Static discharge through a microphone on a pulpit

FAQ #3137 Updated January 08, 2010


What can be done about static popping that occurs when the minister walks across the stage floor and touches the mic? He wears a robe and leather shoes. The problem gets worse during cold weather when the humidity is lower. The mic cable, the shielding, and the floor plate are all OK.


The problem is static electricity. When it is cold, the heat is on and the air dries up. A person walks up to the microphone on carpet, builds up a charge on his body, and the charge is discharged through the microphone because the mic's metal body is grounded via the mic cable.


FYI - All wired mics are grounded via the mic cable.

A wireless mic would not typically have this problem as it is not grounded. Though a static discharge can occur if the wireless mic body has a substantially lower charge potential than the body of the person touching the mic. 

A foam windscreen placed grill might help stop the static from discharging through the mic grill, though touching the mic body will still cause a discharge.

Try an anti-static mat placed on the floor near the mic that will discharge the static when a person stands on it. Or a grounded metal touch plate on the lectern that will also discharge the static build-up.


Adding a humidifier near the microphone can ease static build-up. 

Finally, not touching the mic will end this problem.

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