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What Overhead Mics to Use??

Discussion in 'Room & Overhead' started by fontenel, Apr 8, 2003.

  1. fontenel

    fontenel Guest

    Any suggestions on some good overhead mics under $1000? Rode? Octava? Shure? Thanks, guys.
  2. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    AKG 451.. Great Mics.. Kurt
  3. Doug Milton

    Doug Milton Active Member

    I recently used a pair of 414s as overheads and was pleased with their clarity and imaging.
  4. Doublehelix

    Doublehelix Well-Known Member

    I am using the Rode NT5's...they sound great!
  5. lowdbrent

    lowdbrent Guest

    Neumann U48s
    AKG C12VRs
    AKG C414s
    AKG C451s
    AKG C460s

    Shure KSM32s
    Crown SASS-P
  6. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    shure SM-81's a very good mic
    AKG 451's as mentioned
    Audix SCX-1 soon to become very popular
    Neumann KM-84 & Km-184 the older 84 sounds much better
    ADK SC-1 for a couple hundred for a matched pair it doesnt get any better
  7. Doublehelix

    Doublehelix Well-Known Member

    Remember he said "under $1000"!!! (I assumed that meant for the *pair*.)

    One of the best-sounding overhead mics imho is the AKG C414s, I just heard some the other day that absolutely blew me away!!! Unfortunately however, you cannot fit a pair in under $1000. If I could afford them right now, you can bet I'd have at *least* two!!! They are certainly on my top-ten "wish list", and are an industry standard for *lots* of used other than overheads, and is just a great all-around workhorse mic.

    You can meet the price with the AKG C451's, but the Neumann's mentioned will all run over $1000 for a matched pair.
  8. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    au-contraire mr. helix...there are several 'pairs' of Neumanns on ebay currently going for just under 1 grand..these are buyitnow prices and all are sequential number pairs...yes I saw the price the questioner listed and all my suggestions meet these criteria....peace....BTW, the SM-81 shure small diaphram condenser for over heads usually will best all others at its price and for its clarity and ability to take loud transients....the akg451 is next...
  9. Doublehelix

    Doublehelix Well-Known Member

    Actually Davedog, *your* suggestions *did* meet the price spec, and my comments weren't directed at you, although I am surprised to hear that you can get a matched pair of Neumanns (184's???) for under a grand.

    I have been considering a pair of the SM-81 (obviously another one of those "standards" that everyone has) for either overheads or hi-hats (see my post elsewhere in this forum), and the responses I got from this forum and another I frequent seemed to favor the C451 over the SM-81.

    I know in all my years as a recording musician, the SM-81 was in pretty much every studio that I went into, and has been used in one way or another on most of the recordings I was involved with. Now that I am running my own home-based modest studio, I naturally put the SM-81's on my short-list, but it seems that local opinion around here puts the 451 on a higher plane. Any comments on that?

    (You can pick up a brand new C451 for about $300 on Ebay, although I haven't seen a posting for any matched pairs yet.)
  10. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    Mr. Helix....for me its price point...all three of these mics perform at a high quality level...you could throw in the Coles also in this under a grand for a pair..but for me personally....getting a PAIR of SM-81's for somewhere in the neighborhood of $350 leaves me with 700 in the budget with which i could purchase a RNP preamp and still have a couple hundred left over...with that I could get a Studio Projects B3 and still have dinner with my wife...its all about bang for the buck...I love the 451 mics...and the Km184 and km84...but the sm-81's hooked up to a RNP pre will sound just as yummy and at less than the Neumanns and just a little more than the 451's for a pair...seems to me you get a lot more for your money and you add a piece that you can use on anything(the RNP)....and i did mention the SP B3...what a great mic for the money...its REALLY good...thats my perspective...BTW...i've used all of these mics extensively.....peace
  11. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    Hows it going? I was wondering what your opinion of how the SM81's compare to the 451's? I have 4 451's and I find them to be pretty bright/thin. I also have a pair of C460's and they are much warmer/fatter. When all I want from the overheads is cymbals, I will put up the C451's but if I want to pull more snare and toms out of the overheads I will use the 460's or better yet my 4033's. :D I went to the AKG site and snooped around, it looks as if they are not marketing the C460 anymore. Kurt
  12. lowdbrent

    lowdbrent Guest

    The 460 became the 480.

    I have a pair of Shure KSM137's for sales on ebay. They have the same diaphram as the KSM32, only this mic is an end-address pencil, with 2 position roll-off and pad. These are brand spankin' new. Retail is $575 each, street is about $299+/- each , my price for BOTH mics is $400.

    They are great mics. I hate to sell them, but my kid is on expensive medicine, and we lost our insurance, so out they go.
  13. Timsplace

    Timsplace Guest

    One thing to consider when purchasing OH mics is your technique. Are these going to "whole kit" drum OH's or more cymbal mics. In the first case your room sound is going to come more or less into play depending on your mic choice (especially large or small diaphram). If your going more for a cymbals only position most of the previously mentioned (451's, sm81's etc) are fine. My personal preference, if the room is decent, AND the kit sounds good, is to go with a X/Y pair of large diaphram mics. I will start my whole drum sound with these mics and add in K/Snr/hh/toms to taste (paying close attention to phase-kick mic especially).

  14. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    HEY KURT!...I personally like the 451's on acoustic instruments much better than on overheads...I have ALWAYS thought the 460 sounded ...um better...not the right term...fuller is more like it and found it needed to be eq'd a bit when used on guitars,mandolins,glockenspiel etc etc...the 451's were always right there in yer face and especially with a full bodied sound like a martin...that being said, the SM-81's always sounded good on everything and were the kind of mic one would pull for any application that needed that sort of mic...if there was time for experimentation, most times a solution with something else would present itself...ala..large diaphrams in an overhead or a 4033 on an instrument or an 87 pair in X/Y on whatever....my point about the 81's is for the money you cannot go wrong...and if you're trying to mic a fiddle the 81 will most likely save yer butt...
  15. Doug Milton

    Doug Milton Active Member

    Recently had a chance to listen to the new Rode fixed x / y stereo mic on a drum test that Ty Ford did to write a review for Pro Audio Review. We put a D112 in the kick and a pair of 414s as overheads with no other close mics as our baseline.

    Then keeping the D112, we replaced the 414s with the Rode stereo mic and tried several positions: 1) Behind the drummer, about 20 inches over his head to try and capture what the drummer hears. 2) On a long boom stand in front of the kit with the mic centered over the kick pedal. 3) Out front of the kit about head high if you were standing in front of the kit facing in.

    We were all pleasantly surprised at how good the snare and toms sounded through the Rode with no close mics. Definitely worth a listen….
  16. Doublehelix

    Doublehelix Well-Known Member

    I am glad to hear you say that Doug, since I have been very happy with my Rodes as well.
  17. chrisuk

    chrisuk Guest

    I don't know what the prices are like in the States, but what about the Earthworks mics - they come as matched pairs and have such good bass and level handleing you can use 'em on the bass drum!
  18. hathabr

    hathabr Guest

    I'm digging the Octava MC012's on drums.
  19. pfarrell

    pfarrell Guest

    I got a nice matched pair of Neumann KM184s,
    with wooden box, etc. for under a grand last
    summer, from Dave Butler. But the dollar has fallen against the euro since, and it wasn't
    much under a grand, so today's price may have
    just snuck over the grand mark.

    But they are wonderful, lovely microphones.
    Overheads, acoustic guitar, room mics
    for bluegrass groups, etc.
  20. golli

    golli Active Member

    My budget allowes me Shure KSM109 or Rode NT5.
    Any thoughts/experience with those two, as drum overheads or acustic guitar :)

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