Electric shock happens when a certain amount of voltage passes through your body to reach the ground. When the current finds you to be the shortest path to the ground, it can pass through you.
Certain electrical equipment has some faults in their hardware which can lead to improper earthing. So, when you touch them, they electrocute you. This is very common with mics and lets us get to know how to avoid getting shocked by microphone.
How to avoid getting shocked by Microphone?
Before getting into contact with any device, check for poor grounding on the device surfaces with the following testing devices:
Testing with Multimeter
A multimeter is a device that shows the different types of electrical dealings. Using this, you can also check the voltage leak from the poor grounding on the surface of the consoles.
Using a Tester
A tester is like a small screwdriver that has a small circuit inside it that glows a led when current passes through it. Therefore, before connecting the mic to the devices, with the help of a tester, check any leaking voltages. So, you can avoid microphone electrocution.
Here are some of the best ways to avoid getting electrocuted from a microphone. It is best to follow these as a precaution before going near any equipment.
# Avoid Contact with Grounded Surfaces
If you are not touching any grounded surface, you will not feel the shock. Try to wear shoes to create a barrier between you and the ground.
Because the current passes through you only if it finds the shortest path to the ground with your body. So, if you hinder the path by wearing a shoe, you can avoid such shocks. But a person touching you may feel electrocution.
# Service Your Equipment
Most of the time, due to poor grounding in the equipment, you will find them to be having voltage leaks. Therefore, take the equipment that you are going to connect the microphone with and check for faults in the device hardware that causes the current leakage.
Most of the time, the stray voltage is leaking due to improper installation of the console hardware or a faulty wire. So, check the device properly before connecting the microphone.
# Using Wireless Microphone
Since the microphone is connected to some device, you can simply avoid microphone shocks by using a wireless device.
Instead of using a wired microphone, you can go for a wireless mic which doesn’t have any contact with your console or amplifier thus avoiding electrocution. Also, this avoids any kind of interference with the mic output which is an added advantage.
# Connecting to an Earthed Mains
If you have a single outlet that is grounded properly, you can simply connect all the devices to the same outlet and avoid getting shocked.
You can use an extension power chord if you want to connect multiple electrical systems and equipment. This enables you to avoid leaking stray voltages from all the equipment and devices.
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What are the reasons for microphone shocks?
Getting electrocuted from a microphone happens due to three major reasons. If you fix these, you can easily avoid getting shocked.
From the Mixing Console
The microphone is connected to a device or console through which it is either powered or the output is amplified. The mixing console is one of the devices to which the mic is usually connected.
The mixing console is made up of a metal body which has some leaking voltage over the surface. This voltage might get passed onto the microphone and electrocute you. The problem can be resolved when the console is grounded properly.
Poor Earthing of Amplifier
Similarly, amplifiers are also some of the popularly used consoles which may have some stray voltage leaking on their body. This will lead to electrocution through the mic since the current can reach the ground easily with your contact.
Poor Earthing of Electrical System
Finally, the problem may reside in the outlet of the AC mains. If the mains are not earthed properly, you will get electrocuted despite the type of device connected. The earthing is usually done when the electrical system is installed.
If it is not performed, then you don’t have proper grounding and this will lead to shocks when coming in contact with any connected device.
Is repairing the microphone a good idea?
The shocks from the microphone actually don’t generate from the device itself. Rather, the electrocution is from a console or device that is connected with the microphone.
The stray voltage from these devices causes the microphone to contain these charges and gives the feeling of shock. So, repairing the microphone may not be the solution all the time.
Repair the microphone only if you find it to be not working properly. Otherwise, there is no need for repairing the microphone. But you should consider servicing your other equipment like the mixing console or the amplifier.
They have the highest probability of getting faults that can lead to electrocution. So, regular checking of these devices and proper servicing is needed.
Is microphone electric shock damage the microphone itself?
It is possible that the microphone may be damaged due to the shock. A microphone shock is a sudden change in the electrical potential difference between the microphone and its surroundings.
The sudden change in voltage can cause noise, distortion, or complete failure of the sound system. This can happen when a person touches an exposed wire carrying high voltage or when a person walks across a stage with a live sound system.
These are some of the ways in which you can prevent shocking from the microphone and other devices too.
It is very important to observe precautions with these devices and if you suspect any voltage leak, then use any of the testing methods to find the current flow. With such a prevention method you can avoid major accidents.