MXL 990 won't record

Discussion in 'Microphones (live or studio)' started by pretendradio, Aug 20, 2011.

  1. pretendradio

    pretendradio Member

    Aug 20, 2011
    I just received my MXL 990 condenser mic from Musicians Friend today and everything looked fine when I unboxed so I went ahead and hooked it up to my mixer. I use a Yamaha MW12CX USB mixer that provides phantom power but I can't get anything to record through my MXL 990. I've never used a mic that requires phantom power so I'm not sure if I'm doing something wrong. My Shure PG58s work so I know it's not the mixer or cables. Any thoughts/advice would be greatly appreciated. Also, all my cables are XLR to XLR and not XLR to 1/4 connector. thanks.
  2. djmukilteo

    djmukilteo Well-Known Member

    Nov 23, 2008
    Rainy Roads WA USA
    Have you've tried all of the other mic inputs on your mixer with the MXL and know the phantom power is on the right pins and working? Use a voltage meter and make sure there is 48V on pins 2 and 3. Be careful you don't accidentally short those out while checking with the meter probes. If the mixer is providing the correct voltage between pins 2 and 3 then check to see if the mixer is providing enough current for that mic. In order to check that you will need to make a temporary test cable with connectors on each end so you can hook up the mic and insert you meter into the circuit to measure current. It's possible either the mic is wired wrong internally or the mixer is not providing enough current to power the mic properly. With the mixer off, hook up the test cable and cut the red wire (Hot pin 2) of the test cable so you can hook up your meter in series, set your meter to the current mode (1A scale or higher DC) and hook up the test leads to each end of the red wire. Power up the mixer and read how much current there is going through the red wire. It should be somewhere between 20-50mA (milliamps). I think the MXL needs 30mA.
    If all that is good and normal and you still get nothing out of the mic, then make sure the MXL is wired correctly internally by checking the wiring inside the connector of the mic....or send it back...if you do this test without taking apart the MXL you can be absolutely sure it's not the mixer.

    Hope that helps
  3. RemyRAD

    RemyRAD Member

    Sep 26, 2005
    You do understand you have to have that switch that says +48 V Phantom, on your Yamaha mixer, in the on position?

    While you are using XLR, 3 wire cable, some, for special use applications, do not have the ground wire on pin one connected on both ends or, may have a bypass capacitor installed. This is called a ground lifted XLR cable and will prevent your condenser microphone from working. As you actually need this Shield ground to be the negative side of the +48 V DC. It won't prevent a dynamic microphone or ribbon microphone from working which actually do not require that the ground be connected. Yup, that's right. And that's why in Great Britain it's not referred to as a ground but a shield. And Shields don't all need to be Earthed, grounded.

    Try another cable and try another phantom powered microphone for continuity testing.
    Mx. Remy Ann David

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