosive sounds.
  • Cuts down on sibilance.
  • Keeps moisture off your microphone.

Different Types of Pop Filters

Nylon Mesh Pop Filter

The most common type is a nylon mesh pop filter. It’s made from woven nylon and then stretched around a circular frame. This kind of filter is inexpensive but very effective. It can reduce certain unwanted frequencies during recording sessions.

Bestseller No. 1
Neewer Professional Microphone Pop Filter Shield Compatible with Blue Yeti and Any Other Microphone, Dual Layered Wind Pop Screen With A Flexible 360 Degree Gooseneck Clip Stabilizing Arm
  • DUAL-LAYER POP FILTER: The first screen blocks air blasts as any pop filter normally would; The gap in between then disperses any remaining air pressure, so by the time it passes the second screen, the blast is easily contained to produce great quality recordings
  • ADJUSTABLE GOOSENECK: The steel metal gooseneck holder fully supports the filter’s weight and keep it in place. You can adjust the angle and distance between the screen and the microphone to best fit your needs for yours lovely voice
  • CLERAER SOUND: Banish the dreaded hissing and lisping sounds that come when pronouncing the letter “S” and blocks those ugly “plosives” that follows “B” and “P”. It is a great item for singers, streamers and actors alike who want help achieving the best possible performance and help protect the spitting all over your personal microphone
  • WIDE COMPATIBILITY: Adjustable screw rotating clamp with scratch-proof gripper can secure variety tubular mounting booms or microphone stands. Eliminates anyone’s extra elements that prevents them from recording/projecting their best vocals to the public or their audience
  • EASY OPERATION: Swivel mount for easy installation, removal and location adjustment. Note: Microphone is NOT included.
SaleBestseller No. 2
Rok-It Single Layer Microphone Pop Filter with C-Clamp to Fit Most Microphone Stands; (RI-POPFILTER)
  • 6” Single Layered Microphone Pop Filter
  • Durable Nylon Screen
  • 11.5″ Goose Neck with Adjustable Clamp Mount
  • C-Clamp fits Most Standard Microphone Stand Shafts and Booms
SaleBestseller No. 3
Gator Frameworks Split Level Double Layered Pop Filter with Attachment Clamp; Fits Most Standard Microphone Stands (GM-POP FILTER)
  • Nylon 6-inch screen pop filter
  • 11.5-inch Goose neck and clamp included
  • C-clamp will fit most standard microphone stand shafts and booms
  • 6″ Double layered, split level “pop” filter

Metal Mesh Pop Filter

The metal mesh pop filter places a thin metal screen between you and the microphone. It is a little more expensive than the nylon mesh pop filter but allows a wider range of frequencies to pass through while reducing other noises.

Bestseller No. 1
Gator Frameworks Metal Screen Pop Filter with 12.4-Inch Gooseneck (GFW-POPFILTER-MTL)
  • Metal Screen Pop Filter with 12.4-Inch Gooseneck
  • Shields Vocal Recordings from Popping Sounds while Preserving Vocal Quality
  • Angled Slats on Metal Grille Divert Air Downward for Cleaner Take
  • Great for Podcasts, Broadcasts, Streaming, Content Creation, & Vocal Recordings
  • Clamps to Most Standard Microphone Stands or Boom Shafts up to 18mm in Diameter
Bestseller No. 2
Mic Pop Filter, Professional Metallic Mic Pop Filter Mesh for Blue Yeti and Any Other Mic, ARISEN Dual Layered Microphone Pop Filter, Mic Filter with A Flexible 360° Gooseneck Clip Stabilizing Arm
  • CLEARER SOUND: The Arisen mic pop filter is made of a double layer of metal material, which protects the microphone filter from corrosion by saliva and other steam. Besides, the inseparably close double-layer of the metal pop filter can more effectively eliminate “p” “b” and the hissing of the letter “S” to achieve the perfect sound quality optimization effect.
  • 360° ADJUSTABLE GOOSENECK of pop screen:The gooseneck tube of the Pop Filter is sufficient to support the weight of the metal blue yeti pop filter and hold it securely in place. And you can allow adjusting the angle and distance between the pop filter for microphones and the microphone by changing the angle of the gooseneck tube, which filtering noise or burst sound at the angle that works best for you.
  • DOUBLE METAL MESH of POP FILTERS: Sometimes, you will find the filtering effect is not apparent by using a single layer pop filter metal to filtering out the noise. But here, Arisen mic windscreen does something that other brands on the market are having a hard time doing, that’s the Arisen upgraded versions pop filter that filter out noise while maintaining natural sound quality, resulting in high-quality sound.
  • Widely compatible: The Adjustable swivel clamp with an anti-scratch feature that allows the mic screen to be securely attached to a table or device when installing the pop filter for a condenser microphone, or it is easily installed in any microphone stand or Blue Yeti microphone. Also, the ergonomic design of the adjustable clamps for audio technica pop filter makes it easy to install in music studios, offices, individual studios, and recording studios.
  • FRIENDLY CUSTOMER SERVICE: The ARISEN microphone filter shield can be easily installed to different microphone stands without breaking the stands. And more and more video bloggers chose it to optimize the sound quality because that gets more fans likes from their followers by using this black pop filter. Also, the ARISEN WINDBOX pop filter mesh provides 12 months warranty, any concerns. Please be free to contact us.
SaleBestseller No. 3
Pop Filter,PEMOTech [Upgraded Three Layers] Metal Mesh & Foam & Etamine Layer Microphone Pop Filter,Microphone Windscreen Cover,Handheld Mic Shield Mask for Vocal Recording,Youtube videos,Streaming
  • ▲▲NOT FOR BLUE YETI▲▲ WIDE APPLICATIONS – Our microphone pop filter suitable for 45 mm to 61 mm diameter microphones such as AT2020, AT2035, AT4040, AT2050, AT2020+, Samson Meteor , Scarlett CM25 ,CAD GXL2400, Apogee, Razer Siren X, BADAAX Mic, Rode NT1A, Rode NT-USB, MXL 770, MXL 910, MXL 2010, CAD U37, BM-800 and many other microphones.
  • THREE LAYERS FILTER MIC SHIELD – Three layers design include foam layer, metal net layer and basic etamine layer can effectively reduces the plosive, pops, crackles, wind interference, breath sounds when recording vocals. Absolutely necessary for recording, speaking or singing. This studio mic shield isolation helps to get your best vocal recording.
  • MAINTAIN CLEAN – Metal mesh matches plastic frame in a special appearance design. Functionally prevents saliva, keeping cleanness for your microphones and protecting your microphone.
  • EASY TO SET UP – Handy and quick to assemble and disassemble from the microphone and firmly fixed on your mic with the combination design of elastic bands and inner rubber ring, Special design perfectly matches with your microphones.
  • PACKAGE & GUARANTEE – 1 X Pop Filter(microphone is NOT included).

Foam Windscreen

Foam windscreens are typically used for outdoor boom microphones and microphones that attach to a speaker’s clothing. These filters cover the microphone directly. These filters aren’t used as often as the other filters because they aren’t quite as effective when it comes to filtering out plosive sounds.

Bestseller No. 1
Microphone Cover – Foam Mic Covers Windscreen Suitable for Most Standard Handheld Microphone 6 PCS
  • Microphone Cover Set – 6 pieces foam mic cover, 2.8 x 2.3 inches, caliber size is 1.4 inches, suitable for most standard handheld microphone, not for headset mic.
  • Foam windscreen – Eliminates a bit more of that background noise during our recording sessions.They don’t muffle the sound and are washable, makes this a practical and sanitary.
  • Perfect Filter – Microphone covers help quite a lot with the pops and wind and a little bit with the sibilant “s” without altering the natural sound of the mic.
  • Widely Application – Microphone Foam Windscreen can be used for singing, voiceover, ktv, dance ball, conference room, news interviews, stage performance and other places and anywhere else you need quality sound.
  • Tips – The foam microphone cover is placed in a vacuum package, so please put it out for a little time then it will return to its original shape. If you still feel that they cannot return to its original shape, you can also try soaking them in water And take them out and let them dry.
SaleBestseller No. 2
OnStage Foam Ball-Type Microphone Windscreen, Black
  • Protect your mics against wind interference and singers’ spit
  • Designed for normal sized handheld mics similar in design to a Shure SM58
  • Colorful foam windscreens fit most mics
SaleBestseller No. 3
Phinus 10 Pack Lapel Microphone Windscreen, Headset Windscreen, Mic Foam Covers Lavalier Microphone Windscreen for Variety of Headset Microphone, Tough Sponge Material, Noise Reduction, Black
  • [🎸 CLEAN & SANITARY] – Lapel microphone windscreen can protect the microphone from dust, humidity, and human saliva, allow you to use the mic in an ease and comfortable mood, prolong the lifespan of the microphone as well as maintain personal hygiene for professionals who share devices among their associates.
  • [🎷 REDUCING NOISES] – The headset windscreen is made of high density foam, particularly effective in reducing wind interference and unwanted noises caused by talking or singing closely into the microphone, as well as reducing wind noise when using the microphones in outdoor applications, perfect improve recording quality. Design for most standard lapel and headset microphones.
  • [🎻 THICK & SOFT FOAM SET] – 10 pieces 1.2 x 0.9 in ball-type foam mic cover, made of lightweight yet dense and acoustically transparent foam material with good flexibility, strength and tear-resistance, elasticity and shrinkage, convenient to set on the microphone caliber. These foam microphone is vacuum-packed, so please put it in warm water for about 20 seconds then it will return to its original shape.
  • [🎸 WIDELY APPLICATION] – The lavalier microphone windscreen is fit a variety of headsets with microphones, such as gaming headsets, office telephone hands-free headsets, fitness class headsets, aviation headsets, motorcycle helmet headsets, hearing protection headsets, some voice recorders, podium microphones, and many others. The covers was squeezed in a bag, but they have excellent elasticity and shrinkage. It will take a little time to return to its original shape.
  • [🎸 What you get] – 10 pack lapel microphone windscreens, our 7*24 friendly customer service for peace of mind.

Making Your Own Pop Filter

You can make your own pop filter if you want. A homemade pop filter can use a material like spandex to filter your pops. You can make your own filter by sewing this material into a small sewing circle.

Here’s a video showing you how:

Alternative Ways to Reduce Popping Sounds in Microphones

1. Know the proximity effect

The proximity effect is an increase in low frequency or bass when a sound source is too close. When a loud sound is emitted, it creates a low-frequency thump sound. The closer to the microphone you are, the more likely you are to hear that vocal pop

All microphones respond differently to the proximity effect, so you should always be cautious. This is why it’s a great idea to invest in a good-quality pop filter, as it will protect your microphone.

2. Sing (or speak) off-axis

Speak, or sing, at a slight angle and not directly into the microphone. This prevents the “puh” sound from going directly into the microphone.

You can choose to angle the microphone to a different position. Listen to the audio after the new position to be sure it hits the right volume.

3. Smile when you talk

If you are recording a podcast or doing a voice-over, it’s a good idea to smile when you speak to avoid popping Ps and Bs. Otherwise, your mouth might take a more natural shape, which will more likely create those noises.

Also, be careful not to grit your teeth when you smile. This might create a whistling sound, which is just as unpleasant.

Eli Smith

I'm the managing editor for this website. I like being a dad, writing, and listening to angry music. Thanks for visiting.

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