BEST Studio Mic for Vocals ~$100
Andres.
Thread Starter
#1
14th August 2011
Old 14th August 2011
  #1
Gear Head
 

Thread Starter
BEST Studio Mic for Vocals ~$100

I've been googling, reading reviews, and browsing these forums for the last 2 days in search of a good starting mic for my studio, and I've yet to narrow it down. Here are the one's I'm considering:

CAD GXL2200 - $59.99

MXL 990 - $59.99

MXL V63M - $69.99

Audio-Technica AT2020 - $99.99

I'm leaning towards the CAD, primarily after learning that Alex Goot uses one too. I have some wiggle room to spend, but I'd like to keep the cost as low as possible. And this mic will be mainly for vocals/acoustic guitar, as an SM57 will be used to record the other instruments.

Thanks in advance guys, hope to learn a few things.
#2
14th August 2011
Old 14th August 2011
  #2
Gear nut
 

Get a blue spark or a used studio projects c1 for a little bit more.

Out of those that you chose, I'd get that AT.
#3
14th August 2011
Old 14th August 2011
  #3
Klaatu.. barada.. nikto..
 
The Spark's Avatar
 

In that price range you would be hard pressed to beat the 57 for a lot of things. It wont have the shiny top end of a condenser, but rumor has it that Tom Petty used one on a lot of his vocal recordings (or so the legend has it).

...but from that list Id go with the CAD or AT if you are going to add a 2nd mic. Saving up for better mic wouldnt be a bad option either. An AT 4040 isnt that much more.
Andres.
Thread Starter
#4
14th August 2011
Old 14th August 2011
  #4
Gear Head
 

Thread Starter
If I went with the Blue Spark would it be such a noticeable difference over the ones I posted?

I'm just brand new to mics, and really don't know what to look for. I want to save money, but at the same time know I'm likely to have to upgrade it in the near future for x,y,z reasons.

I'd love to spend $60, but if you guys honestly think I'll be much better off spending 2x or 3x that, I'm all ears.

What can I do with a Blue Spark that the CAD can't do?

Thanks again guys for helping a newbie out.
#5
14th August 2011
Old 14th August 2011
  #5
Lives for beer
 
BudgetMC's Avatar
Give the MXL V67G or 9090 a look. You can often find these for under $100, and you can do very good work with them.

And, if you aren't wedded to condensers, give thought to an omni dynamic, like the EV 635A, which can often be had for $40 or so on Ebay.
#6
14th August 2011
Old 14th August 2011
  #6
Gear interested
 

MXL v67g
Andres.
Thread Starter
#7
14th August 2011
Old 14th August 2011
  #7
Gear Head
 

Thread Starter
Quote:
Originally Posted by BudgetMC View Post
Give the MXL V67G or 9090 a look. You can often find these for under $100, and you can do very good work with them.

And, if you aren't wedded to condensers, give thought to an omni dynamic, like the EV 635A, which can often be had for $40 or so on Ebay.
Quote:
Originally Posted by OnE3nD View Post
MXL v67g
Thanks guys, I really hadn't considered those until now. A bit of food for thought to digest now. Off to do some researchin'.

Still open to suggestions as well as your experiences with these mics.
#8
14th August 2011
Old 14th August 2011
  #8
Gear interested
 

The V67G is pretty, and I had my eye on it once I saw it. I do however have the V63M, and I can vouch for it. It doesn't sound bad at all. I can't tell you if it has 'amazing' potential because I have no treatment in my room so it's a bit blah sounding, but even for that scenario it sounds pretty good, on acoustic guitar and vocals alike.
#9
14th August 2011
Old 14th August 2011
  #9
I have an MXL 990 that I bought before I knew any better and it's pretty ordinary. It's too bright and thin sounding for me. It only ever gets any use when all of my other mics are already in use.
#10
14th August 2011
Old 14th August 2011
  #10
Gear nut
 
jimcasy786's Avatar
 

Get an AT 2035. It's an amazing value. You'll probably still use it even after you dole out the big bucks down the road for something 'better.' They can be easily had new or used for around $100. I've used a fair amount of mics in the $300-$1000 range and the AT 2035 holds up well. But, trust me, at the end of the day, the mic is a distant second to what matters most: The song, the performance, etc. I say that from my own humble (humbling) experience :-).
#11
14th August 2011
Old 14th August 2011
  #11
Lives for gear
 
Kamurah's Avatar
 

I actually really like the AT2020 for vocals (mine). There seems to be a natural balance to the mic along with a de-emphasis on lower frequencies (I am assuming due to the smaller size of the capsule or the tuning of the mic itself) which works pretty well for my vocal range (tenor). For that reason, I find I have to use very minimal EQ when recording with it.

The only downside I have experienced is the mic is fairly sensitive to plosives and air, so a pop filter is a welcome addition.

I will be picking another up at some point in the future.
For reference, I don't have any real high-end microphones to compare it to...other than the 2020 my collection consists of (SM-57, SM-58, SM-7b, MXL 2003, and an AT 4040).
#12
14th August 2011
Old 14th August 2011
  #12
Lives for gear
 

I have tryed many under 100 dollar mics. I know all the ones you mentioned were condensor mics but the mic that see's most use in my studio for vocals is the gls 58 it's clean, clear, open. For 30 dollars it's a no brainer.
#13
14th August 2011
Old 14th August 2011
  #13
Gear interested
 

Since budget is a primary concern, the V67g would be the winner to me. Know that this won't be the mic you want to stay with forever, so if you can't afford to step up o the $$$ "good stuff" now, don't spend more than you have to. the 990 is fine, but the above description is accurate...blah. While I'd prefer the at2020, if it costs you $30 more than the V67g, that $30 could go towards the GLS58 and now you've got choices. In the long run, most of the mics discussed aren't mics you'll really truly WANT in your mic locker in a decade. You've gotta start somewhere!
My personal thought would be to go used, and get a more expensive mic for the same budget. Look for AT 4033,4040, Heil pr30,pr40 among others.
#14
14th August 2011
Old 14th August 2011
  #14
Gear Head
 

Heard some pretty good songs with vocals recorded on the AT 2020,

Cant comment on any of the other ones, but I'd get the 2020. you can find it on CG for like 50-70 bucks used easy, you can use it for a while and its so cheap that I cant picture anyone kicking themselves for getting it.
#15
14th August 2011
Old 14th August 2011
  #15
Gear Head
 

The 2020 sounded good on one of my friends who does experimental rap, i.e. kool keith etc.
And also sounded reeally good on my other buddy who does Black keys type blues rock.
#16
14th August 2011
Old 14th August 2011
  #16
Gear Head
 

Really, if you want to start a studio for $50, get an Shure 58... classic for voice, not too bad for instrument pickup (same cap as 57), and for S(h)ure a good investment

Now, if you are talking about something with restricted aspect but with precise acoustics, maybe AKG perception series will give good result, i will start with the 220...
#17
14th August 2011
Old 14th August 2011
  #17
Lives for gear
 
Shannon Adkins's Avatar
 

The v67g can sound good on the right source. It however does not respond well to high spl's at all.
It will be hard to beat an sm57 in that price range.
If you're looking for a more open sound,I would suggest 2 Audix dynamic mics. An i5 might be a good fit for an all around utility mic. And if it's just for vocals, the OM2 is great! Both are $100 new.
Andres.
Thread Starter
#18
14th August 2011
Old 14th August 2011
  #18
Gear Head
 

Thread Starter
Thanks for all the replies guys, definitely a lot of great insights to think about.

Now, I was browsing around MF and came across the Rode NT-1 for $229. I saw that it comes with an XLR cable, pop filter, and shockmount, which does make it a pretty good value I'd think - considering I'll probably end up getting those things anyways.

Any positive things about this one, or should I just stick with the 2020 or V67g for now until I feel the need to upgrade? I'll end up with an SM57 eventually as well. Or a Few.. lol.
#19
14th August 2011
Old 14th August 2011
  #19
Lives for gear
 
MadGuitrst's Avatar
 

I would seriously consider the Studio Projects B1 as an all around performer in that price rage.
#20
15th August 2011
Old 15th August 2011
  #20
Lives for gear
 
Boogaju's Avatar
people mentionned it already, with this budget, a shure 57 (more versatile), or 58 (more vocals) is a better investment. You will still have it AND use it weekly in 10 years, even if you end up having a huge mic collection then.
They deliver good results, work better in rooms that are not treated right, and are built to last...
#21
15th August 2011
Old 15th August 2011
  #21
Lives for gear
 
turk sanchez's Avatar
ditto...

sm58
sm57
I5

ps...I love Audio Technica, but that 2020 is gross.
#22
15th August 2011
Old 15th August 2011
  #22
Banned
 

Yup an i5 gets my vote, thenthe MXL v67 then the AT2020. The 2020 will sound good on anything but it may not be the best on everything. Kinda like a SM57.
CXP
#23
16th August 2011
Old 16th August 2011
  #23
CXP
Gear maniac
 
CXP's Avatar
+1 SM 57. In every studio for a reason. Everyone that makes money in music uses them. Never will be obsolete.
#24
16th August 2011
Old 16th August 2011
  #24
Lives for gear
 

Another nod to the AT2035, or even better, AT3035 if you can find one. I own 3 of those and use them more than any other mic in my locker. Low self noise, handles high SPL well, detailed and warm. For the few extra bucks over the 2020, there's a high pass filter and -10db pad, plus a real shock mount. There are several on ebay currently.
#25
16th August 2011
Old 16th August 2011
  #25
Gear interested
 

The Rode NT-1A deal for $229 is really good. I recently purchased this mic bundle myself and is my go to mic for recording. Also for your price range, I would highly recommend the Shure SM 57 microphone.
#26
16th August 2011
Old 16th August 2011
  #26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Andres. View Post
I've been googling, reading reviews, and browsing these forums for the last 2 days in search of a good starting mic for my studio, and I've yet to narrow it down. Here are the one's I'm considering:

CAD GXL2200 - $59.99

MXL 990 - $59.99

MXL V63M - $69.99

Audio-Technica AT2020 - $99.99

I'm leaning towards the CAD, primarily after learning that Alex Goot uses one too. I have some wiggle room to spend, but I'd like to keep the cost as low as possible. And this mic will be mainly for vocals/acoustic guitar, as an SM57 will be used to record the other instruments.

Thanks in advance guys, hope to learn a few things.


Hi Andres,

I can’t speak to the AT 2020 because I’ve never used it, but I would stay away from the MXL 990 as a vocal mic. You can do MUCH better for $100. Mad Guitarist mentioned the Studio Projects B1, and that would be my first choice in that price range. The MXL v67 would be my second. I’ve owned and used both of these mics extensively over the years, and both do a good job with male vocals. However, the SP B1 is more versatile. The B1 is sort of like the sm57 of condensers IMO. It seems to have a wider frequency range/response than the v67, and it really does better on multiple sources. The v67 is a good mic too IMO, especially for the price. I like both, but if I had to choose only one it would be the SP B1.

Best regards,

Chris
#27
16th August 2011
Old 16th August 2011
  #27
Gear addict
 
jpgerard's Avatar
 

I'd hunt down a good condition EV RE-15.
#28
16th August 2011
Old 16th August 2011
  #28
Lives for gear
 

IMHO your first basic mic should be the sm57.

Then sometime later look for an all around large diaphragm condenser, and also a small diaphragm condenser. (SDCs can also be great vocal mics, even though most people use them for overheads on drums or acoustic guitars.)

If least expensive but quite usable is the way you want to go, then the LDC Studio Projects B1 isn't a bad choice (but it is a bit bright), and for the SDC a CAD e70
#29
16th August 2011
Old 16th August 2011
  #29
Lives for gear
 
MadGuitrst's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gretsch 6120 View Post
Hi Andres,

The B1 is sort of like the sm57 of condensers IMO. It seems to have a wider frequency range/response than the v67, and it really does better on multiple sources. The v67 is a good mic too IMO, especially for the price. I like both, but if I had to choose only one it would be the SP B1. [/SIZE][/FONT]

Best regards,

Chris
Perfectly stated
#30
17th August 2011
Old 17th August 2011
  #30
Gear Head
 

i got the mxl v67g, it gets the job done.

it seams like i always got eq out alot of the 300-900 range to make it sound though, maby its just me.
New Reply Submit Thread to Facebook Facebook  Submit Thread to Twitter Twitter  Submit Thread to LinkedIn LinkedIn  Submit Thread to Google+ Google+ 
 
Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Forum Jump
 
Register FAQ Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

SEO by vBSEO ©2011, Crawlability, Inc.