View Full Version : Microphone question.

Apr-26-2004, 11:59am
What is it about microphones that determine whether it can pick up sound from a variety of distances and directions? For example, a band that uses a one-mic setup, uses a microphone that can pick up the vocals and the instruments. The microphone is neither placed mouth-high, or guitar height, but in b/w it seems. Are these condenser mics or cardioid? Is it phantom power? (I'm not even sure what Phantom power does.

The mics we have in church don't seem to pick up much of anything unless you speak directly into them. I'd be interested in getting a mic that we can use to both amplify the instruments (guitar and mandolin) and still help amplify vocals (we are limited by number of jacks available to us on stage).


Apr-26-2004, 12:47pm
Some mics are directional; they reproduce sound mainly from one direction and very little from other directions. These are sometimes called cardoid mics, because the pattern of sound attenuation, when plotted on a circular graph as a function of angle, resembles a heart shape. The opposite is an omni-directional mic, which will (ideally) pick up sound from any and every direction. These are the type you want to use for single-mic applications, but of course not all omni mics are created equal, and you can pay big bucks for a clear, balanced mic capable of reproducing both instruments and vocals equally as well.

Phantom power is required for some microphones which need an external power source. Some mics do not need any power, some use a battery, and some use the 48V phantom supply that comes from the mixing board.

Apr-26-2004, 3:03pm

Thanks for the explanation - I appreciate it.

I recently ran the sound for a wedding at our church. We had a pair perform a duet. At the rehearsal, I had a little trouble getting him loud enough (he was singing away from the mic for one but we don't have monitors and he was having trouble hearing himself and therefore wasn't singing loud either). Well, he asked "Doesn't this mic have phantom power?" as if it ws the reason for not being able to pick up his voice. He said the mic at his church could pick him up even if he was singing beside it not in front of it. Well I didn't think phantom power was his problem, but the mic type. i'm not sure what type of mic it is - I will check it out.

These are the same mics I use in church. i was considering contributing to the sound system of the church if I got the chance, so I am trying to learn about mics a little bit.

(Next comes info on soundboards etc....but I will go elsewhere for that - I want to try to stay on topic here a bit!)

Thanks again,


Apr-26-2004, 3:28pm
Just played in a church sunday with a four piece group , one mic technique they had a AT C4000 mic it worked great

Apr-26-2004, 3:46pm
Make that an AKG C-4000

Apr-26-2004, 4:42pm
The hardest part about the single mic(once you find the right mic, I still think the AT 4033 is my best) set up is monitoring. You can't use the regular floor monitors which as far as I'm concerned for the 30+yrs I've been dealing with PA's has always caused more problems than solved. I have always had a hard time hearing myself with regular monitors anyway. The best cheap setup I've come up with is a Berhinger 4ch headphone amp running the same mix as the mains through in-ear-monitor(shure). Ultimately I want to go wireless, that's what all the big boys have now. That way it automatically makes you want to get in the mic if you can't hear yourself and you can't hear the house so you don't have to worry about echo(which is the major cause of timing probs outside of just bad playing). It is hard to get people who are used to the traditional PA used to it at first, but now I've got the hang of it I can't go back.