Today I want to talk to you about the PCS-Boom Connector from Rycote, and why I think every boom operator would be a fool not to have one!
I’ve been known to have trouble screwing my boom pole to my shock mount. So much so that I chewed up the end and broke the whole system...twice!
To fix this problem, I was looking for a quick release system for my boom pole. I did find a budget option which did the job; the Triad Orbit IO-R...I did a review on it a while back.
Then the guys at Rycote saw that video and wondered if i’d be interested in reviewing their quick release system, so here I am. They also sent me some free swag.
I’m gonna put these two boom connectors against each other. You have the budget option, coming in at around £20, and you have the premium option, coming in at about £80. So the Rycote is 4x the price of the Triad Orbit, but is it 4x better?
Let's start with the weight. If you are booming for long periods of time, the amount of weight you add to the end of the pole will matter a lot. You already have a microphone, shock mount, and possibly a blimp on the end, so any more weight will only cause more fatigue.
The Rycote weighs 53g.
The Triad Orbit weighs over 220g. That’s over 4x the weight of the Rycote.
After having both of these in my hands, I can really feel how light the Rycote really is. This thing weighs less than 3 AA batteries. The Triad Orbit is over 12 AAs.
Both appear to be really strong. To test the strength I setup both on C-stands and hung sandbags from the tips. I can’t image you’d put any more than 2 sandbags on the end of your boom, so let's call this one a tie before I break something.
If you are purchasing a quick release system, the thing you want the most is that it can be attached and released with ease.
Attaching the Rycote is satisfying: it locks into place using the grooves on the tip, and its tapered design makes fitting it into the hole really easy. It also has a very satisfying click. Releasing the tip is even more satisfying because it's spring loaded, so you can release it one handed.
The Triad Orbit does a similar job, but everything is a little more tricky. The tip is hex shaped and lacks any taper so you need to feed it into the system more carefully. Not a big deal, but every second counts.
Both feature mount locking systems to secure them onto a boom. The Triad Orbit uses a Hex key design like the Rycote, but the Rycote wins with its rubber shielding to stop you damaging the tip of your boom.
One genius thing the Rycote does that the Triad doesn’t, is the hole they have milled out of the tip which is perfect for using your allen key and getting the tip rock solid on the end of your shock mount. It’s a clever little addition which shows that Rycote has thought about it from a user standpoint.
So who is the winner? The Triad does the job, and would be perfect for musicians, for example, who have a bunch of mics on different stands and need to hotswap a setup. But honestly, if you are concerned about weight, like a boom operator would be, the Rycote is the best option, even for the premium price tag.
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