Comparison of the best microphones 2020
If you want to buy a microphone, you will find a variety of different models on the Internet. We performed countless tests and were finally able to find the best microphone including ratings for weight, filter, dimensions and more.
What is a microphone?
A microphone is used to amplify acoustic signals or to feed a sound carrier. In nature, we are surrounded by sound of all kinds. Trees rushing in the wind, barking dogs and human voices produce tones that are normally limited in their strength and spread and are lost immediately after generation. The microphone takes on the task of receiving sounds of all kinds and converting them into electrical signals. In this way, sound events such as lectures and concerts can be made accessible to a larger audience. Storage on sound carriers or digitization also allows the acoustic events to be preserved.
A microphone receives the sound waves over a membrane. These signals are amplified in the further technical process. After amplification, the tones are either immediately given up again via loudspeakers or recorded. Both processes often take place simultaneously. The demands on microphones have continued to increase and new technologies have replaced old concepts. For many decades, the carbon microphone was the standard in the film industry and in telecommunications. Today it is practically extinct and replaced by the electret microphone.
The challenge for manufacturers of microphones is to reproduce as large a frequency spectrum as possible and to maintain a high dynamic range. Good microphones process low tones as well as loud events without causing distortion or noise.
How does a microphone work?
A microphone is an acoustic receiver and converts sound waves into electrical signals. Tones are characterized by fluctuations in sound pressure and by different wavelengths. Only a limited frequency range can be heard by humans. At a young age, people can perceive sounds up to 20,000 Hertz. For comparison: bats even hear sounds up to 200,000 hertz. The ideal microphone would process the entire audible frequency range of humans evenly and with high fidelity. However, this is not possible for technical reasons, so choosing the right microphone is always a matter of finding the best compromise. In addition to the sound reproduction, a microphone must meet other requirements depending on the purpose and area of application. For example, great robustness, small dimensions, a directional characteristic or a wireless connection may be desirable.
What is the dynamic range of a microphone?
Each microphone produces intrinsic noise on the device side. The microphone noise should remain as small as possible so as not to impair quiet passages. Modern, high-quality condenser microphones only produce an extremely low self-noise. The difference to the maximum sound pressure to be processed is the dynamic range of the microphone. The dynamic range should be as large as possible.
What is the advantage of dubbing?
Videos are often supplemented with noises, moderations and music in the course of dubbing. Many films and videos are also completely dubbed. One advantage of dubbing is the better sound quality that can be achieved in the studio. On the set, it is often difficult to catch a good quality live tone. The more people are to be equipped with microphones, the more difficult it is to microphone and mix. In the case of dubbing, disturbing background noises, slip-ups or gamblers are of no importance. Liveton is used for moderations and wherever there is high authenticity.
How many microphones are needed for a sound recording?
The type and number of microphones depend on the room and the sound source to be recorded. A microphone is usually sufficient for moderations and interviews. Complex musical instruments like drums require at least 3 microphones. A variety of different microphones can be used to record orchestras and large musical events.