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Microphones On A Budget

 
       
 
Feb 18, 2005, 04:06 AM

I am looking to purchase a vocal microphone for a recording project. I have about $200.00 to spend. Any thoughts or advice from people? This will not be used for outside gigs and not for an instrument.

A few friends have suggested the Shure series SM58 or SM57, but I seem to get mixed reviews. Some have said the SM57 is for instruments, but actually puts out great vocals. There also is a new Beta series coming out within the budget.

Thanks in advance for any help or suggestions.

 
     
Patrick Griffin Joined Jul 15, 2004
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Feb 18, 2005, 09:53 AM

I have both a 57 and 58. Both are good mics, but for vocals a 58 is better (in my opinion). The 58 is omni-directional and picks up sound from anywhere in front of it. With the 57, you have to be right in front of the mic, singing right into it. If you are performing, I recommend the 58, it is a classic mic, tried trusted and tough. But if you are recording, check out some of the condenser mics, and large diaghram options. I have an Apex mic (not sure of the model off-hand) and it is a large diaghram vocal mic, a big black mic that sits in a “nest” (the elastic cage-housing to minimize bumps and noise) and it is very affordable. I paid $170 Canadian for it and though there are better mics out there if you spend more, this mic gives a really nice range of frequency, with nice high end and rich tone. I have read reviews on it that say you are getting a lot of value in the mic for what you spend. However, for stage, or jamming, it will feed back much more when levels are up. It picks up everything. Note, like all condensers, it needs phantom power - so it will only work if your PA or recording rig will supply phantom power to it.

wes

 
     
wes pohl Joined Feb 08, 2005
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Feb 18, 2005, 05:54 PM

If you are intending to RECORD vocals, for about $200 dolars i suggest you check out Behringers condenser microphones. They have the B1 and B2 pro between $100 and $150. I have a B1 and it’s a wonderul microphone within it’s price range, spend the remaining amount on a standalone phantom power supply for cheap (eg: rolls PB23 for about $40). check [url=http://www.musiciansfriend.com]http://www.musiciansfriend.com[/url] Good Luck and Have fun. Oh also chek out Kel Audio microphones. I haven’t used these yet but I’ve read some reviews and they may be worth a listen too!!

 
     
Richard Kasika Joined Jun 09, 2004
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Feb 24, 2005, 11:21 PM

Actually you can’t go too wrong with a mic, I myself use a Rhode NT 2, and it’s been great. You can actually get away with a decently priced mic, but make sure you get a really good preamp to go with, regardless of whether is a condensor or dynamic mic. There are a lot of mic brands to choose from and they all have different characteristics, the key is to find the one that fist teh dynamic of your voice and budget. I would suggest going to your local guitar center or professional audio store and speaking with a rep, there is also another company you can deal with out of Indiana whose salespeople are also professional producer’s etc. Their website is [url=http://www.sweetwater.com]http://www.sweetwater.com,[/url] the key, as I said before, is to find the right one for YOU. We can suggest all day long, but you have to live with your purchase.

Good luck!

 
     
michael white Joined Jan 13, 2005
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Mar 01, 2005, 04:03 AM

Patrick,

if you still can’t decide, you can rent mics for a pretty reasonable price. Try a few out to see which suits your style best. Also, A lot of music stores have sound booths where you can plug in different mics and compare them. Compare condenser vs dynamic, and compare different price ranges. You will be surprised that some of the inexpensive mics do sound pretty good!

wes

 
     
wes pohl Joined Feb 08, 2005
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Mar 01, 2005, 08:21 AM

Geeze, don’t know a thing about mics, except that I bought some NADY mics from Musicians Friend for $20.00. They came as a set: boom mic stand (absolutely heavy duty stands!), mic clips, cord (though the cord was only 20’), and they sound great. I mean GREAT! So good infact that I’m going on line right now and purchase 6 more.

 
     
labhriunn maciain Joined Nov 22, 2004
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Mar 08, 2005, 07:55 PM

I have three of those NADY $20 mics and I love them!  Run them up through a good preamp and you’re golden.  Of course it’s not going to sound like a U87, but a solid dynamic mic and preamp go a long way for the buck.

 
     
bemo Joined Mar 08, 2005
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Mar 08, 2005, 08:47 PM

Try the Marshall MXL family of mics…  These are condensers so you will need some sort of phantom power, but for the price they are GREAT.  The 2 large diaphram Marshalls I have are as close to the U87s of the world as I have ever used.  The 990 I have came with a hardshell case and another small diaphram mic, that I can’t rember the model number on, and was only $99 at Guitar Center ... 

If you don’t have a way to use phantom power the sm58 or 57 will work for vocals, the biggest differance is that the 58 comes with the “wind screen”(which can be helpful when recording vocals), other than that they are basicly the same mic. 

 
     
Sam Corson Joined Mar 08, 2005
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Jun 01, 2005, 05:10 AM

check out the Shure Beta 87 A. I think new they’re around 189 bucks street price. My brother says it makes his voice sound like the Neumann u 67 he used in the studio. Of course, the mic is only the first part of the signal chain….

 
     
Mike Cousino Joined Mar 29, 2005
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Jun 01, 2005, 06:26 PM

Hey! Guys, I’m looking for a portastudio. Something that is self explanatory. I saw a couple one was a Tascam and Fostex. Does anyone have any suggestions?
Regina

 
     
REGINA LYNN WASHINGTON Joined Mar 22, 2005
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Jun 01, 2005, 07:49 PM

You’ll be happy with the Audio Technica 3035…promise.  Just make sure you have a decent pre-amp. It runs right under $200.00.

-Josh

 
     
Josh 14 Joined May 16, 2005
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Jun 01, 2005, 07:50 PM

Thanks,
Regina

 
     
REGINA LYNN WASHINGTON Joined Mar 22, 2005
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Jun 01, 2005, 09:26 PM

Regina:
  I have the Tascam 4-track that works fine and is under $100. I think the Fostex is probably just as good though.

Steve West

 
     
Steve West Joined May 07, 2005
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Jun 02, 2005, 04:11 PM

Thanks, Steve I’m going to see what I can do.
Regina

 
     
REGINA LYNN WASHINGTON Joined Mar 22, 2005
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