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$300 budget mics mainly for vocals

Member for

21 years
sorry for another one of these what to buy threads. I'm currently looking to spend about 300$ on a mic, used mainly for vocals, but additionally versatility is obviously a plus. Right now I'm running on a MXL v63m (100$ at the time, i think they're like 60$ now). My front end isn't that great, running into a M-Audio Tampa Preamp (it's solid state but it does warm up the signal) So first, are there any you guys would just straight up recommend. These are the ones I'm looking at now:

MXL v69 Tube Mic 300$
If I get this one, I'm probably going to invest in a Telefunken tube for it

Audio Technica 4040
I hear just overall good solid mic that compares with akg414s and Neumanns for the price. Also maybe get a second one in the future for overhead drums.

Studio Projects TB1 Tube Mic
Only thing I'd say is it's not as visually appealing as the other 2 mics for the customers.


Member for

21 years

Member Wed, 06/11/2008 - 10:14

Lady of few words
Ms. Remy Ann David

I already got some Audix i5's which from the research i did at the time came out on top of the sm57's, and I dont believe sm58's are really used for professional studio recording but more for live situations (i may be wrong). Right now I'm leaning for the AT4040 and maybe working on getting a tube preamp.

Member for

15 years 5 months

BobRogers Wed, 06/11/2008 - 13:48
1. Good dynamic mics like the SM58/57 (and the Audix i5) are the bedrock of both pro studios and project studios. Do a search on pro studios and see the ones that list their mic locker. Most of them list them and those mics aren't on the list to impress the rookies. While I like the 57/58s (I have 7 altogether) a lot of people like the i5.

2. You seem to have a tube bug. I love tubes too, but they are not anywhere near as important in the recording world as they are in the guitar world. Frankly, most tube preamps and mics are cheap junk that sell well to guitarists who have just gotten into recording. Don't know anything in particular about the pieces you are looking at. They may be fine. But I've learned to be suspicious when I see the word tube and a low price with recording gear.

3. One way in which the 4040 is not "comparable to the 414" is that the 4040 is cardioid and the 414 is multipattern. If you can spare an extra $150 to move from the 4040 to the 4050 you would get a much more versatile mic. If not, you might consider getting a 58 or another i5 and saving your pennies until you can.

Member for

21 years

Member Wed, 06/11/2008 - 14:56
SM58's are well built, have good feedback reduction, and most importantly, they're cheap. Well, as cheap as you're gonna find a professional quality mic. Personally, I hate 'em, unless I'm using one to sing live, because I have all the vocal tone of Darby Crash, and they darken up my vox nicely. In the studio, well, they just sound dark. I think the Audix OM5 is light years better than the SM58 when it comes to hardcore applications (why would anyone want to use an SM58 for anything but hardcore?). But yeah, a good dynamic is the way to go. Buying tube mics for $300 is like trying to buy a good tube guitar head for $300: keep dreaming. Maybe I'm taking it too hard on SM58's; they do what they're supposed to do, but they are a tad dark sounding.

Member for

14 years 8 months

droc8705 Tue, 06/10/2008 - 16:07
diddo on the at-4040. I have an at-4033a and a at-4050 and i use them for everything...literally. from acoustic guitars, to piano, to snare, to vocals, to amps...everything.

another company that you may wanna check out is Rode. I have a pair of NT2-As and love 'em too, but they're a darker, warmer sounding mic when compared to the brighter sound that the AT mics produce. If you look on ebay, you can find most of these mics for under your budget.