LowZ, HiZ, XLR, 1/4"...


New member
I just borrowed a friend's Radio Shack "female HiZ 1/4" to male LowZ XLR" adapter. This thing does not do anything useful.

I tried with
two professional microphones
one cheap crappy microphone,
an XLR F to XLR M cable,
and XLR F to 1/4" cable without a Radio Shack adapter,
and then that same cable with the Radio Shack adapter

going into the XLR inputs on the 424mkIII,
going straight into the 1/4" inputs on the 424mkIII
going into the XLR inputs on the 424mkIII using the Radio Shack adapter.

The best sounding was the good mics to all XLR cable to XLR inputs.
Second best was the good mics XLR to 1/4" into the 1/4" inputs.
Third the good mic XLR to 1/4" to adapter to XLR inputs. But this was quite inferior than not using the adapter.

I figured that the 1/4" F on the adapter was a HiZ input and was not best for the LowZ mics.

enter the cheap crappy mic.

Even this HiZ mic sounded better without the Radio Shack adapter. In every case the adapter made the signal weaker, resulting in poorer sound.

The adapter could be messed up but I assume it is not.

What are these adapters for, and are your experiences with these adapters more positive?
Hey S8-N, on the 8th day, god created DI!!!

You have yourself there a very cheap DI box. Mostly made to plug an instrument into the console via the audio snake (Balenced signals can travel quite a bit farther before they deteriorate). In that way it works ok. But for turning a HiZ mic into a LowZ mic, well, the transformer in there is a little too cheap to do this in anyway that sounds good. It IS a cheap transformer, and transformers of any kind will phase distort a signal to a certain degree. That is why when you run the cheapy mic through it, it doesn't sound as good as well you plug cheese mic directly into the console. Throw the thing in your little box of things that you will probably never use in recording and maybe one day it will be a interesting topic starter.