General Description

The Shure® KSM141 is a premium, end-address, condenser microphone with a unique rotating collar that allows for easy switching between a highly consistent cardioid or true omnidirectional polar pattern. Its class A, discrete, transformerless preamplifier captures an extremely transparent sound, and a three-position attenuation switch and low-cut filter allow for handling of extremely high sound pressure levels (SPL) and controlled bass response. An ultra-thin, 24-karat gold-layered diaphragm and superior build quality make the KSM141 ideal for studio use, yet rugged enough for the most demanding live applications.


  • A mechanical polar pattern switch for highly consistent cardioid and true omnidirectional polar patterns, providing flexibility in a wide variety of recording and performance applications.
  • Ultra-thin, 2.5 μm 24-karat gold-layered, low-mass Mylar® diaphragm for superior transient response.
  • Class A, discrete, transformerless preamplifier for transparency, extremely fast transient response, no crossover distortion, and minimal harmonic and inter-modulation distortion.
  • Premium electronic components, including gold-plated internal and external connectors.
  • Subsonic filter eliminates low-frequency rumble (less than 17 Hz) caused by mechanical vibration.
  • Three-position attenuation switch (0 dB, 15 dB, and 25 dB) for handling extremely high SPLs.
  • Three-position low-frequency filter switch reduces stand vibration noise and counteracts proximity effect.

Performance Characteristics

  • Extremely uniform polar response
  • Extended frequency response
  • Minimal self-noise
  • Exceptional low-frequency reproduction
  • Able to withstand high SPLs
  • High output level
  • No crossover distortion
  • Superior common-mode rejection and suppression of radio frequency interference (RFI)

Model Variations

This microphone can be purchased as a stereo pair (KSM141/SL STEREO). In addition to the standard accessories, the stereo pair includes a stereo stand adapter (A27M) for mounting two microphones on one stand.


  • Brass and woodwind instruments
  • Orchestras, choirs, and wind ensembles
  • Overhead miking of drums and percussion instruments
  • Close-miking of acoustic instruments such as piano, guitar, violins, drums, and percussion
  • Low-frequency instruments such as double bass and kick drum
  • Electric guitar and bass amplifiers
  • Vocals and speech
  • Room ambience

    Note: Sound quality is strongly affected by microphone location and room acoustics. To achieve the best overall sound for a particular application, it may be necessary to experiment with microphone placement and room treatments.

Power Requirements

This microphone requires phantom power and performs best with a 48 Vdc supply (IEC-61938). However, it will operate with slightly decreased headroom and sensitivity with supplies as low as 11 Vdc.

Most modern mixers provide phantom power. You must use a balanced microphone cable: XLR-to-XLR.

Mounting the Microphone

Use the supplied microphone mount with floor or boom stands. Visit for more mounting options:

  • To reduce the pickup of unwanted low-frequency mechanical vibrations, use an isolating shock mount.
  • For stereo applications, use the optional Shure A27M Stereo Microphone Adapter.

Selecting Low-Frequency Response

A three-position switch on the back of the microphone lets you adjust the low-frequency response. Use the low-frequency filter to reduce wind noise, room noise, or proximity effect.

Flat response. Provides the most natural sound in most applications.

Low frequency cutoff. Provides an 18 dB-per-octave cutoff at 80 Hz. Helps eliminate floor rumble and low-frequency room noise from heating and air conditioning systems. This setting may also be used to compensate for proximity effect or to reduce low frequencies that make an instrument sound dull or muddy.

Low frequency rolloff. Provides a 6 dB-per-octave rolloff filter at 115 Hz. Use this to compensate for proximity effect or to reduce low frequencies that could make an instrument sound dull or muddy.

Frequency chart for the microphone comparing the three frequency responses

Setting Attenuation

The attenuation switch lets you reduce the signal level without altering the frequency response. This can prevent extremely loud sounds from overloading the microphone circuitry.

0 dB For "quiet" to "normal" sound levels.

−15 dB For use with extremely loud sound sources such as drums, horns, or loud guitar cabinets.

−25 dB For use with in close proximity (less than 10 cm) to extremely loud sound sources such as drums, horns, or loud guitar cabinets.

Load Impedance

Maximum SPL capability, output clipping level, and dynamic range vary with the input load impedance of the preamplifier to which you connect the microphone. Shure recommends a minimum input load impedance of 1000 Ω. Most modern microphone preamplifiers meet this requirement. Higher impedance results in better performance for these specifications.

Selecting a Polar Pattern

To select either the cardioid or omnidirectional polar pattern, rotate the knurled ring on the microphone in either direction until you feel a detent. The image of the desired polar pattern should be directly above the notch at the base of the ring.

Note: Operating the microphone in a non-detent position (no polar pattern selected) will produce an unpredictable polar pattern and may adversely affect frequency response.

Cardioid. When this pattern is selected, the microphone picks up sounds directly in front of the microphone and is least sensitive to those in back. This is the most commonly used pattern in studio recording and live-sound applications.

Omnidirectional. Picks up sounds from all directions. This pattern is best for picking up room ambience and for miking several sources, such as an ensemble or multiple singers, simultaneously. The omnidirectional polar pattern exhibits no proximity effect.

Caution: Rotating the polar pattern switch produces mechanical noise which, when amplified, may damage the loudspeakers. Turn down any loudspeakers or mute the microphone at the mixing console before changing the polar pattern.

Stereo Pair Stand Adapter

Stereo microphone techniques give depth and spatial placement to sound sources for broadcasting, recording, or sound reinforcement applications. The Shure A27M allows you to mount two microphones on a single stand with a wide range of angles and vertical separations for a variety of coincident and closely-spaced stereo configurations.

The stand adapter and two mics


  1. Adjust the vertical separation as shown.
  2. Mount on a stand and attach microphones using 5/8"-27 thread stand adapters.
  3. Adjust the microphone angle using the knurled knob. Use the 45 degree reference marks at the top of the knob to set the desired angle.

Installing mics on the adapter

Stereo Techniques

The following table displays the most common stereo techniques. Keep in mind that microphone technique is largely a matter of personal taste; there is no one “correct” microphone position. For more information, search “Stereo Techniques” at (

Mics positioned at 90, 110, and 135 degrees for stereo sound capture.


Cartridge Type

Electret Condenser

Polar Pattern

Cardioid, Omnidirectional (selectable)

Frequency Response

20 to 20,000 Hz

Output Impedance

150 Ω


open circuit voltage, @ 1 kHz, typical

–37 dBV/Pa[1] (14.1  mV)

Maximum SPL

1 kHz at 1% THD[2]

PAD ON 5000 Ω load 170 dB
2500 Ω load 164 dB
1000 Ω load 159 dB
PAD OFF 5000 Ω load 145 dB
2500 Ω load 139 dB
1000 Ω load 134 dB

Signal-to-Noise Ratio[3]

80 dB

Dynamic Range

@ 1 kHz

5000 Ω load 131 dB
2500 Ω load 125 dB
1000 Ω load 120 dB

Clipping Level

20 Hz to 20 kHz, 1% THD

5000 Ω load 15 dBV
2500 Ω load 9 dBV
1000 Ω load 3 dBV

Self Noise

equivalent SPL, A-weighted, typical

14 dB SPL-A

Common Mode Rejection

10 to 100,000 kHz

≥50 dB

Attenuator Switch

0 , -15 , -25  dB

Low-Frequency Filter Switch

Flat, –6 dB/octave below 115 Hz, or –18 dB/octave below 80 Hz


Three-pin professional audio (XLR), male, balanced


Positive pressure on diaphragm produces positive voltage on pin 2 with respect to pin 3

Power Requirements

11–52 V DC[4] phantom power (IEC-61938)

4.7 mA, maximum

Net Weight

156 g (5.5  oz.)

[1] 1 Pa=94 dB SPL

[2]THD of microphone preamplifier when applied input signal level is equivalent to cartridge output at specified SPL

[3]S/N ratio is the difference between 94 dB SPL and equivalent SPL of self noise, A-weighted

[4]All specifications measured with a 48 Vdc phantom power supply. The microphone operates at lower voltages, but with slightly decreased headroom and sensitivity.

A dimension drawing of the KSM141

Overall Dimensions

Cardioid polar pattern and frequency chart for KSM141


Omnidirectional polar pattern and frequency charts for KSM141



Furnished Accessories

Carrying Case for two KSM137 or KSM141 microphones and A27M stereo bar A100C
Foam Windscreen for KSM141 and KSM137 A100WS
Microphone Clip for AMS26, BETA181, KSM137, KSM141, MX412, MX418, MX412S, MX418S, MX412SE, MX418SE, SM62, SM63, SM63L, SM63LB, SM81, VP64, VP64A, VP64AL and standard microphone stands A57F
Stereo Microphone Adapter A27M

Optional Accessories

Isolation Mount/Swivel Adapter for KSM109, KSM137, KSM141, SM63, SM81, SM94 and VP64 A53M
Popper Stopper® Pop Filter with Metal Gooseneck and Microphone Stand Clamp PS-6

Note: KSM141/SL stereo only.


This product meets the Essential Requirements of all relevant European directives and is eligible for CE marking.

The CE Declaration of Conformity can be obtained from:

Authorized European representative:

Shure Europe GmbH

Headquarters Europe, Middle East & Africa

Department: EMEA Approval

Jakob-Dieffenbacher-Str. 12

75031 Eppingen, Germany

Phone: +49-7262-92 49 0

Fax: +49-7262-92 49 11 4


Trademark Notices: The circular S logo, the stylized Shure logo, and the word, “Shure” are registered trademarks of Shure Incorporated in the United States. “SHOCKSTOPPER” is a trademark of Shure Incorporated in the United States. “Mylar” is a registered trademark of E.I. DuPont de Nemours and Company in the United States. These marks may be registered in other jurisdictions.

Patent Notice: Patent Des. 478,068