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Auditioning Mics For New Record

Discussion in 'Microphones' started by Davedog, Apr 12, 2005.

  1. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    Hiyall...Tomorrow, the SpitBoys start basic tracking for the new record, "Wudge Ya Expect?"..We're going to be looking at several mics in the next month as we put down the guide vocals.This time instead of the 58 in the guest bath, we're going to be searching out sounds as well as mic performance. First up will be the ADK Area51 TT. This is a tube mic with a remote pattern and power supply box.I havent gotten to the pres yet so most likely it will be through the console pres...Ghost with a bit of extra voltage present.More than likely at recording the real tracks it'll be Focusrite 7 or an API 512.' though our mixdown and mastering studio has recently gotten a UA 2-610 and also a mono channel of this pre.
    Anyway, so far after warm up, this mic sounds real personal...up close and inyer face. I have a vocal booth so an omni setting and lots of gain may work well.So far its very warm and NO NOISE!

    I'll be using it on the accordians too so it will be some variety...mostly looking at vocals this time around...Until then....Keep it Clean!

  2. T-Slice

    T-Slice Guest

    What do you know about the PPA LD2ube?
    Hows it measure up against other expensive-r mics?
    Just curious, I need a new warm quality vocal mic, and I only got $350.
  3. poprocks

    poprocks Guest

    I've heard good things about the CAD m9.
  4. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    All-righty...So I've lived with the ADK Area 51 TT for over a week now.I've recorded several acoustic guitar tracks,and I've done a couple of vocal tracks...one of my voice on a demo tape for live bookings, and one as guide vocal for the record project.

    They're really not kidding when they recommend this mic for acoustic instruments,and while it did have just a touch of 'boom' to it(as all LD condensers seem to have on acoustic guitars),a small amount of cut EQ in the 140 hz range tamed it nicely and made it sound like your ear was right at the sweet spot of the guitar. Guitar is a Taylor 414CE.Its not a boomy guitar at all, and is very very even in its response.This mic warms up the sound of this guitar greatly and I'm still only using the Ghost pres!I recorded four tracks of the same(relatively!!) guitar track and I did NOT notice in buildup in frequencies between the tracks.A good thing for doubling with confidence.

    Vocally, I replaced a lead vocal track on The Dixie Wrecked demo.Its one of our little medleys we like to do for the club owners.Why put on a whole song when a simple little medley arrangement gets you four or five of your strong numbers, and they arent forced to fast forward,sit through a bunch of noodling,or simply get disinterested fast?!This one has six rock favorites on it so theres a variety of songs to sing a bit of ..This mic allowed the vocal to stand out with an already busy and guitar heavy arrangement.It was easy!And the mix went so basic.Find the levels...hit play and record on the CD burner......NEXT!

    For the album, I'm looking for a signature sound for our singer.The first Spitboys record,"Spank That Monkey(and other love songs)" had a good vocal sound but it could always be better.Thus the demo of this mic.(there will be more) Its a real warm and detailed mic with no hyped upper end like a lot of Chinese capsuled mics are.And while I'm certainly no expert on vintage mics, it has that sound and flavor of some that I've heard.I used zero EQ for his voice and since we have a bit of a booth situation, I was able to use the omni setting which lent itself to an area sound as well as no proximity effect. I sang my parts through it in a click off cardioid,(its got nine patterns remotely controlled) and also found this mic to have a very negligible PE bump.It meant you would be able to work this mic dramatically without having to add much to your chain for control.

    At a street of right at a grand this thing is the real deal.On a par with the Soundelux U195 though not as crisp since there is a tube involved with the ADK.

    I'll have another mic next week or so and when I get a decent track where we're all actually hitting the same notes, I'll post a blurb. Peace out...........dadogg.

    this is not an official review,just my impressions.For those looking at a vocal/versatile mic in this price range, its definately one to consider.
  5. maintiger

    maintiger Well-Known Member

    we must hear this puppy soon 8)
  6. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    Its update time. The ADK Area51 TT performed very admirably.A very very good mic for a budget studio that still wants to spring a bit for a top notch vocal and instrument mic.The tube does what its supposed to do...ie:warms it all up nicely.The vocal takes with this thing were smooth and even.A nice chesty kind of tone.Not hyped highs or upper mids.It kept all of its clarity even when EQ was applied and also effects.It takes EQ quite well and doesnt seem to have a huge build-up in multiple tracks.Again...My recommendations on this are to get one and try it.

    The next mic is here now as well as something that is a big surprise. Our next test mic is the ADK Hamberg model.This is a street of around $300 so I'm very interested to see if it measures up to the comments I've read online about its tonal pedigree.I will be doing the same tracks vocally and will be able to A/B all mics were testing... .they'll all go down side by side, same songs, so it should give us a fair idea what were gonna want on the project.

    The surprise is an unopened and as yet unheard Groove Tubes Brick.My audio pro says, "Yeah just got that in and need some opinions to see whether I want to carry em ...Take it home and try it..." He's got the Vipre sitting on HIS desk,so I will get a shot at it too.I'll be interested to hear the Brick.Same songs...same scenario. Again...not an official review...just my thoughts and opinions and some color commentary regarding our search for gear to enhance our next album project.We figure, were rehearsing the songs for recording, were doing arrangement ideas and trying different speeds and such, why not the gear too.

    We'll also be using the KSM44,Audio Technica 4047 and 4050,Neumann TLM 127 and TLM170.....

    Pres will include the Brick,Vipre,UA 620 and 2-610,Avalon 2022,and Vintech a73i.

    If we decide to track some things in the big room we'll get API 512,Focurite 7,True Systems,TLA British tube Strip,and others.

    Now, on with the FUN!!
  7. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    Nice to see my little diatribe about mics is getting some hits. Here's the latest....We havent given the Hamberg a fair shaking yet ..on simple voice checking through the Genelecs, it sounds very upfront and present without being too hyped.Again, this seems to be a trait associated with ADK in general.

    The Brick. I wont go into too much detail as I know Kurt is preparing a review.I've only used it as a bass DI so far....a couple of passes is all....and it is real.On a par with the Avalon U5 DI box but no tone contours.The tracks were taken direct to the recorder the Ghost was playback only.I used it as a simple DI only...instrument input blah blah etc...The detail is quite stunning.Sort of an Oh-gosh-darn kinda thing.It did NOT surprise me at all. I've personally heard a ViPre in action and this is definately one of the settings of a ViPre.Thats it for now from The Clubhouse Studio....Keep it Reel.....Now back to your regularly scheduled program......Take it away Beee-atch
  8. maintiger

    maintiger Well-Known Member

    another plug for the brick- darn, I see mah wallet opening again sooner than later... :eek:
  9. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    Its interesting that one of the 'High-Powered' Mods chose to delegate this thread to the 'budget' forum when we're talking about gear over 1K.I guess its a true test of the ear to discern 'budget' vs. affordable quality.

    I digress......Tonight was a little test for the ADK 'Hamberg' Through the Brick as a vocal track.While theres not a doubt in my mind that the "Hamberg' is possibly the very best $299 LDC I've ever heard in terms of clarity and detail, I was truly spoiled by the performance of the Area51 TT mic we had in earlier. Thats not to say that I didnt like the Hamberg....I did....a lot....and those who are on a budget in yer personal studio that want a rich,detailed,clear vocal mic, need to check this one out.The only thing will be a personal taste thing because sonically and buildwise ..you caint go wrong. That being said, let me take a moment to whank a bit about the Brick...I can see, after a few weeks usage, where this unit was built for live on-stage use.Just the layout says that.The sound is really wide in its field, and theres that second order harmonics thing going 24-7 thats just sounds warm and big.Having quite a bit of experience with REAL pres( i chuckle at this as it occupies so many minds these days)...I can safely say that is one of those.Its always about the dimensionality of the sounds and the ability to layer large sounds with other large sounds without them fighting for all the attention.You could have this pre as an Only Good Pre in a budget studio and really enhance yer recordings with it. Its that good....I love it on BASS!!..You are really going to want a good compressor to work with it though...the lack of a pad, the high output, all will contribute to occasionally running into a sound you cant control at the recorder.I would NOT want this as my pre with a colored mic or a tube mic as such. It has lots of its own character as it should, owing to its design.

    So at this point I've got three recomendations for you budgeteers....though I gotta tell you, NONE of this gear sounds or acts budget.Its all stuff you can hold on to.Its all built with the future in mind.And sometimes, especially on RO....budget simply is someones OPINION. But hey, wadda I know?
  10. Good stuff. Keep it coming, Davedog. I'm very interested to see how those other mics you'll be using stack up. Thanks for sharing.
  11. therecordingart

    therecordingart Well-Known Member

    So ya like the Brick? The Brick is my only good pre, and I recently used it on a very nice Pearl kick drum w/ a D112. Holy smokes! A little compression, and a small cut at 250hz gave me the sound I imagined in my head. I didn't even spend much time with mic placement. I put the mic 5 inches from the batter head inside the kick and angled it slightly toward the floor tom. It's probably the best kick sound I've recorded.
  12. TheArchitect

    TheArchitect Active Member

    I just picked up Brick number 2 tonight. They are a budget studio's wet dream. WAY good period. Not just for the cash.

    On a related note, I am interested in hearing any other thoughts on the ADK mics. The Hamburg and Vienna mics were recently brought to my attention to look at. Searching on them is actually how I found this thread. From what I gather the Vienna has a bit more presence boost than the Hamburg. I hate brittle highs and always managed to get mixes with lots of it. I've never blamed my gear for my audio problems but just maybe it has been a much larger contributing factor than I ever wanted to admit.
  13. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    'Brittle Highs' can be a problem and hard to manage if allowed into the basic tracks in large amounts.At this point requireing much EQ to tame and of course adding its own set problems with perhaps less than sterling EQ sections. Its hard to really identify these highs in the tracking process as everything thats been tracked is flat(or at least in my room it is), and whereas it might sound a bit bright its not overbearing until you start adding a lot of other tracks with the same signature.Then it becomes 'brittle'....
    I dont think you'll find 'brittle' a part of the ADK sound pallette.One mic may exhibit extended highs as its difference to another mic, but there will be enough 'other' frequencies to avoid a 'brittle' sound. My experience with them has been that they take EQ quite well and dont muddy up when compressed.
    Get a couple to trial....I dont think you'll be disappointed.

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