Fast FactsReview Setup: Mackie 1604VLZ mixer, Crown CTS210 amplifier, JBL Control 5 speakers, Whirlwind microphone and interface cables.
Key Features: Low profile design; interchangeable cardioid, supercardioid and omnidirectional cartridges; transformerless balanced output
Contact: Shure at 847-866-2200, www.shure.com.Part of the Microflex MX300 series, MX392/C cardioid boundary microphone from Shure is geared towards the reproduction of the voice through sound reinforcement and recording systems. This microphone is designed to be mounted on conference tables, stage floors and lecterns, taking advantage of the increased sensitivity and greater direct-to-reverberant sound ratio of the boundary mounting principle. The microphone is available with cardioid, supercardioid and omnidirectional capsules.
The MX392/C is a surface-mounted electret cardioid condenser microphone with an internal preamplifier and a programmable membrane on/off switch. There is logic input and output terminals available for use with logic controlled mixers and a green status LED and membrane ” push” switch. The microphone is offered with a choice of terminated or unterminated cable, so depending on your installation, portable or permanent, there’s not a lot of wasted time or unnecessary connector hassles in the field. The microphone has a heavy low profile body style with a matt black finish and five anti-skid feet for use in nonpermanent mounted applications. If for some reason you need a different pick-up pattern, the cartridges are interchangeable with the removal of a Philips screw on the bottom of the base of the microphone. This exposes the capsule, electronics, DIP switches and terminal strip connections.
The microphone can be mounted to a surface via two screw holes that are accessed by removing the cover and securing the base to the surface. Shure also includes instructions for painting the microphone to match its surroundings with minimal affect to the microphone. On the MX392 models, the rear exiting cable can be rerouted for bottom exiting in cases where you do not want the cable to be seen. The MX393 models use a three-pin connector located at the rear of the unit. Programming the unit for different behavior is accomplished by removing the base and setting the DIP switches according to the chart included in the accompanying literature. Four settings are available; push to mute, release to talk; push to talk, release to mute; Toggle; push on, push off and the microphone always on with the switch activating logic functions only. The microphone utilizes a balanced transformerless out put which improves immunity to noise over long distances.
Shure specifically points out that to maintain the flattest low frequency response and best rejection to background noise, the unit should be placed on a flat surface that is as large as possible while avoiding locating it near other reflective surfaces that may result in increased reverberant sound. For those of you who have used boundary microphones, you know this all to well, as I have seen boundary microphones snuggled up against the wide lip of lecterns or tables which destroyed the intended use of the microphone.
The membrane switch is seated securely to the top of the microphone body with the status LED embedded in the center. The unit works on phantom power from 11V to 52 volts DC with a 2.0 mA current consumption. The reported frequency response is 50 Hz – 17 kHz with dynamic range of 94 db. Maximum SPL varies from 111.5 dB to 117 dB depending on the cartridge. It’s important to not that the reported measurement were taken with the unit mounted to a wooden surface 30 inches square.
Connecting the microphone is pretty straight-forward. I first used it in the factory setting, mic on, push to mute. In this mode the LED on indicates that the mic is open. One of the biggest concerns with a surface mount mic is of course noise that is coupled into the capsule through vibrations of the surface it is attached to. In my test, I mounted it to a conference table. The isolation from normal paper shuffling, table bumps and leg bumps was excellent making those sounds almost nonexistent over the system. I also noticed that there was very little if no microphonics from the supplied cable. Also, tapping on the push to mute button exhibited very little noise as well. The mic exhibited great sensitivity and faithful reproduction of the voice. The speech was articulate and very well balanced with a roll-off in the low frequencies as expected.
This is a great mic for any application requiring a low-profile pickup of voice. Its variable logic settings and pickup patterns makes it perfect for a conference room recording and reinforcement microphone.