I’m sure that you’ve tried recording once or twice before. When you finished them, they sounded good and it was satisfying. But listening to them now, they sound terrible. You find the product of your hard work isn’t up to par with the original tracks from your favorite artist. There’s noise and hum you didn’t notice. It’s potentially because you didn’t know any better that you need some form of sound isolation or reflection filtering like this portable isolation booth from Aston that I’m going to review will provide you.
Aston has been one of the most consistent and reliable brands out there when it comes to audio gears and devices. And now, I’m going to review its portable isolation booth. Well, it’s marketed as such, but it isn’t exactly designed like your typical PIB (Portable Isolation Booth).
First of all, it isn’t portable. Second, it only focuses on covering the mic. Third, the material and design work differently than your usual portable isolation booth. Nonetheless, it still works as intended. It filters audio reflections to ensure your recordings are clear and free of unwanted noise.
- Weight: 9 lbs.
- Dimensions: 23” x 13” x 20”
- Material: PET (PolyEthylene Terephthalate)
Why Is It Different From The Rest?
While most companies go for a boxy shape, Aston shaped this product to be spherical. It does make sense, actually. A flat, boxy surface, regardless of materials used, will produce more reflections. This product is spherical with an irregular and wavy ridged surface to ensure that reflections will be reduced. Even if this product reflects audio, the reflected audio will cancel out due to the jagged form.
The shape and form also allow the filter to have more surface area than regular PIBs. The bigger the surface area, the more sound can be absorbed.
Also, it uses PET or plastic as its sound absorption material. To be honest, I have no idea why they would do that. Two questions linger in my mind because of this. Since PET is usually hard, will that reflect more audio?
If Aston used plastic materials, this product should be inexpensive, right?
The best way to answer these questions is to take this thing apart. Unfortunately, I can’t. So I must rely on what they say.
The Patented PET Felt
According to Aston, they produce the PET filter through a patented process. They call it PET Felt. I’m guessing that the interior of the product is usually processed plastic. The actual sound absorption process relies on the outer skin, which I’m surmising that it’s the PET felt.
Upon closer inspection, the “skin” of the product has a different texture than regular plastic. Note that PET is used mostly in food-grade plastic bottles for drinking. They’re usually clear and smooth. This product, on the other hand, is rough and a bit sticky to the feel. Maybe that solves the issue as PET being too hard to absorb sound.
Is Price An Issue?
Price-wise, I still believe that this product should be cheaper than it is. Currently, it’s priced around $299.99. Aside from the primary material used is plastic, it’s also recycled. Unless the actual process in creating PET Felt is intensive and expensive, I see no justification that this product is priced as is.
Aside from the conscious choice to use a sustainable, affordable, and supposedly audio workable material, choosing PET as the primary material is a right choice if we’re talking about weight. Compared to its competitors, it’s 50% lighter.
What I Like
Some of the things I said might be disheartening, but everything will make sense once you think deeper and consider the “other side.” After all, we’ve been talking about the side that faces the mic and you. How about the other side?
Unlike other reflections filters, this product’s backside reflects a lot of unwanted noise. This is because the product is domed shaped and ridged. It has more surface area, which will make it bounce back all the outside sound.
Some Minor Concerns
I can safely assume that the product is incomplete. Right, it can block out external noises. However, this is done at the expense of potentially creating reflections from the vocalist’s voice. It could have been great if Aston kept the solid backside, and made sure that the singer facing side has, at the very least, an acoustic panel.
The saddest thing about this product is that it isn’t portable. Because it’s dome-shaped and can’t fold it, it’ll be challenging to take it out anywhere compared to the competition. However, that isn’t even a concern if you’re planning to use it at home while you’re recording, practicing, podcasting, or whatnot.
To End This
With this product, you can record to your heart’s content without worrying that you’ll find out later that your recordings’ quality is crap. You don’t need to worry about ambient noise and potential sounds that may disrupt your recording, which may push you to do the song all over again.
With it, you’ll be one step closer to sounding like your favorite artist. No noise and hum can stop you now. If your interest is piqued, go over here and purchase it now: Aston Halo Shadow.