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Microphone diagnostic question for those also having experience recording speech

Discussion in 'Microphones' started by jmm22, Nov 22, 2010.

  1. jmm22

    jmm22 Guest

    I am going to be doing some mic testing shortly. I joked in another thread that it would only be on guitars, as there is not a mic in the world that could flatter my singing voice enough to tell if it was any good.

    However, I am wondering if I can use the spoken word as a diagnostic tool. So, my question is, will there be enough correlation (qualitatively speaking) between how a mic sounds on the spoken word, and singing, to be of some use in discerning the better mic(s)? If there is some correlation, I could speak into mics and record samples. Obviously speaking is not an ideal test of how a mic might perform on vocals, or how it sounds in general, but I am hoping someone who has done some speech recording can volunteer some insight into this exact question, and indicate whether the mics that do well on vocals are often the same mics that will do well on the spoken word.
     
  2. TheJackAttack

    TheJackAttack Distinguished Member

    Spoken voice is usually far less modulated than a singing voice. Or at least the singing that used to go into music. (I'll save the anti modern pop music rap for later) That said, a well modulated theatrical sort of voice can tell you quite a bit about a mic as well. The inflection and diction and speech rhythms are very much more important IMHO than they are in a pop song where the music makes up for a lot lacking in the lead vocals. If you listen to Celebrity Shorts podcasts you'll get the idea. Since these tests are for you and no one else is around, get all jazz hands (to mix my metaphors) with whatever test text you are using. Listen for quality of the voice but also plosives and trails of the syllables and consonants. Will it be the same as singing? No. Better than singin' in the shower though. Oh yeah, for a baseline, see if you can borrow a Shure SM58 from someone and/or an EV RE20. Those are the top two microphones for announcers and singers. Regardless of whether you like them or not, if you test mic's don't do better in your eyes (ears) then they don't measure up.

    Tequila typing at your service.
     
  3. jmm22

    jmm22 Guest

    Actually, a very intelligent and helpful response that does not betray any temporary handicap :) I do a respectable Marlon Brando from On The Waterfront, so maybe I can muster some theatrics after all.
     
  4. dvdhawk

    dvdhawk Well-Known Member

    Another test that anyone can do, which some people seem to like is jingling your key ring. It's a sound that's delicate and detailed enough to tell you how articulate the mic is, not that it is any indication if it will be 'flattering' to the specific source.
     
  5. jmm22

    jmm22 Guest

    Neat. I'll try that too.
     

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