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Very fine (hideable) microphone wire

Discussion in 'Electronic Components' started by Jon D, Jan 14, 2007.

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  1. Jon D

    Jon D Guest

    I am in the UK. I have an electret mic capsule and want to connect it
    to my MP3 voice recorder with a few feet of very thin mic cable of
    something like 1.5 to 2mm diameter.

    The mic capsule is from Maplins see (http://tinyurl.com/yhfjlb).

    Can I just use any thin mic cable or do I have to match some electrical
    characteristics?

    Any idea where I can get some thin cable as Maplin's thinnest is over
    6mm diameter?
     
  2. Any thin coax will do if you only need it to run a few feet. If you really
    want it close to invisible, build a balanced line input amp and run it from
    a twisted pair. That could be made out of fine enamelled wire chosen to
    match hair colour, it could be damn close to invisible, even in good light
    at close range.
     
  3. If you're not concerned with visibility, and just want thin-ness for other
    reasons, get a cheap pair of walkman headphones and take the cable from
    those. It's usually coaxial, and is as thin as you're asking for. It's also
    very weak crap usually, but you get what you pay for. Even if you waste a
    plug and an earphone you'll still get it cheaper per meter than buying it
    straight, and I think you'll find the added plug a bonus, it will probably
    fit your player.
     
  4. Baron

    Baron Guest

    If I want a length of thin co-ax cable, I chop the video lead from a
    scrap monitor and strip one out of that. 75ohm and usually good
    quality too. A bonus is its in multiple colors!
     
  5. Jon D

    Jon D Guest

    The twisted pair idea seems nice but wouldn't be suitable for my
    case.

    Does the coax have to be specifically "mic coax"?
     
  6. I would just take two lengths of enamelled copper wire, twist them together,
    and see if that works OK.









    --
     
  7. Nope.. Short lengths for audio with limited bandwidth like small electrets
    have, is one of the least demanding things. Depends how much noise you can
    tolerate. If that noise is regular you can remove it from recordings with
    software, but it's still worth trying to reduce at source if it's
    intrusive.

    Try what Baron said, find the cores of an old monitor cable, I never
    thought of that before, it is probably very good stuff.

    Even without the balanced line, the twisted pair might be workable. Worth
    trying just to see how it goes.
     
  8. Jon D

    Jon D Guest


    I'll try it but I would half-expect the most awful hum near mains
    equipment.
     
  9. Sometimes things just work out better than expected. I've seen it happen
    many a time.

    "If it ain't broke, don't fix it".






    --
     
  10. If it's twisted pair it may work fairly well - certainly worth a try.
     
  11. I doubt it, because the pair will be well twisted, and the hum will cancel
    more than cause bother. Also, the main problem with mains is induction, and
    an electret mic circuit has a high impedance, so not much current can be
    induced.
    Try it. If the noise is unacceptable even over the short distance you're
    using, use coax from cheap earphones, like I said, or from an old monitor
    cable, as Baron said.
    I won't say anymore, I'm repeating myself already now.
     
  12. Guest

    Guest Guest

    for short run ( <10 feet) i use flat copper laminated sheet wire. ,
    similar to the stuff u see inside jap cameras for interconnects. can be
    run under anything or painted to conceal. its tough as nails, resists
    tearing too, even used it to hang decoration to conceal the microphones!

    even have used aluminum foil between plain scotch tape!

    be inventive, dont get hamstrung with commercial dealers!
     
  13. Jon D

    Jon D Guest

    I am in the UK. I have an electret mic capsule and want to

    I am the OP.

    I have to confess that I don't know much about twisted pair wiring
    except that it's often mentioned with ethernet.

    (1) Could I make my own twisted pair wiring to attach my minature
    microphone capsule by getting two reasonably fine wires and twist them
    together? If so then would something like four to five twists per inch
    be about right?

    (2) Could I use the wires from an old-style magnetic earpiece?
    For example http://www.maplin.co.uk/images/full/LB23A.jpg
     
  14. Jon D

    Jon D Guest


    Can I buy a few feet of "flat copper laminated sheet wire"? I can't
    find it on Google or Froogle.

    Is it something which has to be cannibalised from defunct electronic
    equipment?
     
  15. It's very common. Most mains cables use twisting so that the induced field
    strength falls off sharply with distance from the cable.
    You can make it easily by taking two parallel lengths of single-core
    stranded insulated wire and tying a small weight on one end of the pair.
    Hold the far ends up so the weight hangs freely. Spread the held
    ends, keeping the angle between each length constant, and twist the ends in
    the same direction, between finger and thumb. The wider the angle, the more
    twists per inch will result. The more the better, generally. This trick
    makes a fast, evenly spaced twisted pair.
    Definitely, that looks like good stuff. They make them twised with many
    turns per inch to reduce induced hum, because the earphones have a very low
    impedance and high sensitivity, so can pick up hum even without much
    amplification if they didn't have the twisting.
     
  16. Actually, mains cables have a twist for easy flexing, but it does help
    reduce inductive coupling, too. The earphone cable also uses it so it
    flexes easily without causing metal fatigue.
     
  17. This is a slightly different application.

    Don't make it too complicated - just try the simple solution first and
    change it only if there is a problem.
     
  18. Guest

    Guest Guest

    try the surplus houses, silicon surplus, digikey, electronic goldmine, etc

    it is also supplied as power distribution bus wire, not as flat though, (.01
    inch thik)

    yes, cannibalism is a great way to derive this stuff, only the
    configurations are very limited that way due to short run pieces.
     
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