Do Microphones Degrade over time? [An Expert Comments]

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Do Microphones Degrade over time?

Microphones are the main element in maintaining the recording chain in the music industry. Therefore, it is essential to take proper care and maintenance of microphones so that we can use them for a more extended period.

The better care of the microphone helps to increase its longevity. Plus, for many people, microphones are a favorite object that stays close to their hearts.

But what if your microphone degrades over time and becomes unuseful?

This post will tell you how microphones degrade over time and how to prevent it. So, if you have a microphone or think it is close to your heart, you must read this post until the end. 

Do microphones really deteriorate? 

According to Ray Baker from MicGurus, Microphones, like other electrical devices, can also deteriorate with time. The degradation happens for longer use of microphones. The components within microphones slowly tire out over time.

At last, a microphone becomes a useless material. Hence, effective care is essential to stop deterioration.

Reasons for  microphone damage:

There are many reasons why a microphone might stop working, and the probable reasons are: 

Dropping a microphone: 

Dropping is the common cause of the failure of the microphone. This especially happens when you can put the mic on the stand. Sometimes, the stand might not be capable of holding the weight of the mic. This can be the reason for dropping a mic on the ground. Besides, a mic can drop from the hand also due to the reason for the absence of mind.

Breaking a cable of the microphone: 

The delicate microphone wires can break due to frequent switching between wired and wireless microphones. Maybe you forgot the plugged in and walked beyond the length of the cable. This way, the wire can break and damage the whole microphone.  

Damaging of condenser: 

A condenser is a diaphragm, and it is located inside the microphone. It helps to grab the sound vibrations from the air and deliver effective sound. The outer layer of the condenser is intuitive. Thus, this delicate diaphragm can be sensitive to use under heat and dampness. Your microphone can mutilate if you leave your mics in high humidity sources like the bathroom or putting under the shower. It can cause serious damage to condensers. 

Over yelling can cause damage: 

A microphone has ample resistance to handle the high-pressure sounds. Despite this, can you break a microphone by yelling into it? Well, there is some microphone that has a very sensitive diaphragm, and it can be blasted due to excessive vocal plosives. 

Overlapping: 

It is important to tap gently while testing the microphone. The internal elements are quite sensitive. Thus, the use of solid taps can cause misplacement of the internal elements, which can damage the microphone permanently. 

How do I recognize if the microphone is broken? 

You must check the sound quality of mics before using them. If you found some issue regarding sound and functions, then you must check the mic on the spot. This can help to recognize the broken microphone at the earliest. 

What happens if you do not take proper care of your microphone:

A microphone can be damaged permanently due to a lack of taking care. Effective care of the microphone will be helpful to allow users to gain scope for lifetime usage of the microphone. When a condenser microphone is damaged, then it produces low-quality sounds and fails to make interference with other instruments while you try to do stage performance.  

Some effective tips to take proper care of your microphone:

Take care of the condenser microphone

You must leave your mics in a plastic bag. Any plastic bag is essential to prevent airborne dust and foam particles. 

Always be careful to use a shocking pop filter while recording your voice. It will intercept a saliva mist or spit of a singer. Besides, it will be effective to turn the electrically charged capsule into alluring flypaper with the presence of airborne elements.

You must keep the minimum distance between the mouth and a mic which also helps to stop the damage of capsules.

You never use the condenser mic where you would not put it into the ears. The reason is that the sensitive condensers may damage due to the sudden pressure of sound. 

Take care of the ribbon microphone

The modern ribbon microphone is more durable than the vintage ones. Despite this, the ribbon microphone needs to be stored in a specific place for controlling care. You must treat the ribbon microphone with delicate care. You may not use any kid’s gloves for handling ribbon mics. Rather, you need to utilize some valuable tools for handling. 

Besides, never keep your ribbon mics down without the use of a cover. The luring and powerful magnets of ribbon mics can attract small harmful particles from the floor. As a result, it produces distorting sounds.

You need to be concerned about placing a useful position on the microphone. It can be placed slightly off-axis when using a close miking energy source. This is a beneficial way to prevent loud sources. Plus, always use a pop-filter when you are comfortably using close miking, and it will be best to connect the ribbon mic to the phantom power mic. Turning off the phantom power is advisable before connecting the ribbon mic.

When should I get a new microphone? 

Here, there are some valid reasons to buy a new mic.

Sound Quality: You can purchase your new microphone when your old mic doesn’t  flatter your voice 

Upgrade: If you want to upgrade the elements of your old mic, you may want to turn the cheap USB microphone into a condenser one. For upgrading purposes, you can get a new microphone.

Final thoughts 

A microphone deteriorates for several reasons, and keeping microphones in safe places is essential. It is vital to recognize a broken microphone while observing the changing functions of the mics. Thus, this article provides a guide for taking good care of mics to increase their longevity.  

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