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Best studio mics - your input?

cronerror

Inspired
I am building a home studio and want to have a good selection of different mics for both guitar cab mic'ing, vocals and shooting IR's. Right now I have a few SM57's and an SE VR1 Ribbon mic.

Outside of the two mentioned above, what mics would you recommend for getting a good mix of flavors for a home studio?

Thanks in advance for your feedback.

Craig
 

Gamedojo

Power User
Though I doubt you would spend the money,

Neumann U87
Neumann U47

would be dream mikes for me. Ever since i found that the Back in Black album was basically a combination of these two mics for all guitar work, I started paying attention.
 

Valhallir

Power User
Vendor
I suggest a Neumann TLM103 oder TLM102. And for guitars also (highly recommended) a Sennheiser MD421 (1st Choice) or a Sennheiser e906 (2nd best, but still great) and if you can't afford the MD421 or the e906, I would suggest the Sennheiser e609 (same capsule like the e906, but without the Charakter-Type switch)
 

acidfrost

Inspired
You don't have to spend that much money. You guys are crazy.

Get a bunch of sm57.
Get a SM7B (guitar, vocals, bass amp)
Get a good condenser pair, suggestions: ADK Odin or Thor. Maybe Vienna.

Don't waste thousands of dollars on mics, a lot of albums where recorded with sm57 everywhere even overheads.

What's more important than mics is the preamp. If you have a generic sound interface with a 3k mic, it will sound like your cheap preamp. A sm57 through a great preamp will sound great. The rest is eq.
 

FractalAudio

Administrator
Fractal Audio Systems
Moderator
The mic I've been most impressed with for recording guitar lately is the Beyer M160. I don't like SM57's alone for amps. They're too spikey and compressed but mixed with an M160 or R121 they add some nice sizzle.
 

Valhallir

Power User
Vendor
The mic I've been most impressed with for recording guitar lately is the Beyer M160. I don't like SM57's alone for amps. They're too spikey and compressed but mixed with an M160 or R121 they add some nice sizzle.

+1000. IMHO the SM57 is too much Hype for what it is really worthy.
But in Addition to some "real" good mikes, like R121, MD421 or just an SM7 (this is what i would call a "good" Shure Mic)
It's nice as a "blend" Mic.

Ribbon Mics, that do a good guitar recording Job are easy to find for small money: just watch out for a RB500, which is a Cheapo ribbon Mic from Thomann (Big German musicstore) and similar products. If you blend them with another dynamic Mics you will achieve quite a fat tone....ok, it's Not a R121, but it's "Bang for the Buck"
 

VegaBaby

Fractal Fanatic
The mic I've been most impressed with for recording guitar lately is the Beyer M160. I don't like SM57's alone for amps. They're too spikey and compressed but mixed with an M160 or R121 they add some nice sizzle.
absolutely. whenever a R121 is a bit "much" blended with a 57, the M160 is just right.
 

Valhallir

Power User
Vendor
You don't have to spend that much money. You guys are crazy.

Get a bunch of sm57.
Get a SM7B (guitar, vocals, bass amp)
Get a good condenser pair, suggestions: ADK Odin or Thor. Maybe Vienna.

Don't waste thousands of dollars on mics, a lot of albums where recorded with sm57 everywhere even overheads.

What's more important than mics is the preamp. If you have a generic sound interface with a 3k mic, it will sound like your cheap preamp. A sm57 through a great preamp will sound great. The rest is eq.

Most modern Mic Preamps on the market can handle more frequency and Gain Range, that a SM57 is able to do.
Fact is: Shit in means Shit Out.
A Good Mike placed well in Front of the speakers Sweetspot saves hours of EQ-Threatment. a guitar Signal is like a Diva, if you do too much with it, it will suck.

In Earlier Days so many Productions were done with SM57, cause, they used the more expensive Signals for Vocals, Overheads, Bass, etc....the guitars got, what was left in the Box...if you told the engineer, that you wanted the u87 for the guitars...he would have thrown you Out of the Studio (except you were Hendrix...who used everything but an SM57 alone....
 

cronerror

Inspired
Thanks for all the of (quick) feedback. The good news is that s lot of it jives with some of my pre-conceived notions. I had already pretty much figured I would add a Sennheiser e906 & MD421, and probably a Beyerdynamic M-160. For <$1,500 that would seem like money well spent. I bought the SE VR1 as a lower cost, great sounding alternative to the R-121. In use, I really like them both although they sound slightly different in the high end. Both great, IMO.

Tyler, I agree that a U87 would be cool to have on tap, if I didn't think I would have to sell a kidney to afford it. :shock

On the topic of the U87, does anyone have personal experience with modding other U87-derived mics like the Rode NT1-A to make them a little smoother? Real, or another "If it seems too good to be true," deal?
 

vinnyburns

Experienced
For rhythm guitar I use an SM57 with an AKG 451 (with CK1 capsule).
Solos are AKG 414. This is also my studio vocal mic and the mic I use for acoustics.
Another mic I like for acoustics is a Sennheiser MD441. Sold mine but I am buying another.
Preamps. I love Focusrute ISA. I have been using ISA110 based units since 1988. The newer ISA828 and ISA220 I have are great but they do run hot and are not the most reliable units. Mine are currently in getting 'serviced' (ahem) but I stick with them because they sound great :)
I tend to stick with stuff all my favourite classic albums from when I was growing up were recorded with so for me, its sm57, 451, and 414 all the way for 90% of everything.
 

Valhallir

Power User
Vendor
Thanks for all the of (quick) feedback. The good news is that s lot of it jives with some of my pre-conceived notions. I had already pretty much figured I would add a Sennheiser e906 & MD421, and probably a Beyerdynamic M-160. For <$1,500 that would seem like money well spent. I bought the SE VR1 as a lower cost, great sounding alternative to the R-121. In use, I really like them both although they sound slightly different in the high end. Both great, IMO.

Tyler, I agree that a U87 would be cool to have on tap, if I didn't think I would have to sell a kidney to afford it. :shock

On the topic of the U87, does anyone have personal experience with modding other U87-derived mics like the Rode NT1-A to make them a little smoother? Real, or another "If it seems too good to be true," deal?


With the Rode NT-1, you'll be quite happy. Rode Mics really have an excellent quality for the Price. If you're looking for really good Condenser Mics for drum Overheads, try a pair of matched NT-5. IMHO, Those are the best small diaphragm Condenser mics around in their price range (and they kill many other Far more expensive Mics...)

If you find an AKG Perception 420, try it out. also worth every Dime.
 

Guitarjon

Fractal Fanatic
The mic I've been most impressed with for recording guitar lately is the Beyer M160. I don't like SM57's alone for amps. They're too spikey and compressed but mixed with an M160 or R121 they add some nice sizzle.

I'm really loving the m160 mic in the new Fractal cab pack.
It can sound amazing on it's own!
 

austinbuddy

Fractal Fanatic
Vendor
The mic I've been most impressed with for recording guitar lately is the Beyer M160. I don't like SM57's alone for amps. They're too spikey and compressed but mixed with an M160 or R121 they add some nice sizzle.

Cliff, I posted this in the "Wish List" part of forum as well to follow protocal, but would it not be great and make sense to add the M160 to the existing AXE FX mic arsenal for use with factory cabs? We all agree that mic is shiznit, be good to have it available for all the factory IRs in the AXE FX!
 
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