Advantages of Microphone | disadvantages of Microphone

This page covers advantages and disadvantages of Microphone and its basics. It mentions benefits or advantages of Microphone and drawbacks or disadvantages of Microphone.

What is Microphone?

The device which converts sound energy to electrical energy to be guided over transmission medium is known as microphone. In other words, it is basically a instrument which does conversion of sound waves into electrical waves.


The figure depicts acoustic sound waves as input and electrical signal waves being tapped using two electrical wires. It is used to provide speech or sounds to be used in various applications and also in voice recognition software.

Following are the different types of microphone based on construction and working principle.
• Carbon microphone: It consists of two metal plates separated by carbon granules. Plate acts as disphragm. When sound waves are applied on diaphragm, it causes it to vibrate and consecutively variable pressure is generated on granules. This will change electrical resistance between plates and consecutively electric current is varied.
• Crystal microphone: In this type, variable pressure is generated by sound waves applied on pair of surfaces of a quartz crystal. This produces electrical signals.
• Ribbon microphone: It works based on faraday law of electromagnetic induction. It is also called as moving coil microphone.
• Wireless microphone : It is developed based on bluetooth technology. It does not require any hassles of wires for connection. It is plug and play device which is very handy for use.
• Condenser microphone: It consists of two thin discs or plates which form a capacitor. One plate is flexible and other is rigid.
• Electret microphone: It works on same principle as condenser microphone except its plates are made from ferroelectric material that retains electrical charge. The word electret is derived from "Electrostatic" and "Magnet".

Benefits or advantages of Microphone

Following are the benefits or advantages of Microphone:
➨It is faster to provide voice as input using microphone than to type text using keyboard.
➨Sound waves can be manipulated in real time.
➨It can help in improving safety and security of drivers and riders when used with voice activation systems e.g. switching on radio, keeping phone in speaker mode etc.
➨They are inexpensive in general.
➨Most of the microphones tolerate extreme high sound pressure levels.
➨Microphone is rugged in construction.
➨It does not require power supply except few. For example dynamic microphone does not need a battery.
➨Condenser microphone: It is very sensitive and hence preferred for vocal recordings.

Drawbacks or disadvantages of Microphone

Following are the drawbacks or disadvantages of Microphone:
➨Sound files require large memory for storage for further processing and use.
➨Voice recognition software is not accurate as manual typing. For example, it can not distinguish between "there" and "their".
➨Sound signals are required to be amplified for proper reconstruction. Hence amplifiers are needed. For example, dynamic microphone requires preamplifier.
➨It has reduced performance at high frequencies.
➨Condenser microphone: It is very sensitive and hence it could pick up undesired background noise.

Conclusion: There are different types of microphones with each having their respective advantages and disadvantages. The above mentioned are generic advantages of microphone and generic disadvantages of microphone.

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