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What kinds of microphones work with soundcards? I have some old microphones, and wonder if they can be used. They are not microphones intended for computer use, but for handheld cassette recorders.

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Last Post by roryt
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What kinds of microphones work with soundcards? I have some old microphones, and wonder if they can be used. They are not microphones intended for computer use, but for handheld cassette recorders.

Any consumer grade mic should do-- what matters is the plug size... Most soundcards have small headphone jack size inputs...
You can buy adapters to fit just about any combo. Little mics from cassette recorders may not give you the volume/sensitivity you need --- depends on your needs.

I recommend the SHURE SM58 for all your needs, from beginner to pro. Had mine for over a decade- a workhorse and strong...

The question is not necessarily what microphone will work as much as what will work with your particular sound card. Sound cards have been known to be their own creatures at times...

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Give it a try, it should work... or atleast pick something up.

If you're thinking of buying a new microphone (for pro standard use) then get:

- Shure SM58 - really just for live vocals and some studio vox work... but doesn't give the full freq range.
- Rhodes NT1 - Recording pretty much anything, can be used as an ambient mic, good frequency range pick up. If you want to do a studio recording of voice - this is the one.
- Shure SM57 - if you want to record from amps or a snare drum.

It will be fairly cheap for you to try what you have... just get an XLR - JACK lead and a large to small jack adapter. Simple.

Let us know what works out.

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i dont think the ones that need to go through an amp will work

A mic is a mic in basic terms. The only basic variables are whether its phantom power or not.

Regarding amplifier-- the amplification comes from the sound system or sound card, not the mic.

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Above post is true. But mics are also Condensor or Dynamic. They are for different purposes.

They also have different pickup paterns, such as figure of 8 and cardioid.

But basic mics should just work through your sound card.

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I'm not recording music this time. My friend is taking an online class. We need something cheap. I found that the cassette recorder mics with 3/16" plugs do work.

I was wondering about compatibility, because one website said you needed a powered mic.

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Well.. the only microphone for PC I have has no power to it. There are two types of power for a mic: battery powered or Phantom power. 99% of computers don't have an output for Phantom power, so if it did have to be powered, there would have to be a battery involved. My mic doesn't have a battery so I presume you don't need a powered mic.

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