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Buying Guide Microphone Buying Guide

Microphone Buying Guide


Finding the right microphone is not easy at the beginning. After all, there is a large selection. There are also different types and interfaces. Likewise all accessories. No wonder! The internet is therefore full of questions about what to consider when buying a microphone. So that you can find the right microphone from the start, we have created this guide. 


Topics in this buying guide:
  • Brief overview of microphone types
  • 4 things to consider before buying a microphone


  • Brief overview of microphone types


    All microphones have the same purpose. Receive and process sound waves. Logical. But how this happens is different for each microphone?

    Due to the technical differences, each type of microphone has its own sound. Of course, there are also plenty of advantages and disadvantages. Fortunately, there is also the optimal microphone for every application.

    In recording, dynamic and condenser microphones make up the majority. In addition, both can be used quite universally. Depending on the microphone, you can use it for many sound sources. However, some special microphones are only suitable for one purpose.

    Condenser microphones are very sensitive and deliver detailed sound. While dynamic microphones are a bit clumsy and sound dull. Nevertheless, both types can be used for voice and vocal recordings. Dynamic microphones can even be used on stage. You often wear it as a handheld microphone.

     

    So far we have already cleared most of it. You should now be able to buy a microphone that really suits you! Since the topic of microphone and recording is not ticked off in one article and only offers an introduction, you will find further answers in this section.


    4 things to consider before buying a microphone


    Directivity

    Another term that acts as a deterrent at the beginning. But it's actually not that bad. Because as a beginner you best ignore this part and resort to the cardioid characteristic. The kidney is the standard directional pattern, so to speak. Basically, the directional pattern reflects the area that lies in the recording area of the microphone. In the case of the kidney, this area is kidney-shaped - hence the name. You can also buy a microphone with a super cardioid, hypercardioid or omnidirectional.


    Phantom power

    You have already stumbled across this term. Energy is needed to operate a microphone. Clear. With a dynamic microphone, this is done by induction. With the condenser microphone, however, the signal is too weak. The phantom power provides a remedy. With the help of a preamp or audio interface and XLR cable, the condenser microphone receives the necessary voltage. When purchasing your microphone, make sure that your recording device delivers phantom power!


    Mono instead of stereo

    Have you wondered why the majority of all microphones are in mono? Stereo microphones, on the other hand, are not very common. 


    A good implementation of stereo recordings is particularly difficult for beginners. Because both recording channels must run synchronously. But that's not too bad. Because mono is completely sufficient. In addition, a high-quality and natural sound is also provided with a mono microphone.


    Quality

    Depending on what your recording purpose is, the recording quality is a decisive criterion. If you only want to record privately for yourself, this point is not decisive. But especially with publications you need reasonable quality.


    After all, you also expect your favorite podcast or YouTube channel to have sufficient sound. There are numerous reviews on the Internet. This gives you a rough overview. But you cannot avoid having your own microphone test at the planned recording location. Try it out a little. But keep in mind: Whoever buys cheaply always buys twice.



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