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Mic choice for Recording Acoustic Guitar

Discussion in 'Guitars' started by igotnosmoke, May 19, 2004.

  1. igotnosmoke

    igotnosmoke Active Member

    Hi guys,

    Im just wondering how you guys would compare the Shure PG81 to other condenser microphones in its class in terms of recording Acoustic Guitar...

    Im thinking about getting a Shure PGDMK6 (6pce mic pack) it would be very cost effective as provides 2 PG81's i could record acoustic guitar with and also use it for my drum kit... Think it would be a good idea or should i consider something different for recording Acoustic?

    Thanks for your help,
    Spiro
     
  2. PG81? I'm guessing that this is a low-dollar clone of the SM81.
    If so, it is probably an SM81 with an opamp pre instead of the discrete pre in the SM81 (aka SM94.)
    The SM81 is an excellent mic for any acoustic intstrument, flat, neutral, very nice.
    They make very nice overheads for drums as well: in the flat setting, you can capture the entire kit with just two mics ( though, I prefer two Beyer 260's for this.)
     
  3. AudioGaff

    AudioGaff Well-Known Member

    Depending on which type of ac-guitar and the sound I'm after, it usually ends being one of these: SM81, C452, AT4050, TLM103, U87ai, C414 ULS or TLII.
     
  4. RecorderMan

    RecorderMan Distinguished Member

    Some of my favorites:
    km56, M49, Royer121, C12, U67 and yes...sm57! :D
     
  5. I'm a fan of the Oktava MC012 on acoustic. I've also begun messing around with the Josephson C42 in this application, and it yields a nice, detailed bright sound.

    I hate to disagree with Recorderman, but I hate dynamic mics on acoustic. Blecchh!!
     
  6. Minguta

    Minguta Active Member

    C414 ULS or TLII is so cool for AC Guitar.
    it's best for me.
     
  7. sneak

    sneak Active Member

    Me too, 414 ULS , TL2 or EB
     
  8. Caine Dreiling

    Caine Dreiling Active Member

    It also depends on playing style. A 57 sounds great on a flat top with light strings strummed fast and hard.
    Caine
     
  9. RecorderMan

    RecorderMan Distinguished Member

    Ala Pete Anderson
     
  10. igotnosmoke

    igotnosmoke Active Member

    Thanks for the reply guys...
    Ill remember to post in the home studio section until i save abit of money... some of the mics listed were way past my budget lol
    Regards,
    Spiro
     
  11. Pootkao

    Pootkao Guest

    My fave is the Neumann KM184. Rode's Classic Tube or NTK work nicely as well.
     
  12. CanopuS

    CanopuS Guest

    Studio Projects C4's sound VERY nice on a not so bright guitar (not TWANGY)
     
  13. krash

    krash Guest

    Spiro,

    You might take note of the varying TYPES of microphones offered here. There's an analysis that the PG81 you suggested might be something like an SM81 which is a small-diaphragm condenser. Some people like the sound of a mic like an AKG C414 on acoustic guitar, which could be described as an "unhyped" large diaphragm condenser.

    So there's still something to learn here. Even though you might not be able to spring for a $600 C414, you may find that another not-so-hyped LD condenser could be worth an audition for you, such as an MXL V67G or an Oktava MK-319 or even a Studio Projects B1. Similarly, if you can't handle the cost of a Neumann KM84 then one of the cheap KM84-a-likes like an MXL 603S or an Oktava MC-012 would be worth looking at.

    The other thing to notice is that not a lot of people are talking much about dynamic mics for acoustic guitars, not in positive terms anyway. So while a few people might be able to make some guitars work with an SM57, it's a lot more common for SD and LD condensers to be used.

    The other thing I'll add about mic selection is that if you are budget-limited, it might be worthwhile to choose mics that will do many things well. If you had $200 to spend on mics, a combo of an MXL 603s and a MXL V67G would hook you up with a SD condenser that can work for a detailed, brigter, acoustic guitar close-miked tone and also a LD condenser that can make for a rounder, fatter acoustic guitar tone, the two of which can be used in concert to make really tremendously good acoustic guitar recordings. Incidentally between these two mics and perhaps an SM57, you can record just about anything else (save for maybe an entire drum kit... which could be done but a stretch) and get at least a decent, usable recording. That's $300 worth of mics including shock mounts and cables, yielding three pretty good specimens from the three big microphone types.
     
  14. igotnosmoke

    igotnosmoke Active Member

    Hey guys,
    Thanks to everyone who submitted a recommendation.. and thanks to josh for the detailed response..

    ill look into some of the mics recommended and get back to yas :)
    Cheers,
    Spiro
     
  15. Aziel

    Aziel Guest

    SM57 for AC guitars? sounds interesting...do you obtain a decent sound with that mic? what kind of sound? maybe stereo with a condenser?
     
  16. hi,

    I've had some amazing results with an XY with 2 mxl 603s mics. and those are also very nice on overheads. just my 0.02euro

    Thomas
     
  17. Ollie1

    Ollie1 Guest

    The mics I like alot for acoustic guitars are Schoeps M221B, Neumann KM264(very natural sounding),KM54, KM56.
     
  18. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    I just want to mention that there have been a lot of negative comments in regards to the MXL and the Octiva mics here at RO. We (RO mods, editors or administrators) don't usually recommend them. The Octiva's seem to suffer from poor quality control and different mics of the same model have varying frequency response. IMO this is not a case of "find a good one" but rather, "stay away". The MXLs also have poor quality control that results with breakage and failure in the field.

    The Shure PG 81 is not a repackaged SM 81.

    The PG 81 is a cardioid condenser with a frequency response of 40 Hz to 18K Hz, output sensitivity of 4mv/Pa, a max spl of 131 dB,self noise of 20 dBA - (DIN/IEC), 600 ohm output impedance, phantom powered by 12 to 48 volt or a 1.5 volt battery. It is not as flat as the SM 81 with a rise in response between 1.5 K and 10K Hz, where it rolls off to -6dB @ 20K Hz. ...

    It appears the PG 81 is a replacement for the discontinued Shure Beta series 4.1 mic. It has the same appearance and is very close to the 4.1 in performance. I have two of Shure 4.1's that I have had for 10 years plus and they still work well.

    I agree and they are affordable..

    Kurt Foster
     
  19. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    I just want to mention that there have been a lot of negative comments in regards to the MXL and the Octiva mics here at RO. We (RO mods, editors or administrators) don't usually recommend them. The Octiva's seem to suffer from poor quality control and different mics of the same model have varying frequency response. IMO this is not a case of "find a good one" but rather, "stay away". The MXLs also have poor quality control that results with breakage and failure in the field.

    The Shure PG 81 is not a repackaged SM 81.

    The PG 81 is a cardioid condenser with a frequency response of 40 Hz to 18K Hz, output sensitivity of 4mv/Pa, a max spl of 131 dB,self noise of 20 dBA - (DIN/IEC), 600 ohm output impedance, phantom powered by 12 to 48 volt or a 1.5 volt battery. It is not as flat as the SM 81 with a rise in response between 1.5 K and 10K Hz, where it rolls off to -6dB @ 20K Hz. ...

    It appears the PG 81 is a replacement for the discontinued Shure Beta series 4.1 mic. It has the same appearance and is very close to the 4.1 in performance. I have two of Shure 4.1's that I have had for 10 years plus and they still work well.

    I agree and they are affordable..

    Kurt Foster
     
  20. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    I just want to mention that there have been a lot of negative comments in regards to the MXL and the Octiva mics here at RO. We (RO mods, editors or administrators) don't usually recommend them. The Octiva's seem to suffer from poor quality control and different mics of the same model have varying frequency response. IMO this is not a case of "find a good one" but rather, "stay away". The MXLs also have poor quality control that results with breakage and failure in the field.

    The Shure PG 81 is not a repackaged SM 81.

    The PG 81 is a cardioid condenser with a frequency response of 40 Hz to 18K Hz, output sensitivity of 4mv/Pa, a max spl of 131 dB,self noise of 20 dBA - (DIN/IEC), 600 ohm output impedance, phantom powered by 12 to 48 volt or a 1.5 volt battery. It is not as flat as the SM 81 with a rise in response between 1.5 K and 10K Hz, where it rolls off to -6dB @ 20K Hz. ...

    It appears the PG 81 is a replacement for the discontinued Shure Beta series 4.1 mic. It has the same appearance and is very close to the 4.1 in performance. I have two of Shures BG 4.1's that I have had for 10 years plus and they still work well.

    I agree and they are affordable..

    Kurt Foster
     

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