Audio Solutions Question of the Week: How can I connect my Audio-Technica microphone to my instrument amplifier?

Question: How can I connect my Audio-Technica microphone to my instrument amplifier?

Answer: It is possible to connect your mic to an instrument amp when you are in need of a way to amplify vocals without the use of a PA system. However, it is important to understand that an instrument amp is designed to amplify instruments and will require more than an adapter cable to successfully connect your mic. While the physical connection may appear to be correct with an adapter cable, you may notice the volume level of your mic is incredibly low, or may not be producing any sound at all.

An instrument amplifier not only uses a different connector than that found on a professional microphone (1/4″ instead of XLR), but it is also designed for high-impedance signals. Since microphones output low-impedance signals, one must use an impedance transformer such as our CP8201 to match the mic’s low-impedance signal to the amp’s high-impedance signal. The CP8201 microphone impedance matching transformer not only provides the impedance matching but also acts as an XLR-to-1/4″ adapter, allowing you to connect the XLR mic to the amplifier’s 1/4″ input. Additionally, the CP8201 reduces excessive noise pickup and maintains the high-frequency response of the microphone.

impedance transformer

If you are trying to connect a condenser microphone to an instrument amplifier, you are not only required to provide the impedance transformer, but also phantom power in order to power the mic. You may use a phantom power supply such as our AT8801 phantom power supply, which utilizes XLR connections. First, connect the mic to the XLR input of the AT8801. Then, with another XLR cable, connect the AT8801’s XLR output to the CP8201, which will plug into the amplifier. Please note that condenser microphones, which operate on battery power, do not require the AT8801 since the mic is already being powered by the batteries.

Now you can successfully amplify your vocals without the need of purchasing a PA system! For further questions regarding how to properly connect your microphone, please contact our Audio Solutions Department.

Audio-Technica

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