Is a phantom power adapter enough?

I wish to begin using Audacity, and maybe synch it with a webcam (which I haven’t purchased yet,) so I can record some classical guitar music for my family and post on YouTube.

I have an old microphone which is a pretty good one. It is an Oktava MK319 condenser microphone. The instructions that came with the mike said I would need a phantom power adapter. So, I have one of those too. It is a Rolls Phantom Power Adapter PB23, and has a switch for 12 volt, and 48 volt.

Does anyone know if this will be enough power to give decent sound levels, or will I need another audio input device?


The Rolls Phantom Power Adapter PB23 will supply phantom power, as required by the Oktava MK319 condenser microphone, but does not provide any amplification to the microphone signal (it is designed to go between a microphone and the mic input of a mixing desk, if the desk does not provide phantom power), so the signal still needs to go into a “microphone level” input so that it can be boosted to give a good level. In theory you ‘could’ use the mic input of your laptop, but mic inputs on laptop PCs are generally crap quality. A better solution would be to use a USB microphone pre-amp with built-in phantom power (for example, an “ART Dual Pre USB”, though many other makes / models are available).

Thanks, Steve.

Looks like I can get the one you suggested, ART Dual Pre USB, on Amazon for $80.00. Although I don’t need two channels, so maybe I can find a single-channel one for even less.

If the price difference between a single channel and a dual channel is not much, then a dual channel device could be worth having in case you want to use a second mic at a later time (Audacity can only access one device at a time. It can’t record from two single channel devices at the same time, but can record two mics from one dual channel device). If you’re on a tight budget, the Behringer USB preamps may be worth a look. One of the things that I like about the ART preamps is that they are housed in a rugged case (most other budget devices have cheap plastic cases).

I’ve been happy with a Behringer UM2 preamp. It seems to work well, supplies 48v phantom power, has headphone monitoring and is certified for overdubbing. And it’s mono, so you don’t have to manage two tracks.


I’m just playing this back in my head. I think they’re back ordered for months. Never mind…


Full Compass says they have it in stock.

Full Compass says they have it in stock.

I’m not entirely comfortable with one supplier who magically claims availability when all the majors are back-ordered.
Worth a shot, though. I’ve pulled out odd equipment purchases that way.


With Behringer, that is quite possible. Retailers have to buy large quantities and still wait their turn. This could mean that most are waiting while one shop just got a delivery.

As an example, Thomann has sold over 2.000 units of the X32 rack version. OK, they are the biggest in Europe, but others are selling that machine too.

And that is the problem with/for Behringer, some of their stuff sells like crazy, some other stuff doesn’t sell at all…