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johnnydoxx

Microphone volume

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This is strange, hope I can explain it OK.

I have a 45-year old dynamic (no phantom power) Shure mike for vocals, which has been just great all these years, and until yesterday I had a 45-yr-old cord for it. The cord was XLR on the mike end and 1/4 inch on the amp end.

Well I finally stepped on the cord one time too many times, and it started to buzz.

My backup cord was an XLR on both ends.

When I plugged the backup cord in, I had to alter the amp volume from 4 to 8 to get the same volume for output.

Today I tried another new cord, again like my original, with XLR on one side and 1/4 inch on the amp side. It did not produce any sound at all. Thinking that the cord might be defective, I bought another and had the same results. Even when I plugged into a pre-amp, neither cord produced sound. I also tried them with a condensor mike through a pre-amp with phantom power and no sound was produced (I guess maybe phantom power requires a XLR/XLR cord?).

Furthermore, I plugged a guitar into a 1/4 inch cord and into the amp and it worked fine, so the input 1/4 inch is OK.

I also plugged the XLR/XLR cord into the pre-amp and then to the amp, and that gave me enough volume to go back to 4.

Anyway, I prefer not to drag a pre-amp around to my gigs, and I don't like running at 8, no room for expansion.

So I'd like it to work like it did before with a cord that is XLR - 1/4.

Any ideas why the new XLR - 1/4 cords would not produce any sound with the old mike? Or how to find a cord that will work like the old one?

Or why the XLR/XLR cords need higher amp setting?

Maybe this helps - I am not sure that XLR/XLR was around at the time that mike was made - no amps that I remember had the XLR input.

Thanks for any ideas

Johnny

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You may have a wiring issue. Perhaps that mic and its chord were wired in a specific way with the 3 wires and equipment in its time.

Just a thought.

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Hmmm, so XLR is normally "balanced" which means that the signal is applied across two of the leads and the other is a sheething of ground to insulate it from noise pick up. An Xlr to 1/4" would apply the signal across an input lead and ground and leave the other lead from the xlr floating (unless the 1/4" has a tip ring and sleeve in which case it is applied across the tip and ring - the sleeve is ground). So if you replace the old cable with a new on, make sure the 1/4" plug does not have tip ring and sleeve. Can't really figure out how the xlr to xlr worked except that maybe it is using the phantom resister feeds as a path to ground. My guess anyways ;).

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Thanks Doug.

That sounds like the explanation.

The new cable's 1/4 inch does indeed have the tip ring and sleeve. I will see if GC has any other kind.

I may have to break down and get a new mike. Last night I used the pre-amp and XLR/XLR and that worked but it's just one more thing to fuss with at the gigs.

Johnny

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I e-mailed Shure's tech support.

I told them this:

"a cord with XLR/XLR on each of the ends works, but I need to use a pre-amp to get enough volume for it, before I used volume 4 on the amp, and now even at 10 it is very low and needs the pre-amp."

They replied:

If you add a Shure A85F or A95F transformer to the amp end of the XLR cable, the signal level will be increased in level to drive the amp properly.

So I'll get one of those transformers.

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