Cardioid condenser microphone
Our take on the Shure PGA181 by Crutchfield's Ralph Graves
If you're looking to step into the world of professional sound but need to watch your budget, check out Shure PG ALTA™ microphones. PG ALTA mics combine Shure engineering excellence, durability, and great sound. Best of all, you'll find a model for almost any application — studio, home recording, or live venue.
A versatile studio mic
The PGA181 features smooth frequency response and is ideal for both vocal and instrumental studio recording. This rugged side-address microphone shrugs off the little accidents that happen in the studio, and it's small enough to fit just about anywhere. Use it to record choirs, drums, piano, acoustic string instruments, or vocalists.
- designed for acoustic instruments, keyboards, ensembles, and studio vocals
- side-address condenser microphone
- cardioid pattern for noise rejection and feedback suppression
- black metallic finish and grille
- frequency response: 50-20,000 Hz
- sensitivity: -38 dBV/Pa
- output impedance: 120 ohms
- male XLR connectors
- 2-1/8" diameter x 5-15/16" length
- weight: 12.8 oz
- carrying case
- 1 mic clip
- stand adapter
- warranty: 2 years
- Our 60-day money-back guarantee
What's in the Box:
- PGA181 Condenser microphone
- WA371 microphone clip
- 5/8"-to-3/8" Thread adapter
- Zippered pouch
- User Guide
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Features and Specs
|Application||For live & studio use|
|Parts Warranty||2 Years|
|Labor Warranty||2 Years|
Overview: The Shure PGA181 is a side-address cardioid condenser microphone. It is ideal for vocals, as well as acoustic and amplified instruments. It comes with a microphone clip (WA371), and a zippered storage pouch.
Microphone Positioning: The microphone should be placed in an upright position, with the sound being directed toward the side-facing diaphragm. The front of the microphone is marked by 4 screws around the grille, the cardioid logo, and the PGA181 model number. Sounds coming from the opposite side of the diaphragm will be reduced by -25dB because of the cardioid pickup pattern. A pop filter should be used when the microphone is used for close-up vocals.
Cardioid Pickup Pattern: The PGA181 has a cardioid polar pattern for maximum gain before feedback, and excellent rejection of off-axis sound.
Phantom Power: The PGA181 is an electret condenser microphone which requires a balanced, microphone-level input that provides phantom power (+48V DC recommended). Phantom power can be supplied by the mixer or audio interface that the microphone is connected to. Usually the mixer has a switch to activate the phantom power.
Applications: The microphone is recommended for the following applications:
- Voice: In voice applications, the singer/speaker should be 1-3" from the microphone. A pop filter should be used.
- Acoustic Guitar: The mic should be positioned near the sound hole (6-12" away) for a full sound. Placement near the 12th fret will give a balanced, natural sound.
- Drums: Placement of the microphone determines which percussion sound you desire. Placing the mic in front of the drum kit (3-6' away) will result in more kick drum, while placement overhead will capture more cymbals.
- Amplifiers: Aiming the microphone toward the center of the speaker (1-6" away) will provide a clear, aggressive sound. Placement toward the edge will deliver a mellower sound.
- Strings/Horns: For a single instrument, the microphone should be placed close to the source (around 1' away). For a horn or string section, the microphone should be placed an equal distance away from all players (3-6' away).
- Full Band: The microphone should be facing the entire group, centered between the instruments, 3-10' away.
Thread Adapter: A 5/8"-to-3/8" thread adapter is included. This adapter allows the mic clip to be attached to a mic stand with a 3/8" threaded connector.
|Frequency Response||50 Hz-20 kHz|
|Sensitivity (at 1kHz)||Open Circuit Voltage |
-38 dBV/Pa (12.7mV)
|Maximum SPL||138dB SPL|
|Dimensions||Shaft Diameter: 1.571" |
Head Diameter: 2.087"
Our Product Research Team
At Crutchfield, you'll get detailed, accurate information that's hard to find elsewhere. That's because we have our own in-house Product Research team. They verify what’s in the box, check the owner's manual, and record dimensions, features and specs. We stay on top of new products and technologies to help people make informed choices.