I caught a glimpse at this little guy back at the 2018 NAB show. It was a prototype and it wasn’t on display. Simon Davies at Rycote whipped it out from the cupboard as a preview. It wasn’t quite there yet as it wobbled a bit, but it was still very exciting. It weighed almost nothing, it had a click-in system that felt very secure, and it looked cool. A nice trifecta.
Flash forward to today and I’d call the release version amazing, if not flawless! To my eyes and hands, the PCS Boom System could not look and feel less makeshift. It is sleek, polished, and most importantly stable. There is zero wobble, and I have been making sure to put it through its paces. Solid as a brick, and light as a feather.
Placing two fingers along the grooves on the sides, you simply pull down and the male end pops out. Easy peasy. The female end doesn’t simply release the male end when you do this. There is a noticeable spring effect where it gives the male end a little push out of the door. The end result is a streamlined process for what should be (and is) a simple procedure.
The mount features standard screw threads on each end. Just what you’d expect, but still relevant. Who knows how many proprietary designs could exist out there.
I want to point out some of the details in the design that I love. First off, the little washer at the head of the screw is a nice touch. But the part that really impressed me was the slight triangle shape, with the grooves at the tip. This allows the tip to glide smoothly into the housing, and to catch on the seating inside of the female end. When you hold this in your hand, you can really feel the painstaking trial and error to achieve something that seems so simple, but must perform beautifully every time. And it absolutely does.
Here I have it mounted on my Cinela OSIX. Not much to say here. It works extremely well and I couldn’t be happier. My biggest concern with this system was going to be its weight. Given its relatively larger size, it seemed as if it would make the head of the pole unbalanced. But again, it really is very very lightweight. Shockingly light weight.
The last thing that I want to point out is the availability of additional male ends. Rycote has made specific connectors to be mounted directly to their blimps. They make one for the Cyclone and the Classic blimps. Above, is the connector for the Classic blimp. As you can see, the male end is hard connected to the blimp mount, and there is an additional side mount to feed through the xlr cable coming from the blimp. Its a nice add-on for the system which further streamlines the connection.
In conclusion, I don’t plan on removing this from my boom pole. I love it and I wholeheartedly believe that anyone else who tries it will love it as well. It is a simple device, which clearly took effort to create. You can clearly see that Rycote examined what worked and what didn’t work, and then made it as sleek as possible. Kudos to Rycote. Well well done.
Jared Elkin is a professional sound mixer located in Minneapolis, Minnesota.