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LDC Vocal mic shootout suggestions?

Discussion in 'Vocals' started by BobRogers, Mar 7, 2010.

  1. BobRogers

    BobRogers Well-Known Member

    My life is pretty hectic for the next two months, but I'm considering doing an LDC vocal mic shootout after things settle down. This is mostly me wanting to add a better mic to the locker for female vocal. I feel like I do pretty well with my dynamics or the K2 for male vocals, but I'd like something more "elegant" for female vocals. More than that I think it should be a pretty interesting test, and I'll definitely try some male vocalists as well.

    I have an AKG C414-BULS and a Rode K2 to start things off. I'm definitely interested in the Mojave MA-200 and 201. I feel like I ought to throw a U87 in as a reference standard (though I'll hate myself if I fall in love with it.) The AT 40 series ought to get a chance.

    What else should I be considering? The general area of $1K would be "sensible" for me. But, as I say, I'm at least going to try a U87 just to hear something at a higher price point head to head.

    If I can get the shootout organized well enough, I may throw a bunch of dynamics in as well. But that runs the danger of getting vocalists tired if we have too many mics overall.
  2. RemyRAD

    RemyRAD Well-Known Member

    Here was one element of the equation you didn't mention? Okay, so you're talking about the U 87. How about that new U 67. I told Neumann/Sennheiser I was upset with their new 67. " Why", he asked? Because I have a pair of original tube 67's. And I have an early pair of 87's of the first generation. My 67's were always more valuable than my 87's. But your new 67's are priced hundreds of dollars less than your 87's. What the F***? Answer:? Less componentry in the new 67's in comparison to the more parts intensive 87's. This does not make for good LESS IS MORE! And so I have not done a shoot out between those two. They supposedly have both a considerable different character from one another. There is a considerable difference between my 87's and my 67's with the tubes. And now we have a third flavor which is another variation on a theme. How else can you spell 414?

    Go for the 67's. Don't tell anybody you spent less on those than on 87's. That's good math.
    Mx. Remy Ann David
  3. soapfloats

    soapfloats Well-Known Member

    I'd look at a Blue mic like the Blueberry or Bottle Rocket.
    I am the owner of a Bluebird, and while I realize its negatives, its positives make me wonder what its more expensive family members have to offer.
    I am also interested in hearing the 414. I have a pair of XLS as I wanted something more "versatile". I wonder what the reality of the difference is.

    Other than that, you gotta throw a 58 in just for the rest of us.
  4. Jeemy

    Jeemy Well-Known Member

    Things in my 'mics to try list' with no particular rhyme or reason. I own the M930 and think its great. I also own a K2 and a ATM4050.

    Gefell M930
    Lawson L251
    Josephson C700
    Sterling Audio ST79
    KEL HM-7U
    Peluso 2247
  5. TheJackAttack

    TheJackAttack Distinguished Member

  6. jg49

    jg49 Well-Known Member

    I am very interested to hear the Mojave 200/201s. A friend whose taste in all gear recording I trust said he used the MXL gensis and was impressed which sorta suprised me and I have always wondered about Violet mics. Looking forward to your tests.
  7. Link555

    Link555 Well-Known Member

    How about Dave's mics, I am curious how they would hold up...
    Advanced Audio Microphones
  8. TheJackAttack

    TheJackAttack Distinguished Member

    +1 on the Mojave.

    The Genesis has been relatively well received I think. I believe MXL is trying to step up in the world since they are releasing within the next month a continuously variable tube, the Revelation. I have a V69 that I'm going to have modded by Oktavamod when the appropriate fundage can be had.
  9. Link555

    Link555 Well-Known Member

    Also you might want to try a modded Apex 460 ....
  10. moonbaby

    moonbaby Mmmmmm Well-Known Member

    For da ladies (think Ms. Krall), I kinda like my AT4047.
  11. bouldersound

    bouldersound Real guitars are for old people. Well-Known Member

    How does that compare to the 4050?
  12. moonbaby

    moonbaby Mmmmmm Well-Known Member

    I have not A/B'd the 2 mics. I do know that the 4047 is very smooth, especially on the top end, which tends to tame any harshness or sibilance issues I've run into with female singers. I think that's due to the "aged" capsule and the output tranny.
    The 4050 is a transformerless output.
  13. fiddler59

    fiddler59 Active Member

    +1 on the KEL HM-7u also it would be good to check out the new KEL Song Sparrow too.

    David Blackmon
  14. tubefire

    tubefire Guest

    +1 on the AT4047 being very smooth on the top! This mic has become a favorite of mine not only because it sounds good on MANY vocals, male or female, but also because it is extremely versatile and works very well on many sources like acoustic guitar, guitar cabs, drum overheads, djembe, hand drums, outside kick and as a room mic.
  15. tubefire

    tubefire Guest

    Bouldersound - The AT4050 is more neutral sounding if that's what your looking for. It sounds more like the KSM32. The AT4047 has more warmth and is a slight bit darker in a nice way but still retains a beautiful open sound. As mentioned, it has a smoother, lovely top end.
  16. soapfloats

    soapfloats Well-Known Member

    Bob -

    Any word on the progress of this?
    The ribbon mic shootout was especially educational, and I think a purpose-driven test would be even more so.
  17. BobRogers

    BobRogers Well-Known Member

    Well- To tell you the truth I just dove in and bought the Mojave MA200. I did a mic test with the three vocalists: me (baritone), another male (low tenor), and female (low soprano). I compared the three LDCs that I have: C414 BULS, Rode K2, and the Mojave. I don't think I saved the files. I'll check. It wasn't as controlled an experiment as we did at Jeremy's place, so I didn't really want to post it. If I get some time later, I'll get some other mics and try a better test on more sources.

    At any rate my subjective impressions are as follows. These are all good mics. They were all reasonably flattering for all of our vocals. No cheap knockoff crispiness in any of them. The 414 was the "darkest", the Mojave a bit brighter, the K2 a bit brighter than that. The Mojave was the hands down favorite for the soprano and tenor. Added more air than the 414 and hid more flaws in the performance than the K2. It was a tossup as to what sounded better on my vocals - the 414 or the Mojave.

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