Budget All-Purpose Microphone

general questions, comments and ideas about recording, audio, music, etc.
phantom power
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Re: Budget All-Purpose Microphone

Post by phantom power » Fri May 23, 2003 6:27 am

My pics as far as the mics you mentioned + 2 are as follows:

#1- Beyer m160 ($300 used)
#2- AT 4033 (great mono drum mic and good at just about everything else)
#3- 421
(it kicks ass, but you'll get more variety of uses out of a 4033)
#4- EV 635a
(it's at least usable on anything you put it on and only $75 used, sometimes it's just plain magic)


oh yeah, the only real down fall to the 421 is you'll want more of them as soon as you use one
-AE

headache9
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Re: Budget All-Purpose Microphone

Post by headache9 » Sat May 24, 2003 5:39 pm

I try to use the rode nt1 on stuff all the time & never end up liking it...it was my 1st condenser but I just can't find a good use for it...But the studio projects C1 or an sm57 can pretty much do it all. 2 of each & add a 421 & you are really set for a lot of options. You can pretty much do it all with those mics. I used the c1 on a snare recently & it just rocked my world...it's big though ...the drummer whacked it once & put a dent in it but it's still just fine.

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@?,*???&?
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Re: Budget All-Purpose Microphone

Post by @?,*???&? » Sat May 24, 2003 7:31 pm

The Audio Technica AT4033 is a crap mic. Sounds congested and closed in. I wouldn't recommend it. As for picking up either the Oktava Mk219 or Mk319, I'd have to say no to those as well. Again they are closed in sounding with some kind of weird gauziness that veils the sound of whatever it is you have miked up. The Mk219 in particular is what I would call a 'disposable' condensor mic. At $99, these become candidates for guitar cabinet detail. Blow the capsule? Who cares, buy another one. Double your budget and you'll do well to pick up a Shure KSM32 large diaphragm condensor mic.

Catoogie
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Re: Budget All-Purpose Microphone

Post by Catoogie » Sun May 25, 2003 2:58 am

Jeff,

While I appreciate your descriptions of the things wrong with certain microphones I'm considering, your lack of suggestions (aside from telling me so flippantly to "double your budget") does me absolutely no good what so ever.

Doubling a budget is not always so easily done. At this point, $200 is a lot of money for me and $400 is out of the question. I've read some of your posts and have appreciated your insight on various topics but I can't go with this one bro. There has to be a mic for $200 or under that you deem worthy of buying if you were in my position.

Thanks

bobbydj
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Re: Budget All-Purpose Microphone

Post by bobbydj » Sun May 25, 2003 5:24 am

Amen.
Image

Bobby D. Jones
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(The Crudballs, Tyrone P. Spink, The Fuxx, Shitters, The Geighs...)

JES
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Re: Budget All-Purpose Microphone

Post by JES » Mon May 26, 2003 9:05 am

Hey There,

I was going to recommend the KSM-32 until I saw your budget, though if you wanted to stretch, they can probably be had for about $300 used. The 4033 may be a little closed-in sounding, but that can sound GOOD for many application. You don't always want everything to be super open.

Shure makes a KSM-27 mic that's also cheaper and might be a good choice.

Basically, you've got two options --

1) Go to the local music store (if there is one) and try out a few different mics and see what you like.

2) Get a used AT 4033 or Studio Projects C1, because both are widely recommended and easy to resell, and try it out for awhile. If you liek it, you scored. If you don't, you can sell it and try a different flavor.

Good luck. FWIW, the KSM-32 (which technically speaking is a medium diaphragm condensor) was my first all purpose mic and I love it.

Best,
--JES

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I'm Painting Again
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Re: Budget All-Purpose Microphone

Post by I'm Painting Again » Mon May 26, 2003 5:54 pm

shure ksm27 (~250) i have two and i think they are fantastic!!

or

AT's listed in above postings

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AnalogElectric
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Re: Budget All-Purpose Microphone

Post by AnalogElectric » Mon May 26, 2003 7:52 pm

I've been really surprised with my Audio Technica ATM23HE's. They cut through a bit better than an SM57 or SM58 and are pretty even toned. I've had mine for years, used them for drums, but have found them useful for almost everything else. Beyond that I'd like to add that there really isn't one mic for every application especially when you hear characteristics of other mics. I remember pulling my hair out when I first started recording believing that everything could be recorded with a 57. I thought owning a U47 tube would be the perfect mic for every application also. Not true. There are some mics I find to be more versatile but they also cost more than $200. If you use EQ properly you can use one or two mics for everything but you might discover your recordings are a little blah.

--Adam Lazlo
AnalogElectric Recording
Gilbert, Arizona USA
http://www.analogelectric.com
http://www.myspace.com/adamlazlo

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@?,*???&?
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Re: Budget All-Purpose Microphone

Post by @?,*???&? » Mon May 26, 2003 7:53 pm

The KSM27 is a good mic. Unlike the higher end Shure condensors, it has a peaky presence that works well for vocals, but I can imagine it being a bit edgy on other instruments. Almost like a Beta 58 when compared with the traditional 58. The KSM27 will run you $279 at Guitar Center. Check out the large diaphragm Audio Technica AT3035. You may be impressed with it. On sale at Guitar Center for $199- for me a much better alternative to the AT4033.

Catoogie- I didn't mean to insult you, but I was assuming that you may be making other gear purchases which would allow for some adjustments on other items to get the budget into a better spot for the mic.

rich
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Re: Budget All-Purpose Microphone

Post by rich » Tue May 27, 2003 1:04 am

a cad e-100 is another cheap, versatile, and overlooked mic. they run around 150 on ebay and work fairly well on many sources. the 421 is a pretty safe bet though for the 200$ range. or hell the new BLUE BALL mic is 200$ even, and i doubt blue is going to make a mic that is crap. i think im going to order up one tomorrow.

Catoogie
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Re: Budget All-Purpose Microphone

Post by Catoogie » Tue May 27, 2003 6:27 am

Thanks for your advice everybody! After doing a bit more research and speaking with some other people, I think I'm gonna check out a 421 and the C1.

Jeff, I wasn't offended by your comments, it's cool.

Later

edspyhill
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Re: Budget All-Purpose Microphone

Post by edspyhill » Wed Jun 04, 2003 5:11 pm

Have you tried the Rode NT3 condenser mic? It is a 3/4" diaphram mic. The owner reviews on zZounds.com are mostly raves.

Lostboy
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Re: Budget All-Purpose Microphone

Post by Lostboy » Wed Jun 04, 2003 8:23 pm

i have to second (or is it "fifth" by now?) the plug for the AT4033. i use this on EVERYTHING. i got some amazing sounds on an acoustic guitar with one, nice for vocals, too. i want to get a real expensive mic, but for now, this is superb.

keefer
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PL-20

Post by keefer » Sat Jun 14, 2003 3:58 pm

For the $200 one-mic that you don't have, I'd find a EV PL-20. Sit on E-Bone, bid low and wait (weeks, months..). The one you get will have a dented front screen (no big deal, it just pushes out), scratches/wear, and foam turning to adhesive goo inside. It WILL work and is repairable/supportable.

THRIFT STORES! Take that $200 and spend it just a little at a time.

I have 4 E-V Omni 635a's that were less than $5 each, look rough, but work. RE-50 is a better shock-mount than a 635a, but the same otherwise. No phantom power problems.

Old reel-to-reel decks often have mic's in a pouch that are worth more than the whole deck. Dictaphones came with external microphones.

I have a pair of SONY c. 1960 dynamic cardioid mic's, with 1/8th inch mono plug, that were 50 cents each (at St. Vincent's junk store in pdx) that have output transformers in the hard plastic cubic bodies. They attracted some attention when I had them on the TapeOpCon2 Back Issue table. Decent for a buck.

Panasonic electret mic capsules can be ordered from Digi-Key for less than a buck each. DIY a mic body similar to an Earthworks "probe" mic and you will have fun.

keefer
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PL-20

Post by keefer » Sat Jun 14, 2003 4:03 pm

For the $200 one-mic that you don't have, I'd find a EV PL-20. Sit on E-Bone, bid low and wait (weeks, months..). The one you get will have a dented front screen (no big deal, it just pushes out), scratches/wear, and foam turning to adhesive goo inside. It WILL work and is repairable/supportable.

THRIFT STORES! Take that $200 and spend it just a little at a time.

I have 4 E-V Omni 635a's that were less than $5 each, look rough, but work. RE-50 is a better shock-mount than a 635a, but the same otherwise. No phantom power problems.

Old reel-to-reel decks often have mic's in a pouch that are worth more than the whole deck. Dictaphones came with external microphones.

I have a pair of SONY c. 1960 dynamic cardioid mic's, with 1/8th inch mono plug, that were 50 cents each (at St. Vincent's junk store in pdx) that have output transformers in the hard plastic cubic bodies. They attracted some attention when I had them on the TapeOpCon2 Back Issue table. Decent for a buck.

Panasonic electret mic capsules can be ordered from Digi-Key for less than a buck each. DIY a mic body similar to an Earthworks "probe" mic and you will have fun.

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