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I bought a Sony ECMCS3 lavalier mic, but I can't use it with my Mac because it's not powered. What do I need to buy to make it work? Ideally it should be portable, and cost less than $30.

If this is not possible, what are some good options for amateur-quality mics for video recording?

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If you are happy with basic soldering they are straight-forward to make cheaply as are no more than a battery to supply DC power and a capacitor to block the power getting to your PC

One typical circuit can be found in the following topic

https://electronics.stackexchange.com/questions/25229/do-electret-condenser-microphones-require-phantom-power

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  • Thanks, but I don't think I'd feel comfortable doing this – nachocab Apr 16 '14 at 3:31
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Could you not use a small portable recorder such as the Zoom H1, then transfer the recordings to the mac via USB? Zoom H1

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You need something that can supply 'plug in power'. Most recorders can do this so there are not many devices around. Often people make their own.

There are some on ebay for £15ish. I think your mic is stereo, so make sure you get one capable of that.

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