The Periscope is said to be the world’s first microphone with a built-in compressor, and that’s not the only unusual thing about it

While many new microphones are compared to vintage and contemporary favourites, the Periscope - the first product from new Finnish manufacturer Scope Labs - is different to anything else we’ve ever seen.

This steampunk-styled device looks like what can only be described as a curved piece of copper pipe with eyeballs in the ends, but is actually an omni-directional condenser mic that promises to be big on character. This is thanks not only to its full-frequency capsule, but also a built-in compressor, which is designed to impart a unique sonic footprint.

The Periscope is described as “a magnifying lens that creates larger than life results capable of instantly drawing the attention of anyone listening.” Each one will be manufactured in-house at the Scope Labs headquarters.

Mattia Sartori, Co-founder of Scope Labs and pro-audio technician, comments: “For years microphone manufacturers have been looking for the most pristine sound, we have our mic lockers full of supposed-to-be-perfect pieces. They can tell us exactly how an instrument sounds but often they cannot capture the vibe, they cannot tell us the story behind it. That’s why we need new unique tools with character and that’s exactly what the Periscope delivers.”

Scope Labs Periscope

(Image credit: Scope Labs)

Paavo Kurkela, Co-founder of Scope Labs, craftsman and pro-audio technician, adds: “Our mic is not a clone. It’s a brand new design developed from the ground up taking inspiration from tools and techniques that have been used for decades but that are only now available in a sleek and simple plug-n-play form. Just hook up the mic in front of the source, switch phantom power on and you’re all set to enter The Periscope’s world of sound.

“The obvious question for many is why would you compress or distort a microphone? Because we can, it’s unconventional, and it sounds super cool. You should try it out and hear it for yourself!”

The Periscope is already in the hands of some famous users, with the Chemical Brothers saying: “Love The Periscope, it adds instant excitement to live drums and percussion and anything else you want to throw at it. Inspiring.”

Butch Vig, meanwhile, says: “It sounds killer on just about everything. If you’re looking for instant vibe, the Periscope rocks.“

You can find out more on the Scope Labs website. The Periscope is available to order now priced at €369 plus VAT.

Scope Labs Periscope

(Image credit: Scope Labs)
Ben Rogerson
Deputy Editor

I’m the Deputy Editor of MusicRadar, having worked on the site since its launch in 2007. I previously spent eight years working on our sister magazine, Computer Music. I’ve been playing the piano, gigging in bands and failing to finish tracks at home for more than 30 years, 24 of which I’ve also spent writing about music and the ever-changing technology used to make it. 

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