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Recording Omnidirectional Condenser Microphones

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    Blue Bottle Rocket Stage One Condenser Microphone
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In a world with cardioid and shotgun microphones available to limit and focus the response, is there still a place for omnidirectional mics that listen to all directions equally? The answer to that question is definitely "yes". Not only are there times when you want to pick up sound from all around; there are also a few unique perks that make recording omnidirectional condenser microphones useful in other ways. For example, omnidirectional mics resist wind and handling noise better than directional ones. They're also less susceptible to popping from plosives, and they're effectively immune to proximity effect.

Lots of recording environments can benefit from advantages like those, so if that's the kind of situation you're dealing with, go ahead and take a look through the selection. You'll notice that some options, like the Earthworks QTC50 Omnidirectional Microphone and the Behringer ECM8000 Microphone, have very narrow tips - that's because the body of the microphone itself will obstruct some soundwaves, so this shape allows better response from the rear. Of course, if you're choosing omnidirectional mostly for its fringe benefits rather than the express purpose of 360-degree pickup, any shape will do. There are also specialty designs to choose from, such as the Crown PZM30D Boundary Microphone, which is meant to be placed against a surface to avoid picking up the sound bouncing off of it, leading to a cleaner recording.

All in all, no matter which model you choose, the best thing about recording omnidirectional condenser microphones is that they have very few limits. They'll pick up sound from any direction, and they'll do it without suffering much from proximity effect, popping or wind noise. No microphone is perfect for every single situation, but there are definitely times that call for the use of any mic, so when you run into a challenge that an omnidirectional microphone is ready to solve, you'll be off to a good start searching here.
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