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What Is The Proper Way To Hold A Microphone? (Full Guide)

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While public speaking is an art, how to hold a microphone is a crucial part of that art.

Many performers, singers, vocalists, and public speakers have to deal with voice delivery as their first challenge.

They want to know the right way to hold the microphone, aiming to get a high-quality audio output.

To help you hold your microphone the right way, we’ve got our detailed guide.

What you’re to do is keep on reading this info-treasure-filled blog post and find out your way to perform flawlessly.

Table of Contents

Full Guide On How To Hold A Microphone Properly

So, here we go with our first step of letting you know the best hold of your mic.

1. Choose the right microphone

Not all microphones are the same.

So, knowing your most fitted microphone is of chief importance here.

Whether you are a singer, vocalist, or public speaker, choosing the right and knowing how to hold a microphone correctly is inevitable to perform well.

Thus, the quality audio output is crucial for the success of your program.

So, a clear, undisturbed, and distraction-free sound is your goal when you’re delivering to your audiences.

Let’s see what are microphones that go best with your vocal performances.

You need not spend $1,000 on a microphone to reach your desired sound output.

It’s less than that, but more than just picking your microphone up and starting throwing your voice into it.

Yet, you can get sweet audio files using just your ordinary microphone for $100.

Types of microphone

It requires the right selection of a microphone for your show or recording.

You’ve got two types of microphones to choose between.

Condenser Microphone

The first one is a condenser microphone which suits best when you’ve delicate vocals and high-frequency sound.

There isn’t a doubt the output of the condenser microphone is highly clear.

However, it will also result in picking up background noises and minor sounds like that of your breathing and swallowing.

So, you can choose a condenser microphone only when you’ve got enough expertise in using a microphone.

And you’ve learned well, how to control your voice, or you are ready to spend hours in a lab while editing your recordings.

Dynamic Microphone

A dynamic microphone is for you when you’ve powerful vocals and loud audio output.

However, the clarity of the voice you get on a condenser microphone isn’t sure for these dynamic microphones.

Although the dynamic microphones are more pocket friendly.

So, before heading towards holding the microphone, getting the most suitable is more essential.

A wise decision can save you time or effort.

2. Wearing headphones can help you hold the microphone the right way

Monitoring or editing, what will you like with your audio?

A proactive approach is better while positioning the microphone correctly.

Final Thoughts

Doing experiments with your microphone positioning and holding can help you get your final performance superb.

It seems quite easy to tell that you can have your mic and start singing.

Yet, for a performer, it requires a genuine effort to end the show successfully.

Following pro-advice and staying persistent with your performance you can master your techniques of holding your mic.

By that time, you can learn what serves you the best for your job type.

Hence, you can also get some particular personal techniques, which will be most suitable for you.

So, let us know how you’re going to partner with your mic next time?

Here is how I’ll be holding my microphone

Since I’m a public speaker, I’ll love to speak in a flow.

Therefore, I use the best techniques of my microphone handling, as I have shared with you.

Still, if you ask me what can be the best way to hold the microphone, I tell you it’s with persistence.

You can’t hold a microphone today and then next year.

It’s an only regular practice that can help you master your shows and performances.

Final Thoughts

Doing experiments with your microphone positioning and holding can help you get your final performance superb.

It seems quite easy to tell that you can have your mic and start singing.

Yet, for a performer, it requires a genuine effort to end the show successfully.

Following pro-advice and staying persistent with your performance you can master your techniques of holding your mic.

By that time, you can learn what serves you the best for your job type.

Hence, you can also get some particular personal techniques, which will be most suitable for you.

So, let us know how you’re going to partner with your mic next time?

So, it is essential to know how you assess your sound on your microphone.

Otherwise, you’ll come across the noises in your recordings you’ll not get rid of.

You can do it by listening to your sound in the hall or room…

Is it the exact way?

You’ve got your ears set behind, while you need them in front of your mouth to know the actual audio output.

Therefore, you need to use headphones to get better control of your voice by positioning your microphone rightly.

Thus, your brain will get the original quality of audio, and help you maintain the required distance for the best quality audio output.

Since headphones help you get how you are sounding at your microphone, you can also realize how ambient sound is affecting your audio.

Hence, you can remove them beforehand, without troubling yourself with the editing process later on.

3. Eliminate ambient sounds before holding your microphone

You’re singing, and there is a “hum!!!!”

Is it from your vocals, or you should look around to figure out the sources?

Probably it’s from some external source.

It is from a nearby device or appliances in your hall?

So, before holding the microphone, it is important to remove those interferers from your hall or room.

Therefore, we call that removing the ambient is also part of the ideal handling of your microphone.

How can you listen and identify these sounds?

It’s perfect to get your sound into your microphone, instead of that of your speakers, fans, keyboards, and mobile phone vibrations.

These annoying sounds can be from your PC’s fan, your keyboard clicks, refrigerator’s sounds, raindrops on your window panels, or an ice-cream call outside your house, etc.

We’ve got a solution.

You can catch them by becoming silent, keeping your microphone on, and focusing on the audio output.

Surely, you can listen to many of the sounds in no time.

In this way, you can clear the ambient sounds easily, by taking certain measures.

Measures to eliminate ambient sounds

  • The right selection of microphones

Since some microphones are less sensitive to background noise than others, a correct selection can help you better.

For example, dynamic microphones are famous for being less sensitive to background noises.

So, we’ll advise you to pick dynamic microphones, when you already know the ambient sounds.

  • Microphone windshields

Foam or furry covers that serve as microphone windshields can also keep the wind and noises away from your microphones.

Thus, the wind that carries the sounds from other sources will also stay away.

  • Holding microphone correctly

Holding the microphone at 45 degrees can also help you get an excellent sound if you don’t get a POP filter.

Hence, a 45-degree angle placement will stop the plosives, though it’ll require a lot of practice.

4. Use the right distance to hold your microphone

After getting your ideal microphone, and making all preparations, the time is now to position your microphone.

It’s where you’ll put your mouth at your microphone.

The distance of the microphone from your mouth plays a big role in the sound output quality.

You might have seen speakers or vocalists just eating up their microphones.

Some other people pull away from their microphones at a significant distance.

Isn’t that confusing?

Audio proximity effects

We can help you figure out these positioning techniques by telling you more about vocal dynamics and microphones.

When vocalists or singers have a dynamic mic, they pull away from the mic from their mouths.

So, if you’re also a vocalist with a dynamic microphone, we’ll suggest that you practice pulling away as much as you master.

Thus, you can manage audio proximity effects.

How far can you position your microphone?

The answer is – when you are a presenter, or a speaker, holding your microphone at 2-10 inches distance with a 45-degree angle is enough.

If you’ve got an issue with plosives “b”, or “s”, then changing the angle 20 to 30 degrees can help you improve the sound.

Your audience wants to see your communication besides listening to you.

Therefore, the right position can help you let them maintain good eye contact, and see facial expressions.

If you’re in the habit of using high notes intonation while speaking or singing, you must maintain a higher distance to prevent a burst or shriek.

Similarly, if you’re a stage performer, you might be in the habit of moving around the stage.

In such a case, you need to maintain the distance of your microphone.

5. Hold your mic straight to speak closely

Scared of the microphone?

When you’re new to speak or sing on your microphone, it’s natural to be sensitive.

So, you can start using your microphone by keeping on speaking or singing as you naturally do.

You might make the biggest mistake of not placing the microphone close to your mouth.

Keeping the microphone below your chest or in your lap will be of no use.

A loud sound is your need when you look for reaching out to your audiences.

Softer or louder?

Though you have two options: be softer or louder ⸺ the second one is better.

The reason is, you need to be audible with clarity of sound.

Holding a microphone away significantly reduces the sound.

In the same way, placing your microphone closer increases the sound.

Though placing your microphone closer to your mouth can affect the voice quality of your vocals.

Yet, you get no compromise on the voice clarity.

So, speaking or singing directly guarantees a better outcome ultimately.

How close can your microphone be?

It’s 1-3 inches, just as you’re going to eat it like an ice-cream.

A close positioning will help you in the following ways:

  • Your microphone means to be for the sound’s sake, not the background noises
  • According to the inverse-square law, every doubling of the distance decreases the sound quality by a quarter. Thus, locating your mic by the distance of 2 inches from your mouth will let you get a 4 times better outcome, compared to placing it 4 inches away.
  • To reject the background noises, a 1-3 inches closeness to the mouth will serve enough

As a vocalist, you need to be louder than the instruments.

So, being closer to your microphone will help you get the perfect audio.

6. Holding your mic by the grille might not be a good option

You saw the vocalist holding the microphone by the grill?

Should you do that to look cool?

This is what you recall and ask yourself.

Therefore, we’re going to tell you about this microphone epidemic.

Though it looks like an ideal performer, we call it handling an ice-cream from the top, not the stick.

Thus, it’s drastic from the audio perspective.

Why is holding the mic by the grill not correct?

Usually, you’ve got a cardioid microphone or a directional mic.

This means that your microphone works in all directions allowing all the background sounds’ absorption to some extent.

Such types of microphones will create directional patterns relying on the rear space.

So, holding by the grill, you alter the directional pattern of the microphone into an Omni-directional pickup pattern.

Thus, you’ll be collecting all the background noises, which you would ignore otherwise.

Hence, you cup your microphone and get an immediate feedback issue.

Here, we don’t mean to tell you not to be dancing with your mic when you are a singer.

We only mean to ask you to place your fingers away from the grill.

Some of your fellows can claim that mic-cupping is a wonderful technique.

They’ll defend it saying psycho-acoustically perceived volume and frequency response changes, etc.

Yet, these benefits are no less than those issues you get by troubling mic responses against sound tech’s gain structure.

7. Resting your microphone

You’ve known that positioning the microphone near or far from your mouth makes a significant difference.

Similarly, resting the microphone is also a part of holding your mic.

Why place your microphone near or below your chest?

Suppose that you’re not speaking or singing into your microphone, what else will you be doing?

Pointing here and there using your microphone?

Or, hanging it by some speakers when you’re done with your speaking or singing?

How annoying it’ll be for your presentation and performances.

So, resting the microphone near your chest is also a point to remember here.

And it doesn’t require a lot of practice to remember.

Keep your arms stationary when handling a mic

Besides this, another mistake you can make is keeping your arm moving with the microphone.

Usually, you can be in a habit of moving your hand and arm just like your routine talk.

Yet, while holding the microphone, you need to keep your arms stationary.

A moving arm, while speaking, causes a fading voice.

During the silence, it can move your mic towards picking background noise too.

Hence, minor negligence with your microphone’s resting place or arms movement can affect your performances hugely.

Therefore, you must remain vigilant about how you keep your microphone when you are speaking and even when you are not speaking.

8. Holding your mic while singing or rapping needs more care

Being a rapper or a singer with a lot of live shows, it’s super important to learn the correct handling of the microphone for you.

First, we’ll recommend you to do plenty of practice in your studio or at your home.

And also, as a singer with a microphone in your hand, we advise you to stay behind the PA system to avoid feedback.

Hold your mic firmly

Listening to this can sound funny, yet we know that rappers and singers are in the habit of getting excited.

An excited jerk can make your microphone drop during the performance.

To prevent that, be firm with your hold on your mic.

Hold the mic in your dominant hand

Hold the microphone in your dominant hand and hold it through your palm where the grate meets the base.

But, it shouldn’t be cupping your mic, as we talked about earlier.

Hold the mic close and in alignment

Holding your mic closer is necessary as a singer.

So, holding your microphone 1.3 – 2.5 cm away from your mouth will be sufficient.

As a rapper or singer, keeping your mic directly aligned with your mouth is also advisable.

So, you need to be careful not to let your mic go to your chest level.

Since, as a singer you’re placing your mic near to your mouth, there can be chances of getting hit against your lips or teeth,

To help you prevent such unwanted accidents, we advise you to place your thumb over the mic’s level, pointing towards your chin.

For this purpose, you can bring your thumb 1 inch above the edge of your mic, towards your chin.

Avoid drifting

Drifting away from the microphone by the end of a phrase is a common habit of singers.

Yey, it can be part of their style, we agree.

However, for a sound tech, it’s a calamity for it makes the vocal unclear for your audiences.

9. Some more tips for handling your microphone the right way

Since we care about positioning the microphone correctly to help you perform flawlessly, we’ve got you some more tips here.

  • Be careful with your fashion accessories

If you’re a stage performer, you might come up with your unique fashion sense.

You might be in love with long hair, bands, or necklaces.

Your audiences can also be crazy with your accessories and hairstyling.

But, it can be troublesome if your hair messes up with your microphone just like in this video.

So, you need to be careful that your microphone must stay alive and happy with your accessories.

  • Avoid playing with the mic

Are you in the habit of playing with your microphone in your hands?

Unnecessary handling can create static noise, which can come as an unwelcome guest during your performance.

So, we advise you to stay calm with your microphone, to let this sweet guy sing for you.

  • Avoid handling your mic from the cable end

Just as handling a microphone from its grill is unwanted, holding your mic from its cable near the end is also not good.

It can cause your mic loss of grip besides mic safety issues.

  • Tap tap!!!!

Will you test your microphone like this?

Though you see people blowing into the microphone or tapping the mics to assess the audio.

Yet, we tell you, a call of “microphone testing” is better.

So, testing your microphone is essential for it allows you to learn all the drawbacks.

Similarly, you should not blow to test your microphone because the microphone is for sounds, not winds.

Therefore, your vocals give you a good check rather than just blowing into mics.

  • Do not hide behind the mic

Whether you’re a speaker, presenter, or singer hiding your face with your mic isn’t a good idea.

To keep the interaction pleasant, you should place your mic so that your audience can see you.

10. Some common don’ts to avoid

Despite knowing a lot about the ways of positioning and holding the microphone, there are certain things one must avoid.

As humans, we try to learn through imitation.

Doing so, we follow the performers whom we see around us, without paying attention to the relevance of their actions.

Thus, you make mistakes, and it ends in wrong handling the mic, which ruins your show.

To help you get an insight into these types of mistakes, we’ve got you some common microphone handling errors here.

Don’t hold the mic from its antenna

You might have seen people holding the microphone from its antenna.

This is, of course, is not a good idea, as it disturbs the transmission range of your mic.

The power button

Don’t play with the on/off button of your microphone.

Yes, people do so unknowingly, which can cause irritation for your audiences.

Avoid passing the mic around

Don’t hand over your mic to the 2nd person, in case you are interviewing.

Instead, you can offer a microphone to the person, keeping it in your hand.

Otherwise, it seems like a war, not an interview.

Avoid the use of a mic stand

If you know that, you’ll be performing with your microphone in your hand, using a stand on the stage can be a hurdle only

Most of the time, it’ll create noise.

Do not hold your mic too tight or too loose

Don’t squeeze your microphone too firmly thinking that it’ll help perform better.

Though squeezing is advisable, yet doing so too hard can cause physical tension in your hands or wrists.

Just as we advised you to hold the microphone tightly, here is a don’t too.

Holding your microphone limply can cause noise to disturb your sound outcome.

Here is how I’ll be holding my microphone

Since I’m a public speaker, I’ll love to speak in a flow.

Therefore, I use the best techniques of my microphone handling, as I have shared with you.

Still, if you ask me what can be the best way to hold the microphone, I tell you it’s with persistence.

You can’t hold a microphone today and then next year.

It’s an only regular practice that can help you master your shows and performances.

Final Thoughts

Doing experiments with your microphone positioning and holding can help you get your final performance superb.

It seems quite easy to tell that you can have your mic and start singing.

Yet, for a performer, it requires a genuine effort to end the show successfully.

Following pro-advice and staying persistent with your performance you can master your techniques of holding your mic.

By that time, you can learn what serves you the best for your job type.

Hence, you can also get some particular personal techniques, which will be most suitable for you.

So, let us know how you’re going to partner with your mic next time?

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