Microphones basics-g
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Microphones basics-g






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Microphones basics-g Microphones basics-g Presentation Transcript

  • Microphones
  • The microphone is your primary tool in the sound chain from sound source to audio storage medium.
  • Factors when capturing a sound with a microphone: microphones location in relation to the sound source the acoustic environment in which we choose to record the sound source
  • Types of Microphones There are three main types of microphones: 1) Dynamic/Moving Coil 2) Ribbon 3) Condenser/Capacitor
  • 1) Dynamic/Moving Coil microphones Example: Shure SM 57 They operate on a magnetic principle : movement of a copper coil around a magnet causes a changing flow of electrons that represent the sound wave
  • Dynamic/Moving Coil microphones Advantages: durable and can withstand a lot of volume. colours the sound in range between 5-10khz, this adds clarity, presence and understandability to many vocal and instrument sounds. doesn’t feedback as easily as other mics
  • Dynamic/Moving Coil microphones typical uses: mostly live situations, but they are also used a lot in the studio. close mic applications (1-12 inches) drums, guitar, vocals and any instrument that can play loud.
  • Dynamic/Moving Coil microphones disadvantage:These microphones often miss many sounds because it takes a lot of sound pressure to move the coil.
  • 2) Ribbon microphones Example: Beyer M 160 a metallic ribbon is suspended between two poles of a magnet. Sound waves vibrate the metallic ribbon which causes a varying flow of electrons to the different poles of the magnet
  • Ribbon microphones advantages: These microphones capture a warmer and smoother sound than dynamic/moving coil microphones. Don’t feedback much in live situations.
  • Ribbon microphones typical uses: Typically used in the studio because they are fragile Used in close mic applications (1-12 inches) Often used for acoustic guitars. Also work well for vocals.
  • Ribbon microphones disadvantages: colours the sound by adding a high frequency edge fragile will only pick up sounds that are very close.
  • 3) Condenser/Capacitor microphones Example: Audio Technica AT 4033 How do condenser microphones work? A charged electrical current is applied to a metal-coated piece of plastic. the coating vibrates sympathetically in response to a sound wave because it is very thin. The metal-coated piece of plastic is positioned close to a piece of metallic alloy. The changes in the space between the surfaces create a changing discharge of electrical current. It makes an electrical version of acoustic energy from the sound source.
  • Condenser/Capacitor microphones advantages: they respond to fast attacks and work more precisely than other mics and add little tonal colouration they can be used to record sounds from a greater distance and capture a broader range of frequencies big advantage: these mics record a sound while capturing natural ambience of a room.
  • Condenser/Capacitor microphones typical uses: recording studios. can be used to record almost any sound…except very loud ones. extremely effective with quiet sounds. the perfect choice for capturing room ambience. almost always used for vocals , acoustic guitars and drums.
  • Condenser/Capacitor microphones disadvantages: fairly fragile feedback too easily in a live environment (although some have low frequency roll off switches to help alleviate feedback frequencies).
  • Microphone polar patterns: A polar pattern is the pickup pattern of the microphone. There are three main types of patterns: 1) Cardiod 2) Bi-directional 3) Omnidirectional
  • Frequency Response Most microphones respond to frequencies within and beyond the human range of hearing. Our ears have the ability to hear frequencies from 20-20 000 hertz . All microphone manufacturers provide specifications for the frequency range of their products.
  • Frequency response curve The frequency response curve of a microphone shows how the microphone responds to different frequencies across the audible spectrum. A mic with a flat response adds little colouration to the sound. Many mics drop off sharply in the frequencies below 300 hz. Yet boast frequencies in the area of 4000 hz.
  • Pre-amplifiers Although a microphone can be plugged directly into a mixing board, better results are often achieved by using an amplifier.
  • Conclusion Effective sound output requires lots of experimentation. Most home studios should have at least one good moving coil and one good condenser mic.