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What Are the Different Types of Trumpet Microphones?

Erik J.J. Goserud
Erik J.J. Goserud

Trumpet microphones are small and clip on the ends of the instruments opposite the mouthpiece. These microphones are some of the smallest instrument mics on the market. They allow the trumpeter to be mobile while performing as most of these microphones are wireless. A trumpet has a more dynamic range than most instruments. There are a few basic types of trumpet microphones to choose from.

The buyer will want to choose trumpet microphones based on their purposes. Musicians use trumpet microphones for performance or for recording. While recording microphones can be extremely expensive, they can be used for multiple instruments and not just trumpets.

A cardioid microphone is designed to reduce the sound of ambient noise.
A cardioid microphone is designed to reduce the sound of ambient noise.

Recording microphones for trumpets are generally stand-alone mics and do not clip on the instrument itself. Stereo condenser microphones are a viable option for recording trumpets. Rooms prominent in reverb can complement a trumpet recording quite well. Cardioid microphones are a solid option for recording trumpet; however, these microphones can be quite expensive.

For live performances, specialized microphones with clips are the most popular option for professional trumpeters. These trumpet microphones also work for saxophones, trombones, and many other brass instruments. For big bands with many horn players, these clip mics allow for the most stage space by avoiding the use of large boom mic stands. It also permits horn sections to do physical, synchronized moves as many big show bands perform in their routines.

Professionals use standard instrument microphones for trumpets as well. These can be the same mics used for guitars or drums. Each requires a mic stand and an XLR plug-in, which inhibits the mobility of the trumpeter. If the trumpeter also sings in the band, the sound engineer sometimes sets up a separate mic for vocals to provide an easier mix. These trumpet microphones are much cheaper and are more widely available online and in retail stores.

Musicians can use effects pedals on trumpets to enhance and diversify the sound. These are hooked up similarly to a guitar pedal board, except they run directly through the microphone. Some sound engineers opt to add effects after the trumpet is recorded, while others prefer to use effects beforehand. Most trumpeters that use effects pedals have signature sounds they prefer.

If no other options are available, a vocal mic can be used as a trumpet microphone. Used microphones are the cheapest way to find a mic for a trumpet. Many younger bands or bands on smaller budgets choose this option.

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    • A cardioid microphone is designed to reduce the sound of ambient noise.
      By: Leo
      A cardioid microphone is designed to reduce the sound of ambient noise.