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I'm using macbook air. My XLR mic works fine without phantom power supply in between, it's just that audio is low. When I use phantom power supply, macbook doesn't detect the microphone. Has anybody faced a similar problem? What's the solution?

  • How is the microphone connected to your MacBook? What is the make and model of the microphone? – ischeriad Apr 12 '18 at 12:11
  • @ischeriad microphone and headphone are connected with mic + headphone splitter going in macbook's headphone port. This is the mic: amazon.in/gp/product/B01FY20TVS – mehulmpt Apr 12 '18 at 12:17
  • What "phantom power supply" are you using? I would expect to use an audio interface with phantom power and preamp. I have never seen an XLR microphone used with a straight XLR–1/8" cable and I wouldn't expect it to work. – ischeriad Apr 12 '18 at 12:21
  • @ischeriad this one: amazon.in/gp/product/B074L6JVXS – mehulmpt Apr 12 '18 at 12:27
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    XLR microphones usually use a balanced signal (also stated in the description of your power supply), while the MacBook most certainly has an unbalanced input. Furthermore, the microphone needs to be amplified (mic level), which I'm not sure the MacBook can do ((phantom power is not amplification). I cannot help you further, I would suggest looking into buying a USB audio interface. – ischeriad Apr 12 '18 at 12:34
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You still need a microphone preamp.

As always seems to happen with these mics, they are bought by people for whom it is their first venture into the audio field, beyond a headset mic.

Unfortunately, nothing in any of these ads tells you precisely what you are going to need - nor do they even supply the right cables in the box to be able to do it.
Theoretically, you can get a signal out of them by using a PC's built-in low voltage supply that can power headsets.
In practise, that really doesn't work well at all - so then people buy a phantom supply, without realising they still really need something to get the signal into the computer at good levels.

If you can return that phantom power supply, do so, you don't need it.

Even on the picture for the supply it shows you need to connect it to a preamp.

enter image description here

Preamps are readily-available with built-in phantom power & USB connection.
They become the instant bridge between your mic & your computer. They supply the correct phantom power to the mic & become a useable input for the computer.

Instead, get anything like the following list obtained by Googling "USB Phantom" -
Random selection on Amazon
Example -

enter image description here

They run from approx £30 to many hundreds, depending on number of inputs/features etc. All you need as a basic starter kit is 1 mic input with phantom power.

You also need a male-female XLR cable which will connect to the pre-amp's mic input, which those mics are not supplied with.

enter image description here

  • Thank you for your answer! Just a question, why does then phantom power supply exist independently if it cannot be used alone? – mehulmpt Apr 12 '18 at 18:35
  • They're used for supplying power to preamps that don't already have phantom. They're usually for pro use, where you already have sufficient XLR mic channels, but not enough phantom powered channels. A 48 channel mixing board is already very expensive. Putting phantom capability on all 48 is even more expensive; so they often just have phantom on the first few & if you need more, then you have a box-full of spare PSUs in the truck. For home use, it's just a whole lot simpler to have a USB 'box' that can do it all. – Tetsujin Apr 12 '18 at 18:40
  • Hey @Tetsujin are you available? – mehulmpt May 18 '18 at 15:20
  • "Available for weddings, funerals, birthdays, bar mitzvahs.. - though it would be quicker to just post whatever issue you have. Tag me with @Tetsujin again & I'll be notified – Tetsujin May 18 '18 at 17:14

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