1. Register NOW and become part of this fantastic knowledge base forum! This message will go away once you have registered.

Microphones, Amps, and Preamps

Discussion in 'Preamps' started by SHODAN, Jun 11, 2011.


    SHODAN Member

    Need Help with Microphones, Amps, and Preamp

    Hello everyone,

    I'm new to this forum and a novice to acoustics in general, so I apologize if my question is very basic. I have spent several hours searching google and various forums but haven't been able to find a satisfactory answer.

    Basically, I need help figuring out which sorts of audio components are required for my particular purposes. What I am hoping to achieve is a microphone system that I can use in conjunction with a camcorder (or maybe also as a standalone device) to record fairly distant (10 ft - 100 ft) speech and musical instruments. I need the audio to be clear and accurate enough that the speech is intelligible and the music (mostly strings) undistorted; the output also has to be significantly louder than what is picked up by my naked ears.

    The one thing I know that I need is a shotgun mic (I have been considering the Azden SMG-II and the Audio Technica AT8035). I also know that the signal produced by the mic is weak and needs to be amplified, and this is where things get confusing for me. I am looking at preamps to perform this function (specifically the Sound Devices MM-1), but actually it seems like there are several options for receiving the mic signal:

    1. I can connect the mic directly to my camcorder, or to any other device with mic-in, as the device must already have an amplifier built in.
    2. I can connect the mic to a preamp/"field mixer", which, I have read, brings the signal up to line-level. From there, I am not sure whether I need to pass the signal along to a regular amplifier, or whether I can listen/record from the preamp directly.
    3. I can connect the mic directly to an amp (like a PA amp or keyboard amp) that has mic-in. If this is possible, then what is the advantage of sending the signal through a preamp first (especially since the preamps seem more expensive than the amps)?

    If anyone could lend me their expertise and explain the differences between these 3 options, I would greatly appreciate it.


Share This Page