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Noise-Canceling Microphones: Technology, Benefits, and Applications

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Noise-canceling microphones have become a must-have piece of recording equipment nowadays. With the capability to improve voice clarity while removing background noise, a noise-canceling microphone is particularly useful for individuals who find themselves in noisy and open environments.

How exactly does a noise-canceling microphone work? We break down its technology and list some of its benefits and applications to fully understand and appreciate the noise-canceling microphone.


Do Noise Canceling Microphones Work?

There are several factors and noise cancellation technology at play to help guarantee that the microphone will be able to filter out background noise coming from all angles.

Unlike a regular mic that will need various accessories and techniques for noise cancellation, a noise-canceling microphone can separate ambient noise from the target sound source just by generating the same pressure on both sides of the diaphragm. This is done because an ambient sound field reaches both ports of the microphone and by applying the same pressure on each side, only sound from the front port can enter.

With this technique, the diaphragm vibrates from the target sound source coming from the front of the microphone while the ambient noise is rejected from the two ports at the sides. Thus, the microphone’s diaphragm vibrates just to pick up the audio or speech that is directly in front of it.

For superior sound quality performance, ample distance must be placed between a user and the background noise. This helps ensure that the noise-canceling microphone effectively filters out the surrounding noise from one’s voice and even rejects feedback.


When is a Noise Canceling Microphone Useful?

Noise Cancelling Microphones: Technology, Benefits, and Applications

Generally speaking, a noise-canceling microphone can be used by anyone and everyone. However, there are three applications wherein a noise-canceling microphone is most useful.

Recordings

Whether you’re in the studio recording music, at a filming set, or creating content, a noise-canceling microphone can give you a professional-level audio quality that is void of background noise. With noise-cancellation technology, recordings are sure to have a clear pickup of one’s voice without even the faintest sound of unwanted noise and feedback. This means less work is needed when it comes to audio cleanup and post-processing.

Streamings

Live streamers can benefit greatly from a noise-canceling microphone. As there are ‘surprises’ or uncontrollable factors that can arise during a streaming session, a noise-canceling microphone can make sure that you can retain high-quality audio as it filters out unwanted sounds. Thus, you can tap away on your keyboard, leave the door open, or even have your pet with you in the same room and you’ll be sure that your microphone can filter out the noise.

Meetings

As the hybrid setup is becoming more prevalent both in work and school, video conferencing and audio calls are heavily used to conduct virtual meetings. A noise-canceling microphone can make sure that one’s speech can be heard during these virtual meetings whether you are attending it on the go or conducting it in a noisy and open area.

Set-up of a noise-canceling microphone is also easy as there are models that can be directly plugged into a laptop via USB cable for convenience.


Which Type of Microphone is Best For Noise Cancellation?

Noise Cancelling Microphones: Technology, Benefits, and Applications

One can choose between using a dynamic microphone or a condenser microphone.

Dynamic microphones work by picking up sound waves and converting them into an electrical signal using a diaphragm, coil, and magnet. Dynamic microphones are generally priced cheaper than condensers and can perform better in loud environments.

Condenser microphones have an electrically charged diaphragm that vibrates and generates an electrical signal that is proportional to the sound. Condenser microphones are priced higher than dynamic mics but they generally provide better sound performance across various applications.

Deciding which of the two is best will ultimately depend on one’s preference, budget, and intended application.


Final Note

Noise Cancelling Microphones: Technology, Benefits, and Applications

A noise-canceling microphone has advanced noise-cancellation technology that helps it analyze and filter out ambient noise and unwanted sounds. While it can be useful in many applications, one can benefit the most from a noise-canceling microphone in scenarios wherein ambient noise can be often heard.


Frequently Asked Questions

Can you stop a noise-canceling microphone from picking up background noise?

A noise-canceling microphone already has technology and mechanisms that will automatically reject background noise for you. The use of external accessories such as pop filters, windscreens, and foams may not be necessary anymore. However, depending on the type and model of your microphone, one can still choose to use these for added protection.

Is there any noise-canceling microphone that eliminates background noise?

All noise-canceling mics reduce or reject background noise well enough for them to not be heard by the human ear. However, some top models offer a higher performance and are more effective in eliminating noise than others. The HyperX QuadCast S is an example of a great noise-canceling USB microphone that can effectively eliminate all noise.

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Ash Burnett

Hailing from Chicago, IL - Ash made his break into journalism at the age of 23 writing music reviews for a local website. Now in his late 30's and after being pulled closer towards the technical side of the music and live gig industry, he founded Shout4Music to write thorough microphone reviews.

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