1. Register NOW and become part of this fantastic knowledge base forum! This message will go away once you have registered.

$300 vocal / acoustic mic?

Discussion in 'Vocals' started by EricIndecisive, Aug 10, 2007.

  1. EricIndecisive

    EricIndecisive Active Member

    For acoustic guitar / vocals, should I get:
    A single mic
    A matched pair?
    Condenser over dynamic?

    The mic is strictly for recording purposes

    Hey guys, I know that this fits into 'budget' mics for most of you, but for me it's gonna be more of a high-end one. My firepod came with this AT2020 but even compared to my friends other $100 mic, it doesn't seem so great.

    -The signal - there is a little bit of fuzz. I'm not sure if this is because it's not as good of a connection or because the sound limiting capabilities (like, low end frequencies) are not as good as the other one. The cable is fine.
    -The sound tends to jump quite a bit when I hit certain low notes. It does not seem to have a pretty constant signal, which makes the song sound weird. Lows are too high!

    Sooooo, any help would be much appreciated. I really don't know what to look for.
  2. Sights

    Sights Guest

  3. Sights

    Sights Guest

    I would recommend the Rode mics. They sound great, built well, and well serviced. And "bang for buck" they are way up there.

    Could be your pre, depending on its quality or any other part of the signal chain. You just have to go through a process of elimination.
  4. EricIndecisive

    EricIndecisive Active Member

    Thanks! I will definitely check out Rodes. Bang for the buck is definitely what I'm looking for. Oh, and I figured out the noise. I turned up the volume and realized it was just some ambient noise around. So everything else is good.

    After looking at some Rode microphones, it seems that the Rode NT1A is the way to go, since I don't want to spend more than $300. I will probably end up getting it pretty soon, and from 232 reviews on ZZounds it has an 8/10. Thanks Sights.
  5. AlTheBear

    AlTheBear Guest

    I would say demo a couple of different mics at a local store. Go someplace that will also let you take them home to try and return to see if another one works.

    Depending on your acoustic and voice, I may go with a mic that doesn't have such a boosted top end. I really like the AT4040 in this application.

    As for the lows being boosted. Does this happen at certain low notes you hit or all of them in general? Have you tried recording in a different room and if so are different low notes being boosted? I think that issue may have more to do with the room being untreated than the equipment, but who knows. :)
  6. Mauisnow13

    Mauisnow13 Active Member

    For $300, I'm a fan of the Bluebird.
    Blue Microphones Bluebird | Sweetwater.com

    It works great on vocals and acoustic instruments alike. There have been many mic shootouts on this site in the past, and the one I was most interested in was this vocal/acoustic mic shootout since I was looking for one. This mic came in second out of all of them. First was the AKG C414, a $1000 mic. I thought the Bluebird sounded clearer and warmer than all others. I'll see if I can find that shootout and I'll link it. That way you can listen to them all and hear for yourself.

    IMO, you can't go wrong on it. It's a mic that sounds amazing for the price and it is very flexible in applications.
  7. Mauisnow13

    Mauisnow13 Active Member

  8. GZsound

    GZsound Active Member

    I am a big fan of the CAD M179. I think it is the best bang for the buck mic you can buy. Plus it only costs $200, but I would put it up against just about any mic under a thousand dollars.

    It gets great reviews.
  9. gunsofbrixton

    gunsofbrixton Active Member

    +1 for Rode mics. I have two NT2a and they are very decent and versatile mics.

    But don't count on your new mic solving your problems. The 2020 is not such a bad mic that it would cause the issues you describe. I guess there is another weak link in your signal chain. If you record through a Behringer mixer get rid of this first ;)
  10. vashuba

    vashuba Active Member

    +1 on the bluebird, got one and like. If you have a Mac, i would say get the apogee one. I am looking into it for quick interface
  11. hueseph

    hueseph Well-Known Member

    Not a fan of the Bluebird. I find it, like many of the other cheaper mics, harsh and brittle sounding. I don't mind the AT2020 but it's very limited in usefulness. The NT1 is a decent mic. Studio Projects C1. M-Audio Luna. These are all ok but not great.
  12. djmukilteo

    djmukilteo Well-Known Member

    A Shure SM7B could be had brand new for $350 and probably used for $300!
  13. soapfloats

    soapfloats Well-Known Member

    Since it was my (rather flawed) test that was linked, I'll weigh in.
    Lately I've doing a lot of acoustic/voice work.

    I really like matched SDCs for acoustic guitar. One around the bridge, one around the 12th fret. You know the drill.
    This lets me easily build a stereo mix w/ only voice and guitar.
    The MXL 603s are probably the best, cheap pencil condensers I've found. Cascade M39s are also nice, and a great deal at $150.00 for a pair.
    Lately the Cascades (both the M39s and my Fatheads) are getting a lot of use and becoming favorites of mine.

    Both the BB and the 414 are well-rounded mics. I use them on vocals and as a single mic on guitar (and guitar cabs).
    Of course, the 414 is way out of your range, so we'll disregard that.
    I think the Rode mics would be a great alternative for a quality, single condenser in your range.
    The 4040 is also a nice condenser, but I think you'll get more mileage out of the Rode.

    One caveat - the BB can be a hot mic, and may be too gainy or present for all sources. Also, pairing it w/ the right preamp can make a big difference.

    So, you might be able to stretch your budget a little and get the SDC pair, plus the BB or Rode.
    Also, never underestimate an SM58 on vocals. And that's only a $100 mic.

Share This Page