Or maybe an MD-421. Hard to say. It's nice to have a couple large diaphragmn dynamics around so you have choices and you can get so much mileage out of a relatively small investement. I'm not really thinking an RE-20 particularly here, but there isn't a lot you can't record well with one. M-88 is another good one for versatility.
Originally posted by blake eat world: seriously, if i only had one mic to make an album with i'd use a 57 regardless of what i had.
I'd probably use either a really good small diaphragm cardioid, or an RE20.
Reminds me of when a friend of mine and I decided to put together a song with one mic, but still mic everything the 'standard' way- i.e., mic the kick, play it, mic the snare, play it, etc, etc. It was fun, and sounded like $*^t.
...first thing you need if you're gonna be recording is a 57, then build from there. Probably go for a AKG D112 next depending on the style of music, it's another extremely well made mic. then a pair of small diaphragms (recommend Neumann KM184's). Then a large diaphragm(don't skimp on this mic, and find the color <or lack there of> that you like).
To be honest Teacher, I would stay away from the dynamic mics (shure sm-57, etc.), if you are primarily going to record vocals only. Are you using sequenced music or are you recording drums, guitar, etc.?. The Audio Technica mics like the 4033 and 4047 mentioned earlier are very good value for the money, they are condensor mics which are far superior for vocal applications. The sm-57 is an excellent mic if you need a workhorse mic, but not the best for vocals.
I have to agree with the SM57 crowd. I was just starting to equip my multimedia group when I went shopping for mics, mostly for v/o work. I bought a variety including re20s, SM7s, TLM103s and several SM57s. I had no previous knowledge of the SM57 or its reputation before I bought them.
Upon hearing the results after the first use I couldn't believe it! The richness and clarity was incredible. Such quality from such a little, inexpensive mic! It's hard to resist the bias to use the more expensive mics in certain situations but I keep coming back to my Shure workhorses that I know won't let me down.
I am not an expert by any means but the RODE NTK is a valve mic for under $500. In fact, check out http://www.bpmmusic.com they don't advertise the price so they are allowed to sell for under the manufacturer's price floor. I just bought mine for $389!! This mic sounds great. It has been getting stellar reviews as well (if that means anything).
For just slightly (like $20) over $500, I suggest trying out the ADK a51TC tube mic. I haven't compared it with the current crop of sub $500 condensers, but I have tried it side by side with several much more expensive ones, & it more than holds its own. Aside from the ADC I can recommend the AKG C4000B, EV PL20 (RE20), Audio Technica 4033 & 4050 and perhaps a Beyerdynamic ribbon like the M260 or M130. All excellent vocal mics, but individual voices sometimes demand non-traditional mic choices. If you have the availability, I'd get a couple of the singers you work - or expect to work - with and go audition as many of them as you can, rather than just buying "blind".