Shure Unidyne


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First Single-Cartridge Unidirectional Microphoone

Released to the world in 1939, the Shure Unidyne Microphone offered a unidirectional, cardioid pick-up pattern without using two diaphragms.  Through acoustic signal processing, the diaphragm was made part pressure, and part velocity transducer.  All cardioid moving coil dynamic microphones today are descendants of this innovation.

The capsule design was largely the  work of clever engineer Benjamin Bauer.  The exterior look was inspired by the 38 Pontiac.


Here’s a quick video of the first 7 prototypes — the actual prototypes from the lab — that led to the microphone we still use today.



And here’s the deco grille that helped make a microphone an icon.

Shure Unidyne 38 Pontiac


Shure has a detailed timeline of the product, showing that it has changed little in almost a century.