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The 10 Best Microphone Isolation Shields and Reflection Filters (2023 Guide)

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By Scott Winstead

best microphone isolation shields

With the best microphone isolation shield, you can reduce unwanted noise and end up with higher-quality recordings.

Whether you’re recording in a studio environment, podcasting at home, or anything in between, taking control of the recording environment is crucial for maximizing sound quality. I’ve had the opportunity to work in a wide variety of recording situations with vocalists and voice over artists, and I’ve learned that a microphone isolation shield is one of the most crucial tools for recording success.

Using a reflection filter with your voice over microphone, my vocal recordings are free of background noise and can be easily edited to sound their best.

I’ve reviewed and ranked the best microphone shields and reflection filters for 2023 based on numerous factors, including the quality of materials used, design, price, customer reviews, and more.

My Quick Suggestions

I’ve included detailed reviews below, but if you’re pressed for time, here are some of my quick suggestions to help you find the best microphone isolation shield and microphone filter to tame sound wave reflections during recording:

  • Aston Microphone Reflection Filter – Unique design offers 360-degree microphone isolation and filtering. Lightweight, high-density acoustic foam allows for portability between studio and live recording environments.
  • Rockville Isolation Shield + Tripod – Foldable design of this mic shield delivers flexibility in different audio recording situations. Included tripod is sturdy and can be easily maneuvered and adjusted for microphone placement. Because of its width, this mic isolation shield is also ideal for recording instruments.
  • Monoprice Microphone Isolation Shield – High-density acoustic foam microphone filter cuts out sound reflections for clear, direct recording. Includes 3/8-inch threaded mic mount for ease of use with standard microphones.
Best Mic Reflection Filters & Isolation Shields
Aston Reflection Filter

High-end solution for 360 degrees of reflection filtering. Large depth can accommodate a range of microphone sizes.

Price: high-end
My Choice for High-End Microphone Filter
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Rockville Microphone Shield + Heavy Duty Tripod Stand

Wide panel dimensions offer reflection control for vocal and instrument recording, easy to transport.

Price: mid-range
My Choice for Mid-Range Mic Shield
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Monoprice Microphone Isolation Shield

Affordable and portable. Can be adapted to most general home recording studio needs.

Price: low cost
My Choice in the Low Cost!
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sE Electronics Reflexion Filter PRO

Impressive design and quality construction materials. Durable for portability and can filter out long and short reflections.

Price: high-end
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Neewer Microphone Isolation

Easily attaches to a variety of mic stands. Durable construction and vented backing reduce delayed and early reflections.

Price: low cost
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LyxPro VRI-10 Foam Shield

Unique folding panels allow for use on desktop or on studio mic stand. Compact and portable.

Price: mid-range
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RF-X SE Electronics Portable Vocal Booth

Affordable solution for general isolation needs. Foam material provides damping and reflection reduction for untreated acoustic environments.

Price: low cost
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Marantz Professional Sound Shield

Adjustable microphone plate offers customization for various recording needs. Durable construction materials provide protection for portable recording situations.

Price: low cost
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TONOR Isolation Shield and Stand Kit

Vented backing reduces early reflections. Dense foam pyramid design diverts unwanted sound from the microphone’s recording capsule.

Price: low cost
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Pyle Mic Absorber Shield with Stand

Open design provides room for multiple performers. Reduces early and late reflections utilizing angled acoustic foam.

Price: mid-range
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When to Use and When Not to Use a Reflection Filter

Before choosing any type of microphone isolation shield, it’s important to understand how they work and why they’re used.

While many microphone reflection filters look the same, they actually serve different purposes.

Here are some things to consider before you start shopping for microphone isolation shields:


Understanding Reflections

In a nutshell, any time sound is produced, whether it be from a voice, an instrument, or a car door slamming, a pressure wave is created. This wave travels through the air and reverberates within the eardrum, thereby creating what we know as sound; however, sound waves don’t just hit our eardrums in a straight line.

Instead, sound waves spread out and bounce off of nearby surfaces. Depending on the material of these nearby surfaces, reflections are created just like a mirror. This is what creates reverb and echo or delay effects. The harder and more even a surface is, the more likely it will be to produce a strong reflection that can feed back into your microphone, ultimately leading to unwanted noise.


When to Use a Microphone Reflection Filter

In order to get rid of these unwanted reflections, I use a mic reflection filter when recording. Microphone isolation shields act as a barrier between my voice and any reflective surfaces while recording.

Because these types of filters utilize dense, uneven materials, they don’t reflect sound well, meaning the microphone receives a clear, direct sound wave from my voice without the clutter of reflective reverberation and echo.

I almost always use a microphone reflection filter when recording voice over work because I need to not only have clear audio, but I also need to be able to shape the sound in post-production. The best part is that, by recording a dry signal, I can add or remove reflections later through my editing software and plugins.


When Not to Use a Microphone Isolation Shield

Of course, there are times when I actually want to record reflections. These situations may arise when I’m trying to capture the acoustic space of a room for effect during recording.

For example, if I’m recording a voice over that needs to sound like I’m in a large auditorium, I would set up my recording rig in the space and allow the reflections to naturally bounce back to the mic off of the walls and other surfaces.

I might also forgo the use of a microphone reflection filter or mic shield when I’m in a live recording environment and need to capture the crowd and other audio sources around the area. If I place a microphone isolation shield around the microphone in these situations, then I can lose the natural ambiance of the moment, but without one, those room reflections won’t get lost or muted.


What are the Best Microphone Isolation Shields?

Here are our picks for the very best microphone isolation shields and reflection filters available in 2023…

1. Aston Reflection Filter →

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12/03/2023 11:22 am GMT

What’s inside: Portable reflection filter, microphone mount plate

Top Features: The big thing (pun intended) about the Aston Microphones Halo Shadow is its size. This filter is large enough to work with virtually any microphone you can throw at it, making it an excellent choice for studios that have a dedicated mic cabinet. This also means that you have room to maneuver your equipment into place for the right recording angle.

Another cool feature is that the Halo Shadow adds layers of filtering vertically instead of just using a traditional horizontal layout. This offers additional isolation from reflections that can pop up from untreated flooring or down from ceiling tiles. The real benefit in this is that some of the best recording environments in the world rely on hardwood acoustics for instrument tracking, but these aren’t always best for vocals.

By using the Halo Shadow, you can set up your mic in any room in the studio without needing to shuttle back and forth between the vocal booth and the tracking room.

Best for: Professional studios and recording environments with reflective ceilings and flooring.

Audio engineer James from Production Expert demonstrates the features of the Aston Microphones Halo Shadow while also showing viewers how to make adjustments for different recording situations. He also records vocal takes at varying volumes to demonstrate how versatile this reflection filter can be in the studio.


2. Rockville Microphone Shield + Heavy Duty Tripod Stand →

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12/03/2023 05:22 pm GMT

What’s inside: Mic isolation shield and heavy-duty black tripod with mount

Top Features: The Rockville Recording Studio isolation shield delivers powerful filtering of reflections in almost all recording environments, but it really excels in larger spaces. The shield itself is wide enough to accommodate multiple voice artists at once, so if you have a project that requires dialogue and you don’t want to hassle with separate booths, this shield can help.

Another thing I like about this package is that it includes a tripod stand that can double as a PA speaker pole mount. This not only gives me peace of mind in knowing that the shield will remain in place when I set it, but it can also pull double duty if the need arises in a live recording environment. Finally, the design of the inner foam involves convex cone shaping for extra dispersion of reflections, providing increased damping and control over recorded vocal takes.

Best for: General studio vocal work and live recording environments for broadcast or playback podcasting on location.

Rockville Audio unboxes and demonstrates the process of setting up and adjusting the Recording Studio isolation shield. You also get to hear how it can be used in different recording capacities, including vocal recording for game streaming and voice over work.


3. Monoprice Microphone Isolation Shield →

What’s inside: Microphone isolation shield, 3/8-inch threaded mount, and desktop feet

Top Features: Monoprice’s isolation shield offers a wide filtering area that can be adapted to a range of general recording scenarios, including podcasting and narration. One nice feature is that the mic shield comes with desktop feet, so it can be used alongside a computer or portable audio interface, but it can also be mounted on a stand to block reflections from untreated surfaces.

The pyramid design of the inner foam traps common speech sound frequencies, and it can also mitigate reflections from lower ranges.

I also found that Monoprice had encapsulation in mind by designing the shield to fold in on itself enough to provide adequate closure for extra reduction in sound reflections. This comes in especially handy when a recording environment has curved glass surfaces that may bounce sound waves off of odd angles.

Best for: Interviews, podcasts, and other general voice work.

Songwriter Isaac Lundgren demonstrates the Monoprice microphone isolation shield’s effect on vocal recording in his home studio. Utilizing a Blue Kiwi microphone, he records a voice demo track that lets you hear how the shield not only isolates the vocals, but allows them to be mixed more easily without noisy background reflections.


4. sE Electronics Reflexion Filter PRO →

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12/02/2023 09:12 am GMT

What’s inside: Isolation shield, microphone mount plate and mounting clamp

Top Features: When it comes to looks, sE got it right with the Reflexion Filter PRO. The unit has a futuristic design that certainly commands attention, and its vented backing helps to tame early reflections that would otherwise find their way back around the front and into your mic. I like that the unit includes a mounting plate for use with most standard microphones, but the inclusion of a mounting clamp seals the deal by giving users additional options for attaching the shield. This is a big plus in my book because different recording jobs call for different setups, so it’s nice to know I can have flexibility in a pinch.

In terms of sound, sE utilized a multi-layer approach to reflection cancellation. While foam can work wonders in reducing and eliminating sound wave reflection, the insulation layers in the Reflexion Filter PRO seem to tame a wide range of frequencies, making this the ideal solution for both vocal and instrument tracking when isolation is a must and a booth isn’t an option.

Best for: Professional studio vocal and instrument tracking


5. Neewer Microphone Isolation Shield →

What’s inside: Isolation shield, shield mounting hardware and microphone mounting plate

Top Features: Neewer’s isolation booth solution utilizes the familiar vertical rectangle foam design to block out common frequencies, but its vented backing gives an edge over the competition by pushing away early reflections as well. This means it can be used to capture vocals from performers of all stripes with only minor adjustments regarding placement.

Speaking of adjustments and placement, this unit includes hardware to move the shield placement vertically to adjust for height, but it also allows for microphone adjustment horizontally. When it comes to recording vocals, this is incredibly important as different performers will have different styles and needs regarding proximity and volume.

All in all, the Neewer Microphone Isolation Shield is a solid, versatile unit that’s great for a range of environments.

Best for: General studio recording, podcasting and live broadcasting when proximity adjustments are a must.


6. LyxPro VRI-10 Foam Shield →

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What’s inside: Isolation shield, microphone stand mount and desktop mounting

Top Features: Although I often record vocal takes while standing, I like having the option to sit, especially when I need to be working for longer periods of time. On top of that, while standing often provides the best vocal takes for projecting, sitting can also change the tone of my voice based on the position of the diaphragm. With the VRI-10 from LyxPro, I can have the best of both worlds because this unit allows for easy attachment to a stand or convenient mounting on a desktop.

Another nice feature about the VR1-10 is that it includes five folding panels for additional customization. Some portable reflection filters will go with a three-panel design, meaning I can only really block two competing angles, but with five panels, I have the ability to choose the coverage area in a more comprehensive manner, allowing for easier setup in tight spaces or when I need to block sound waves from odd angles.

Best for: General studio vocal recording and podcasting, but also ideal for specialty usage when curved or uneven surfaces are a factor.


7. sE RF-X Electronics Portable Vocal Booth →

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What’s inside: Isolation shield, clamp assembly

Top Features: The sE RF-X features not only a traditional horizontal insulation pattern, but each insulation strip is also angled to increase surface area and reduce front-facing reflections. This is especially important if you need to fold the shield into a tighter space where the added foam surface area can trap more intense frequencies without diminishing the overall sound source.

This kit also contains mounting hardware for microphone attachment onto a threaded base. This can be a pro or a con depending on the microphone you need to use. If you choose not to utilize the included mount, this shield should be able to accommodate almost any type of condenser mic using a shock mount or a clip mount.

Best for: General purpose studio recording of vocals and some instruments. Can also be used for podcasting or narrating video content for clearer diction.


8. Marantz Professional Sound Shield →

What’s inside: Curved isolation shield and adjustable microphone mount

Top Features: Although the Sound Shield Live is only one curved piece, it makes up for a lack of flexibility by being very portable due to its lightweight aluminum construction. Additionally, the unit comes with an adjustable microphone mount attachment that provides enough space for taller mics, including bottle mics and ribbon mics. This is a major benefit if your mic cabinet includes some vintage capsules.

Height and mic proximity adjustment are also a breeze when mounting to a stand as the performer can move the shield and the mic into a comfortable position by simply adjusting the thumbscrews. Unfortunately, due to the microphone mounting clamp, this unit wouldn’t be able to sit on a desktop or flat surface unless you’re utilizing a separate mic stand.

Best for: Vocal tracking in a home studio, professional studio, or when podcasting using a separate mic stand.


9. TONOR Microphone Isolation Shield →

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12/03/2023 02:17 pm GMT

What’s inside: Isolation shield, thread adapters and adjustable stand

Top Features: TONOR’s mic isolation shield is constructed of steel, making it heavy, but also making it durable. This can be a huge benefit in live recording situations where the environment could be less than pristine, or when the potential exists for the unit to get banged around.

In terms of the insulation material used to deaden reflections, TONOR included cotton layers to allow for the trapping of lower frequencies while allowing high-end tones to shine through. This can make for an ideal recording environment when you’re working with vocal talent that produces upper ranges.

Best for: General studio recording and recording vocals and instruments in live settings where ambient noise needs to be reduced.


10. Pyle Mic Absorber Shield with Stand →

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12/02/2023 01:42 pm GMT

What’s inside: Isolation shield, desktop mounting feet, tripod mounting stand, and stand-mounting hardware

Top Features: Pyle is known for producing affordable audio solutions, and its absorber shield is a good contender in the space of general-use reflection filtering. The foam insulation used to reduce reflections is arranged in a convex cone pattern, and the backing of the unit includes venting to disperse reflections from behind that may reach around and bounce off of surfaces behind the performer.

One downside to this unit is that, while Pyle included desktop mounting feet for use in podcasting and narration settings, the unit itself may be a bit too wide for many desktops. That said, the shield does fold, so it may be possible to mold it into the right shape with some effort. On the other hand, when used for recording in a standing position, the included mounting stand offers a range of possibilities with some adjustments.

Best for: General studio recording that requires wide coverage areas for filtering, including for instruments when a booth isn’t available. May be too wide for desktop use.


Is a DIY Microphone Isolation Shield an Option?

If you’re not ready to commit to a professional microphone isolation shield just yet, you can do it yourself and make your own for a fraction of the price!

Check out the videos below for some ideas to get started with building your own microphone isolation shields:

DIY might be the solution if you need an affordable reflection filter. This video walks you through the steps and tools needed to build your own microphone isolation shield for around $14.

You can also make your own isolation foam booth-like cube using foam panels and common household tools. This solution can be completed for around $20 and provides near-total isolation for your mic in a recording studio environment.


Final Thoughts on Choosing the Right Microphone Isolation Shield

In my experience, having a quality microphone isolation shield in your toolkit is essential to recording great audio.

In the studio, a microphone isolation shield or reflection filter provides the power to really shape recorded audio, but in a live setting, protecting recorded audio is even more important because I rarely have the chance to re-record something in the field.

Have you used a microphone isolation shield?

Do you have any tips or tricks that you use in your own studio to deal with sound wave reflections?

Leave us a comment below to share your questions and experiences!

Want to learn even more about the art of voice acting? Check out our guide to the best voice acting classes to take your skills to the next level.

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