Dynamic vs. Condenser Microphones : what is the difference?

Dynamic vs. Condenser Microphones : what is the difference?

A microphone is a crucial tool that is essential for every audio professional.

While its primary function is to convert soundwaves into electrical waves, the process of selecting the right microphone can be overwhelming due to the various options available in the market. Choosing the appropriate microphone is vital for achieving professional-grade audio quality.

Among the most popular microphone types are dynamic, condenser, and ribbon microphones. This article will focus on dynamic and condenser microphones, which differ in how their diaphragm interacts with the circuitry to generate the electrical signal. This distinction primarily affects two technical aspects: the output level and the frequency response.

The following sections of this article aim to simplify your next microphone purchase. The key is to understand the working principles of dynamic and condenser microphones, their main characteristics, and the optimal ways to utilize them.

Before delving into the technical details, take a moment to consider your requirements and preferences for your next microphone. Keeping these factors in mind will aid in identifying the necessary specifications for your new microphone.



The dynamic microphones are the oldest and most primitive. They are commonly used on stage because of their durability and ability to operate independently from a power source.

How Does A Dynamic Microphone Work?

The diaphragm of a dynamic microphone is attached to a metal coil located inside a magnetic field. When the sound waves hit the diaphragm, it vibrates that coil forming an electric current that mimics the sound waves.

Characteristics Of Dynamic Microphones

  • Durable.
  • Tolerant to heat and humidity, which makes it suitable for the outdoors.
  • Capable of capturing high volumes without distortion.
  • Efficient in eliminating background noise.

When To Use A Dynamic Microphone?

Dynamic microphones are excellent for capturing intense sounds, such as the sounds emitting from guns and explosives. Similarly, musicians use it to record the sounds coming from drums, guitar amplifiers, and other loud musical instruments.

Besides using them outdoors and during live performances, podcasters and interviewers use dynamic microphones to record vocals when smooth and accurate reproduction is not required.

Recommended Dynamic Mics :

  1. Shure SM7B
  2. Electro-Voice RE Electro-Voice RE-20
  3. Shure SM57



A condenser microphone is a more delicate piece of equipment used to record accurate sounds, practically in a studio setup. Since it is more complicated than its dynamic counterpart, condenser mics tend to be more expensive.

How Does A Condenser Microphone Work?

Suspended to a fixed plate charged with a power source, the diaphragm movement against the charged field converts the sound waves to electrical energy. The electricity applied to the plate, usually from phantom power or a 9v battery, gives the microphone the ability to produce crisp and clear sounds.

Characteristics Of Condenser Microphones

  • Capture clear and detailed sounds.
  • Smooth frequency response.
  • Provide a higher output level, which eliminates the need to amplify the soundusing a mixer.
  • Great for quiet sounds due to their high sensitivity.

When To Use A Condenser Microphone?

With their ability to handle complex sounds with a wide range of frequencies, condenser mics are ideal for voiceovers, singers, and capturing sounds from instruments like acoustic guitars.
Additionally, condenser microphones have a great capability of recording the atmosphere of the room. For this reason, many drummers like to use them as overhead mics for their drum sets.

Recommended Condenser Microphones

  1. Audio-Technica AT2035
  2. Rode NT1
  3. Neumann TLM 103



While a dynamic microphone works perfectly in rough environments, a condenser microphone is powerful at reproducing crisp and delicate sound, and would be ideal for Voiceover recordings for example ;).

Combined with our jules&agatha Voiceover Booth for the best acoustics and an optimal working environment, you're sure to produce recordings worthy of industry professionals. 

Back to blog

Leave a comment

Please note, comments need to be approved before they are published.