Lesson #20 - Microphone Techniques

ceramic mic

dynamic mic

Condenser mic


The most natural sounding micing technique is to simply place a good quality mic/stand in front of the Cajun Accordion while performing.  But, this presents problems too.  One is closely restricted to the mic/stand, and may have difficulty getting adequate volume through a PA without feedback.

Here are some popular microphones that may work for you as an alternative solution:

1.)  Ceramic

These mics have been widely used because they are cheap, relatively small, lightweight and high impedance.  They may be mounted externally or internally.

High impedance means that wire leads can be run right from the mic element through a cord and into a conventional guitar amp with out the use of an impedance matching transformer. 

But, ceramic mics have probably the poorest frequency response.. kinda ďtinnyĒ sounding to me. 

Of course, this is purely subjective, and Iíd imaging that some feel this is the purest technology?

2.)  Dynamic

These mics are like the old Shure line of 565SD, etc.  (One has to "tear them apart" to get the active mic element out of the body.)

They cost more and generally require that a matching transformer be jury rigged into the Cajun box somewhere.  This is done to match the low-impedance mic element with a high impedance guitar amp or PA input. 

These mics, while superior to my ear in quality, are more expensive and harder to come by. 

I usually look for a deal on ebay or a used one in a music store to tear apart to put just the mic element  into my boxes.  Itís difficult for me to buy a brand new mic & tear it apart for parts! 

Note that the Shure SM-48 has a high impedance mic element, not requiring a matching transformer.

3.)  Condenser

Iíve had good luck with the Audio Technica ATM35 Condenser mic. 

Iíve added a provision to clip in onto my accordion. 

The issue with micing in this manner is that you cannot pick up the bass side of the accordion, and, these devices do require either phantom power, or a battery pack.  Most modern PA mixing consoles (Mackie, Behringer) include a Phantom Power switch that will accommodate this kind of microphone.

Dynamic mic inside box

external clip-on