--------------------------the superscope ec-12b


This mic is the cheaper, consumer model of the Sony ECM-51, generally known as "the game show microphone"

When I first saw the Sony version in the early 70s, I thought it was the coolest mic I had ever seen, and wanted one badly. So the first chance I had some disposable income (this would be the summer of 1978), I bought the cheaper model (the Superscope EC-12B) at Pacific Stereo for about $40 (the Sonys went for around $150 back then). It came with a black wind screen, a stand adapter, and a tie clip - all of which I've lost through the years. I've used it in many interviews at every radio job I've had, and it's always an attention getter.

There are some differences between the EC-12B and the ECM-51: the Sony is thinner and more compact and has three extensions, while the Superscope has only two. But the Superscope has a nifty feature lacking in the Sony: the ability to transform to a lavalier. This is done by unscrewing the top and bottom portions from the telescopic wand and screwing them together.

It's a delicate mic, and needs to be handled with care. Its compact design leads to shorts and wire breakage, particularly at its most southerly connection (although the last time I had an engineer fix it, he said the break was actually inside the telescopic wand - the perils of using a 30-year-old microphone, I guess). In addition, it goes through batteries like water, and I always have some extras on hand (the battery, by the way, goes in near the top of the mic). Personally, I like to use it at its shorter lengths, I think it looks kinda gangly when fully extended.

But it's still the coolest mic I own, I've never for a second regretted buying it.

And, to answer the inevitable question - no, it's NOT for sale.

UPDATE: Since this page was first put up, the original mic I wrote about was stolen. But no worries, because through ebay I have acquired several other EC-12Bs with all the accessories. One of them is pictured below.

Text and pictures copyright © 2009-2010 by Kenneth I. Johannessen.

This webpage was created and produced in the United States of America.