mic/preamp choice to beef up breathy vocals

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subbots
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mic/preamp choice to beef up breathy vocals

Post by subbots » Mon Sep 12, 2011 1:33 pm

My singing voice is in the line of Siobahn De Mare from the UK band Mono. It tends not to cut through so well on the higher register. I'm working on my technique but also I'd like to have a mic that's less sibilant and would be able to add a little beef on the mids. My current set up: AT-ATM33a (cheap hypercardioid) through a Firepod. I also track drums so ideally mics that excel as vocal and OH (I use At4031s right now)? Style of music is dream-pop, trip-pop, electronica....
Which of the following options should I go for?

At4060
T-funken AK 47
Cascade Fathead
Rode NTK
Neve 1073 DPA
UA 2-610
GR MPV-2
Chandler TG-2
Avalon 2022

Other suggestions are totally welcome. Thanks for your help!
confound the mighty with your weakness.

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kittonian
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Post by kittonian » Mon Sep 12, 2011 1:50 pm

The A Designs Pacifica would be my best recommendation. We just did a test between a Neve 1073 and the Pacifica and found the difference to be quite small (within 10%). If you figure that with the Pacifica you get two channels for under $2k and are paying over $3k for a single 1073 module and still have to purchase the rack and power supply on top of that, it becomes a very easy decision.

Here's a link:
http://www.audiolot.com/proaudio/sales/products?id=321
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kslight
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Post by kslight » Mon Sep 12, 2011 4:10 pm

Shure SM7 and Chandler TG. Also like the Shure KSM44 for LDC...

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Post by Producer/Engineer » Mon Sep 12, 2011 5:45 pm

+1 on the Pacifica! Add a ADK custom shop TC47AU and it will meet your listed wishes. Awesome combination!

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losthighway
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Post by losthighway » Mon Sep 12, 2011 6:25 pm

It's hard to recommend a mic for a voice you've never heard.

That said, the mics that I have used with the greatest success on the greatest variety of voices are SM7 and Groove Tubes Md1a. 4047's can be cool, pretty reliable.

A friend of mine spent the dough on the Telefunken you mentioned and ended up selling it within a few months. I've never tried it personally. It is quite a bit pricier than the other ones on your list. I've heard good things about Bock and Charter Oak mics in that price range. Again, never used one... kinda out of my league there.

Of the pres you've mentioned I've only used a Great River, but I will say that it sounds great.

Another thing to think about for vocals is compression. The kind of compressor(s), amount of compression etc can effect the way your vocals come across. I can make a vocal stay put with a plugin, but hardware comps seem to have more power to make vocals feel different.

I like something transparent on the way in just pushing back at like 2:1 squeezing it down a couple db. When it's time to mix I like the sound of a vari-mu compressor working a lot harder. I sometimes put up a plugin to keep the playback clear. The minute I put the plugin away and send the vocals through a nice outboard box, I start seeing the singer's eyes light up. Like "Dude, what did you do? That sounds awesome."

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Nick Sevilla
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Post by Nick Sevilla » Tue Sep 13, 2011 6:49 am

Have you tried :

Reducing the midrange you miss on your vocal from the other instruments?

Changing your arrangements to make more room for your voice?

Panning instruments so they are out of the way of your vocal?

Using EQ when you are tracking, to get the vocal sound you need for the song committed to tape?

Using less compression(related to the comment on too much sibilance).

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jgimbel
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Post by jgimbel » Tue Sep 13, 2011 7:40 am

kittonian wrote:The A Designs Pacifica would be my best recommendation. We just did a test between a Neve 1073 and the Pacifica and found the difference to be quite small (within 10%). If you figure that with the Pacifica you get two channels for under $2k and are paying over $3k for a single 1073 module and still have to purchase the rack and power supply on top of that, it becomes a very easy decision.

Here's a link:
http://www.audiolot.com/proaudio/sales/products?id=321
I'm surprised to hear about the Pacifica sounding so similar to the Neve! I see people mention the Pacifica all the time but not usually in reference to Neve-sounding units. I've been set on getting a BAE 1073MP, but thinking of maybe getting two channels now instead, and since they're a similar price I can't not consider the Pacifica!
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red cross
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Post by red cross » Tue Sep 13, 2011 6:12 pm

A Coles 4038 into a UA610 is still my favourite combo for beefing up 'thin' or really bright sounding sources. Sounds like thunder on overheads as well...

fuzz
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Post by fuzz » Wed Sep 14, 2011 5:55 am

If the vocals are really breathy then I'd say Beta 52. If not and its just sounding thin, then get closer to the mic.

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Recycled_Brains
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Post by Recycled_Brains » Wed Sep 14, 2011 8:41 am

Whatever you decide, just make sure you buy it from Kittonian. :roll:

I like Daking preamps. The EQ is great. A little boost in the low mids does the trick for me quite often. The lowpass filter is super handy for reducing unwanted sibilance and brightness, without making things sound dull. Very flexible. The preamp alone adds a nice thickness to the midrange.
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joninc
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Post by joninc » Thu Sep 15, 2011 12:31 pm

i am listening to the song "waves" on the mono site which i think is the regular singer (not a guest vocalist)

to my ears - this is more like a brighter open top ended mic. i'd recommend a peluso P12. i have one and i love it - it looks like the cheaper LDC made in china and it is bright, but it's not harsh and spitty like a lot of crappy ones are. much smoother - you still might find yourself de-essing a bit but it's a really nice sounding mic. i find myself using it a lot when i want sparkle on top and esp with a lot of female vocalists.

for pres i am sure most would sound fine but i have noticed mine pairs really well with chandler germ or great river. follow that with an opto comp (i like the adl or distressor). BINGO!

the 47 style mics are more rich in the lower mids and a little rounded at the top - that will have the effect of thickening a bit but it won't necessarily make the higher stuff punch out more.
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subbots
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Post by subbots » Tue Sep 20, 2011 10:28 am

joninc wrote:i am listening to the song "waves" on the mono site which i think is the regular singer (not a guest vocalist)
I didn't know there's another band in UK named Mono..:D I was referring to this one:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V2aa1tEh82I
confound the mighty with your weakness.

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