condenser mic external phantom power

The Basics of Phantom Power for Microphones

If you've used any condenser mics in your home recording studio, you probably already know of the importance of phantom power. While a small number of condenser mics can be powered by other means (i.e. a battery), almost all used in studios use phantom power.

Phantom Power for Condenser Microphone

Those working with condenser mics may also have learned (the hard way) that not all audio interfaces and mixers have built-in phantom power. So we wanted to take a closer look at what phantom power is, how to use it and how it will affect your studio.

1. What is Phantom Power?

While we won’t go too far into the technical aspects of phantom power, the basics are that it is a positive voltage (from 12 volts to 48 volts DC) that runs on pins 2 and 3 in an XLR cable. The word phantom is used because the power source is essentially invisible, running through the same cord that the audio signal flows through. Many audio interfaces include a switch labeled P48 that turns phantom power on and off – the 48 standing for the highest voltage rating.

2. Why Do Condenser Mics Need Phantom Power?

Put simply, condenser microphones have active electronics that need an external power source, while dynamic mics are passive and therefore do not need phantom power. Because of the way condenser mics work, their output is very high impedance, and therefore requires a powered circuit to reduce that impedance.

3. Can You Use Phantom Power on Dynamic Mics?

Technically yes, but that doesn’t mean you should.

If you are running live sound, you probably won’t notice much of a difference if you have phantom power switched on for a dynamic mic. However, if you are recording, you may find that you pick up some additional hum due to the phantom power.

Additionally, because of the way the power flows through the pins of an XLR cord, a normally working mic and cable will not result in a dynamic mic being damaged by having phantom power turned on. However, if there happens to be an imbalance in the amount phantom power voltage being applied to each pin, the power can damage or destroy a dynamic mic. This is particularly true with ribbon mics (a type of dynamic mic), where an imbalance of power flow can destroy the ribbon in the mic.

4. Should You Turn Off Phantom Power Before Plugging in a Microphone

Yes, and you should also turn off power before disconnecting a mic. The loud pop that is produced when you do either of these actions can result in damage to your equipment (not just the microphones, but possibly your speakers, as well).

5. What Supplies Phantom Power?

Many audio interfaces and mixers have phantom power built in, though – as mentioned previously – some do not. If your audio interface does not include phantom power, you have a few options.

Among the most common is using a microphone pre-amp that supplies phantom power. This has the advantage of not only providing phantom power, but you also tend to have better quality inputs than many audio interfaces. Another option is to use an external power supply. You can check with your mics manufacturer to see what product they recommend, and they may make a power supply specifically for your mic.

Audiofanz – Your Ultimate Guide to the World of Sound

Unveiling the Mystery of Phantom Power and Condenser Microphones: A Comprehensive Guide

In this guide:

Introduction: Why Understanding Phantom Power and Condenser Microphones are Crucial for Audio Production

Audio production is all about capturing sound as accurately and effectively as possible. In order to achieve high-quality recordings, it’s essential to have a thorough understanding of the tools and equipment being used. Two of the most important pieces in any recording setup are Phantom Power and Condenser Microphones.

Definition of Phantom Power

Phantom power is an electrical current supplied to certain types of audio equipment in order to power them. Specifically, it is used with condenser microphones, which require electricity to function properly. The term “phantom” refers to the fact that the power is transmitted through the same cables that carry audio signal, without causing any interference or noise.

There are two commonly used voltages for phantom power: 48 volts and 24 volts. While 48-volt phantom power is more common, some devices such as portable audio recorders only support 24-volt phantom power.

Explanation of Condenser Microphones

Condenser microphones use capacitance – the ability of two conductive plates separated by a dielectric material (air) – to convert sound waves into electrical signals. They have a thin metal diaphragm that vibrates in response to sound waves.

The diaphragm is positioned very close to a metal backplate, forming an electrical capacitor between them. When sound waves hit the diaphragm, it moves back and forth relative to the backplate, changing the distance between them and therefore changing the capacitance between them as well.

This results in a tiny electrical current that corresponds exactly with the sound waves picked up by the microphone. Condenser microphones are known for their high sensitivity and accuracy compared to other types of microphones such as dynamic or ribbon mics.

Importance of Understanding Phantom Power and Condenser Microphones

Understanding phantom power and condenser microphones is crucial for anyone involved in audio production. Without proper knowledge of these concepts, it’s easy to make mistakes that can lead to low-quality recordings, or even equipment damage.

For example, connecting a condenser microphone to a device that doesn’t provide phantom power can result in no signal being picked up, or a very weak and unusable signal. Conversely, supplying phantom power to a device that doesn’t require it can cause permanent damage to the equipment.

Furthermore, different types of condenser microphones require different amounts of phantom power. Failing to supply the correct voltage can result in poor sound quality or uneven frequency response.

Having a solid understanding of phantom power and condenser microphones is essential for achieving high-quality audio recordings. In the following sections, we will delve deeper into these topics and explore how they work together.

Understanding Phantom Power

Definition and explanation of phantom power.

Phantom power is a term used to describe a method of powering certain types of audio equipment. It is typically used with condenser microphones, though it can also be used with other devices such as DI boxes and some active speakers. The term ‘phantom’ refers to the fact that power is supplied without the need for an external power source – i.e. it seems to appear out of nowhere.

Phantom power is supplied through the same cables that are used to connect the equipment, meaning that only one cable is required for both audio and power. This makes it a convenient solution for many recording and live sound situations.

The voltage level of phantom power can vary between different devices and systems, but most commonly it is either 12V or 48V DC. The voltage does not affect the quality of the audio signal in any way, but it must be compatible with the equipment being used.

Types of Devices That Require Phantom Power

As mentioned earlier, condenser microphones are the most common type of device that require phantom power. However, there are other devices that may also require phantom power such as DI boxes (used for connecting instruments), active speakers (which have built-in amplifiers) and some specialty audio equipment.

It’s worth noting that not all condenser microphones require phantom power; there are some models which have their own internal battery or external power supply. However, if you’re using a condenser microphone without these features then you’ll almost certainly need to use phantom power in order to get any sound out of it.

Voltage Requirements for Different Devices

As mentioned earlier, there are two common voltages used for phantom power: 12V and 48V DC. Most modern equipment will be designed to work with both voltages, but it’s always worth double-checking the requirements of your specific equipment. Some microphones may have a higher voltage requirement in order to operate properly.

For example, some ribbon microphones require up to 60V DC in order to produce sound. It’s important to be aware of these requirements and make sure that your equipment is compatible before attempting to use it.

How to Supply Phantom Power to Devices

There are various methods for supplying phantom power depending on the equipment being used. For most recording setups and small live sound systems, phantom power is supplied via the mixing console or audio interface.

Most mixing consoles will have a switch or button labelled ‘PHANTOM’ which can be engaged in order to supply power. Audio interfaces often have a similar feature, either as a physical switch or as an option within the control software.

It’s important to note that not all mixing consoles or audio interfaces will provide enough current for multiple devices requiring phantom power. If you’re using multiple condenser microphones or other devices then it may be necessary to use an external phantom power supply unit.

Phantom power is a simple but essential technology for anyone involved in recording or live sound production. Understanding how it works and how different devices require different voltages is crucial for achieving high-quality audio recordings and performances. By following the guidelines outlined above and consulting your equipment manuals where necessary, you’ll be able to ensure that phantom power is supplied safely and effectively throughout your setup.

Understanding Condenser Microphones

Condenser microphones are a type of microphone that use an electrically charged diaphragm to convert sound into an electrical signal. They are popular in professional recording studios because they are capable of capturing a wide range of frequencies and dynamics, making them ideal for recording vocals, acoustic instruments, and other sources that require a high level of detail.

Definition and Explanation of Condenser Microphones

Condenser microphones work by using a thin metal or plastic diaphragm that is placed close to a backplate. The distance between the diaphragm and backplate creates a capacitance, which is the ability to store an electrical charge. When sound waves hit the diaphragm, it vibrates and changes the capacitance between the two plates, creating an electrical signal.

One important thing to note about condenser microphones is that they require power to operate. This power is called phantom power and can be supplied through XLR cables or battery-powered preamps.

Types of Condenser Microphones

There are several different types of condenser microphones available. These include:

1) Large Diaphragm

Large diaphragm condenser microphones have a diaphragm that is typically 1 inch in diameter or larger. They are popular for recording vocals because they have a warm, full-bodied sound with plenty of low-end response.

2) Small Diaphragm

Small diaphragm condenser microphones have a diaphragm that is typically less than 1 inch in diameter. They are popular for recording acoustic instruments such as guitars and pianos because they have a more accurate high-frequency response.

3) Tube Condensers

Tube condensers use vacuum tubes instead of transistors to amplify the signal. They are known for their warm, vintage sound and are popular for recording instruments such as drums and electric guitars.

4) Electret Condensers

Electret condenser microphones are similar to traditional condenser microphones, but they use a permanent charge instead of an external power source. They are popular for use in consumer electronics such as laptops and smartphones.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Using a Condenser Microphone

One advantage of using a condenser microphone is that it is capable of capturing a wide range of frequencies and dynamics. This makes it ideal for recording sources that require a high level of detail, such as vocals or acoustic instruments. However, there are some disadvantages to using a condenser microphone as well.

One is that they can be more sensitive to environmental noise than other types of microphones. Additionally, they require power to operate, which means you will need an interface or preamp with phantom power capabilities in order to use them.

Overall, if you need a microphone that can capture highly-detailed sound with plenty of nuance and subtlety, then a condenser microphone may be the right choice for you. Just be sure to consider the advantages and disadvantages before making your decision.

How do Phantom Power and Condenser Microphones work together?

Condenser microphones are known for their high sensitivity and ability to capture subtle nuances in sound. However, they require a power source to operate, and this is where phantom power comes in.

Phantom power is used to provide this necessary voltage to the condenser microphone. In most cases, phantom power is supplied via an XLR cable from a mixer or preamp.

The phantom power travels through the same cable that carries the audio signal from the microphone. When it reaches the microphone, it powers the electronics inside, which include a diaphragm that vibrates in response to sound waves.

The vibrating diaphragm creates an electrical signal that travels down the cable and into your recording device or mixing console. From there, you can manipulate the signal with EQ, compression, or other effects.

Explanation on how phantom power is used with condenser microphones

Phantom power supplies use two conductors within an XLR cable: one carries positive voltage (+48V), while the other carries negative voltage (-48V). Together they act as a balanced audio circuit while also providing DC voltage. However, not all condenser microphones require +48v of phantom power; some require less voltage such as +12v or +24v.

In some cases when using incorrect voltages or polarity reversal of pin 2 & 3 on XLR connector can cause damage to microphones. Some mixers have switches allowing you to turn off phantom power per channel (used for ribbon mics) or per group of channels (to save battery life).

How phantom power affects sound quality from a condenser microphone

Phantom Power provides necessary voltage to condenser microphones allowing them to capture sound with great detail and sensitivity while doing away with the need for battery replacements. The correct usage of Phantom Power will ensure best sound quality without any interference during recording process while incorrect usage may lead to damage equipment or poor sound quality.

Phantom Power should not affect sound quality if provided correctly at recommended voltages without any interference but it can affect performance if not provided correctly such as  producing noise during recording process. A low-quality phantom power supply can cause noise and hum in the signal, which will be amplified when you increase the gain or volume of the recording. It is advised to use a high-quality phantom power supply or mixer/preamp that has quality built-in phantom power supply.

How to troubleshoot issues with phantom power and condenser microphones

If you’re having issues with your microphone or aren’t getting any signal, there are a few things you can try to troubleshoot:

1. Check your cables: Make sure both ends of your XLR cable are securely plugged in and that the cable itself isn’t damaged.

2. Check for polarity reversal: Ensure pins 2 & 3 on XLR connector are not reversed.

3. Check for proper voltage: Ensure voltage requirement by microphone is met.

4. Swap out cables: If you have another XLR cable available, try swapping it out to see if that fixes the issue. 

5. Check mixer settings: Make sure your mixer is turned on, phantom power is turned on per channel if required by mic type (ribbon mics) and volumes/gains are set reasonably without clipping signals.

In this article, we have covered the definitions and explanations of phantom power and condenser microphones. We have also discussed the different types of condenser microphones and how phantom power is used with them. Additionally, we looked at how to troubleshoot any issues that may arise when using these devices together.

Phantom Power is a vital part of any recording setup that requires a condenser microphone. It provides the necessary voltage to make sure your microphone operates correctly. By understanding how it works, you can ensure your recordings are clear and free from unwanted noise. Condenser microphones are commonly used in recording studios because they are sensitive to sound and produce high-quality recordings.

There are various types of condenser microphones available, each with its unique features suited for different applications. When using phantom power with a condenser microphone, it is essential to make sure that the voltage supplied matches the requirements for the device you’re using; otherwise, you may encounter problems in your recordings.

To help improve your experience when working with Phantom Power and Condenser Microphones, here are some tips: 

1. Always check your equipment before beginning any recording session to ensure everything is functioning correctly. 

2. Make sure you use good quality cables that can handle the voltage requirements for your devices.

3. Consider investing in a pop filter or windscreen to reduce plosive sounds during recording sessions.

4. Be aware of microphone placement as this can affect the quality of sound recorded by your microphone.

5. Finally, always stay up-to-date with new technologies in audio production as advancements can significantly improve audio quality while reducing noise levels in recordings. Mastering the use of Phantom Power and Condenser Microphones will lead to clearer sound recordings free from unwanted noises or disruptions.

Proper understanding of these devices is essential for any audio producer or recording artist looking to take their craft to the next level. By following the tips outlined, you can improve your recording sessions’ quality and accuracy while reducing the likelihood of problems arising during your sessions.

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  • Performance & Production

What is Phantom Power & Why Do I Need It?

Phantom power…what a strange name!? If you're new to home recording, this term can be confusing. If this is the case, we can help...

Phantom power, sounds funny, doesn't it? If you're new to home recording, this term can be confusing. Thankfully, we can help...  

Shure Beta 181

Phantom Power is a term given to the process of delivering DC (Direct Current) to microphones requiring electric power to drive active circuitry. Condenser microphones such as Shure's KSM range all have active circuitry and require phantom power.  

How Does Phantom Power Work?

The power can be provided by a battery located inside of the mic; an example is the Shure PG81 (now discontinued) that operates from a single AA battery. Alternatively (and most commonly) the DC power is provided by the pre-amp/mixer and delivered to the condenser microphone via the mic cable. This method is referred to as phantom power. The worldwide standard for phantom power is 11 to 52 volts of DC (typical studio mics run on 48v). Your preamp will typically have a button labelled 48v, which allows you to turn this on/off. However, some older mixers and cheaper audio interfaces may not have phantom power. In this case, an external phantom power supply can be added between the condenser mic and the preamp.  

Will Phantom Power Damage My Dynamic Mics?

A dynamic microphone, like the SM58 , does not require phantom power because it does not have active electronics inside. Nonetheless, applying phantom power will not damage other microphones in the vast majority of cases. The reason is that modern dynamic  microphones are designed to accept phantom power without issues, but we advise checking your manual or consulting with the manufacturer first before connecting; particularly if you have a ribbon microphone. Additionally, it's a good idea to turn phantom power off while plugging and unplugging microphones to prevent any potential power surge and general pops and loud noises, which could damage your speakers/headphones over time.  

Why Is It Called Phantom Power?

Condenser microphones made in the 1930s, 1940s, and 1950s required a special power supply to operate. This power supply would often be located quite near the microphone and was usually large, heavy, and cumbersome. In the 1960s, work began on a new powering concept that would eliminate the need for a separate power supply. Schoeps and Neumann (German microphone manufacturers) were leaders in this development. Eventually, a new condenser mic powering standard emerged. The DC power to operate the condenser mic was provided by the mixing board and delivered via the mic cable; eliminating the need for an external power supply. And what does one call a power supply that is working, but invisible? It is a phantom power supply! - Source Shure Inc Applications Engineering

Marc Henshall

Marc forms part of our Pro Audio team at Shure UK and specialises in Digital Marketing. He also holds a BSc First Class Hons Degree in Music Technology. When not at work he enjoys playing the guitar, producing music, and dabbling in DIY (preferably with a good craft beer or two).

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condenser mic external phantom power

Do All Condensers Need Phantom Power? (3 Key Things To Know)

Condenser microphones are among the most versatile mics available, and they are ideal for use in studios and for recording. Condenser microphones are used for recording, streaming, and for live performances, but they can be challenging to use. The versatility and usability of these microphones may have led you to wonder if all condensers need phantom power to work?

All condenser microphones do require phantom power to function. Phantom power electrifies the diaphragm in the mic, which makes it very sensitive, and allows it to amplify audio very clearly, producing very high-quality audio. Condensers do not work without phantom.

Phantom power is required to run certain audio devices, but some microphones can be used without it. However, some mics do need this external source of power, and it can be confusing to define which mics do not need it.

Let’s explore the world of condenser microphones to determine if they all need phantom and how to tell if your microphones need phantom power or not.

Do All Condenser Microphones Need Phantom Power?

Condenser microphones are a favorite in recording environments, as well as for use for spoken words such as podcasts, for recording instruments, for live speaking, for live vocal performances , and even for streaming and virtual communications.

condenser microphone

These microphones are among the most versatile of all. Condenser microphones produce clearer and more well-defined high-quality audio than other types of microphones do, even if they are not as well-made or expensive as other mics.

The wide range and functionality of condensers make them very popular, but there is one problem: condenser microphones require phantom power.

The unfortunate reality is that all condenser microphones require phantom power. These microphones require an electrical current to activate the internal diaphragm backplate within the microphone.

condenser microphone 6

When this backplate is activated, any sound waves that come into contact with it are slightly electrified and amplified.

This type of amplification is why condenser mics are as good as they are. This technology makes condenser microphones very sensitive and produces very high quality, clear audio without any distortion. This makes the audio from these mics very easy to use, simple to mix, and highly functional.

Every condenser microphone requires phantom power to activate this internal mechanism, and without it, these microphones would not be condensers, and they would not function in the same way, nor would they be as functional.

condenser microphone 5

What If You Don’t Use Phantom Power With A Condenser?

If you have a condenser microphone but you have no way of running phantom power to the microphone, will it work without it in any way? What happens if you use a condenser without phantom power?

The truth of this matter is that a condenser microphone will simply not work if it is used without phantom power.

You can plug a condenser mic in, run a cable to it, and try to use it, but without phantom power, there is not enough electrical current running to the mic to activate the internal mechanism that allows the mic to capture and transmit audio signals.

condenser microphone 4

Condenser microphones work by using an electrical current to power an electrical sensor backplate that forms part of the internal diaphragm of the microphone. This diaphragm is what vibrates when sound reaches the microphone, and the electrical current electrifies the audio and amplifies it, producing very clear and high-quality audio even at very low levels.

Without phantom, your condenser microphones simply will not function at all. You will need some way to power them to use them, or you will need to switch to dynamic microphones that do not require phantom power to function.

(You can learn more about the differences between dynamic and condenser microphones here).

Can You Use A Condenser Without An Interface Or Mixer?

The most common way to supply power a condenser microphone is to use an audio interface or an audio mixer that has phantom power capabilities. These devices are the most common ways to power center microphones because they are usually used to send the signal from the mic to a computer for recording or streaming anyway, but what if you do not own an interface or a mixer?

condenser microphone 3

Can you use a condenser microphone without an interface or a mixer? Well, yes, you can. All that a condenser microphone requires to function is an XLR cable and phantom power . Aside from interfaces and mixers, simple microphone preamps can be used to power the condenser microphone as well.

If you want to run a condenser directly into our computer or even into your tablet and phone, all you need is the appropriate adaptors and a microphone preamp that is capable of supplying phantom power.

mixer mixing table

This is the simplest way to use a condenser microphone with the least hardware possible. The reality is that condenser microphones do need phantom power to activate them, but so long as this energy is supplied to the microphone, it will function well for any audio purpose that you can think of.

How To Tell If Your Mics Need Phantom Power

If your microphone is not working, especially if it is a microphone that you have never used before or a mic that you are very unfamiliar with, you may need to determine whether or not this microphone requires phantom power to work or if there is another problem with the hardware.

To determine if your mix requires phantom or not is simple. All condenser microphones require phantom, so the first step is to determine whether or not this particular mic is a condenser or a dynamic microphone.

condenser microphone 2condenser microphone 2

All condenser microphones are relatively large and typically have very sophisticated pop-filters or foam covers to protect the sensitive diaphragm of the mic.

These mics are usually larger, more square, or have a far larger or longer functional microphone section.

Dynamic microphones typically have very small internal diaphragms and therefore are usually smaller microphones, and the area of the mic that you speak or sing into is usually very small as well.

If the mic is larger than other mics, if it has a large area to speak into, or if it has a sophisticated pop-filter, then it is likely to be a condenser microphone, and you should try running phantom power to the mic before moving on to finding any other possible reasons why it may not be working.

You can learn about whether wireless microphones need phantom power here.

At the end of it, the important information that you need to know is that all condenser microphones require phantom power, and they cannot operate without it. The use of phantom power makes these microphones the useful devices that they are.

Without phantom power, a condenser does not function, and if these mics did not require phantom, they would not be as good as they are. Be sure that you understand the microphones that you are using to get the most out of them, and learn how they work to operate them safely.

Do All Condenser Mics Need Phantom Power? – nt1a, AT2020
How to use a CONDENSER MIC without an audio interface (and phantom power?) – MXL Mic Mate Pro review

Jonathon Madore

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  • Mic University


condenser mic external phantom power

What is phantom power?

condenser mic external phantom power

Why do microphones need power?

Is it standardized.

condenser mic external phantom power

Is phantom power always 48 volts?

What if the voltage is less than 48 volts, how much current can you draw, must the p48 be switched off if i don't use it, what if my device does not have phantom, do miniature microphones also need phantom power.

condenser mic external phantom power

How is it possible to carry both AC and DC?

condenser mic external phantom power

Can P48 power anything else but microphones?

When was phantom power invented, can phantom power damage a microphone.

condenser mic external phantom power

How to check the phantom power?

condenser mic external phantom power

Does P48 circuitry have any effect on the input impedance?

How much current draw can you expect from a microphone, mic university.


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A Primer on Phantom Power for Microphones

phantom power microphone audio recording

In the field of professional sound production, you’ll be hearing the term “phantom power” a lot when you start using a microphone for podcasting , recording in your very own home studio , live streaming , or even filmmaking . But what does it really do?

First, you’ll need to familiarize yourself with the different kinds of microphones , particularly the condenser microphone, as it is known to utilize phantom power the most. Once you’re more familiar with it, it’s much easier to understand what phantom power is and how it works to power microphones. 

What Is Phantom Power?

flatlay shot of condenser microphone, standard mic cable, and audio interface

Phantom Power, also known as +48V, is DC electric power sent through audio cables to operate microphones with active electronic circuitry. It’s most popularly known as a convenient power source for condenser microphones, which need this type of power to operate their internal circuitry. 

The word “phantom” comes from the idea that the power “hides” in the very same cables that carry the audio signals, instead of needing a separate power cable. Used interchangeably with idle current, vampire power, and standby power, it also refers to the energy consumed (and wasted) by appliances and electronics that are powered off or on “sleep” mode but are still plugged into a power outlet.

While phantom power is one of the most convenient technologies in the music industry today, it was actually discovered by accident in 1966 when professional recording microphone manufacturer Neumann GmbH was contracted by the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation to supply transistorized microphones that could run off of their studios’ 48V power supply, which had been powering their emergency lighting systems.

The new microphones (KM 84) that Neumann had presented became the origin of 48V and the solution later became the DIN standard 45596. Today, 48V is considered standard, but operating voltages commonly range from 9V up to 48VDC.

Why Do Condenser Microphones Need Phantom Power?

Phantom power, or battery power, is usually needed for condenser microphones because this type of microphone works like a capacitor, as opposed to a dynamic microphone that doesn’t have active circuitry and can generate electricity on its own through electromagnetic induction (like a loudspeaker in reverse). You can learn more about their differences here .

Inside a condenser microphone is a piece of metal (diaphragm) that needs a constant supply of +48 volts to be able to store sound vibration energy from its two surrounding plates before finally converting it into electric signals.

This signal and power transmission concurrently take place through the same cable conductor,  and this is made possible only when it’s connected to compatible external audio devices. Phantom power supplies are usually built into:

  • Analog/digital mixing consoles
  • Mic preamps
  • Audio interfaces
  • Separate units
  • Instrument amps with XLR input

As you can imagine, it’s not only the cable that serves a double purpose but also many audio receivers, as they are often capable of providing the required phantom power on top of performing their primary functional purposes during live audio sessions and recordings.

How Does Phantom Power Work?

phantom power microphone

The need for phantom power supply makes condenser microphones a bit more complicated to use. Instead of being a plug-and-play device like the typical dynamic mic, you have to make sure that your condenser mic has a power source.

On your chosen compatible external audio device, you have to find and press/click the button or switch (often labeled “P48” or “48V,” if not “phantom”) to turn the power supply on and off. This is after plugging your phantom power microphone in so it doesn’t make loud, popping sounds.

A phantom power cable has a balanced three-pin XLR connector or, in case of a 9V supply, a jack plug rather than an XLR.

  • Pin 1: 0 Voltage (ground)
  • Pin 2: Positive Voltage (audio in-polarity)
  • Pin 3: Positive Voltage (audio opposite-polarity)

You may be able to plug a dynamic and ribbon microphone into a phantom power supply as these other types of microphones connect to Pin 2 and 3, which offer a balanced voltage and therefore do not let any current flow through.

However, it’s not always safe to do so. When one terminal of the coil (in a dynamic microphone) or the ribbon (in a ribbon microphone) gets shorted to the grounded mic housing, the current will flow through and damage the internals of your dynamic or ribbon microphone. This is why it is still advisable to only use phantom power for condenser microphones.

The most common requirement for phantom powering is 48V, but you should check your condenser microphone’s required voltage range to ensure working compatibility between your microphone and audio device. And if your condenser microphone is the type that can also be powered by batteries, it’s best to remove them before using the phantom power to avoid damaging the batteries.

Best Phantom Power for Microphones

close up of 48V phantom power switch on a console

If a mixer or amplifier doesn’t feature 48V, there are separate external phantom supply units available in the market. Fortunately, Adorama carries many standalone units that both newbie and professional audio producers are currently using with their phantom-powered microphones. Check them out below:

  • Sanken P-11x-PT  ( )
  • Behringer Micropower PS400 Ultra-Compact  ( )
  • Deity Microphones D-XLR Adapter for V-Series Microphones ( )
  • Ambient Recording Universal Microphone Power Supply ( )
  • Beyerdynamic MA-PVA Adaptor with Mini-XLR 4pin Input ( )
  • Whirlwind Micmute Foot Pedal Microphone Muting Box ( )
  • Yamaha MG20 20-Input 6-Bus Mixing Console ( )

You can check out the other phantom supply units that we have here .

condenser mic external phantom power

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Condenser mics offer a high degree of fidelity and are favored in studio environments. They are active devices that require phantom power, balanced audio cables, and pre-amps in their connection chain—all of these should be included for the correct operation of condenser mics. Conveniently, most audio interfaces provide in-built phantom power and pre-amps, otherwise, external sources are required.

In this article we’ll look at:

Connecting a condenser mic to an audio interface

Phantom power, balanced audio cables, combo jacks.

Condenser microphones have a high degree of audio sensitivity and fidelity and are widely used in studio recording environments.

They are balanced audio devices that contain active circuitry. They, therefore, require external power to operate.

The external power can be provided directly from an audio interface through a phantom power connection—most modern audio interfaces include this.

Condenser mics—as with all mics that connect to an audio interface—also require a pre-amp. Again, most modern audio interfaces include in-built pre-amps.

Being balanced devices, condenser mics require balanced audio cables— XLR cables —to connect with audio interfaces.

Let’s assume that:

  • You have an audio interface with an in-built pre-amp and phantom power connection
  • You have a balanced XLR cable
  • Your audio interface is on and is properly connected to the other components of your digital audio workflow (eg. your computer system and DAW).

Then, the process for connecting a condenser mic to an audio interface is as follows:

Connect your condenser mic to one end of the XLR cable— the XLR connection jack on the condenser mic is male, so it should connect to the female jack of the XLR cable .

The phantom power switch on an audio interface is usually labeled “48V” or “P48”— ensure that this is switched off .

Turn the gain (or “volume”) of the audio interface’s XLR connector to zero .

Connect the male jack of the XLR cable to the female jack of the audio interface XLR connector (this is usually a combo jack in most audio interfaces).

After all these connections are secure, switch on the phantom power and adjust the audio interface’s XLR connector gain to the desired level.

Some audio interfaces may not have a physical switch for phantom power. In these cases, you’ll need to turn the phantom power on and off via the included controller/mixer software.

It’s also worth remembering:

  • Don’t include any connections between your mic and its connection to the audio interface—this may either block phantom power or degrade the sound quality
  • For similar reasons, don’t connect your mic to a patch bay—connect directly to the XLR mic input on the audio interface

The pictures below illustrate the connection process:

condenser mic external phantom power

To understand why a condenser mic needs to be connected in the manner described above, let’s take a closer look at the key components of the connection chain: Pre-amps, phantom power, balanced audio cables, and combo jacks.

Microphones tend to produce very low signal output levels and these are not strong enough to connect to other components in an audio workflow. Hence, these output signals need to be amplified to a level that can work with other audio devices—this level is usually referred to as a line level .

Pre-amplifiers (or “pre-amps”) boost microphone signal levels to line levels.

Fortunately, most audio interfaces include in-built pre-amps. If not, then an external pre-amp would be required for using a microphone with an audio interface.

As mentioned, condenser mics contain active circuitry that requires external power. This differs from dynamic mics and most ribbon mics, which are passive devices that do not require external power.

Phantom power is a way of providing the external power that condenser mics need, and again, most modern audio interfaces include a phantom power connection.

Since it’s included within the audio interface, there’s no “visible” power supply involved, and this is why the term “phantom” is used to describe this type of power. It also (usually) has no effect on passive devices, which is another reason for calling this type of power “phantom”.

condenser mic external phantom power

If phantom power isn’t available in an audio interface, then an external phantom power supply would be necessary for using condenser mics.

But why do condenser mics need phantom power in the first place?

The diaphragm construction of condenser mics—the part that vibrates in response to sound waves—is very thin . This “fragility” helps to provide condenser mics with their high sensitivity and fidelity characteristics.

But the fragility of condenser mic diaphragms means that they produce only tiny currents . Hence, their signal outputs require a phantom power “boost” before connecting to other audio devices.

Balanced audio cables contain three conductors (rather than two) and are required for applications that use phantom power.

condenser mic external phantom power

If phantom power is used with an unbalanced cable (containing two conductors), it could lead to an overload on any connected microphone and may cause serious damage.

Balanced audio cables are also better at minimizing interference than unbalanced cables.

This is because balanced cables contain two signal paths (the other conductor goes to ground) that transmit phase-inverted copies of the original signal.

At the receiving end of a balanced connection (eg. at the audio interface), the phases of the two signals are synchronized and the original signal is restored—any common interference that develops along the signal paths is canceled out in this process.

Unbalanced cables have only one signal transmission path, so any interference that develops is carried to the receiving end without being canceled out.

Many audio interfaces include combo jacks for connecting microphones. These allow either an XLR cable or a TRS cable to be connected.

condenser mic external phantom power

TRS cables are used for instruments or other line sources, but XLR cables should be used for microphones—it’s the XLR connection that provides access to the pre-amp in an audio interface.

Condenser mics are active, balanced audio devices that require external (phantom) power in order to operate.

When connecting a condenser mic to an audio interface, each component in the connection chain has a specific purpose—pre-amps boost the low-level microphone signals to line levels, phantom power activates the tiny currents produced by condenser mics, and balanced cables transmit the phantom power and minimize interference.

It’s important to include the necessary components and follow the correct sequence when connecting a condenser mic to an audio interface. This helps to minimize possible damage and ensure that every component is working properly.

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Produce Like A Pro

What Is Phantom Power & Which Mics Need It?

What Is Phantom Power & Which Mics Need It?

Phantom power can be confusing when you first get into recording. This guide to phantom power will answer some of the most frequently asked questions beginner engineers have.

Introduction: What Is Phantom Power?

In order to understand phantom power, it’s a good idea to cover the basics of condenser microphones (also known as capacitor microphones), which operate using an electrical principle called variable capacitance.

Inside a condenser’s capsule is a thin membrane typically made from mylar, called the diaphragm, and a metal backplate. When acoustic energy from a voice or instrument hits the diaphragm, it’s sensitive enough to vibrate back and forth. This vibration varies the distance between the diaphragm and backplate, and ultimately changes the capacitance, or stored electrical charge.

The fluctuating charge converts acoustic energy entering the mic into a recordable electrical signal. But these active components must be powered somehow beforehand…

Phantom power sends a DC current from a preamp or mixer, through the XLR cable, and to the condenser microphone to power the internal active circuitry. The global standard for phantom is 11V to 52V DC, with studio mics running on +48V. You’ll often find phantom written as +48V on preamps, mixers, audio interfaces, and the like.

Why is it called “phantom” power?

Between the ’30s and ’50s, condenser mics had bulky external power supplies. (Today’s tube microphones still have them.) In the ’60s, Neumann and Schoeps started work on a new form of power that would get rid of these weighty boxes. +48V became the new standard for running condenser microphones, and it was sent from the mixer, through the XLR cable, to the mic.

The so-called “invisible” new power supply earned itself the name “phantom.” Happy Halloween.

  • SEE ALSO: What Does a Cloudlifter Do (And Should You Be Using One)?

Is it safe to leave phantom power on?

A good rule of thumb is to turn phantom off whenever you’re connecting or disconnecting a condenser microphone. It’s just the safest practice—plugging or unplugging a mic with phantom on won’t necessarily destroy it, but it’s best to avoid being the victim of any weird electrical anomalies, or just plain bad luck.

That said, you should never plug in a ribbon mic with phantom power on, or turn it on period. Apart from modern active ribbon microphones which require it, phantom power can damage the sensitive internal components of older passive ribbon mics.

What Types of Microphones Use Phantom Power?

What Is Phantom Power & Which Mics Need It?_2

The three main types of microphones are condensers, dynamics, and ribbons.

Do condenser mics need phantom power?

Yes! Condenser microphones are the primary kind which require +48V phantom power to operate the active circuitry inside. An exception are tube microphones, which are a type of condenser that still use external power supplies.

Do dynamic mics need phantom power?

No. Dynamic microphones work on a different principle to generate sound. They contain a mechanical moving coil which vibrates from acoustic energy and sends an electrical signal for recording. Dynamic mics are more robust than condensers, i.e., less sensitive, and can tolerate higher SPLs without distorting. They are passive, and do not require +48V power. It’s worth noting that sending phantom power to a dynamic usually won’t hurt it.

Do ribbon mics need phantom power?

Sometimes. Certain contemporary ribbon mics contain active circuitry like condensers, and require phantom power to run. However, you can destroy passive ribbon microphones with +48V; always be absolutely sure of whether the ribbon you’re using is passive or active before engaging phantom.

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condenser mic external phantom power

How-To Geek

What is a condenser microphone, and how do they work.

Condenser mics offer more sensitivity for detailed recordings, but they're not the best tool for every job.

Quick Links

What is a condenser microphone, how do condenser microphones work, condenser mics vs. dynamic mics: what are the differences, key takeaways.

Condenser microphones are typically much more sensitive than other microphones like dynamic microphones. They're good for capturing detail across the entire range of frequencies but make it much easier to pick up unwanted sounds in the background. For recording instruments, condenser mics are generally more detailed.

Whether you're a content creator, musician, or producer, a quality microphone can go a long way. People often recommend condenser microphones for accurate recordings, but what are they? How do they compare to other types of mics?

A condenser microphone is a type of microphone that is meant to be more sensitive than alternatives like dynamic microphones. This sensitivity means they can pick up much more detail than dynamic microphones in many cases.

There are two types of condenser microphones: large-diaphragm condenser microphones and small-diaphragm condenser microphones. These terms refer to the diaphragm of the microphone, the physical element that actually does the work of picking up sound.

Related: What Is a Supercardioid Microphone?

Large-diaphragm condenser microphones typically have a diaphragm around one inch in diameter, or slightly larger or smaller. A large-diaphragm condenser microphone like the Audio-Technica AT4040 doesn't have as consistent a pickup pattern as mics with smaller diaphragms, but this leads to the "warmth" people talk about with large-diaphragm condenser microphones.

Small-diaphragm condensers like the Lewitt LCT 140 AIR typically have a diaphragm around half an inch or less in size. These don't have the same low-end response as large-diaphragm condensers, but they're excellent at high-end detail. They also have great transient response (think sounds like claps).

Regardless of the type of condenser microphone you're using, the extra sensitivity does have downsides. Mainly, if you're recording in a less-than-quiet environment (i.e., not a professional recording studio), you're likely to capture unwanted background noise.

Unlike dynamic microphones, condenser microphones also require an external power source, usually in the form of phantom power . We'll look at this more in the next section.

Like other microphones, condenser microphones pick up sound as vibrations through the diaphragm. The diaphragm converts this vibration into an electric signal, which then travels through the microphone's circuitry and through the output.

The diaphragm in a condenser mic is essentially a capacitor, but you don't need to know much about electricity to understand how it works. In this case, the diaphragm is made of conductive material that sits next to a solid metal plate. As the diaphragm vibrates, this creates a current in the metal plate, creating an audio signal.

This signal is very low level, much more so than the low level signal coming out of a dynamic microphone. It's also a very high impedance , whereas microphone preamps expect low impedance signals.

Because of this, even though you need to plug the microphone into a preamp , condenser microphones have an additional built-in preamp to raise the level of the output. The preamp requires power, albeit not much.

This is why condenser mics require phantom power, which is a 48V signal sent over the XLR cable from your mixer or preamp into the microphone. USB microphones use power over USB instead of phantom power, while other condenser mics that use vacuum tubes use external power supplies.

As mentioned above, one of the main differences between condenser microphones and dynamic microphones is the sensitivity. Dynamic microphones aren't as sensitive, and often don't capture the full range of frequencies as a condenser microphone. They're also more prone to self noise and have very low output.

This makes dynamic microphones good for any situation where the source is close to the microphone. For the spoken word, dynamic mics tend to excel as they pick up the voice without picking up the sound of the room. A condenser mic will pick up much more ambience.

Dynamic microphones are also typically much more rugged than condenser mics. This makes them ideal for usage in live music. That lower sensitivity also makes them less prone to feedback, another useful feature in live concerts.

Condenser microphones generally capture a more accurate picture of what you're recording, but this is both a good thing and a bad thing. Recording a perfectly tuned instrument in a great sounding room, you'll likely get a much better recording than you would with a dynamic microphone.

Put that same condenser microphone and perfectly tuned instrument in a room with poor acoustic properties, and it will pick up just how bad the room sounds. You need to be much more careful with your environment.

Generally, condenser mics are more suited toward music. If you're a gamer or content creator, that won't be of much use to you. Instead, take a look at our roundup of the best gaming microphones .

How To Set Up Any Microphone With Phantom Power-(Explained!)

Categories Phantom Power And Microphones

Is phantom power a term you have been hearing a lot lately?

Regardless of if you are trying to hook up a condenser microphone to your computer for the first time, or a seasoned pro, phantom power is something that we need from a very early stage in our careers making records.

I can’t begin to tell you how many awkward situations I got myself into just for the lack of this common feature. Just so you won’t make the same mistakes I did, I put this guide together in order to spread the knowledge.

Setting up ANY condenser microphone with phantom power is the skill you’ll have by the end of this article. Are you ready? Let’s go!

condenser mic external phantom power

What Is Phantom Power?

Let’s start from the beginning and review some facts real quick.

If you ever wondered what phantom power actually is, the answer to that question could be electrical power traveling through the XLR microphone cable (in most cases) and reaching the condenser microphone.

Once there, the electrical current amplifies the sound coming out of the capsule making it usable in a recording studio.

  • If it wasn’t for phantom power, the gain of a condenser would be lower than that of a dynamic microphone.

Mostly phantom power is 48 volts and you might encounter the switch to power it on labeled as “48v” or just “phantom power”

I have written an article on phantom power. You can read it here.

Does Phantom Power Damage Other Microphones?

This is a very common myth you’ll hear because of an old problem with the early models of ribbon microphones.

Ribbon technology can be traced back to the beginning of the previous century. It works with a very thin sheet of metal between two magnets. Many of these microphones in the old days didn’t have an internal transformer.

If you hit one of these very rare and old ribbon microphones with phantom power you can destroy it. Luckily, hitting any other microphone with those 48v will not do anything to it; including modern ribbon microphones.

Take a look at my article on ribbon microphones here.

Large Diaphragm VS Small Diaphragm Microphones

Visually, these two kinds of condenser microphones are very different, but for those who are not familiar with them, they might sound similar. Do both of them need to be run with phantom power? The answer is absolutely yes.

Can I Power More Than One Condenser Microphone At The Same Time?

What happens if I plug two condenser microphones (perhaps a large diaphragm and a small diaphragm to capture a singer-songwriter playing and singing) to the same mixing console? Will it give phantom power to both? As long as it has two XLR inputs, it will power both microphones.

condenser mic external phantom power

Can I Just Use A Dynamic Microphone?

Well, this is a very good question to ask at this moment. Why, if it’s so much of a hassle don’t we just go for dynamic microphones that don’t require phantom power and get it over with?

Well, the answer to that question is very simple: they don’t sound the same. In fact, they don’t even have the same amount of gain. If you were to capture a quiet sound source utilizing a dynamic microphone you would have to really crank it. Some of these might be the consequences to the mix of using dynamics instead of condensers:

· Noises – Ambient noises that are hardly perceptible get hugely amplified when you compress and increase the volume of a track. I know what you are thinking, but fixing your vocal noises with an EQ is an epic fail that might even damage the end result (and your reputation).

· Losing the warmth – Voices on dynamic microphones tend to sound thin and lack presence on the lower registers. Well, if you are thinking about boosting frequencies with your EQ later on, you’ll pick up all sorts of stuff except for a decent low end for those vocals.

I have written an article on the differences between dynamic and condenser microphones. You can find it here.

Best Phantom Power Sources For Your Condenser Microphone

Now that you are aware of what phantom power is and how it works, it’s time to go fetch your phantom power sources.

  • Remember you need phantom power with all types of condenser microphone

Audio Interface

For home studio owners this is the most common way of feeding phantom power to your microphone.

A good audio interface is much more than just a provider of phantom power; that is not the reason why you should buy one of these. Audio interfaces will translate analog into digital and allow you to convert any PC in the world into a home studio.

Most audio interfaces provide either one or more XLR inputs featuring a preamp (some better than others) and phantom power.

If I were as lucky as you are and started my musical journey in this day and age, I would definitely buy a Focusrite Scarlett Solo. It has everything you need to get started in this beautiful world of music recording. Plus, if you buy it brand new, it also comes with free bundled software to cover all your basic needs.

Back when I started, affording a laptop computer was an extreme luxury. Having an audio interface you could take with you in your backpack was unthinkable. You are very lucky.

  • I have written an article all about getting started with audio interfaces. You can read it here.

condenser mic external phantom power

The second most common way to give phantom power to a hungry condenser is to go through a mixer or mixing console.

The other great thing about mixing consoles is that they allow you to do a lot of things with the audio besides the basic volume up and down. You can, for example, learn the fine art of equalizing a live mix with index and thumb and train your ears a lot in the way too.

Finally, you have the ability to power more than one condenser or plug in more than one audio source. For example, if you are a podcaster you can do a live show hooking up external music sources, more than one microphone, and making decisions on the fly.

My pick, in this case, is the Mackie Mix8. Mackie is one of the biggest names in the world in audio and this small, portable, and this super useful mixer does justice to its heritage in a tiny, inexpensive package.

You get a main out, a dedicated headphone level (super useful for the click when recording), two XLR inputs, and phantom power among many other features.

One thing you have to know about Mackie, in general, is that they are built like a tank.

External Phantom Power Supply

Finally, this is something that can never be absent in your studio.

For the price, you absolutely need to get one of these.

What is a case scenario you might need it?

For example, if you happen to have a USB-powered audio interface like, let’s say the amazing Apollo Twin Duo and you have very good headphones at a reasonable level, your condenser is going to stay hungry.

Dividing power from the USB connection to power the interface and the condenser might lower the quality of your recordings because instead of 48v, your microphone could be getting less while power is routed towards speakers or headphones .

You can solve that with an inexpensive external phantom power supply. I have one in my backpack at all times and if I ever work with a USB-powered audio interface I just use it for the main vocal mic.

condenser mic external phantom power

I am going to go for Mackie again because I just think their products are so sturdy they can handle the road.

I go out a lot doing field recordings and carrying a Mackie M48 is great because it can even run on batteries.

This way I won’t even have to bother looking for an electrical socket. If you ever consider working in the super fun world of movie audio, an M48 in your backpack ready to go at all times can save an entire day of shooting (and turn you into the hero of the day).

condenser mic external phantom power

Nail Two Categories With One Purchase: Get A Preamp

So, now that we are talking about providing phantom power to a condenser microphone with an external source, why don’t you just get a preamp and solve two problems at once?

Having an external preamp can allow you to dial in a sound you like regardless of the place you are working.

Maybe the band hired you and rented a studio that has a mixing console you don’t like because the preamps sound harsh. Well, get a preamp and your best large-diaphragm vocal microphone into a backpack and do the magic anywhere sounding consistently good.

My pick is by an old brand that was utterly famous and Avant grade in the eighties called ART (Applied Research and Technology). They made the worst-looking, best-sounding pedalboards among other rack gear back in the day.

Their Studio V3 Tube preamp is a wonderful way of coloring the sound in a musical way and also feeding that phantom power your condenser mic was needing.

The voicing knob is such a great addition that will allow you to dial in almost anything you want to plug into it. Another must for my backpack.

condenser mic external phantom power

If you are going to be recording audio, you are going to need phantom power. It is a fact. To me, the best way to do it is to get an external source that also works as a preamp.

Once you have mastered that preamp, you’ll find yourself automatizing many of the vocal processing for all projects and saving lots of time. Besides, you won’t be draining precious USB power from your audio interface.

I would highly recommend using a shock mount with your condenser microphone. You can read more about them here.

Don’t overlook the training of your ears; working with preamps is being one step closer to achieving pro-sounding vocals. If vocals sound superb, chances are the track will sound great too.

Happy (phantom powered) recording!

condenser mic external phantom power

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How to Power a Condenser Mic

This post was most recently updated on November 5th, 2023

A microphone is essential whether you are interested in becoming a professional entertainer or you just want to have some recording fun in your spare time. There are a number of different microphone types and models. Still, the two most common are dynamic and condenser mics.

While the dynamic is more popular as it is something widely accessible to most of us, the condenser mic is a better option if you are looking to engage in professional recording because it has a flat frequency response and a wide frequency range. Through using an internal capacitor it converts basic acoustics into electric energy.

One of the most common questions about a condenser microphone is how to connect it to a laptop . While the process is not as simple as with a basic mic, it is nothing complicated and with the right equipment, you will do it in a matter of a few minutes.

There are three things you need: a condenser mic , a sound card, and a mixing console. The mixing console is critical as without it you will not be able to achieve the best sound quality.

Once you buy all three, all you need to do is to connect the microphone to the mixing console and connect the mixer to the appropriate sound card (that supports a 1/4 inch jack). But wait – how do you power a condenser mic? There are a few methods. Let’s take a look.

The Reason a Condenser Microphone Needs a Phantom Power Source

If you are not already familiar with the design of the condenser microphone, we can tell you that it differs from a basic dynamic mic. It has three essential parts – a back metal plate, a diaphragm, as well as the capacitor which is situated inside of the microphone capsule.

As you record, the diaphragm detects the change in air pressure and sends the waves to the back plate which then returns it back to the diaphragm. The whole issue with this electric signal is that it is not strong enough, and if you want it to be heard on speakers it needs an external amp. Unlike dynamic microphones, a condenser mic without a phantom power supply will do you no good. But is it complicated and how can you power it?

The Three Basic Options to Power a Condenser Microphone

The most popular method is 48V phantom power. For those of you that don’t know, phantom power is an audio interface preamp that supplies a condenser microphone with enough electrical power to give it volume and to improve sound quality.

It is the best way if you are interested in doing any studio recording, as it is affordable and effective. 

If recording to a computer primarily , phantom power (the power needed for a condenser mic) can be supplied from an audio interface .

Once you buy one, the only thing you will need to do is to connect it with an XLR cable to your condenser microphone. 

For live performances or recording directly to a recording disk or console, most of these units have a few if not all XLR inputs dedicated to delivering phantom power to microphones.

For example, inputs five and six of my hard disk recorder has the ability to send phantom power to microphones.

phantom power from a mixer

There are a number of different 48V phantom power options, and it is your decision if you will get an AC or a battery-powered one.

An old-school way would be to invest in a vacuum tube that is able to boost the electric signal emitted by the microphone capsule. While it is not as popular as the phantom power option, it may be a more efficient method if you want to create warm and pure sound. It does have its own power supply and is certainly a cheaper alternative to the abovementioned option.

Last is powering your condenser microphone through an electret. An electret is a dielectric unit that is either attached to the back plate or the diaphragm and provides a constant power supply that runs on batteries. The electret method is used with microphones that are installed in phones, laptops, and other tech gadgets.

If we talk about bigger, professional condenser microphones, the phantom power method is the most effective one.

A Few Things to be Cautious of

There are two main things you need to consider. First, you should never plug in your mic if the phantom power supply is already on. There is a chance for short circuits and losing your microphone or preamp is not something you want. Along with that, be sure to invest in a phantom power interface that is adequate for your condenser mic – if the voltage is lower, these two can’t work together.

Final Thoughts

Investing in a condenser microphone is a smart decision if you are interested in sound recording. There are a number of different models and finding an affordable one shouldn’t be a problem. You should know that this type of mic needs an external power supply, and there are a few methods. We did our best to make this a simple guide on how to power your condenser mic and get the best sound quality out of it.

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Home recording studios and music production

What Is Phantom Power and Why Do You Need It? (Explained)

Once upon a time, in the heart of a home studio nestled between pizza boxes and fizzy drink cans, a young beatmaker was struggling to get his new condenser mic to work. He was jacked up on dreams and caffeine, ready to lay down some fire tracks, but the mic was as silent as a ninja. “What kind of sorcery is this?” he wondered, feeling like he’d been ghosted by his own gear.

What he needs is phantom power ! It’s the invisible force that breathes life into your mics and other audio equipment, kind of like the audio world’s version of spinach for Popeye! Now, wouldn’t you love to understand this magical entity that plays a crucial role in your music production but stays in the shadows like some mysterious superhero?

What is phantom power in audio? Phantom power, in the realm of audio, is a DC voltage—usually 48V—sent through microphone cables to power certain types of audio equipment like condenser microphones, giving them the juice they need to pick up your sick beats and soulful vocals.

Image of a phantom power button and indicator light on a korg d888 digital recorder

What is phantom power for?

Phantom power is like that secret sauce that makes your audio gear sing. It’s especially important when using condenser microphones, as they require a power source to function properly. Think of phantom power as the fuel that energizes your microphone, allowing it to capture those sweet, sweet tunes you’re laying down.

But why is it the unsung hero? Well, it’s because it works behind the scenes, making sure your gear is powered up and ready to roll without any fuss. You won’t even realize it’s there, but your recordings wouldn’t sound nearly as professional without it.

For example, let’s say you’re recording an acoustic guitar with a condenser microphone. Without phantom power, you’d end up with a weak, lifeless sound that wouldn’t do justice to your fingerpicking skills. But once you activate that phantom power, your mic comes alive, capturing the richness and depth of your playing , making your guitar sound like it’s being played right in front of you.

AKAI Professional MPK Mini MK3

What is phantom power and why do you need it? (explained) | 717qmgla7zl. Ac sl1500 | audio apartment

How does phantom power work?

Now that we’ve established what phantom power is, let’s talk about how it works. Strap in ’cause we’re going on a quick detour down the science highway.

Phantom power runs on DC voltage, typically 48 volts, that’s transmitted through your mic cable. This current isn’t for any old piece of equipment; it’s specifically for devices like condenser mics that need an external power source. This voltage is called “phantom” because it’s invisible to dynamic microphones and other audio gear that don’t require external power while still doing its thing for those devices that do.

So, imagine you’re rocking a killer vocal session with a condenser mic. The phantom power supplies the necessary voltage to the mic through the mic cable. The mic takes this voltage and uses it to create a clear, powerful recording of your voice. Without phantom power, your mic would be like a car without gas – all revved up with nowhere to go.

A little tip, though – always remember to switch off phantom power when plugging or unplugging your mic. It helps to avoid any potential damage to your gear.

Here’s a little Dos and Don’ts table to help you out:

Which gear should use phantom power?

Alright, it’s time to break down which pieces of your gear are gonna be partying with the phantom and which ones aren’t invited. Not every piece of audio equipment needs or can even handle phantom power.

First off, condenser mics are the main guests at the phantom power party. These mics have active electronics that need power to work. So, if you’re using a condenser mic , make sure that phantom power is up and running.

Image of condenser microphone in recording studio. Source: unsplash

On the flip side, dynamic mics, like the ones you’d see at a live concert, don’t need phantom power. These mics work passively, meaning they generate their own electric signal without any external help. If you send phantom power to a dynamic mic, it’s like sending a party invitation to someone who prefers to Netflix and chill – they simply don’t need it.

But don’t stress. Phantom power won’t damage a dynamic microphone , so if you accidentally left the switch on, your gear will be A-OK.

In the realm of direct boxes (DIs), things get a bit more complex. Some DIs require phantom power, while others don’t. Always check the specs of your DI box before you start messing around with phantom power.

To summarize:

  • Condenser mics? Yes, they need phantom power.
  • Dynamic mics? No, they don’t need it, but they can handle it.
  • Direct boxes? It depends, so check the specs.

Remember, knowing your gear and its needs is key to creating those killer tracks!

How do you know if your gear is getting enough power?

It’s important to know how to make sure your gear is getting its fair share of that sweet, sweet phantom power. It’s not a game of guesswork. There are clear signs that can tell you if your gear is getting the power it needs or not.

1. No sound

The most obvious sign: if you’ve got a condenser mic and it’s not picking up any sound, then it’s likely not getting phantom power. No power, no sound – it’s as simple as that.

. Always check your gear’s manual before you start plugging things in and switching on phantom power.

2. Power indicator is not on

Some gear will have an indicator light to tell you if it’s receiving power. If that light’s not on, then you’ve got a problem. Make sure you check your cables and your audio interface to make sure everything’s connected correctly.

3. Weak or distorted sound

If your sound seems weak or distorted, it might be a sign that your gear isn’t getting enough power. Phantom power should give you a clean, strong signal. If that’s not what you’re hearing, then it’s time to do some troubleshooting.

This table provides the average power consumption of some common audio devices while in an idle state (power on, not actively used) as well as during active use. Note that these figures can vary based on specific brands or models, but the data can still give you a good sense of the phantom power usage of common devices.

A word of caution, though. Always check your gear’s manual before you start plugging things in and switching on phantom power. And if you’re not sure, don’t hesitate to ask someone more experienced or reach out to the manufacturer’s customer service. Better safe than sorry, my friends.

Advantages and disadvantages of phantom power

Phantom power plays a critical role in audio technology , particularly for condenser microphones and active DI boxes. Its benefits and downsides often shape the overall audio production experience.

Advantages of phantom power

The pros of phantom power underscore its fundamental place in the audio world:

  • Enables use of condenser microphones: These microphones, known for superior audio quality, rely heavily on phantom power for operation. They produce clearer, more detailed sounds compared to other microphone types.
  • Universal compatibility: Phantom power is a standardized feature on most audio interfaces and mixers, making it widely accessible for various audio equipment.
  • No need for batteries: Devices powered by phantom power do not require batteries, reducing the risk of audio interruption due to power loss and eliminating the cost and hassle of battery replacement.
  • Long cable runs: Phantom power can be sent over long distances via balanced audio cables without any significant loss of voltage, providing flexibility in setting up audio equipment.

Disadvantages of phantom power

Despite the benefits, phantom power also has a few drawbacks that audio professionals and enthusiasts must keep in mind:

  • Potential equipment damage: Not all audio devices can tolerate phantom power. Sending it accidentally to unsuitable devices, such as some dynamic microphones or vintage ribbon mics, may damage them.
  • Noise issues: Sometimes, turning on or off the phantom power can introduce pops or clicks in the audio signal that can potentially damage speakers or other equipment if the volume is high.
  • Limited to balanced connections: Phantom power can only be provided over balanced connections like XLR or TRS. Unbalanced connections such as RCA or TS cannot support it.
  • Power inefficiency: While phantom power avoids the need for batteries, it is not the most power-efficient system. Devices that run on it often consume more power than their battery-powered counterparts.

Remember, it’s essential to understand the specifics of your audio equipment and its compatibility with phantom power to fully harness its benefits and avoid potential pitfalls.

If you want even more tips and insights, watch this video called “What Is Phantom Power And Why Do You Need It?” from the Recordingrevolution YouTube channel.

Frequently asked questions (FAQ)

Do you still have questions about phantom power in audio? Below are some of the most commonly asked questions.

Can phantom power damage my microphones?

Phantom power won’t harm most microphones. Dynamic mics are cool with it, and condenser mics actually need it. But there are exceptions. Some ribbon mics might not play nice with phantom power, so always check your gear’s specs.

Do all audio interfaces provide phantom power?

Not all of them. Many do, but if yours doesn’t, you’ll need an external phantom power supply. It’s like a VIP pass for your condenser mics to the party.

Do I need to switch off phantom power when I’m not using it?

Yeah, it’s a good idea. While it won’t damage most gear, you should switch off phantom power when you’re plugging or unplugging your gear. It’s all about good housekeeping, folks!

Well, we’ve ghosted through the ins and outs of phantom power, and I hope it’s all a bit clearer now. And remember, phantom power is a bit like a great DJ – you don’t always see it, but it’s there in the background, making sure the party goes off without a hitch.

So, did you find the phantom, or is it still power-ing through your questions? And did I cover everything you wanted to know? Let me know in the comments section below ( I read and reply to every comment ). If you found this article helpful, share it with a friend, and check out my full blog for more tips and tricks on audio production. Thanks for reading, and keep those beats banging!

Key takeaways

This article covered the concept of phantom power in audio. Here are some key takeaways:

  • Phantom power is a power source that travels through audio cables to power certain types of audio gear.
  • It’s typically used with condenser microphones, which require external power to function.
  • Phantom power won’t harm most gear that doesn’t require it, such as dynamic microphones.
  • Not all gear can handle phantom power, so always check your gear’s specs.
  • Always turn off phantom power when connecting or disconnecting gear to avoid potential damage.

Helpful resources

  • Phantom power
  • Phantom Power Explained
  • Phantom Power Supplies

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Hey there! My name is Andrew, and I'm relatively new to music production, but I've been learning a ton, and documenting my journey along the way. That's why I started this blog. If you want to improve your home studio setup and learn more along with me, this is the place for you!


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Theremin’s Bug: How The Soviet Union Spied On The US Embassy For 7 Years

condenser mic external phantom power

The man leaned over his creation, carefully assembling the tiny pieces. This was the hardest part, placing a thin silver plated diaphragm over the internal chamber. The diaphragm had to be strong enough to support itself, yet flexible enough to be affected by the slightest sound. One false move, and the device would be ruined. To fail meant a return to the road work detail, quite possibly a death sentence. Finally, the job was done. The man leaned back to admire his work.

The man in this semi-fictional vignette was Lev Sergeyevich Termen, better known in the western world as Léon Theremin. You know Theremin for the musical instrument which bears his name. In the spy business though, he is known as the creator of one of the most successful clandestine listening devices ever used against the American government.

condenser mic external phantom power

In 1920, while working on his dielectric measurement device, Theremin noticed that an audio oscillator changed frequency when he moved his hand near the circuit. The Theremin was born. In November of 1920 Léon gave his first public concert with the instrument. He began touring with it in the late 1920’s and in 1928, he brought the Theremin to the United States. He set up a lab in New York and worked with RCA to produce the instrument.

Theremin’s personal life during this period was less successful than his professional endeavors. His wife, Katia, had come to America with him and studied medicine at a school about 35 miles from the City. For much of this time, Léon and Katia lived apart, seeing each other only a couple of times a week. While at school, Katia became associated with a fascist organization. The Russian Consulate caught wind of this and summarily divorced Léon from Katia. They couldn’t risk their rising star being associated with the Nazis.

Theremin eventually remarried, this time to Lavinia Williams, a ballerina. Lavinia was African-American and the couple faced ridicule in American social circles due to their mixed race. However, the Soviet Consulate did not have a problem with their relationship. In 1938, with the Nazi threat growing stronger, Theremin returned to Russia. He expected to send for his wife a few weeks after his arrival. Unfortunately, that wasn’t to be the case. Léon and Lavinia never saw each other again.

Upon arrival in Leningrad, Theremin was imprisoned, suspected of crimes against the state. He found himself working in a laboratory for the state department. This was not an unusual situation. Aircraft designer Andrei Tupolev and missile designer Sergei Korolyov were two of many others who faced a similar fate. It was during this time as a prisoner that Theremin designed his listening device.

Placing the bug




Theory of Operation


Regardless of who figured out the device, the method of operation is devilishly simple. The Soviets would sit outside the embassy, either in another building or in a van. From this remote location they would aim a radio transmitter at the great seal. The bug inside would receive this signal and transmit voices in the room on a second, higher frequency. It did all of this with no standard internal components. No resistors, no tubes, no traditional capacitors, or the like. There were capacitive properties to the mechanism. For instance, a capacitor is formed between the diaphragm and the tuning peg of the device.


Sound waves would cause the diaphragm to move, which would vary the capacitance between the body and diaphragm, forming a condenser microphone. It is important to note that the bug didn’t transmit and receive on the same frequency. According to Peter Wright, the excitation frequency used by the Russians was actually 800 MHz. The cavity would resonate at a multiple of this base frequency, producing the 1.6 GHz output seen by Bezjian.

While bugs of this type have fallen out of favor, the idea of “illuminating” a device with an external transmitter lives on. Check out  [Elliot’s] description of the RageMaster bug from the ANT catalog here . Resonant cavities have found common use as well. Every microwave oven or radar system with a magnetron uses one.

A Political Pawn


A replica of the great seal is on display at the NSA National Cryptologic Museum.


Theremin finally visited the United States in 1992, reuniting with old friends. He performed in a concert at Stanford and was interviewed by Robert Moog , who considered him to be a hero of the electronic music world . After filling in many of the blanks of his story, Theremin asked Moog and co-interviewer Olivia Mattis to be responsible when writing up their story. “But if you write that I have said something; against the Soviet government and that I have said that it is better to work elsewhere, then I shall have difficulties back home [ironic laughter]”. Even then at the twilight of his life, with the fall of the Soviet Union underway, Theremin was still looking over his shoulder, worried about what the government might do if he offended them.

Theremin passed away in 1993. The unlikely master of this spy-gadget was 97 years old.

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The Moscow Metro – MCC – MCD – everything about capital’s subway

Moscow Metro map and journey planner app called Yandex.Metro is available for iOS and Android for free.

We have a great Moscow Metro & Stalin Skyscrapers Private Tour across all famous metro stations, available for you every day.

1. Famous Moscow metro stations

Kievskaya (circle line).

Kievskaya Metro Station (Circle line)

The station was opened on March 14, 1954. It was named after the nearby Kievsky Railway Station. Decorating of station is devoted to friendship of Russian and Ukrainian people. Rich mosaic decoration is made from smalt and valuable stones by project of Ukrainian architects, chosen from seventy-three works presented on competition.

Kievskaya (Dark-blue line)

«A holiday in Kiev» wall painting at Kievskaya Metro Station (Dark-Blue line)

It was opened on April 5, 1953. Design of the station is devoted to the Soviet Ukraine and reunion of Ukraine and Russia. The station is decorated with a large number of the picturesque cloths executed in style of socialist realism in fresco technique. The fresco «Holiday in Kiev», made in 1953 was practically destroyed in 2010, due to an accident during nearby constructing works. While the fresco recovery, restorers revived its original appearance that had gone through many changes since its creation.

Ploshad Revolutsii

Famous dog at Ploshchad Revolyutsii Metro Station

The station was opened on March 13, 1938. The most interesting feature of the station is 76 bronze figures, situated in niches of 18 arches. This peculiar gallery of images of Soviet people, aimed to personify force and power of the country, its glorious past and bright future. One of the bronze sculptures — a dog that accompanies a frontier guard — is believed to bring good luck if you touch its nose.

Prospekt Mira

Prospekt Mira Metro Station

Prospect Mira station of the Circle line was opened on January 30, 1952. It used to be called Botanical Garden up to June 20, 1966. The station’s decoration is devoted to development of agriculture in the USSR. Light marble and bas-reliefs by sculptor G. I. Motovilov decorate poles of the station. Famous smalt panel «Mothers of the World» by A. N. Kuznetsov is situated in the lobby.


Komsomolskaya Metro Station

Komsomolskaya station was opened on January 30, 1952. The station has rich decoration devoted to a fight of USSR against overseas aggressors and victory in the Great Patriotic War. Mosaic panels from smalt and valuable stones, created according to sketches of the Lenin Award winner Pavel Corin, represent famous Russian commanders and weapons of different eras.


Roof mosaic at Novokuznetskaya Metro Station

The station was opened on November 20, 1943. Its name was originally written through a hyphen: ‘Novo-Kuznetskaya’. The interior of the station is rich with decorating elements. The idea of creative force and power of Soviet people, its remarkable victories in the Great Patriotic War found realization in architectural design of station. The perimeter of the escalator arch is decorated with bronze sculptures by the sculptor N.V.Tomsky.


Novoslobodskaya Metro Station

Novoslobodskaya station was opened on January 30, 1952. It was called after Novoslobodskaya street, where the station is situated. 32 original stained-glass windows from multi-colored glass, framed with steel and gilded brass and the famous mosaic panel «World peace», situated at the face wall the station, are made by sketches of Pavel Dmitriyevich Corin.


Portrait of Fyodor Dostoyevsky at Dostoyevskaya Metro Station

Dostoevskaya is comparatively new station, opened on June 19, 2010. It is situated at Suvorovskaya Square. Russian writer Fedor Dostoyevsky was born and lived in this district of Moscow. Therefore, the station bears his name and features scenes from his works «Crime and Punishment», «The Idiot», «Demons», «The Brothers Karamazov». Artist Ivan Nikolaev, the author of the decoration, said that depicting scenes of violence shows depth and tragedy of Dostoevsky’s work.

2. General information about Moscow metro

Metro working hours, navigation, wi-fi.

The Moscow Metro is open from about 5:30 am until 1:00 am. The precise opening time varies at different stations according to the arrival of the first train, but all stations simultaneously close their entrances and transitions to other lines at 01:00 am for maintenance. The minimum interval between trains is 90 seconds during the morning and evening rush hours. Each line is identified according to an alphanumeric index (usually consisting of a number), a name and a color. Voice announcements in Russian refer to the lines by name and by numbers in English. A male voice announces the next station when traveling towards the center of the city or the clockwise direction on the circle line, and a female voice – when going away from the center or the counter-clockwise direction at the circle. The lines are also assigned specific colors for maps and signs.

Free Wi-Fi is called MT_FREE and available on all 14 lines (inside the trains).

Using Metro services is frequently the fastest and the most efficient way to get from one part of the city to another. But during daytime Moscow Metro stations are usually overcrowded so if you want to just enjoy the beauty of the underground, it’s better to visit it late in the evening.


Since 2016 The Moscow Metro is connected to two new types of rail transport. The first one is MCC – Moscow Central Circle. It has 31 stations around the city with changes to metro stations (most of them require to walk a few minutes via the street). The second one is MCD, Moscow Central Diameters, a system of city train services on existing commuter rail lines in Moscow and Moscow Oblast. MCD has several lines, they’re being marked as D1, D2 etc. Changing to both MCC and MCD from the Metro is free when your journey is within the city. Both MCC and MCD lines exist on all of the Moscow Metro maps.

Interesting facts about Moscow metro

213 people were born in the metro during the World War II, when it was used as a bomb shelter.

There are 76 bronze sculptures of workers, peasants, soldiers, sailors, etc. at Ploshchad Revolyutsii station. There is legend connected with this station. To pass any examination successfully, a student should touch the bronze dog’s nose («the Frontier Guard with a Dog» sculpture). You can easily understand high popularity of this legend by looking at the polished nose of the dog.

It is said that some of the magnificent mosaics at several central stations, for example the «World Peace» mosaic at Novoslobodskaya, were made with the pieces of enamel and smalt, taken from the famous Christ the Savior Cathedral, before it’s destruction.

As any other dungeon the Moscow metro, has its own ghosts. The most famous one is the old lineman. He is not dangerous and usually hides into the wall, when people appear. The ghostly metro train is much more dangerous. It appears after midnight at the Circle Line and consists of old-time carriages. It sometimes stops at the stations and opens its doors, and then goes back into the darkness. It is said that the souls of Stalin’s prisoners, perished during the building of the metro are locked in the train forever.

3. Moscow Metro tickets

1 or 2 trips.

You can buy tickets in ticket offices or in automatic ticket machines. Passes for 1 or 2 trips are the most expensive. They sold only in ATM and cost 55 and 110 rubles (€0.75 and €1.51) respectively.

More than 2 trips

All the other kinds of tickets are available in the ticket offices. Tickets for bigger amount of trips are more profitable.

«90 Minutes» ticket

A ticket «90 minutes» is valid for one trip on the metro and an unlimited number of trips on surface transport within this time. It costs 65 rub (€0.89).

The «Troyka» card

You can also use «Troyka» – refillable card to pay for travelling on all kinds of public transport – metro, buses, trolley-buses, trams, monorail and blue minibuses. With «Troyka» one trip costs 35 rub (€0.48).

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  1. The Basics of Phantom Power for Microphones

    Why Do Condenser Mics Need Phantom Power? Put simply, condenser microphones have active electronics that need an external power source, while dynamic mics are passive and therefore do not need phantom power.

  2. Phantom Power & Condenser Mics: A Comprehensive Guide

    September 13, 2023 by audiofanz In this guide: Introduction Why Understanding Phantom Power and Condenser Microphones are Crucial for Audio Production Understanding Phantom Power Understanding Condenser Microphones How do Phantom Power and Condenser Microphones work together? Conclusion

  3. What is Phantom Power & Why Do I Need It?

    Phantom Power is a term given to the process of delivering DC (Direct Current) to microphones requiring electric power to drive active circuitry. Condenser microphones such as Shure's KSM range all have active circuitry and require phantom power. How Does Phantom Power Work?

  4. Do All Condensers Need Phantom Power? (3 Key Things To Know)

    A condenser microphone needs phantom power for the backplate. What If You Don't Use Phantom Power With A Condenser? If you have a condenser microphone but you have no way of running phantom power to the microphone, will it work without it in any way? What happens if you use a condenser without phantom power?

  5. Not So Mysterious: A Primer On Phantom Power For Microphones

    Condenser microphones need phantom power to operate their internal circuitry. The power is supplied to the mic through its 2-conductor shielded cable and can be provided either from a stand-alone device or from a mixing console (at each mic connector). ... Some microphones work on either internal batteries or external phantom power. In most ...

  6. PDF Everything You Wanted To Know About phantom power for microphones

    Condenser mics draw a certain amount of current - up to 10 milli-amps (mA) in some models. The phantom power supply must provide as much ... Some mics work either on internal batteries or external phantom power. In most designs, connecting the mic to phantom automatically removes the bat-tery from the circuit. Otherwise the battery would ...

  7. Know the Basics About Phantom Power

    The short version: Phantom power is the standard method for powering professional condenser microphones via the XLR-3 connector and balanced cables. The XLR-connector's pin 2 and pin 3 both carry +48 volts ±4 volts DC. Pin 1 is 0 volt.

  8. A Primer On Phantom Power For Condenser Microphones

    Condenser microphones need phantom power to operate their internal circuitry. Phantom power is supplied to the mic through its 2-conductor shielded cable. The power can be supplied either from a stand-alone device or from a mixing console (at each mic connector).

  9. What Is Phantom Power, and Does Your Microphone Need It?

    Do Condenser Mics Need Phantom Power? Every condenser microphone requires power, due to the way this type of microphone operates. In the majority of cases, this is phantom power. There are only two cases where condenser microphones use other power sources, which we'll look at in a moment.

  10. Phantom Power for Microphones: What Is It?

    Phantom Power, also known as +48V, is DC electric power sent through audio cables to operate microphones with active electronic circuitry. It's most popularly known as a convenient power source for condenser microphones, which need this type of power to operate their internal circuitry. The word "phantom" comes from the idea that the ...

  11. How To Connect A Condenser Mic To An Audio Interface

    Phantom power is a way of providing the external power that condenser mics need, and again, most modern audio interfaces include a phantom power connection. Since it's included within the audio interface, there's no "visible" power supply involved, and this is why the term "phantom" is used to describe this type of power.

  12. Understanding And Utilizing 48v Phantom Power For Improved Audio

    Powering Condenser Microphones. Phantom power is a crucial aspect of audio production, especially when it comes to powering condenser microphones. These microphones require an external power source to function properly, and 48v phantom power is the industry standard for this purpose. To understand how 48v phantom power works with condenser ...

  13. What is phantom power, and when do I need it?

    Condenser microphones require an external power source to amplify their signal. That's what phantom power is - a +48V DC voltage sent through your audio cables, providing the necessary voltage boost needed for condenser mics to operate properly.

  14. What Is Phantom Power & Which Mics Need It?

    Do condenser mics need phantom power? Yes! Condenser microphones are the primary kind which require +48V phantom power to operate the active circuitry inside. An exception are tube microphones, which are a type of condenser that still use external power supplies. Do dynamic mics need phantom power?

  15. What Is a Condenser Microphone, and How Do They Work?

    This is why condenser mics require phantom power, which is a 48V signal sent over the XLR cable from your mixer or preamp into the microphone. USB microphones use power over USB instead of phantom power, while other condenser mics that use vacuum tubes use external power supplies.

  16. How to Connect Condenser Microphone with Phantom Power to ...

    This video demonstrates the proper way to connect a condenser microphone to an audio interface or pre-amp using phantom power. Proper connection will reduce ...

  17. How To Set Up Any Microphone With Phantom Power-(Explained!)

    The answer is absolutely yes. Can I Power More Than One Condenser Microphone At The Same Time? What happens if I plug two condenser microphones (perhaps a large diaphragm and a small diaphragm to capture a singer-songwriter playing and singing) to the same mixing console? Will it give phantom power to both?

  18. How to Power a Condenser Mic

    The Three Basic Options to Power a Condenser Microphone. The most popular method is 48V phantom power. For those of you that don't know, phantom power is an audio interface preamp that supplies a condenser microphone with enough electrical power to give it volume and to improve sound quality. It is the best way if you are interested in doing ...

  19. What Is Phantom Power and Why Do You Need It? (Explained)

    Here are some key takeaways: Phantom power is a power source that travels through audio cables to power certain types of audio gear. It's typically used with condenser microphones, which require external power to function. Phantom power won't harm most gear that doesn't require it, such as dynamic microphones.

  20. Theremin's Bug: How The Soviet Union Spied On The US ...

    So, through the antenna, it'd resonate back a small fraction of the "illuminating" power, with the exact frequency depending on the mic membrane's position as it moved in response to sound.

  21. Moscow parks

    Losiny Ostrov. Losiny Ostrov (Elk Island Park) Losiny Ostrov (Elk Island Park) is located at the north of Moscow. It covers 22 km from the west to the east and 10 km from the north to the south and it's one of the most beautiful national parks in Moscow. Two rivers, Yausa and Pechorka begin here.

  22. The Moscow Metro

    MCC and MCD. Since 2016 The Moscow Metro is connected to two new types of rail transport. The first one is MCC - Moscow Central Circle. It has 31 stations around the city with changes to metro stations (most of them require to walk a few minutes via the street). The second one is MCD, Moscow Central Diameters, a system of city train services ...

  23. 1999 Russian apartment bombings

    On 9 September 1999, shortly after midnight at 20:00 GMT, a bomb detonated on the ground floor of an apartment building in southeast Moscow (19 Guryanova Street). The explosive power was equivalent to 300-400 kilograms (660-880 lb) of TNT.The nine-story building was destroyed, killing 106 people inside (with early reports giving 93 dead) and injuring 249 others, and damaging 19 nearby ...