Types of Microphones
Condenser Microphone: The condenser microphone works by creating a variation in the amount of electric charge stored internally within a microphone's electrical system. These microphones have exceptional frequency response, hence are suitable for studio recording. A phantom power source is necessary for the operation of this microphone.
Dynamic Microphone: Electromagnetism is the principle behind the design of dynamic microphones. It uses a similar concept to that of the loud speaker to produce sound. Therefore, these microphones are suitable for applications such public address systems, where high frequencies are limited, and instead the emphasis is on the mid-range frequencies. Therefore, these microphones do not require pre-amplifiers for normal operation.
Ribbon Microphone: These high frequency microphones are in a way related to dynamic microphones, since they both operate on the electromagnetic principle. The only difference is that the ribbon microphone uses electromagnetic induction to generate voltages between the magnetic poles, through a ribbon made from thin metal placed in between the poles. The high frequency capability makes this microphone suitable for voice-overs and studio recording.
Electret Condenser Microphone: These are an advanced from of the condenser microphone, with the difference being that they have an electret material is used in making the condenser plate. Even though a power source is not necessary for these microphones to operate, they have a pre-amplifier, which has to have a power source.
Common Microphones Available in the Market
Shure 55SH Series II Dynamic Microphones: These microphones have a rich history since for many years; they were commonly used for live performances. The Series II has the classic look and feel of the Elvis Presley days, but when it comes to operation, it possesses the modern processing power for digital audio. This microphone is largely unidirectional.
Blue Microphones Yeti USB Microphone: This is a new release from the Blue Microphones family. The fact that it is USB microphone places it ahead of its competition, due to its plug and play nature. It is widely recognized for its superior quality sound processing capabilities. However, it is considered a bit bulky.
AKG PERCEPTION 220 Microphones: These microphones are of the condenser type, and come with a large diaphragm, which gives them excellent quality audio processing capabilities. As such, it is popular with professional recording studios, especially in recording acoustics.
Sennheiser MKE 400 Shotgun Microphone: This microphone is popularly used while recording videos via handheld cameras. It comes with a compact design that is very durable and versatile. It has the ability to suppress background, hence making it suitable for video recording.