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CardioidSamson MTR101

Cardioid Condenser Microphone

The MTR101 is an inexpensive condenser microphone with a fixed Cardioid pickup pattern and a visually distinctive metal grille.

MTR101 circuitThe mic’s circuit is transformerless. It is implemented with a mix of through-hole and surface-mounted parts. The construction reveals attention to higher standards than is evident in many low-cost models, such as: the input capacitor is a film type, and the high-impedance connection is formed “dead bug” style (with component legs in the air) rather than on the surface of the PCB.

The capsule is described as a “1-inch large diaphragm” design, but this is misleading. The capsule is not a 32–35mm O.D. Braunmuhl-Weber type, as is found in most large-diaphragm microphones. Rather, the MTR100 uses a smaller capsule, with outside diameter of 25mm. It is built like a small-diaphragm design, with a single diaphragm on the front, and a ported rear backplate with center electrode. The assembly is mounted within a rubber harness designed to reduce the sonic impact of mechanical vibration.

The capsule appears to be a Transound TSB-25A electret; see spec sheet linked from sidebar.

In the sample microphone we analysed, the circuit provided approximately 40VDC polarization voltage to the capsule backplate, even though an electret capsule would not need it.

In our inspection of a sample unit, we found the mic to be unusually susceptible to body resonance. Both the mic’s body and grille ring when struck, with a sustained resonance. The mic would appear to benefit from internal damping.

Permalink: Samson MTR101


Pickup Patterns Pads & Filters
Cardioid (22 mV/Pa; 20 - 20,000 Hz)
Capsule Dimensions Impedance SPL/Noise
Diaphragm diameter: 24mm
Capsule diameter: 24mm
50 Ohms (Low) Max SPL: 137 dB
Self-noise: 16.0 dB(A)
Weight Length Max Diameter Interface(s)
460g (16.23oz) 190mm (7.48'') n/a
  • 3-pin XLR male (1)
Power Specifications
  • Requires phantom power
  • Phantom voltage: 48 ± 4v

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