Choosing a Microphone Cartridge

The microphone cartridge is a single-point, stereo condenser microphone that is used in professional recording studios, field production, electronic news gathering, and also for studio broadcasting applications. It is composed by the combination of two condenser cartridges which are disposed in single housing in order to release a stereo audio image of the sound source.

The microphone cartridge is special because it has the ability to maintain the realism of a live action and in the same time it withstands some typical production environments. The first mic cartridge’s function is to capture on-axis sounds. This is made possible through the use of a cardioid pattern. The second microphone cartridge has a bi-directional circuit that is able to capture sounds from both sides.

Accessories and options

The cartridge is based on an internal matrix which contains three settings adapted for different degrees of stereo image separation and this matrix is usually bypassed in case that an external matrix is used. The typical accessories of the cartridge are the switches, the stereo imaging, the low-frequency settings, and also a battery on/off. There are some advanced microphone cartridges that can operate on phantom power or on internal 6V battery. The cartridges of this type are supplied with a Y-cable, with foam windscreen, swivel stand adapter. There are also some optional accessories that include an isolation mount, a microphone extension cable, a phantom power supply, a microphone stand, LED power indicator, and on command some can be provided with built-in pop screen.

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