While available in both wired or wireless versions, Baker felt the traditional wired d:facto™ mics were best-suited to Mendes’ portion of the performance. “Sergio and his singers have excellent mic technique,” he explains. “The Mendes singers have spectacular voices, so they traditionally sing dynamically lower and further away from the mic. With the d:facto™, they got a more comprehensive sound—because of the cancellation pattern and the way the mic is made—than they have achieved with other microphones. I selected wired options for them because, to me, a wired mic always sounds better than a wireless, it’s just the fact of physics.”
Since will.i.am tends to move more about the stage, Baker recognized that a wireless version would be the best solution for him. “There was the potential for other surprise guest artists showing up to perform with Sergio and Will, so I wanted to have the d:facto™ mics
with the Shure wireless system on hand,” he continues. “I’m a total fan of the entire DPA line. Any opportunity I can get to open someone’s eyes to their sound, I’m ecstatic. The d:facto™ is really a perfect mic no matter what setup you use. The first time I ever used it, I thought ‘wow, those engineers at DPA sure have a sense of humor; they call it the d:facto™ —in other words, the fact or the truth. You literally just plug it in and let it do what it’s supposed to do.’ It’s really THE premier microphone for vocals.”
When he’s not doing production work for Mendes, Baker can be found on the road as FOH engineer for The Al McKay All Stars—featuring legendary Earth, Wind & Fire guitarist, songwriter and producer Al McKay—and The Jacksons, for which he also uses a large collection of DPA Microphones.