Skip to main content

Phantom Power question

Member for

19 years 10 months
This is a stupid question to a lot of you but being primarily a guitar player I've never dealt with this.
If you have a small mixer that you want to use to record drums with but the mixer only allows you to turn on the phantom power for all mic-pres at once, can you use microphones that require phantom power as well as ones that don't at the same time? In other words, will any of the mics get damaged by the phantom power if they don't require phantom power but it's turned on? I'm using a Euro Rack mixer and want to use a combination of SM57s and condenser mics.


Member for

19 years 10 months

homerg Thu, 03/07/2002 - 10:29
Is the difference that one is low impedence and the other high impedence? I'm assuming you mean use a 3 prong cannor cable?
Please correct me if I'm wrong. I'll be recording this weekend and a frind lent me some CAD drum mics that I plan to use along with a couple of Marshall condencer mics and a SM57.
Thanks for replying.

Member for

21 years 3 months

archived member Thu, 03/07/2002 - 12:32
No it's not to do with impedance, it's all about using balanced leads and a balanced source.

Check that the microphone leads you are using are connected in a balanced configuration. Assuming you are using XLR to XLR connecting leads then the connections on the lead will be pin 1 (screen) on the male XLR to pin 1 female XLR, pin 2 (Hot(+ve)) male to pin 2 female, pin 3 (Cold(-)) male to pin 3 female.
i.e. 1 to 1, 2 to 2 and 3 to 3.

On an unbalanced lead pin 1 and pin 3 are linked and connected to the screen, pin 2 is the (Hot(+ve)connection.

DO NOT use either unbalanced leads or sources with the phantom power switched on as the voltage on pins 2 & 3 of the XLR connector can cause damage to the microphone.

Your SM57's on a balanced mic cable will be fine so don't worry.
But it is important to make sure only use balanced sources and balanced connecting cables to the mixer when the phantom power is on.