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Problem: The locking ring on the Sennheiser ME2’s jack cable stops it fitting firmly into audio recorders such as the Zoom H1, so it comes loose and spoils audio.

How to use a Sennheiser locking ring microphone jack with the Zoom H1 audio recorder, without the cable coming loose.
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Back in August 2014 we shot a wedding in Germany, doing both photography and video of the big day. Since our broadcasting licence only covers use of our Sennheiser Wireless System within the UK, I’d plugged the Sennheiser ME2 microphone directly into a zoom h1 (or zoom h1n handy recorder) and placed that in the pocket of the father of the bride, the groom and the two best men for the speeches.

The trouble with that was that the locking end on the lav mic’s cable fits quite loosely into the jack input on the H1 due to that not having the locking ring mechanism, so as the groom walked around during his speech it unfortunately came loose in his pocket and as a result the sound kept coming in and out. Listen to the video to hear the audio before I spent time cleaning it up in Audition…

As you could hear on the video, that audio sounded pretty terrible. I managed to fix it OK in post, but clearly I wanted to prevent that happening again. The trouble is that the male jack plug on the Sennheiser lav mic doesn’t quite go all the way in until it ‘clicks’ when used with a non-locking port like on the Zoom h1 here.

My initial plan to remedy this for future events was to solder together a custom-built extension for the ME2’s cable by getting an Inline Stereo Locking Jack Socket from eBay and soldering it onto the end of a right-angled jack extension lead, also from eBay. I worked out the wiring required to let the audio fill left and right but I wasn’t entirely happy with this solution and thought there must be a better option.

Then I realised that since I got the CL 1 cable with the wireless system, which connects the receiver into your camera/audio recorder if you need a jack ended cable, all I needed was a Female to Female Jack Coupler, which I had lying around anyway, to join that directly to the ME2 and that would give me a nice clean (non-locking) male jack end to go into the H1.

If you’ve not got the right Sennheiser cable, you should be able to find one on Amazon or eBay. At the time of uploading this video, I couldn’t find any on Amazon but they are on eBay:

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When connected up with a coupler it looks like what you see in the video. The great thing is that the CL 1 cable has a right-angled end on it already, meaning the Zoom H1 can slot easily into the pocket of whoever’s wearing the lavalier microphone, and despite not having locking ends, the jack coupler I’m using seems nice and tight so should hopefully stay put.

Until recently, this was the best solution I found, however about a year ago Zoom released the F1 recorder ( which features a locking ring meaning if you use one of these instead then you won’t run into the problems I did back in 2014. I now own an f1 recorder as well as the original h1 and I can confirm it’s a great recorder which works well with the Sennheiser ME2 lav mic ( In fact, you can hear them both in the video! Zoom have also just announced a nice carry case for the F1 ( so you can keep it protected whilst travelling and also store the lav mic too.

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Paul Freeman-Powell

Paul (@paulfp) is the main presenter of the award-winning Switched On Network YouTube Channel, which covers a variety of interesting topics usually relating to his love of technology and all things geeky. He also founded and runs Innobella Media, where he leads in all aspects of video production, video editing, sound & lighting. A father of 3 children including twins, his hobbies used to include photography, playing the drums and cycling. With a degree in Modern European Languages, Paul speaks French, Spanish and a little bit of Italian, and holds dual British & Irish citizenship.

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