When my wife isn’t looking after our daughter, she sings part-time in and around Sussex and uses a simple portable microphone and amplifier set for gigs. The amp and the rest of the kit lead a hard life, being transported between the car boot and venue and on one occasion, the microphone was dropped from a height. I guess things could have been worse, it could have been the amp!
The microphone now rattled badly and seemed to cut out when connected up, even when turned up to 11. Not a good sound when she was in the middle of ‘Moon River’.
The microphone actually came from a Lidl karaoke set and is made by Silvercrest, a Lidl brand. It’s a heavy, metal bodied microphone with a decent quality feel and metal grilled top.
The rattle seemed to coincide with the cutting out, so it seemed sensible to open up the mic. Three Phillips screws hold the casing together and upon opening it up, the problem quickly became apparent. The metal weight inside had come away from the inside of the casing and was occasionally ‘shorting’ the connections on the back of the on/off switch. Not good.
While in bits, I checked all the wiring for continuity, no problems there and decided to clean the switch with contact cleaner for good measure. Once all the electrical side of the mic was proved, I reassembled the casing with the parts, adding a little hot-melt glue to the metal weight to prevent it coming in to contact with the back of the on/off switch.
This wasn’t the end of the song (sorry).
Upon hooking the mic up to the amp, it now worked again without cutting out, but I couldn’t help but notice that the lead connecting to the base of the mic seemed to be causing a slight crackle. Not a nice sound effect.
Opening up the three-pin mic connector revealed a simple design, three poles soldered to the microphone’s wiring, one core and one screen. A quick cut, strip and re-solder and the lead was ready to roll once again. Before I did the cable crimp back up, I added another dab of hot melt glue between the cable outer and flex guard, to ensure the cable couldn’t twist, which might cause the connector to fail again.
Cost of a new microphone £20+. Cost of repair; Time plus soldering and a bit of glue.
‘My Fairlady’ sings again…