Obviously with any worship service, the key factor is the sound.
If the congregation can’t hear the music and the message, the service simply won’t work. For this reason, choosing microphones should be given serious consideration. There are many types of microphones that are all optimized for different types of events, different spaces, and different styles of worship.
The way you set them up your microphones and the type of amplification system you use can have an effect on the sound quality as well. As worship services become bigger, louder, and driven by more pop and rock music styling, the microphones become even more complex and varied.
If you want to know the key information you need when selecting your microphones, keep reading!
There are are a three main types of microphones that you may use in your worship service:
all of the above options can be wired or wireless.
Lavalier microphones are simply not designed for the singing. This option is best suited to the pastor’s sermon, or a presenter’s speech.
Headsets can be used for singers, and indeed often are for singers who also play guitar, or need their hands to communicate the worship message through sign language. Headsets offer one major drawback, and that is the inability to control volume by moving the microphone closer or farther away from the face. Once they are in place, that is is where they’ll stay; so you’ll have to have an experienced sound tech who can appropriately control volume throughout a service.
Handheld microphones can still be hands-free with the use of microphone stands. This offers the singer the ability to move their face away to control volume, and the ability to play an instrument or sign. However, that also means they’ll be confined to a single space on the stage, unable to move around. If singers don’t need their hands, then holding a wireless microphone is often the best compromise. This option allows the singers to move around, control volume, and pass microphones off to other presenters very easily.
Sound in Small Churches
Believe it or not, sound quality is actually easier to control in a large space. Large churches have the benefit of great room acoustics, plus the ability to layer speakers throughout the space without overwhelming the congregation during the worship service.
Small churches must learn to balance quality sound with potentially problematic acoustics. The needs of a small church may be far less complex, however. If the worship service includes drums, guitars, a piano, an organ, or perhaps even more instruments, your amplification system may not need to be strong.
Microphones in these spaces need to compete with musicians, whose natural volume will already overpower far more than in a large church space. In these cases, it may be wise to use amplification only for the microphone, or place speakers for the microphone feed in a more prominent position. Without room for microphone stands, headsets or wireless handhelds are probably the best choice for these spaces.
Microphones for Each Source
There are a few basic considerations when amplifying instruments versus vocals with microphones.
Vocals generally need condenser microphones that can minimize feedback and any background noise from instruments or other singers.
Drums need dynamic microphones, and hyper-cardioid pickups are even better because they can isolate the sound from each drum.
Drum amplification can be difficult to get exactly right, because intensity and sound pressure varies so much. You may have to experiment with condenser microphones for cymbals and low-frequency microphones for the kick drum. Guitars of all types generally work best with condenser microphones, which pick up the most nuance.
Getting your microphone set up just right will go a long way towards making your worship service flawless.
What are your thoughts?
What microphones work best for your church?