With people who don’t know anything about audio equipment, they just go and buy some types that sound clear is enough, it can be used to talk or karaoke at home. In fact, the producers divide microphones on each purposed such as, talking, karaoke singing, recording… Pick the right micro let you record the best quality audio.
This topic will help you understand the structure, working principle or features of each types of microphone used in studios. And you can find your studio the right ones.
What Is the Microphone?
Microphone exists in our life everywhere with various, forms, types, sizes, function. Specialized microphone or not, they have one simple working principle, its mechanical vibration under the form of atmospheric pressure to produce electronic signal. This signal is amplified by amply and sent to speaker or recorded into computer.
There are three types of microphone whose aim is for music production industry. All three types has the same main components which are:
- Diaphragm: Sound pounds on thin veil which is called diaphragm, make diaphragm vibrate at the same time with sound. The thinner diaphragm is, the more possible for producing sound with high and super high frequency.
- Transducer: Diaphragm vibration is changed into electronic signal through transducer.
- Casing: Is a shell with its function to be protecting diaphragm and transducer. Beside, casing also affects directional feature of microphone which means when change structure of casing, microphone will be changed its directional. For example, from 360 degree area recording to one direction recording.
Simple way of understanding basic operation of microphone:
When there’s a change in atmospheric pressure, the diaphragm will be vibrated after the changing of atmospheric pressure.
The diaphragm transmit the vibration to transducer, where it is changed into electronic signal and delivered to other devices for processing.
Choose the Best Suited Studio Microphone to you
There are three type of studio microphone: Dynamic, Condenser, and Ribbon. We’re gonna talk about the most basic features of each one as well as their strong and weak point for you to consider.
1#: Dynamic Microphone:
This microphone is the most popular in the world. It can function any roles in studio as well as normal life with fair price.
The Dynamic for professional audio can be bought with very cheap price from $50 to $100, high-grade models are also just $200 to $400. But, don’t underestimate its sound quality of dynamic microphone. They give good audio in different cases such as singing recording, musical instruments recording to audio effects.
- Convenient, long-lasting
- Temperature and humidity resistance
- No needs of resource
- Strong audio resistance
- Size is small
- Good noise filtering
- Not good with reproduce audio with 10hkz or higher frequency.
- Have clear resonant point from 1khz to 4khz, which means audio will be concentrated on one group of frequency within 1khz to 4khz depends on the model. But this make dynamic suitable for recording singing with middle voice.
2#: Ribbon Microphone
Ribbon is used for musical instruments recording or singing recording but mainly musical instruments recording. This type of microphone is the least popular in three types we’re discussing. Its operation is similar with dynamic. The difference is it merges diaphragm and transducer in one parts. Therefore, it can receive high frequency better than dynamic.
Just like dynamic, high frequency receiving depends on diaphragm. But in Ribbon, diaphragm and transducer is one so its weight is much lighter than dynamic structure.
About price, you can find Ribbon under $100 quite easily. But high-grade models are more than $6000.
- Recording higher frequency than dynamic.
- The frequency is more even which means it rarely concentrates on some specific group of frequencies.
- Resonant point is at quite low frequency so it has quite balanced middle and high audio.
- No needs of sources for running.
- Fragile and easy to be broken
- Good quality Ribbon is from $500 to $1000
- The output sound is lower than other microphone which mean volume recorded through ribbon is usually smaller.
3#: Condenser Microphone:
Condenser Microphone is widely used in every scales and levels recording studios. Function well with singing recording as well as musical instrument recording, give lively and detailed sound.
Because of special structure, it needs 48V (phantom 48V) source-feeding which can be supplied by attached parts of microphone or from audio interface, pre-amps, mixer, et cetera.
There are two types of Condense: small diaphragm condenser and large diaphragm condenser. Both has the same basic operation but is different in diaphragm size, this affects their audio features.
Small diaphragm condenser is usually used for musical instrument recording ‘cause its light changing timbre feature when source is not placed straight toward diaphragm.
- Produce high quality audio
- Simulating sound well and some condensers produce very deep low bass tone.
- Need phantom 48V source
- High price
- Cheap condenser produce unstable audio
- Easy affected by humidity and temperature
Each studio microphones have their benefits and drawbacks. Therefore you need to specify your need, aims and scales of your studio in order to choose the best, the most efficient, economical option.