I have an XLR cable that I am trying to wire directly to a microphone that did have a Micro XLR connected to it. I have cut the male micro XLR's from each side and am left with the following wires -

Lead - Red (2), White (3) Naked (1)

Mic - Red (3), Naked (1)

I am struggling to get these mocked up to produce any sound output. It seems that the lead numbers do not match the corresponding mic numbers or am I wrong?

Thanks, Chris


Originally manufactured as the Cannon X series, by 1950 a locking mechanism was added (Cannon XL)[2] and by 1955[2] a version surrounding the female contacts with a synthetic rubber polychloroprene insulation using the part number prefix XLR. Source: Wikipedia XLR connectors.

The XLR connector is now a standard for balanced microphone connection. In this configuration the microphone capsule is wired to L and R and neither is connected to screen. For an unbalanced microphone one of the mic wires needs to be connected to shield.


simulate this circuit – Schematic created using CircuitLab

Figure 1 and 2 show how to "unbalance" a balanced microphone for an unbalanced input. Figure 3 shows how to connect an unbalanced mic into a balanced input. (Connect one of the L or R pins to shield in the mic plug.)

The circuit assumes a low-Z microphone feeding into a hi-Z amplifier using a transformer for impedance coupling. The transformer is shown for simplicity but can be effected by electronic solutions.


You mention micro XLR connector. I assume these are similar or identical to the Switchcraft Tini-QG connector family?

One supplier of Tini-QG: Full Compass

XLR pin numbers have been standardized to:

p1: Shield

p2: (+)

p3: (-)

This corresponds nicely to the wire colors you mention above: Red is (+) and White is (-).

However, it looks as if the microphone itself is unbalanced.

The normal method of connecting an unbalanced microphone to a balanced input is to short the (-) input lead to the shield connection (p1). This presumes that any phantom power supply for that input has been turned OFF.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Thank you Dwayne. That's correct they are identical to the Switchcraft Tini-QG connector. So to clarify, on the lead I need to short the naked to the white. Then connect the red to the corresponding red? Sorry wiring isn't my strong point - hence asking on here! \$\endgroup\$ – Chris Apr 13 '16 at 14:47
  • \$\begingroup\$ And in that case, what to do with the naked that is coming from the microphone? Thanks! \$\endgroup\$ – Chris Apr 13 '16 at 14:49

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