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Shure Vocal Master Price??

Discussion in 'Vocals' started by djmac, Apr 30, 2005.

  1. djmac

    djmac Guest

    I was given a Shure Vocal Master (VM302) mixer. I have spent a good deal of time trying to find a price and some more information on this thing. It is in pretty good shape and everything still works on it. I have no use for it but someone might want it as a good vintage mic pre-amp? Any help would be great. (And yes i have looked on ebay with no luck.
  2. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    The Vocal Masters are from the 60's and 70's ... maybe 150 watts .... At best it's worth a couple hundred bucks. Which version is it, the one with 1/4" inputs or the one with XLRs?
  3. djmac

    djmac Guest

  4. djmac

    djmac Guest

    1971 and everything work great..
  5. AudioGaff

    AudioGaff Well-Known Member

    What is it worth? About $50 tops give or take $10. It was state of the art crap in 1971 and it is now classic vintage crap in 2005.
  6. djmac

    djmac Guest

    Do you not think that it would benifit someone who might could use it as a good tube preamp, for example you could mix some nice harmonies on it it and then mix it down to one channel with a fatter warm tone.
  7. djmac

    djmac Guest

    AudioGaff ...got something against shure?
  8. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    No it is not tube. It's solid state and not very good at that. While the Vocal Master was OK as a PA / amp I wouldn't consider using one for recording ... other that perhaps taking a mix out of it to record a live rehearsal or performance.
  9. AudioGaff

    AudioGaff Well-Known Member

    No, I own and have owned many Shure products. Like most of the PA systems from that era, they were the best available but they were, and are, still crap.
  10. djmac

    djmac Guest

    I understand, i would not personally use it myself. That is why i am trying to get rid of it. I also have a carvin S1800 18 channel mixer. If anyone knows a possible price on this item as well let me know. Both pieces still work well. I found the shure mixer on ebay that went for 200 so maybe i can do as good??
  11. JoeH

    JoeH Well-Known Member

    Modern Shure products are not crap, of course, but the Vocal Master system was part of a number of products from that era - late 60's & early to mid 70's that simply filled a need (and didn't do it all THAT well) at the time.

    Many companies were venturing into the fray (in addition to old Standby's like Fender & Gibson, etc.) including Shure, with their all in one packages. Kustom (of Chanute, Kansas) made similar PA systems, with cabinets covered in tucked & rolled naughahyde: 4x10 (or 12") speakers in dual towers, with a four, six or eight channel powered "head" that drove it all. There was often a little bit of lame EQ, reverb (Usually a spring type that "EXPLODED" when the unit was shaken or bumped), and very basic (ok, downright rudimentary & poor) mic pre's.

    The Vocal master was an all in one package for wedding bands, prom bands, party bands, nightclubs and god knows what else. (I remember seeing a poster with the "Fifth Dimension" in Las Vegas or LA or somewhere, with STACKS of them (using the "pro" version) for their sound system. Promo or not, it was probably the best available at the time. Many many nightclubs of the day had them as "house systems;" some even had the shorter columns installed in the ceilings as foldback monitors over the stage...

    These days, it's probably only good as a movie prop or museum piece, or something to blast sound out of in a rundown roadhouse bar. (Those on/off in/out switches for each channel were ALWAYS the first thing to start cutting out...probably since they were open-backed switches, and magnets for cigarette smoke & dust.)

    Cut your losses and dump it if you dont' intend to keep it for sentimental reasons. Those preamps are hardly worth being called that, and the system is really not worth much more than parts for scrap. Sorry, but I can't put it any nicer than that....
  12. djmac

    djmac Guest

    Thanks Joe,
    That was a plethera of information. I appreciate the input. I will just put on e-bay and see what happens. Know of any god museums...hahahaha
  13. blesd

    blesd Guest


    I saw a vocal master on ebay and was wondering if this could possibly be my solution to creating beach boy-esque vocals.. Apparently not?
  14. moonbaby

    moonbaby Mmmmmm Well-Known Member

    Negatory. However you CAN get Vox Churchill PA head and sound like the Beatles! I used to use the "ceramic mic" input on that thing for my Les Paul...great overdrive!
  15. Are you people nuts!?!

    The Shure Vocal Master sounds fracking amazing. I use one with my band. With the right vocal mics it sounds extremely good. You can't beat old technology like this.

    With my band we use the vocal master and we also have a bryston and that makes everything sound amazing aswell.

    I suggest to anyone to actually get a Vocal Master if you can and not put it down without trying it. Just because it's old doesn't mean it isn't good. The vocal reverb is highly sought after. Trust me on this one. Vocal Master is worth it's weight in gold even if it doesn't cost that much to get one on Ebay. its the best 300 bucks you'll ever spend.

    I recorded a jam session with my band not too long ago and it just sounded out of this world. You nay sayers do not know what you are talking about.
  16. JoeH

    JoeH Well-Known Member

    Re: Are you people nuts!?!

    Ok, Funtravel....assuming you're not pulling our leg (and maybe have a couple of these that you want to drive up the price on ebay) - you're on.

    Make us a nice recording of it - line out, or mic the room itself - and let us judge for ourselves. Not sure what you mean with the Bryston...you mean you're using the line out of the Shure and using the Bryston's amp instead? Are you driving the columns with it, or....???

    Please define "out of this world". (I can think of a lot of things that might apply here..including "Martian-like", "Stinkier than Uranus" or "Colder Than Pluto". ) You're going to have to do better than that. :twisted:

    I've probably sung & played through, blown up and repaired more Vocal Master systems than are still left out there, and I stand by my assesment. They were fine for their day, but unless you've got some magical, just-out-of-the-box system that's never been used or abused, I think you maybe just got lucky with the right mics going into this thing. (There's no input trim or gain as I recall on the "Master/Head" unit, so assuming you're using the mic inputs, whatever mics you're using luckily aren't causing distortion.)

    There's no phantom power that I recall, and if you're professing your love for this thing based on dynamic mics only, then I don't think I want to play....

    Go ahead now, explain to the class what you're on about! :cool:
  17. moonbaby

    moonbaby Mmmmmm Well-Known Member

    I couldn't believe my eyes when I saw this post!!!!
    This has to be a joke!
    "The reverb is highly sought after" really had me rolling on the floor!
    I'm sure that the engineers at Bryston were glad to hear that their amplifiers compare favorably to this fine piece of audio engineering!
    And $300.....whatta steal !!! Do you know Fletcher?
  18. Looks like you guys haven't had a great experience with this thing for whatever reason. But ours is in perfect working condition and sounds amazing. I like how my vocals sound anyways. I use a sennheiser e945 and it sounds amazing. but thats just my opinion.

    The Bryston is a poweramp from the 80's. Worth their weight in gold. We were offered a nice sum of money but we'd rather keep it.

    We're not recording with the Vocal Master but during jam sessions it sounds really good. I like how my music sounds anyways.

    I can only assume that the ones you guys have used weren't in perfect condition because the one my band and I use is certainly deserving of more then the harsh reviews some have for it here.
  19. JoeH

    JoeH Well-Known Member

    Ok son, have your fun. With "proof" like that, who are we to argue?

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