SM7 vs Md421

Discussion in 'Microphones (live or studio)' started by johnnyrock, Mar 6, 2004.

  1. johnnyrock

    johnnyrock Guest

    I'd like to get a large diameter dynamic to compliment my existing collection (small though it is),it looks as though the sm7 would be a good vocal mic for me,I have a voice that has been said to sound almost exactly like David Byrn,I'd say bits of Springsteen and Elvis Costello as well.The thing is I'd like to get a 421 for guitar and I can't buy both. How would a 421 sound on my voice?

    How would an sm7 sound on a blues/rock guitar,
    distorted but not massively so.How do these two mics compare?
  2. Davedog

    Davedog Well-Known Member

    Dec 10, 2001
    Pacific NW
    These two mics are the alpha and the omega of dynamic microphones. As a comparison without both in front of a person, its hard to describe them.Both are excellent.The 421 may be a bit more versatile in that it will reproduce a bit more of a variety of sources more acurately.As for voice, when I had one at my disposal, the SM7 never left the stand and made a lot of voices sound great even in the company of a couple of older U87i's,a U67, and a Sony Condenser.As with all dynamics, a great preamp can bring these to a level unimagined without it.
  3. AudioGaff

    AudioGaff Well-Known Member

    Feb 23, 2001
    Silicon Valley
    I agree with DaDog. The 421 is a more flexable and more often usefull mic. I've used the 421 for vocals, guitar, bass, drums, horns in live PA/FOH and for recording many times with great results. The SM7 is one of those mics that you get specific for voice over work or that you get down the road to complete an already basic filled mic locker.
  4. chessparov

    chessparov Active Member

    Dec 16, 2001
    Orange County, CA
    Johnny, if you have any issues with sibilance,
    the SM7 may well turn out to be one the for you
    among these two choices.

    Sometimes a MD421 will bring that out, and the
    new MKII version is considerably brighter than
    the prior 421's.

    If you don't, then also consider the Beyer M88.

    It can be also used as a hand held microphone
    in live performance BTW.

  5. studio rat

    studio rat Guest

    I was talking to the guy from Cello Studios and he said he used the SM7 exclusivly on Steven Tyler, Bon Scott and many others. As a side note the signal path was,sm7, Neve 1073, LA2a,to a pultec...or vise versa..but you probably could have guessed that one ...good luck they're both nice mics.
  6. missilanious

    missilanious Guest

    also just too throw in a RE20 is also a nice mic to have in your locker if you don't own one. Its great on gritier voices, expecaily when working with agressive blues vocals.
  7. johnnyrock

    johnnyrock Guest

    At this point my best pre is a Joe Meek Vc1Q which so far is yielding decent results with a 57 on guitar and less ok reuslts on vocals with an NT1000,the vocals are bright and a little thin sounding.The NT1000 has sounded quite good on my Martin D-28 through the Meek,bright but not thin.

    I have a bluesish voice but in the sense of a Nick Cave or a Jim Morrison,not a Screamin Jay Hawkins or Big Joe Turner.My voice is pretty wooly.I read that Sprinsteen recorded the vocals to Darkness On the Edge of Town with an SM7,that's close to what I'm after.

    I don't have issues with sibalence and will likely go with the 421,though I have this sneeking suspician that the SM7 is the vocal mic for me.
  8. musicalhair

    musicalhair Guest

    I have both and I like both on my voice. I've not tried the SM-7 on a guitar amp, but apparently Sum 41 use them live on their guitar amps.

    If you're going to end up with a "collection" then you'll probably get each of the dynamic mics in this thread: M88, RE 20, SM-7, MD-421. If you want to hear them before committing to one, pm me-- I'm in New Jersey too.
  9. bgavin

    bgavin Guest

    I understand the Soundstar MK-II is Beyer's rival for this group.
  10. Bill Park

    Bill Park Guest

    My choices would be among the Beyer M-88 and the Sennheiser 441. But I already own a few 421s. The RE-20 is also a nice choice.

  11. clintrubber

    clintrubber Guest

    from DaveDog:
    Could you give some examples of pre's where this 'added magic' starts to take place ?

    I'm currently in Mackie/Beh.-preamp territory
    and am curious which decent but modestly priced pre's would give that extra for my 421/441/57.
    Preamp models that can be DIYed would be even greater.


  12. Midlandmorgan

    Midlandmorgan Active Member

    Jul 21, 2002
    Even something as simple as the Mindprint Envoice will bring out "the added magic"...and it just gets better as you go up the food chain.

    Don't forget to consider the EV RE16 in your dynamic mic quest...they absolutley slay most of the lower/mid grade condensers, and have many vocal hits to their credit (Sinatra, Elvis later years, et al)
  13. chessparov

    chessparov Active Member

    Dec 16, 2001
    Orange County, CA
    I also own/use the EV RE16 and the Beyer Soundstar MKII.

    The free "mod" is to take the foam pop screen out
    on a RE16 in order to get better clarity.
    I have two, so that was done to one of them.

    The Soundstar MKII sounds a LOT like the SM7.
    Just doesn't have the tone flexibility of the
    SM7, as that has the on board EQ options.

    Harvey Gerst tipped me off to these BTW.
    He just bought one (he has three now) that used to be mine. I kept one. Big sleeper like the RE's.

  14. veatch

    veatch Active Member

    Feb 16, 2004
    Don't eat for a month and buy both. ;-)

    I would get the 421 first, but as has been sed, you'll likely end up with both someday. You're making good choices, though: both will useful long term....
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