Built-in microphones are notoriously less capable of capturing audio than stand-alones are, and the issue is only made worse when that built-in mic lives inside waterproof housing. But GoPro Hero4 users will soon have an audio solution that can go anywhere their camera can go. The MKE 2 by the German-based audio company Sennheiser is the first waterproof microphone to obtain GoPro’s “Works With GoPro” stamp of approval.
Launching on April 24, the MKE 2 is a microphone designed to take on the elements, including recording underwater. A shield also cuts back the wind noise that’s a common issue for recording fast action. A suspension system even suppresses noises that could potentially be made from the structure of the microphone itself. Sennheiser says the mic is designed to go anywhere the Hero4 can go, from surfing to skiing.
The microphone is built-in to a GoPro back, designed to replace the back piece of the Hero4’s waterproof housing. While the back looks like something that could have even came with the GoPro, the microphone and shield looks like a black puff stuck to the side of the camera.
Sennheiser is currently the only audio company that offers the “Works With GoPro” verification, which means GoPro has verified that the accessory is compatible with their camera system.
“In the world of action sports, uncompromising sound quality was still a summit to be scaled,” said Achim Gleissner, commercial manager for broadcast and media at Sennheiser. “Until now, users have had to accept that there are situations where poor-quality recordings are inevitable or even when sound capture is impossible, such as under water. The MKE 2 elements breaks through these barriers, so you can make your action cam footage even more intense with fantastic sound. Of course, the microphone performs equally well in less extreme situations: The MKE 2 elements will be an ideal companion for producing outdoor travel footage, with its special design protecting your recordings from wind noise.”
While the MKE 2 is designed to work only with the black and silver versions of the Hero4, Sennheiser says a variation for the Hero5 is already in the works. Since the Hero5 is designed to be waterproof without external housing, the back-style attachment for the MKE 2 wouldn’t work with the action camera giant’s latest flagship camera.
The MKE 2 is currently available for pre-order, with full availability beginning April 24. The HERO4 microphone lists for $199.