[Rap Recording] What is the difference between the microphone input and line input on an audio interface?

The difference between “Mic input” and “Line input” on an audio interface primarily relates to signal level and impedance. Here’s a brief explanation of each:

Table of Contents

Mic Input

  • For Low-Level Signals: Mic inputs are designed to receive very low-level signals from microphones. These signals are typically in the range of a few millivolts (mV).
  • High Impedance: Mic inputs have high impedance, designed to capture signals from microphones with as little loss as possible.
  • Phantom Power: For microphones that require an external power source, such as condenser mics, mic inputs can provide phantom power (usually 48V).

Line Input

  • For High-Level Signals: Line inputs are designed to receive signals that have already been somewhat amplified, such as from keyboards, synthesizers, mixers, etc. These signals are typically around 1 volt (V).
  • Low Impedance: Since line-level signals are relatively high, line inputs are designed with lower impedance compared to mic inputs.
  • No Phantom Power Needed: Devices using line inputs generally do not require an external power source.

In essence, mic inputs are for handling very weak signals, and line inputs are for processing stronger signals. Therefore, when using an audio interface, it’s important to select the appropriate input type based on the device you are connecting.