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So what IS the "best" vocal mic?
Old 7th May 2017
  #31
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Will The Weirdo's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by musicl View Post
That's strange, no U87 mention!
Not strange at all, lol. While the U87 is a great all around studio workhorse mic, it's far from considered a top vocal mic.
Old 7th May 2017
  #32
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Lance Lawson's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by thehightenor View Post
Unless you're Phil Collins who recorded the vocals on 90% of his 200 million album sales (Genesis and solo) with a £230 Beyer M88 dynamic mic.

Just saying
Phil who?.......just saying.........
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So what IS the "best" vocal mic?-220px-donna_summer_1977.jpg   So what IS the "best" vocal mic?-1432cf642dec9db8b5a21961b37c9f75.jpg   So what IS the "best" vocal mic?-bob-dylan-piano-during-recording-session-1965.jpg   So what IS the "best" vocal mic?-frank_sinatra-1957-studio.jpg   So what IS the "best" vocal mic?-georgeandpaulabbeyroadsessions69.jpg  

So what IS the "best" vocal mic?-original_124.jpg   So what IS the "best" vocal mic?-recording-white-mansions-olympic-john-dillon-steve-cash-waylon-jennings-glyn-johns-credit-eth.jpg  
Old 7th May 2017
  #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lance Lawson View Post
Phil who?.......just saying.........
You were the one who said the choice comes down to an LDC for lead vocals - not me!

And not for Phil Collins, David Bowie, Mick Jagger, Eric Clapton, Bono, Peter Gabriel .... I could go on! (sorry I didn't have time for pictures - but I imagine you know who those artists are)

All who have cut lead vocals tracks on multi-million selling albums with an M88 or SM58 or SM57.

Just sayin'

Personally - I've cut great vocals myself on my high end boutique LDC's and also on my M88's and SM58's - they're all great for recording vocals in my book. Depends on the track, mood, register, vibe - I've got vocals I'm proud of recorded with a mic costing £6500 and one costing £90!

It's all good by me .... if it sounds great

Last edited by thehightenor; 8th May 2017 at 11:38 AM..
Old 8th May 2017
  #34
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After a quick listening through sh***y gaming headphones, I have to say I was quite impressed by the Chandler REDD mic.
Old 8th May 2017
  #35
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There is a best mic for a given vocalist, but you have to try them all to find it....

Old 8th May 2017
  #36
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Thread Starter
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gusss View Post
So Lynn - what's your fave ?
You might guess what I'll say.

"That depends."

I've been in the studio with 251's, 47s, 67s, 87s, C12s, 44s, CV4s, C800Gs, and dozens and dozens more.

That singer, that day, that song, that range—there are so many variables.

I've had to take a C800G down that sounded great on a vocalist but it was so clean and transparent that I could hear that the singer didn't shave that morning. I could hear the headphone earcups rubbing on the singer's cheeks and it sounded like a scratchy distortion.

I've put up a 251, CV-4, Blue Bottle, and C12 on a female singer with very little tone and ended up with an SM58 as the best alternative.

I've used an R84 on a Joe Cocker-sounding voice that had so much "shred" in it that any condenser just ended up hurting your ears.

I've used different mics on the verse than on the chorus because of the frequency range. The C12 sounded amazing on the verses because of the intimate high end but it just sounded horrid on the choruses with all that top end in their high range. (For that matter, I've used different preamps for the verse vs. the chorus because of the same reason.)

I've used U47s that sounded amazing but would just collapse on loud passages so I had to use a SM7B to swap in for the portions where the U47 distorted.

My favorite? There's really not one. I could narrow it down to maybe a dozen but I couldn't ever pick one mic that would work on everything.

The real answer for me? More mics. Just like there's not one hammer for every job or one screwdriver for every screw head, you just need to have the right tools for whatever job you're presented.

Ultimately, the right mic for you can only be decided by one person—You!
Old 8th May 2017
  #37
What's your fave out of this lot Lynn?
Old 8th May 2017
  #38
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Thread Starter
Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul_G View Post
What's your fave out of this lot Lynn?
I'll see your question and raise you a question: What's YOUR favorite?
Old 8th May 2017
  #39
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lynn Fuston View Post
I'll see your question and raise you a question: What's YOUR favorite?
Well today I've a new favourite. Not one I've ever considered before.
Still not a cheap option but the AUDIO-TECHNICA AT5040 sounds very smooth, rich and sweet.

I totally get the horses for courses thing in general though.

Now it's your turn. Ha Ha.
Old 8th May 2017
  #40
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Thread Starter
Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul_G View Post
Well today I've a new favourite. Not one I've ever considered before.
Still not a cheap option but the AUDIO-TECHNICA AT5040 sounds very smooth, rich and sweet.

I totally get the horses for courses thing in general though.

Now it's your turn. Ha Ha.
Catch me at lunch. Or over a drink after work.

I *have* opinions.

Surprised?
Old 8th May 2017
  #41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lynn Fuston View Post
Catch me at lunch. Or over a drink after work.

I *have* opinions.

Surprised?
Ha Ha, I'd be *interested* for sure....
Old 8th May 2017
  #42
Here for the gear
 

I may get dog-piled for saying this here, but I've been using the Slate VMS for many of my personal projects since December, and I have to say, the results have been jaw-dropping. Recording an artist first, then having them sit by me in front of the monitors and pick the ideal mic/pre combo is so rad.

Anyway, just wanted to throw my two cents into the conversation.
Old 8th May 2017
  #43
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Thread Starter
Quote:
Originally Posted by beaustep View Post
I may get dog-piled for saying this here, but I've been using the Slate VMS for many of my personal projects since December, and I have to say, the results have been jaw-dropping. Recording an artist first, then having them sit by me in front of the monitors and pick the ideal mic/pre combo is so rad.
Sounds like a real time saver. Instead of setting up a dozen mics, you can just set up one.
Old 8th May 2017
  #44
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carloff's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul_G View Post
Well today I've a new favourite. Not one I've ever considered before.
Still not a cheap option but the AUDIO-TECHNICA AT5040 sounds very smooth, rich and sweet.

I totally get the horses for courses thing in general though.

Now it's your turn. Ha Ha.
I do not like too many new mics for vox . Audiotechnica 5040 is one of the few I really like
Old 8th May 2017
  #45
Here for the gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lynn Fuston View Post
Sounds like a real time saver. Instead of setting up a dozen mics, you can just set up one.
Absolutely. I've been having a blast with this thing, so much so, that I'm on preorder for VSR8 3k package. Game changer, even for guys who have the full monte mic locker.
Old 8th May 2017
  #46
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cheu78's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul_G View Post
Well today I've a new favourite. Not one I've ever considered before.
Still not a cheap option but the AUDIO-TECHNICA AT5040 sounds very smooth, rich and sweet.

I totally get the horses for courses thing in general though.

Now it's your turn. Ha Ha.
Would be great if sweetwater could add the new AT 5047 to this shootout, I'm curious to hear the differences with the 5040..



Cheu
Old 9th May 2017
  #47
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Thread Starter
Quote:
Originally Posted by cheu78 View Post
Would be great if sweetwater could add the new AT 5047 to this shootout, I'm curious to hear the differences with the 5040..
I would have loved to include the 5047. I definitely want to hear it.

Unfortunately it was announced at Messe on April 18. We recorded these samples two weeks earlier on March 28 and 29.

Maybe next time....
Old 10th May 2017
  #48
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kelvyn's Avatar
Would have loved to have heard the new Ehrlund mics and of course Brauner.
The AT5040 was a pleasant surprise as was the Avantone - considering the price - it was a lot better sounding than I expected.
Old 12th May 2017
  #49
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nightchef's Avatar
 

For me the important question is, "what's the best vocal mic I can afford (or can reasonably expect to afford)?" That rules out quite a few of the contenders here.

When I focus on mics that are priced on my level of the food chain, one jumps out pretty quickly to my ears, and that's the Mojave MA-300.
Old 21st May 2017
  #50
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T_R_S's Avatar
it so depends on the singer for example a U47 is great mic but if you have a singer who is very loud it's going to crap out unlike a Sony C800 both of which are tube mics but the C800 can take a much higher SPL.
Old 5th June 2017
  #51
Hey all, Just wondering if anyone thinks the U47 Fet is a bad idea for vocals ? Ive heard some nice sounding stuff on them and am planing to DIY build one
Old 5th June 2017
  #52
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rixsta View Post
Hey all, Just wondering if anyone thinks the U47 Fet is a bad idea for vocals ? Ive heard some nice sounding stuff on them and am planing to DIY build one
A 47Fet on vox is very good. Even better than an 87. For vox, if it has to be a Neumann, I'd also consider the 89 & the 170.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #53
Gear Nut
The last couple of days i've listened to the 24bit/96 tracks with different headphones. Each track 4 times and gave points in a blind test. Out of that result I have been able to make a top 9 (4 mics ended 10th with the same points). Here it is, my own personal top 9 of the Sweetwater Vocal Mic Shootout:

1. Manley Reference Gold
2. Chandler Redd
3. Audio Technica AT4050
4. Telefunken AR51
5. Warm Audio WA87
6. Neumann TLM49
7. Lauten Clarion
8. SE Electronics X1S
9. Shure KSM44A

Do you have a top # ?
Old 3 weeks ago
  #54
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Thread Starter
I love the spread in the price of these mics. And the fact that you have a $179 sE in your Top 9 list with some $5000 mics? We've come a long way in terms of sonic value for the money.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Uomo di Mele View Post
The last couple of days i've listened to the 24bit/96 tracks with different headphones. Each track 4 times and gave points in a blind test. Out of that result I have been able to make a top 9 (4 mics ended 10th with the same points). Here it is, my own personal top 9 of the Sweetwater Vocal Mic Shootout:

1. Manley Reference Gold
2. Chandler Redd
3. Audio Technica AT4050
4. Telefunken AR51
5. Warm Audio WA87
6. Neumann TLM49
7. Lauten Clarion
8. SE Electronics X1S
9. Shure KSM44A

Do you have a top # ?
Old 3 weeks ago
  #55
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Whatever best captures the singer's voice while fitting the creative role of the vocalist's part in the music is the best vocal microphone.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #56
Gear Nut
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lynn Fuston View Post
I love the spread in the price of these mics. And the fact that you have a $179 sE in your Top 9 list with some $5000 mics? We've come a long way in terms of sonic value for the money.
Yes, but still I want the Manley Gold and Chandler Redd, in pairs :-)
I started saving today and skipped my lunch :-)
Old 3 weeks ago
  #57
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Thread Starter
Quote:
Originally Posted by Uomo di Mele View Post
Yes, but still I want the Manley Gold and Chandler Redd, in pairs :-)
I started saving today and skipped my lunch :-)
Skipping meals to save up for mics? Good man!!

Your priorities are straight. You may have a future in this business. ;-)
Old 3 weeks ago
  #58
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Will The Weirdo's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by beaustep View Post
Absolutely. I've been having a blast with this thing, so much so, that I'm on preorder for VSR8 3k package. Game changer, even for guys who have the full monte mic locker.
To each their own, but after spending 6 months with my VMS I returned to high end mic's and my final mixed results were very telling for me. You can see my posts about it in the main VMS thread. It's for sure a bang for the buck mic system at $1K, you'll need to spend to beat it, but IMHO it is not up there with the High End mics, pres, and comps.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #59
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georgehenderson's Avatar
 

There isn't the BEST vocal mic. It has to harmonize with the voice you record. There are a few mics preferred for vocals like

Audiotechnica 4040
Mojave Audio MA-300
Neumann U87

But in the end you have to try...
Old 2 weeks ago
  #60
Gear Maniac
 

A few things this exercise teaches me:

(1) Not a fan of the male voice recorded here
(2) My ears have expensive tastes in hardware
(3) There are some mics that I already play with that hold up well e.g. AT4050
(4) AT5040 is something new and has a nice tone (and a price tag to match)
(5) I have always bought microphones virtually blind. I think this shootout helps to contrast the qualities and tonality of the microphones recorded. I know people will argue all day about flaws in the method(s) used, whether all the tonal possibilities were evaluated etc. An unrealistic amount of effort would be required to satisfy everyone. In this case the files are given and if you want you can try and see how well the different models take eq and also see whether or not the recordings fall apart easily when sculpted

Overall several potential "Best" / "Good" tones have been served up. Your wallet may however be a limitation....

Regards,
Stratman
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