Microphones-How Long Will/Do They Last

general questions, comments and ideas about recording, audio, music, etc.
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newguy12
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Microphones-How Long Will/Do They Last

Post by newguy12 » Mon Apr 05, 2004 11:26 pm

This might be a dumb question but humor me. I know there are tons of mics out there from decades past still floating around in perfect working order but I was curious about some of the midrange-to-budget microphones being manufactured today. Assuming they are well cared for and used properly, will they last a real long time or can I expect my cheap-o chinese condensors or even some of the midrange akg or audio technica stuff to crap out after 5-10yrs?

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Re: Microphones-How Long Will/Do They Last

Post by TapeOpLarry » Tue Apr 06, 2004 12:04 am

They only last a couple of weeks so you should just send them to me when you're done recording...

Mics, if well cared for (not dropped or spit into) will last a good long time. Keep dust off them, keep them protected and put away after use. The biggest destroyer is stands getting knocked over.

I haven't had many probelms with any mics. Blew out a Royer somehow, possibly phantom power error. My Langevin CR-3A had a few problems in the past but has been rocking for a good 6 years now.
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Re: Microphones-How Long Will/Do They Last

Post by newguy12 » Tue Apr 06, 2004 1:15 am

Thanks Larry for the response and thanks for such a great mag. The reason I ask, and I could be wrong but I could have sworn I read a post from Fletcher on one of the ProSoundWeb messageboards discussing how mics like some of the studio project stuff and what not will probably not have the same lifespan of more expensive mics. In addition to owning a couple of cheap-o chinese made condensors I've been looking into buying a few used mics which are 5-10+ years old and I don't want to purchase something and have it die on me in a couple of years.

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Re: Microphones-How Long Will/Do They Last

Post by b3groover » Tue Apr 06, 2004 1:23 am

Well, I have an AKG C3000 that suddenly started to hum for no good reason. Never been dropped, always taken care of. So, who knows?

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DON"T FORGET METAL

Post by New Orleans Steve » Tue Apr 06, 2004 7:39 am

Don't forget small metal particles. ANY small mwtal dust, fileings, or shards will ba atracted INTO Dynamic Mics. I have talked to older guys that rebuild RCA ribons. They have a huge magnet any they tell me how suprised they have been to find WAY more metal particles in those mics that have been in the feild for some time. Just don't saw or work metal anywhere near the mic locker. There could be more sources of these metalic dust that you first think.
I'm always looking for that 'Metal' sound.

Steve
check us out on the web www.frenchmenstreetrecords.com

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Re: Microphones-How Long Will/Do They Last

Post by TapeOpLarry » Tue Apr 06, 2004 9:47 am

I would agree with Fletcher that the cheap Chinese mics wouldn't have the same lifespan as a good mic. Components are cheap and will dry out, burn out sooner. The workmanship is shoddy and bodies will fall apart. Connectors come loose. I'm a bit biased against Chinese stuff in general, as in most cases there's no R&D and little QC. Look for mics by Audio Technica, Shure, Audix etc, for stuff that has been designed and built properly and is affordable.
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Re: Microphones-How Long Will/Do They Last

Post by scarygroover » Tue Apr 06, 2004 11:07 am

My rode nt2 fell apart then stopped working. after I wrote to them and got no response, I wrote back saying I will never buy another rode because of the lack of service. They immediately returned my email and said they would fix it for free. Now that is my kind of service. Plus I like the sound of my rode nt 2.

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Re: Microphones-How Long Will/Do They Last

Post by cgarges » Tue Apr 06, 2004 12:17 pm

The Chinese mics simply might develop problems that are expensive enough to fix that render it "dead." It's one thing to spend $150 getting a fifty year-old AKG fixed, it's another to spend that some amount on a mic that costs $100 to begin with.

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Re: Microphones-How Long Will/Do They Last

Post by wing » Tue Apr 06, 2004 12:31 pm

i have mics from the 40's that still rock me...

man, i can't believe they're like over 40 years older than me :shock:

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Re: Microphones-How Long Will/Do They Last

Post by NewAndImprov » Tue Apr 06, 2004 4:51 pm

b3groover wrote:Well, I have an AKG C3000 that suddenly started to hum for no good reason.
...maybe it forgot the words?

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Re: Microphones-How Long Will/Do They Last

Post by meblumen » Tue Apr 06, 2004 5:04 pm

I've always been hesitant to buy used mics, you never know if it took a big fall or meet with a spilled can of beer or some other mishap but I have a small collection of mics, cheap and not so cheap, several of which are a good 5, 10 years old as well as a couple of mics I picked up in pawn shops and thrift stores which are quite a bit older. Except for a few I picked up at thrift stores here and there which didn't work off the bat, all of my other mics are still going strong. I take good care of them, don't smoke around them, keep them in their cases or covered in plastic when not in use and I store them at a decent temp. I doubt my Oktava's will outlast me but I bought a pair of 219's way back when they were $200 a piece (I know ouch) and both are still kicking so breath a sigh of relief. Besides, if you buy a mic for $100, it would be nice if it lasts forever but if it craps out in 5 years, I'd say you probably got your money's worth. Just my 2 cents.

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