The U 87 Ai Condenser Microphone from Neumann is a large dual-diaphragm condenser microphone. It features three directional patterns, including omnidirectional, cardioid and figure-8. These are selectable with a switch below the head grille and the window above this switch shows the symbol of the selected characteristic. A 10 dB attenuation switch is located on the rear. It enables the microphone to handle sound pressure levels up to 127 dB without distortion. The low frequency response can be reduced to compensate for proximity effect.
The U 87 Ai is used as a main microphone for orchestra recordings, as a spot microphone for single instruments, and extensively as a vocal microphone for all types of music and speech.