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Best drum overheads - Rode NT5?
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ryangruss
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7th February 2009
Old 7th February 2009
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Best drum overheads - Rode NT5?

Hey Slutz,

I'm in the market for new overhead mics for my drums. I've done a lot of sessions with Rode NT5's (and even NT1-A's) and was happy with the results. I'd like to purchase something that won't require a second mortgage on the house.... but still has a nice crisp sound. What are your thoughts on mics in the $500-$800 range (for the pair)? Stick with the Rodes??

Thanks,
Ryan
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7th February 2009
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The Rode's will get the job done. If you can afford it, shell out the extra cash for a pair of 414's...I think you could get more uses out of em in the long run. This is such a personal opinion thing, that I hate to even give advice. Experiment with everything you can.
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7th February 2009
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In that range I bought the Beyerdynamic MC930's. Those are some pretty nice mics. You can find plenty of others speaking well of those mics on this site.

I have not had nor heard Rodes mics in a while, but from what I remember, I would say the MC930s are far more natural and pleasing to the ear than the (original) NT-1's that I sold.
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There are so many budget mics that do a decent job as drum overheads, IMO. I just uploaded some samples of a $100 mic paired as an X/Y at 'hear the gear dot com.'

THe NT5's should be fine, unless there's something you feel you're missing from your sound. I prefer LDC's on overhead duty, but that's just a personal preference (and stylistic approach).
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7th February 2009
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Josephson C42 are superb on OH. You could get a pair used in your budget. They will totally smoke your NT5s.
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I used to use the NT5, now the Josephson C42. The Rodes are fine but like was said, they are smoked by the C42's.
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mine

I been using a pair of NT1-A (amazing for the price, rather bright) or a pair of
Avantone CK-1 (best I have tried on OH yet, period). -JON
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A friends studio where I record almost all my drums uses them. I have no big complains about them.
But every now and then I bring there some Oktava MK012 or some KM84. Those sound more "rock and roll" to me. Fuller, warmer and a bit dirtier, in a good way.

For me , that have had both, the Oktavas are the poor man's KM84.
I've never tried C42 or M300 though, that are said to be in the same ballpark too.
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I picked up a pair of used AKG c451b's for less than $600 and I don't mind them at all. I have not tried any other SDCs though.
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8th February 2009
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In reverse order:


Shure SM81
Josephson C42
Mercenary KM69
ryangruss
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8th February 2009
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Thanks for all of the suggestions. The Josephson C42's look interesting. Does anyone have links to any recordings w/ the C42's as overheads?
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+1 for a pair of Oktavamod MK-012s... excellent as OHs, great for the price, and more than hold their own with much more expensive SDCs....
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I use a set of Audio Technica ATM 450's as my go to's and also like and sometimes use the Peluso CEMC6's. I like both.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PaRaNoId View Post
I been using a pair of NT1-A (amazing for the price, rather bright) or a pair of
Avantone CK-1 (best I have tried on OH yet, period). -JON
Agreed. Nice bang for the buck, but there bright.
Whats the Neuman KSM84s or something?
Those are alot darker, especially for SDCs.
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Some of my go to OH setups..

SM81
Gefell M70
Gefell M71
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Track 7 View Post
I use a set of Audio Technica ATM 450's as my go to's and also like and sometimes use the Peluso CEMC6's. I like both.
enjoying my ATM450s on OHs.

I A/B'd them with the NT5s back when I was looking for new SDCs, and the ATMs won.
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You could get a pair of AKG 214's. They're cheaper, cardioid only 414's.
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In my case, I've never liked the SM81. I find them so brittle in the top that it makes mixing a pain. I'm sure they have their place but I haven't found it yet.
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I think that ADK TL's are the best in this $$ category. Big open sound, and are a huge step up from NT5's IME (and 414 B-ULS for that matter). I really like large diaphragms on drum overheads (which is what the TL's are); Josephson c42's and Beyer MC930 are great choices for SDC's in this price range.
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12th February 2009
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+1 for the Josephson C42's.
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15th March 2009
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Thanks again for all of the feedback. In the end, I decided to go with the NT5s. With a recession-friendly price tag of $420 I couldn't resist. Plus, to my non-audiophile ears, they sound pretty decent. You can check them out on my latest post:

ECM. | ryangruss.com
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