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SM81 vs AT4040 for Voice

Discussion in 'Recording' started by bgavin, Aug 17, 2003.

  1. bgavin

    bgavin Guest

    What are the pros/cons of the SM81 vs AT4040 specifically for voice?

    The targer vocalists are young female and male rockers, older male blues and rock.
  2. Alécio Costa - Brazil

    Alécio Costa - Brazil Distinguished Member

    Mar 19, 2002
    I don´t think the SM81 would do fine for single kead vocals. Some guys do use it for capturing choir overheads.
    I would stick with an at4050.
  3. bgavin

    bgavin Guest

    I guess I wasn't clear. My choices are the AT4040 or the SM81.

    I'm leaning toward the AT4040.
  4. Alécio Costa - Brazil

    Alécio Costa - Brazil Distinguished Member

    Mar 19, 2002
    Due to the size of its diaphragm the at4040 will be usable in many other situations. I got 3 and I do love them.
    Very nice purchase!
  5. white swan

    white swan Guest

    I don't know anything about those specific mics, but it seems like a good part of the question is the issue of whether small diaphragm or large diaphragm mics are better on lead vocals. (I'm assuming the 4040 is large diaphrgm?)

    I was taught there are so many factors in choosing a mic for a specific application: off-axis response, handling noise, degree of proximity effect, proneness to popping and sibilance, warmness of sound, clarity of sound, and so on.

    I know there is a very famous thread somewhere that is about 100 pages long that discusses all these issues in great detail. Maybe someone could put up a link to it, as that would probably contain far more complete information than anyone could possibly post on their own.

    Or is there some rule against posting off-site links here? Seems like I just saw someone else on another thread try to do that (Bear?) unsuccesfully. :confused:

    [ August 17, 2003, 10:13 PM: Message edited by: white swan ]
  6. RecorderMan

    RecorderMan Distinguished Member

    Mar 28, 2001
    While one rule is there are no rules...another is that small diaphram condensers generally do not make the best vocal mics.
  7. bgavin

    bgavin Guest

    I have an opportunity to buy either for a very good price, so I'm inclined toward the AT4040 to use entirely as a vocal mic.
  8. dabmeister music

    dabmeister music Active Member

    Jan 11, 2003
    Woodbridge, Va
    Home Page:
    I'd second that motion. I'm a user of AT products for almost a decade. My first AT mic was a 4033. Then I purchased a 3035 which I love so much. Audio Technica has a reputation for making pretty good mics. They are'nt your Neumann U87's or TLM93's , but they hold their own.
  9. bgavin

    bgavin Guest

    I've noticed a substantial price reduction at ZZounds on AT mics.

    However, I was able to get the AT4040 for $222, new in the box with papers, etc. There are other eBay dealers selling them new for $235, so I did OK, price-wise. This is still much better than the $300 charged by ZZounds.

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