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Neumann KM 184 or AKG C451 B/ST suggestions?
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Rokus666
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15th June 2009
Old 15th June 2009
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Neumann KM 184 or AKG C451 B/ST suggestions?

I am looking to get a stereo pair mainly for recording steel string, classical guitar and various small percussion.

Any experience which might be better for this use ?

Or, is there any nice stereo pair out there that outperforms these two in terms of price-range ?
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Rokus666
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16th June 2009
Old 16th June 2009
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Anyone, tell me something ?
I am hoping to hear that Neuman outperforms the other one...
Anyone used it side by side ?
my only experience is using 451 on acoustic guitar and it sounded bright and pleasing. The only concern is that it would sound thin for instruments that have a lot of body like drums or accordion...
That's why I'm hoping that Neuman will be a bang for the buck...
901
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16th June 2009
Old 16th June 2009
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901
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For my taste the 451 is a bit too bright as a general purpose stereo mic pair. I prefer my 184 pair and use the 451 only if I´m really after the sparkle.

Lots of fellow gearslutters will tell you to use KM84 instead...
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16th June 2009
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The 451 only ever works for me when I'm recording to tape. Otherwise it's just too damn bright on the transients.
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16th June 2009
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I've had them side by side on overheades. I preferred the 184s except on jazz, where that little extra sparle the 451s had worked.

Generally the 184s sound like 451s with more body
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16th June 2009
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I compared the 184s and 451s side by side on piano a while ago. I guess it's just a matter of personal taste, but I really didn't care for the AKGs at all. I thought the Neumanns sounded wonderful.
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16th June 2009
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Yes,

That is what I am thinking too. 184's are the way to go...
I might as well get both pairs and see the preference for myself.
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16th June 2009
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the old 451 EB's sound nothing like the new akg 451 offering.
the new ones sound harsh and bright to me.
basically useless for the sounds i like to achieve.
my of old 451 EB's are wonderful mics for many applications.
ac gtr, strings, OH's.
love em.

when i first got them, i A/B'd them with my neumann km 184's and sold the km 184's one week later for $400 more than i paid for the 451 EB's.
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16th June 2009
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If I score the old pair on e-bay that would be really awesome.
But weren't they supposed to be exactly the same microphones ?
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16th June 2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rokus666 View Post
Or, is there any nice stereo pair out there that outperforms these two in terms of price-range ?
The Oktava MK-012 MSP6 kits are so much mic for your needs it's ridiculous. In my opinion they would prove themselves more useful than either of those, not only in sound but having the choice to swap cardioid, omni and hypercardioid capsules (which all have their own tone to them). The omni cap from Oktava impresses me more and more lately, very linear sound with great snap.

Out of the two, I would go with the Neumann though over the AKG for those uses.

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16th June 2009
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I have old 451's which I love dearly. Nonetheless, when we did a direct comparison the 184 just had more to offer.

Then again....the drummer was Jeff Alexander...who happened to head sales at Neumann at the time....

But it was his recordn and his drums....and if the 451;s sounded better he'd have been te first to say so. Wasn't that way though.
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16th June 2009
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The MK-012 are lovely mics for acoustic guitar, too!

If you don´t mind some sloppy playing and a few German words, I have made up a comparison of MK012, SM-58, U87Ai, C451, MD421, MK101, KM184.




It´s not really scientifically correct since I applied some processing. But for me this brings the differences even better to the surface.

Have fun!
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16th June 2009
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I'm happily surprised to see so many positive comments about the 184. They tend to get abused around here, and on other forums.

They have probably been used on more commercially released recordings in the past 10 years than any other SDC mic. (I can't imagine how many thousands of 184s Neumann has sold in that time). I'm sure that some of the negative comparisons versus certain vintage SDC mics are valid, but I've found my pair of 184s to be very useful in a wide variety of situations.

If there is an upside to all of the online criticism of this mic it might be that you occasionally see great deals on used pairs, likely from people who read that they own mics that don't sound good.
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