Sounds are made from vibrations. Microphones pick up vibrations and change them into electrical signal which speakers translate them back into sounds.
Microphones might seem like complicated pieces of technology but it doesn’t take much to build one of your own. You can put together a simple microphone with the graphite stripped out of a number two pencil and tiny matchbox.
Make a microphone out of a matchbox and pencil leads. Listen to sounds and music from the other side of the house using this DIY microphone. This is just a simple audio electronics project!
You’ll only need a few other things to finish the project—like a 9-volt battery, some basic wires, alligator clips, and a speaker or pair of headphones. Just remove the graphite from your pencils extremely carefully, scrape a flat side on each piece, place them in the matchbox as demonstrated, and you’re ready to wire it all up. It may not be as nice as a studio mic, but it works surprisingly well!
Pretty incredible, huh?!
Watch how this guy poked 4 holes in a matchbox to make something AMAZINGLY UNBELIEVABLE!
This is an example of a “variable resistance” microphone which was commonly used in early telephones (such as the Carbon Microphone). The piece of pencil lead sitting on top of the two supporting leads vibrates with the matchbox which acts as the variable resistor. Modern production microphones do not use this technique for capturing sound, instead relying on magnets or charged electrical plates.