Best microphone for female vocalist?
DarkSarahTK
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#1
24th June 2013
Old 24th June 2013
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Best microphone for female vocalist?

Hey all,

I would like to get your opinion on choosing new microphone for our singer Heidi to be used mainly on the Live shows. She is a classical singer and her range is Lyrical Soprano. We've had quite many different mics before but now I will update the one what we have to the wireless of our own so that can get her voice out better. There seems to be these new 2.4Ghz range wireless microphones but would they be any good for us?

What we need is a crystal clear sound and microphone that is suitable for her vocal range. We are using in-ear monitoring so the stage noise is "minimal". Would be nice to hear of your experiences and what would you recommend.

Here is a sample of one of our songs and you get better picture what we are looking for.

Dark Sarah - Save me ->http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3wsHp6VsE6w

Rock Rock,
++Tommi
Dark Sarah - Official
https://twitter.com/DarkSarahTK
#2
25th June 2013
Old 25th June 2013
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My vote is for the Heil PR-35. This is available as a handheld wired mic or you can get the "head" to mount on other manufacturer's wireless transmitters. This mic sounds great on female singers, very wide dynamic range.
DarkSarahTK
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#3
25th June 2013
Old 25th June 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moonbaby View Post
My vote is for the Heil PR-35. This is available as a handheld wired mic or you can get the "head" to mount on other manufacturer's wireless transmitters. This mic sounds great on female singers, very wide dynamic range.
Thanks for the tip. Unfortunately it seems to be almost impossible to test Heil PR-35 mics here in Finland. No importers. I've been now reading some reviews of it and it sounds very interesting indeed and could fit to our purpose really well.

I know you can change the capsules but also I would like to know of your experiences on 2.4Ghz wireless solutions. Are they working well or is there some blackouts etc because heavy traffic on those frequencies?

RockRock,
++Tommi
Dark Sarah - Official
https://twitter.com/DarkSarahTK

Last edited by DarkSarahTK; 25th June 2013 at 07:08 AM.. Reason: spell check
#4
25th June 2013
Old 25th June 2013
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frans's Avatar
 
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It's a bit like the question, which shoes will fit her.
It depends on a few factors, like:
A) the sound of her voice
B) the stage volume in relation to her singing volume
C) her mic technique
If B+C are okay, then it's all about A. The Heil PR35 is a quality mic and able to deliver. The usual condensers like Neumann, etc. are also not bad but have a waaay broader pickup pattern and pick up more that is around your singer, so they are prone to bleed and feedback. So if it's all about how it sounds, feel free to chose whatever sounds best to you. If it's about what will work under good and bad conditions, get the PR-35.
DarkSarahTK
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#5
25th June 2013
Old 25th June 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by frans View Post
It's a bit like the question, which shoes will fit her.
It depends on a few factors, like:
A) the sound of her voice
B) the stage volume in relation to her singing volume
C) her mic technique
If B+C are okay, then it's all about A. The Heil PR35 is a quality mic and able to deliver. The usual condensers like Neumann, etc. are also not bad but have a waaay broader pickup pattern and pick up more that is around your singer, so they are prone to bleed and feedback. So if it's all about how it sounds, feel free to chose whatever sounds best to you. If it's about what will work under good and bad conditions, get the PR-35.
Well we know women and their shoes :D

You are right... it is about all of those A+B+C. B and C are normally good. Bigger stages the bleed and feedback shouldn't be an issue. We mainly have drums and sometimes monitors but target is to keep the stage volume low. Are there any online stores in Germany or other european countries that are selling it?

++Tommi
Dark Sarah - Official
#6
25th June 2013
Old 25th June 2013
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EV 967
Neumann 105
AT AE5400
#7
25th June 2013
Old 25th June 2013
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I tried a Heil PR35 on a mezzo soprano gospel singer and neither of us liked it on her voice. The PR35 sounded too strident and harsh for her tone. We've had much better results using the Sennheiser E935, Audix OM6 and AKG D5 on her voice,

I would suggest trying the Sennheiser E935, E840, Audix OM6 and AKG D5.
cbr
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26th June 2013
Old 26th June 2013
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#9
26th June 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dickiefunk View Post
I tried a Heil PR35 on a mezzo soprano gospel singer and neither of us liked it on her voice. The PR35 sounded too strident and harsh for her tone. We've had much better results using the Sennheiser E935, Audix OM6 and AKG D5 on her voice,

I would suggest trying the Sennheiser E935, E840, Audix OM6 and AKG D5.
I also find the Heil's a bit strident, for vocalists with a "trained" voice, Neumann or Sennheiser are a good place to start. Audix is OK if isolation is a primary concern.
#10
26th June 2013
Old 26th June 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by edva View Post
I also find the Heil's a bit strident, for vocalists with a "trained" voice, Neumann or Sennheiser are a good place to start. Audix is OK if isolation is a primary concern.
Yes I forgot the Neumann KMS 105. Really great female vocal mic but more costly.
That's true about the Audix mics they're great when isolation is needed but I prefer the Sennheiser's and even the AKG D5's on some sources!
#11
26th June 2013
Old 26th June 2013
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Audix OM5 or OM6 sound amazing on female soprano live. I would highly reccomend giving it a try
#12
1st July 2013
Old 1st July 2013
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It all is really subjective to the vocalist.

I've had some luck with the Telefunken m-80's with females, but they have some feedbacking issues. when they're grabbing for signal, but if you tune your monitors the proper way, you should be good.

I totally agree with everyone with the pr-35's. they're great.
#13
1st July 2013
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as much as i hate the akg C414 b-xls for the male vocals, but it always surprised me on female vocals.
#14
2nd July 2013
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The Neumannis good, but If the singer moves off the mic at all it does tend to pick up whatever it is pointing at, in your typical rock band this makes it sound like you have just gained an extra drum overhead mic.
Try the Blue Encore 300, it has a good strong top end without the over-brightness of the Shure Beta range, and a very strong warm bottom end, but retaining balance
#15
6th July 2013
Old 6th July 2013
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Our main female vocalist is in a similar range, it sounds like. the Encore 300 is great on her, and my first choice, but I have found it can have feedback problems in some venues (especially if they have a lot of reflective walls close by). The EV767a is my fallback dynamic, and it sounds nearly as good, and is very easy to place, feedback is never an issue.
#16
6th July 2013
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[QUOTE=brettsabo;9188940]It all is really subjective to the vocalist.

I've had some luck with the Telefunken m-80's with females,
I work with.trained female voices..., on the higher side, dramatic soprano and up there are several mics that will work well,
The BeyerDynamic m69 , though not regarded as such a Mic, has proven to work very very well for us LIVE and in the studio. I kid you not. Excellent rejection and handles the pressure beautifully.
If you have a chance to demo one, it might be just the thing you're in need of sometimes...
The M80 from Telefunken is another great Mic,
bright but also full and bloomy. Looks very cool! For females, I use an extra basket liner (foam) on the outside to reduce the ssssssspops and keep lipstick off my lovely Mic. Built like a tank..
The kms 105 can be buggery to work with live if there is any other stage sound happening. Impossible to keep good monitoring in small rooms, well, difficult more than impossible. In ear highly recommended...
Stunning sounding Mic worth the work that goes with it.
SM7b excellent Mic that works in many situations outside the studio, robust sound but singers must really spend some time with it to know it's idiosyncrasies....not my first choice but as stated previous, depends on exact voice and particular environment.

In the studio, we use the sm7 or the beyer 69 for rehearsal or demoing, 249b for tracking....that's what works for us, hope it helps mate
Gene



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#17
6th July 2013
Old 6th July 2013
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There's so much more than the mic that goes into experiencing "crystal clear vocals" in a live setting. Live, loud stages are sonic warfare.

Granted it doesn't seem like you're doing a bunch of cymbal bashing, cranked amp, bleed from every direction, every wedge louder than every other wedge type stuff, so the mic may actually play a relatively big role.

For taming bright, loud vocals I've had good luck with the Sennheiser e935.
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6th July 2013
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[QUOTE=GeneHall;9203181]
Quote:
Originally Posted by brettsabo View Post
I work with.trained female voices..., on the higher side, dramatic soprano and up there are several mics that will work well,
The BeyerDynamic m69 , though not regarded as such a Mic, has proven to work very very well for us LIVE and in the studio. I kid you not. Excellent rejection and handles the pressure beautifully.
If you have a chance to demo one, it might be just the thing you're in need of sometimes...
For females, I use an extra basket liner (foam) on the outside to reduce the ssssssspops and keep lipstick off my lovely Mic.
Interesting. I often use and enjoy the m69 on female rock and R&B vox in a live setting, nice forward sounding mic, not harsh, and as you mention excellent rejection. Had not tried it on classical type voices, might give that a shot.
And I have also found that usually it is a good idea to use foam pop filters on almost all female's vocal mics, as you say it helps with the pops and the lipstick, but I also find it prevents them from eating the mic in an attempt to get more low end in their voice, which they may think is cool, but it sounds like mud out front. The m69 works OK without one though, using some hi-pass.
#19
7th July 2013
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[QUOTE=edva;9204735]
Quote:
Originally Posted by GeneHall View Post

Interesting. I often use and enjoy the m69 on female rock and R&B vox in a live setting, nice forward sounding mic, not harsh, and as you mention excellent rejection. Had not tried it on classical type voices, might give that a shot.
And I have also found that usually it is a good idea to use foam pop filters on almost all female's vocal mics, as you say it helps with the pops and the lipstick, but I also find it prevents them from eating the mic in an attempt to get more low end in their voice, which they may think is cool, but it sounds like mud out front. The m69 works OK without one though, using some hi-pass.
Yeah the 69 doesn't have one, I pulled the basket foam out of a d7 and put it over the 69 basket, it works but maybe not so flash looking. The 69 never ceases to amaze me with female vox. Hpf on the daking 1 is a delicious ....., I'll find a track I recorded as a guide that wound up being a programme demo guide vocal!.., sometimes all the fruit in the machine lines up with the most unusual combination....I'd really like to try dramatic soprano on a 69 through a bg1....through 1073 ish type eq for a crisp edge on full bloom. :D

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#20
7th July 2013
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When someone brings in an accordion, banjo or female vocalist I put up a ribbon.
#21
7th July 2013
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#22
7th July 2013
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I have never tried Heil mics, but they do intrigue me.. they get a lot of mention around this forum.

but.. I will second the Sennheiser e935.. It's currently my favorite vocal stage mic.

I choose it over the SM58, Beta58, Beta 87.. and even the coveted Neumann KMS105

even though the KMS mics are very hi-fi sounding, they can easily feedback in a loud stage scenario.. and I mix a lot of gritty indie rock acts.
#23
10th July 2013
Old 10th July 2013
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You might want to consider the new DPA d:facto II condenser microphone. High-end mic that's suitable for both male and female vocalists.

Should be no problem to get a hand on one in Finland (Noretron is the Finnish DPA distributor).

Another pro for the DPA is that it will fit on to almost any wireless system that's out there (with several adapters made by DPA).
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