Best Mics

Discussion in 'Microphones (live or studio)' started by MarcusDavid, Sep 20, 2005.

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  1. MarcusDavid

    MarcusDavid Guest

    Just curious on some schools of thought for what would be the absolute best mics for recording various parts of an arrangement. Vocals, (best kinds for different types of songers) Kick Drum, Snare, Acoustic Guitar etc.

    Just looking for opinions.

  2. McCheese

    McCheese Well-Known Member

    Mar 24, 2005
    Well I'm glad someone finally brought this up, we've been needing to discuss it.
  3. ghellquist

    ghellquist Member

    May 25, 2004
    I have been following this forum for a while, and everyone seems to disagree with each other on everything, except on this very matter. What the best mic is. Then everyone suddenly agrees and total harmony seems to be the order of the day. Only problem is that I have sort of forgotten the answer. Never mind, it probably isn´t important. 8)

  4. tnjazz

    tnjazz Active Member

    Jan 4, 2005
    While I love the sarcasm and :roll: nature of the responses so far, I'll offer our new poster a different answer:

    There's a search function at the top of the page that will give you every answer you could imagine from every kind of person imaginable. Then you just need to decide whose opinion you trust the most.

  5. TornadoTed

    TornadoTed Guest

    Everyone will have their own opinion on what the best mics are so impossible to answer.

    Accepted industry standards are however:

    Kick - AKG D112, EV RE20
    Snare - Shure SM57
    Toms - Senheisser MD421
    HH - Shure SM81
    Overheads - Neumann KM84, Shure SM81, AKG 414

    Acoustic Guitar - Pretty much as listed in Overheads
    Electric Guitar - Shure SM57, EV RE20, Senheisser MD421

    Bass - EV RE20, Senheisser MD421, Shure SM57

    Vocals - Neumann U87, U47, U49, AKG 414

    I use some but not all of these mics and prefer others on various sources.
  6. Reggie

    Reggie Well-Known Member

    Dec 20, 2004
    Best talkback mic: Nady Star Power 1
  7. MarcusDavid

    MarcusDavid Guest

    Thanks Ted! You took a potentially schizo topic question and steamlined it into a managable reply.

    Industry standard is great, but I am still curious as to some of the engineers/musicians personal preferences and why. I understand it could be a full thread, but really that's why I asked for the different shools of thought.
  8. cfaalm

    cfaalm Active Member

    Feb 21, 2005
    Home Page:
    I am not going to fight the industry standard, but there are alternatives.

    In my band I mike the drums with a set of Shure DMK6 and add the N300C for snare. I am not saying the N300C is the best mic for snare ever. It is just a different choice that I am happy with.

    It doesn't hurt to swap the SM57 for another quality dynamic mic. I do not believe the SM57 is of such distinguishing and decisive quality that you cannot mike a snare with anything else.

    I have used an SM58 (basically the same mic but with another cap) for snare but was not satisfied with the sound and decided to try the N300C. It has a little more "air" than the SM58 to me.

    To be honest, I happend to have the N300C lying around, like a lot of people have an SM57 I guess :wink: . It was my first vocal mic that I bought in 1985 and I have used it in my band up to the moment where I got the SM58. I now sing through a Sennheiser E865 (condenser) on stage.
  9. TornadoTed

    TornadoTed Guest

    Your welcome MarcusDavid. I used to get frustrated many moons ago when I was starting out when I wanted to know stuff but people wouldn't answer my questions.

    As far as what I use goes:

    Kick - AKG D112, AT Pro25, EV RE20
    Snare - SM57
    Toms - Senheisser MD421
    HH - AT3031
    Overheads - Shoeps CMC6U bodies and Mk21 capsules

    Bass - RE20,MD421, AT Pro25

    Electric guitar - SM57, RE20, MD421, AKG Solidtube
    Acoustic guitar - The schoeps I use for overheads sometimes in mono, sometimes in stereo

    Vocals - Neumann U87, AKG Solidtube
  10. ghellquist

    ghellquist Member

    May 25, 2004
    I am going to offer my apologies here to TornadoTed.

    I guess I missed that you are new here and that your question was asked from that kind of innocense.

    If you spend some time looking through the archives you will find that there is a lot of giving on different mics, in fact that is one of the main themes of several hundreds of historical posts. Don´t miss that source of insight and information by not looking there, some of that has proved very valuable to me, some I simply do not agree with. All of it, as far as I can say, has been given honestly.

    You will also find that the people writing here rarely agrees on what is best. It sort of always depends on a number of factors. One of them is taste, we all like things a little different. Once a thread like this starts rolling the differences in taste will start to appear.

    You will also find that budget is a very important aspect. Some of the mics people would want to have or use only exists in very limited numbers as they are vintage or old. You will find quite a few references to Neumann U47 or AKG C12 in the wish list, and both has gone out of production a long time ago. I´m not sure very many felt they could afford them when they were new, and they have all gone up in price quite a bit since.

    And once you start compromising on the cost, you are no longer talking the best.

    To make a comparison, I would like to have a Rolls-Royce for my vacation trips, a Ferrari Testarossa for the fun of it, and a lorry for carrying my trunks. Which is best? Well, the truth is that I drive a used Toyota as that was what I thought I can afford.

  11. TornadoTed

    TornadoTed Guest

    Hi ghellquist. I think you have the wrong bloke, marcusdavid asked the question I just replied with an answer.

    As a side shoot to this topic and not aimed at you. I've been on here for quite a while and read a thousand posts like this but I still try to give a reasonable answer. I guess because the 12 years ago when I started recording doesn't seem that long a go and I remember what it was like to not get an answer quickly and easily in a way I understood. I try to answer these questions without resorting to 'do a search' which is tempting but I have the will power :lol: :lol:

    I know it can be frustrating and a lot easier to say 'do a search' but I urge everyone to have a bit more patience and remember what it was like being a newbie. I remember when I started out it seemed like the North face of Everest, so much information to try and learn, so much whizzing around the brain.
  12. MarcusDavid

    MarcusDavid Guest

    Gunnar, while I do appreciate your direction and respect your viewpoint, (I know you are only trying to help) I realize that I can go on a search to find some of these answers. The thing is, I also expect to make some friendships and develop some connections that I hope will be fun and informative, if not even lasting as well. I understand the medium itself can easily promote a sterile and aloof "do it yourself" atmosphere, but I refuse to be conditioned to live in an isolated world. To me, music is about connection and expression.

    So while I hear perfectly what you are saying, I also respecfully choose to continue to ask the same questions that have been asked a thousand times before, (while also utilizing the search function) and possibly have an opportunity to make some friends along the way, challenging the very face of what could otherwise just be a one dimentional R & D forum.
  13. skygod

    skygod Guest

  14. MadMax

    MadMax Well-Known Member

    Mar 18, 2001
    Sunny & warm NC
    Home Page:
    OK, here we go...

    I'll commend the "industry standard" list... as far as I can tell... spot on.

    A couple of mic's that will also make the list... just not the "cheap" industry standard list... and no, I'm not calling the first list a bunch-o-cheap mics...

    Kik - Audix D6? (Just got one and will track with it tomorrow)
    Toms - Sennheiser e604, Beta 98
    OH/General Purpose - RCA 77, Schoeps CMC Line, Coles 4038, DPA 3503

    Another mic line to consider is Royer.

    My .02
  15. walaby

    walaby Guest

    Kick :
    Inside : RE20 with Earthworks Kickpad
    Outside : 18"Speaker

    Overheads : KM184

    All the rest :

  16. maintiger

    maintiger Well-Known Member

    Dec 3, 2003
    Whittier, California, USA
    oops, duplicate...
  17. maintiger

    maintiger Well-Known Member

    Dec 3, 2003
    Whittier, California, USA
    best sound I ever got for clean electric guitar was micing the cab with a vintage RCA D77 mic- if you don't mind risking blowing out the ribbon... 8)

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