Looking for a good all-round mic

Discussion in 'Microphones (live or studio)' started by bcwilliamson, Nov 24, 2009.

  1. bcwilliamson

    bcwilliamson Active Member

    Oct 20, 2009
    Memphis, TN
    Home Page:
    Hi, I'm here with another naive question on the myriad world of recording. :)

    I'm just starting to record on a modest set-up, working on a four-track machine to make recordings either solo or with my band. I'm a hobbyist at heart, looking to make demo recordings with near-professional quality.

    I'm in a financial hard place at the moment and I only have about $80-150 to spend on a good all-round microphone- when my band come over to record, they bring their own, and when I'm on my own I like to record vocals w/ acoustic guitar separately, or build up tracks part by part w/ drums, bass, guitar, vocals and piano. My current microphone is not very suited to my needs any more, and I need to get a good mic.

    Now I'm very aware that these financial limitations will not get me very far - I've been researching what microphone to get for weeks and I'm confused. I was set on an SM58 for a while because of its prestige, but now more and more tell me it's a more live-oriented mic that might not be what I'm looking for. Do I really want a dynamic mic or a condenser?

    I just want something of good quality (I am recording into a fairly dated machine, so I'm not looking for perfection) that would cover a wide spectrum of sounds, including acoustic guitar, guitar cabinets, harmonica, piano, drums and vocals. It really isn't ideal, I know, but would you be able to advise me on one solid, good-quality microphone that will last me until I have the means to expand? Thank you in advance.
  2. apstrong

    apstrong Active Member

    Feb 13, 2009
    You can't go wrong with a SM57. Get a pop filter/screen and use it for vocals too. Later, when you have 20 mics, you'll probably still use it for something.
  3. Spase

    Spase Active Member

    Feb 21, 2006
    The 57 or 58 are great live. They have also been used on more hit recordings than you could ever hope to be involved with. Get one and you can always use it somewhere.
  4. RemyRAD

    RemyRAD Member

    Sep 26, 2005
    You can have 20 SM57's for the cost of a single U87. You don't need no stinkin' 87. But you will want 20 of the 57's.

    Keep on keeping on
    Mx. Remy Ann David
  5. soundfarm1

    soundfarm1 Active Member

    Dec 30, 2008
    I agree, you can never have enough sm-57's. I have had very good results with the audix i5 (~$99). See if you can demo the both of them at your local audio store and see which one you like.

    When you are ready to make the leap into condenser land, check out RODE mic's. Great value in my opinion and I am always surprised with the results.

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