One characteristic of directional mics is the bass proximity effect--the bass boost you get as you talk or sing very close to the mic. This extra bass is used to great effect on vocals, especially announcers, to fatten the sound, or some say create a warmer sound, without outboard equalization.
The downside is that plosive or popping sounds like those starting with the letters 'p' or 'b' will be over-emphasized. In addition, these mics tend to be more susceptible to wind noise.
That's why it's important to use windscreens on these mics.
Windscreens are often built into the mics themselves. Look at the popular vocal mics with their domed shape metal mesh tops with a piece of foam inside.
Another type of windscreen is a separate cover that goes over the mic. That's why you often see those fuzzy mitts over shotgun mics. Yes they're windscreens too.
Windscreens can also be a mesh barrier between the mic and a vocalist. What started out as a homemade solution with a piece of nylon stocking stretched into an embroidery frame, are now available as ready made products that can be found at your favorite mic shop.
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