Understanding Your VS: MIC THEORY- Microphone Characteristics

Tags: vs-2480,vs-2000,vs-1680,vs-1880,vs-880,vs-880ex,vs-890,mic,pattern,vs-1824cd,vs2400,cardioid,frequency,proximity
MIC THEORY

Microphone Characteristics:

Pick-Up Pattern

- Cardioid
Most sensitive to sound coming in front of the microphone
- Supercardioid
A unidirectional microphone with a cardioid pattern and an extra pickup at a 115° angle behind the microphone
- Hypercardioid
A unidirectional microphone with a cardioid pattern and an extra pickup at a 115° angle behind the microphone
- Omni directional
A microphone that has a wide range and circular polar pattern. This indicates that the microphone is equally sensitive in all directions.
- Bidirectional (Figure 8)
A directional microphone that’s equally sensitive in only two directions.

Frequency Response

The Frequency Response Curve of a microphone demonstrates its audible response over a 20 Hz- 20 kHz frequency range (average human hearing). Compare this to a flat frequency response curve, a response equal at all frequencies, and the mic’s curve may demonstrate whether it emphasizes or deemphasizes certain frequencies. An emphasis in a certain frequency range may color the sound, often resulting in a change of tonal quality from the original signal.

Proximity Effect

Proximity effect is a low-frequency bass boost that occurs within 1” of the microphone. It’s usually associated with the “popping” of the letters “p” and “b”. A roll-off filter is sometimes added to the microphone to even out the bass frequencies so it has a flat, more natural sounding response.