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Is it ok to use phantom power with NON powered mics such as sm57's sm58's etc?

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I have 12 XLR inputs on my O1v. But there are only TWO phantom power switches. One activates the ENTIRE first bank of 6 inputs. The other activates the ENTIRE second bank of six inputs. The problem is I only need TWO channels of phantom power for my c1000's as overheads. This means that the phantom power for the remaining 4 inputs on that bank is on.


Sometimes I need these inputs. Is it ok to have mics such as sm57's, 58's, or other dynamic/non-powered mics plugged into these inputs with the phantom power on? Will it damage something? thanks, -Josh.

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I handle production on live gigs.


Sometimes there is phantom power on a dynamic mic or a passive DI, no problem.


Sometimes one of my knuckleheads has phantom power active on a channel at monitor world, or @ FOH. Sometimes the guys doing remote recording inadvertently fire up phantom on a line, never seen a problem.


Of course, having NO PHANTOM power on a active DI or condenser mic is not cool. As a rule, I've always dictated that the monitor console should be capable of supplying phantom (it's closest to the source, and can follow stage changes), and that only monitor world handles phantom.



NYC Drew


This message has been edited by NYC Drew on 03-06-2001 at 05:58 PM

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Originally posted by Steve Sklar:

Oh, I dunno, StevePow. I've seen that response in MANY articles, books, etc. Seems to be some legit confusion. I've also heard: dynamics bad, ribbons ok.


Steve Sklar/Big Sky




I have never heard the above or seen it in any book. Dynamics are always OK (providing proper cabling). Most ribbons are OK so long as you don't switch phantom on or off while it's plugged in.


Safest is Dynamics OK, Ribbons bad.





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Gee wiz, an ounce of research is worth a pound of speculation - I hope the Royer guys don't mind my lifting this - I love my R-121, even live on a Mackie with the phantom on (there!):


Can phantom power damage a ribbon mic?


Phantom power will not damage a Royer ribbon, provided that the cable is not miswired. Phantom power can damage the ribbon on some older ribbon microphones that utilized an output transformer with a grounded center tap at the output. With Royer mics, as long as your wiring is correct phantom power will not give you any trouble.


Let's plug (pardon the pun) Mackie also while we're at it:


phantom power


A system of providing electrical power for condenser microphones (and some electronic pickup devices) from the sound mixer. The system is called phantom because the power is carried on standard microphone audio wiring in a way that is "invisible" to ordinary dynamic microphones. Mackie mixers use standard +48 volt DC power, switchable on or off. Most quality condenser microphones are designed to use +48 VDC phantom power. Check the manufacturers recommendations.


Generally, phantom power is safe to use with non-condenser microphones as well, especially dynamic microphones. However, unbalanced microphones, some electronic equipment (such as some wireless microphone receivers) can short out the phantom power and be severely damaged. Check the manufacturers recommendations and be careful!

Steve Powell - Bull Moon Digital


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Thanks for your research and the manufactures' confirmation of the phantom power thang. I would like to add that it pays to read the manuals for some of the shit you want to plug into your board. I have a Manley single channel tube DI that specifically recommends not to use phantom power. FWIW
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Just to add to the overwhelming response... I've been plugging in my 421s and 57s for years with my Mackie 1202, which has to have the phantom power running in all four of the mic preamps, and I've never had a problem. I'm told constantly not to run older ribbons (The Royer is considered far more rugged than most ribbon mics and is often an exception where abuse is concerned). This, however, is not a big concern for me since I don't own any ribbons!


Also, I don't believe it is *ever* advisable to plug or unplug ANY microphone, dynamic, condenser, or otherwise -- with the phantom power running.



Ken/Eleven Shadows/d i t h er/nectar


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Since I happen to have two cents on me...


While it's alright to have dynamic mics plugged in with phantom pwr on, it's not wise to have phantom pwr on when there isn't a reason to have it on. If you don't have any condensors that need it, turn it off. On some mixers, you will get noise by leaving phantom on, and possibly even do some internal damage.

Bill Murphy


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