How and When to Use a Throat Microphone

When noise is amped up to the max, a mic at the throat can be the best way to convey your own voice.

Pilots who have to communicate their messages in extremely noisy environments frequently use throat microphones. Unlike regular microphones, which pick up sounds via acoustic vibrations in the air, a throat mic attaches directly to the throat so that source of the audio input is the larynx itself. By doing so, the throat microphone conveys a vocal sound that is crystal clear, unimpeded by competing noise and easier to understand.

Understanding the Basics of the Throat Mic

A throat microphone, which filters out acoustical background noise, works by being securely fastened around the neck with transponders that rest on the throat. Also known as mic pickups, the transponders, which are usually used in pairs, make direct contact with the throat. A throat strap is fastened at the back of the neck, and one or sometimes two ear pieces are placed in the ear. It may take a little bit of trial and error to locate the perfect spot on your neck for the transducers to work optimally, since every neck has a unique shape and contour and everyone's Adam's apple is a different size.

Once the microphone's output cable is plugged into the transmitting or receiving device, you're ready to start communicating by using your throat with no "middle man." The mic cable goes into the audio input port if you are plugging it into a computer or a cell phone or smart phone.

The PTT (push to talk) button is used to talk on the microphone. If you are using a wireless microphone, to receiving device should be tuned to the broadcasting frequency that is found either in the manual or right on the microphone's box. The frequency of each throat microphone is unique.