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Brauner VM1 or VMX (VMA)? - with audio wav samples - mic test Condenser Microphones
Old 9th November 2009
  #1
Here for the gear
 

Smile Brauner VM1 or VMX (VMA)? - with audio wav samples - mic test

Hi there, I was looking for 1 week all around the net to find some audio samples which can give me an idea of what the difference between the Brauner VM1 and the VMX(VMA) is - but I couldnt find anything useful.

So I ordered a comparison-CD directly from Brauner.
The CD is called: "The BRAUNER & VOVOX Live Experience" (recording from 23. and 24. January 2005 - Gamma Recording - Switzerland)

Here I post these files to share them with you.

All files recorded in cardioid mode, in a professional Recording Studio without using any compression, EQ, Filters or Reverb.

The two mics compared are: The VM1, and the VMA in VMA-mode (which is the same as the VMX.)

1. female voice VM1
2. female voice VMA(VMA-mode = VMX)
3. male voice VM1
4. male voice VMA(VMA-mode = VMX)
5. flute VM1
6. flute VMA(VMA-mode = VMX)



Please notice that these files are not ment to compare the Brauner microphones to other microphone brands - for that reason the recording must be done under exactly the same conditions and by the same singer. These files should help to get an idea of what the difference between the VM1 and the VMX(VMA) could be - but also here - what sounds better on the voice of the artist (and the way he was singing) in the audio sample, might sound totally different on your voice.
So finally I would say there is no way around - for getting a serious and reliable impression of the sound of a mic you have to try it out yourself.
Obviously also the quality of your monitoring system is crucial.


have fun! Love is all around!
Attached Files

01.Titel 06 - VM1 - female voice.wav (5.05 MB, 11468 views)

02.Titel 07 - VMA(VMX) - female voice.wav (5.05 MB, 11050 views)

03.Titel 14 - VM1 - male voice.wav (5.05 MB, 11784 views)

04.Titel 15 - VMA(VMX) - male voice.wav (5.05 MB, 11480 views)

05.Titel 22 - VM1 - flute.wav (5.05 MB, 9610 views)

06.Titel 23 - VMA(VMX) - flute 06.wav (5.05 MB, 9697 views)

Old 9th November 2009
  #2
Lives for gear
 

Both sound great to me. But I prefer the clarity and more "airy" sound of the VM1 - especially on female vocals.
Old 9th November 2009
  #3
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chrisdee's Avatar
VM1 sounds more natural and less colored. VMA sounds a bit to bright. To much of the essss on VMA.
+1 for the VM1
Old 10th November 2009
  #4
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chrisdee's Avatar
They both seem to pick up the room. How far away from the mic are they standing and is the room isolated ?
Old 10th November 2009
  #5
Here for the gear
 

Hi, chrisdee, I don´t know exactly about the recording conditions because I was not there. But on the CD there is a picture made while these files were recorded.

Here I send you 2 pictures of the CD-Cover - they might say more than words. Hopefully they give you an idea of the recording conditions.
The room is damped with foam material but there seems to be a lot of glass around in the recording room(reflections).
Attached Thumbnails
Brauner VM1 or VMX (VMA)? - with audio wav samples - mic test-recording-room1.jpg   Brauner VM1 or VMX (VMA)? - with audio wav samples - mic test-recording-room2.jpg  
Old 10th November 2009
  #6
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chrisdee's Avatar
Ok. Thanks
Old 10th November 2009
  #7
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chrisdee's Avatar
Both microphones sound great, but the VM1 sounded more plesant in my ears.
Old 10th November 2009
  #8
Gear Head
 

It's because the Brauners are very sensitive that they pick up ambience. It's part of their 'real' sound, of course in a not so good sounding room you will hear some not so good sounding ambience.
In fact if there's one thing that the Brauners do even better than capturing up-close vocals, it's recording acoustic instruments in nice spaces - they have detail like an SDC but with a 'larger' character typical for an LDC, and they handle off-axis sound like reflections (or other sound sources) very well.

Michiel
Joystick Audio
Old 10th November 2009
  #9
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World Studios's Avatar
VMX Sounds way more "exiting" too me, which is what I found when I compared the two modes of the WMA at my place a year ago. To me, the WM-1 sounds plain, dull and boring.

Flame Suit On.
Old 10th November 2009
  #10
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chrisdee's Avatar
If you have first hand experience I take your word for it
Besides it's difficult to rate a microphone based on a few clips here on the forum. But its great people are posting so we can get an idea
Old 10th November 2009
  #11
Gear Maniac
 
Donny's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by World Studios View Post
VMX Sounds way more "exiting" too me, which is what I found when I compared the two modes of the WMA at my place a year ago. To me, the WM-1 sounds plain, dull and boring.

Flame Suit On.
100% agreed. I have the VMA and the VMX mode gets used more all the time. Something 'magical' about it..
Old 10th November 2009
  #12
My favorite tube mic by Brauner is the Valvet. It has more density than their higher end tube mics which are crystal clear, yet the Valvet still has a smooth detailed sound.

I have that mic test CD as well. Interesting enough they have a Neumann U87ai on it as well so you can compare it against their solid state Phantom (and other mic's). For what I like, the Phantom sounded better on both male and female vocals compared to the U87ai. No mid honk that is heard on the U87ai.

It is true that these mic's pick up the room, so in my project studio I always use it with my reflection filter. Just by having it on the outer edge of the filter has done a great job in controlling the room sounds getting into the mic. I also have treatment behind the singer as well which helps as well. Now if I could just afford the Valvet...Still want to compare the Valvet X to the original. I am thinking it will sound similar to the VMX where there is a little less top end, but a little more charater in the low mid's.
Old 10th November 2009
  #13
Lives for gear
 

The VMA was more magical by far on those female tracks for me.

It's why I nearly always use the VMA setting here.

Paul
Old 12th November 2009
  #14
Gear Head
 

valvet or X

Quote:
Originally Posted by Glenn Bucci View Post
...Still want to compare the Valvet X to the original. I am thinking it will sound similar to the VMX where there is a little less top end, but a little more charater in the low mid's.
Valvet X is smoother sounding than the VMX, it's not a 'scaled down' VMX if that's what you mean; also the cardioid polar pattern is different to that on the original Valvet or VM1/VMX. A lot of this has to do with the fact that its 'Pure Cardioid', which means not a double membrane. That makes quite a difference. (the same probably goes for the pure cardioid VM1 and VMX but I haven't compared them yet..)

check it out,
michiel
Joystick Audio
Old 13th November 2009
  #15
Gear Addict
I suspect the singer were much closer to VMX than VMA. If not than VMX is a clear winner. I think it sounds very similar to U67 when they were new. This sound reminds me on Paul's Hey Jude voice..
Old 17th November 2009
  #16
Here for the gear
 

Smile

Hi people! Here I post you a link where you can compare various microphones. The mics, tested on female and male vocals, are: Brauner VM1, Neumann m 149 Tube, Neumann U 87 ai, Neumann TLM 103, AKG C12vr, AKG C-414 B-XL II, and some more...

These files are all recorded by the same singers and under the same conditions.

Here is the link: DAS Knowledgebase - Mikrofone (link currently not available)

enjoy!

Last edited by christus; 10th January 2010 at 12:12 PM..
Old 18th November 2009
  #17
Quote:
Originally Posted by Michiel H View Post
Valvet X is smoother sounding than the VMX, it's not a 'scaled down' VMX if that's what you mean; also the cardioid polar pattern is different to that on the original Valvet or VM1/VMX. A lot of this has to do with the fact that its 'Pure Cardioid', which means not a double membrane. That makes quite a difference. (the same probably goes for the pure cardioid VM1 and VMX but I haven't compared them yet..)

check it out,
michiel
Joystick Audio
How would you compare the Valvet to the Valvet X? I know how the Valvet sounds but never heard the X.
Old 18th November 2009
  #18
Gear Head
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Glenn Bucci View Post
How would you compare the Valvet to the Valvet X? I know how the Valvet sounds but never heard the X.
The normal valvet is tighter in the lower mids, and clearer at the top. A bit tighter overall i would say with some more detail which the Brauners are known for. Valvet X has more color to it, sounds thicker and smoother and as a consequence slightly less detailed, although by normal standards it's still a very detailed sounding mic.
plus the cardioid behaves differently to that of the normal Valvet. It's a bit wider i think and more even over the freq. range (this depends on distance to the source)

When tracking a singer with an acoustic with the two mics, in comparison you would hear a more complete sound of the acoustic on the X (which was recording the vocals at 20 cm away), on the normal Valvet you could hear clearer that the guitar was off-axis from the mic (same placement)
The X also sounded bigger but the normal valvet tighter..
it's a matter of taste if you prefer one or the other, in this case i preferred the Valvet X but in a busy mix..

We also tried it on upright bass. Here the normal valvet with tighter low mids has an advantage because it gives a clearer picture of the bass which you can compress without it getting muddy. With the X you would have to do some cutting in the low mids to get there, but it was again a richer sound which also has its advantages.


Hope that helps..
michiel
Joystick Audio
Old 23rd November 2009
  #19
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chrisdee's Avatar
Actually after listening in more detail I have to agree the vma is actually the one I liked the best. A/B ing in Audacity the VMA is a clear winner. It sounds clear and warm. The VM1 sounds thinner and more distant in comparison.
Old 8th December 2009
  #20
Gear Addict
Quote:
Originally Posted by christus View Post
Hi people! Here I post you a link where you can compare various microphones. The mics, tested on female and male vocals, are: Brauner VM1, Neumann m 149 Tube, Neumann U 87 ai, Neumann TLM 103, AKG C12vr, AKG C-414 B-XL II, and some more...

These files are all recorded by the same singers and under the same conditions.

Here is the link: digital audio service - Dienstleistung für Musikproduktion, Postproduktion, Broadcast

enjoy!
Thank you for sharing your test, christus!! It's funny, besides all those mics, I still prefer u87. Like someone mentioned on this forum, it's something organic about this mic. Irreplaceable, really..
Old 10th January 2010
  #21
Here for the gear
 

Hi people I want to tell you about my experiences of the last months since I put up this thread:

2.) I bought a Brauner VM1 and I didn´t like it. Little bass/lows, too much highs and a little hard at least on my (male) voice for my taste. This mic colours quite much. It didn´t sound so dynamic to me - a little rigid. But the quality of maufacture and the material used for the mic was first class. You should try it to get your own opinion - maybe You like it. I returned it to the store because it was not the sound I was looking for.

3.) Then I bought a Neumann m-149 Tube. That sounded good to my ears and quite natural, altough it was sounding a little thin/narrow and a little boxy. The quality of manufacture and the materials used gave me a cheap impression. In comparison, the VM1 was built much more precious.
But I preferred the sound of the m-149 to the VM1. To me, the m-149 sounded softer and had more bass/lows and was more dynamic.

But I returned back also the Neumann m-149 Tube, because when comparing the m-149 to my Sontronics Orpheus FET-mic they sounded almost the same!!!! So why spending all that money if you get the same sound for ten times less? And again these two mics sounded so similar, that it was very difficult to tell which is which.


Here is my own personal conclusion:

It is not necessary to buy a Tube mic to make good recordings!

Tube mics are not better than FET mics at all - there is only a very little nuance of difference - in the end they also only pick up whats in front of the mic. There are good and bad Tube mics and there are good and bad FET mics.
When I compared the Neumann m-149 Tube(4000.-) to the Sontronics Orpheus(400.-) - I thought - "****, this is not a 4000 dollar difference - they sound almost the same - I´ll send the Neumann back!"

I recommend to anyone who has little money - to buy a good FET mic.
The best and most overall useables are: AKG C 414 and Neumann U87.
The AKG C 414 costs 3 to 4 times less than the Neumann U87.
So the clar winner for me is the AKG C 414.
But there is an endless number of microphones out there - but with this two you go secure.


Before trying out this expensive mics I was really obsessed to get a Tube mic - but now having compared those higly acclaimed mics with very cheep ones - I came to the conclusion to buy just a good FET mic - this will make me happy - I believe.

I´m already happy with my Sontronics Orpheus.
But I ordered an AKG C414 and I will tell you how I like it.


See you
Old 18th January 2010
  #22
Here for the gear
 

Hi people, as I promised, I will report about my personal final decision which mic I keep.
Today I received my AKG C414 B-TL-II. I payed about 500.-euros.
The sound is a little darker than the Neumann m-149, and there is something magic in the sound. Very good on vocals, guitar and flute. For me the sound is warm, soft and silky.

The m-149 was more bright and more clean but still soft.
The VM-1 was very bright and a little hard and rigid - probably not the mic for my voice and/or taste(male voice).

So finally I will keep the AKG C 414. I like the sound. Nothing is missing and nothing is too much and it also has something magic for me. And its also a famous mic that everybody knows.
I tried all mics on the clean first class preamps of my RME Fireface UC.

This is my experience/opinion. Have fun making your own experiences!

joy
Old 9th December 2010
  #23
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A very personal experience

Quote:
Originally Posted by dibravibra View Post
Thank you for sharing your test, christus!! It's funny, besides all those mics, I still prefer u87. Like someone mentioned on this forum, it's something organic about this mic. Irreplaceable, really..
First-ever post, so not sure if I've done this right.

Back in Sept. 2008, I borrowed a VMA, a Josephson C700A, a C720, a Microtech Gefell M92 & a UM900 to try out on vocals [and, as a curiosity, a Schoeps CMC 5 to try out on my acoustic] and A/B'd all of these through a Neve 8801, against each other, and against my U87.

Listening back at the session now (Dec 2010) I draw the same conclusions as I did then. For me the U87 is the clear choice for my desert island. However, I have replied to this thread because the sounds of the Josephson C700A, and the VMA(VMX) through the cans have haunted me ever since. This probably explains why there are just a few takes of the C720, M92, & UM900 and loads of the VM1/X and C700A.

I have a soft voice (m), and (back in 2008) the C700A shone on my very mediocre vocals, and positively excelled when I added harmonies. It was magic with a similar build quality to the VMA, and [the C700A] is the mic I would've bought at the time (..if the sound of the Schoeps hadn't completely stunned me into buying it for my acoustic). The VM(X) however, is the mic that I may buy in 2010/1 because i can still flippin'-well hear its haunting richness 2 years later. The C700A was magical sparkles in the room, but the VM(X) did things dry that I've never heard before, or since. Also, the difference compared to 2008 is that (the VMX/C700A compared) i am now looking for a mic that is [the most]-different to my U87. In the future, I may well sell hard-earned & loved gear to get both mics because the C700A was also that good.

For me, the VM1 is class, but the VMX is graduation day ..
Old 10th April 2012
  #24
Here for the gear
 

Geez, will they ever put a DECENT MALE singer in those shootouts?? I can't focus on the sound itself, because my musical ear can't stand that choppy/ legato non-existent singing! It's like the dude is just talking with a little bit of pitch involved. Too much hip-hop and metal for the dudes I guess (I'm sorry for that, but I had to say it) - apparently it makes them forget how actual singing should sound like! Sing MELODY you male morons... and feel the push and pull in each musical line!!

Now I feel like both mics sound bad on male vocals:(

I like the sound of both on female vocals. The VM1 sounded more neutral (natural), while
VMA (VMX) more intimate (colored). For modern stuff (pop) VMX seems like a better choice.
Old 10th April 2012
  #25
Lives for gear
 

interesting listening. I know this is an old thread, but I'm glad it was revived.

I'd really like to hear some Phantom versus Phantera shootouts.

I know what the poster above means. Neither the male nor the female singer really has a characteristic enough voice to make either mic sound particularly sexy. I favour the second mic based on those tests, it just seemed to have a bit more intimacy, more magic. Not sure what, exactly. But neither sounds exactly mindblowing. And that's simply because the room is an uninteresting space. And the vocalists are competent but uninteresting vocalists.
Old 11th April 2012
  #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by binarymilton View Post
interesting listening. I know this is an old thread, but I'm glad it was revived.

I'd really like to hear some Phantom versus Phantera shootouts.

I know what the poster above means. Neither the male nor the female singer really has a characteristic enough voice to make either mic sound particularly sexy. I favour the second mic based on those tests, it just seemed to have a bit more intimacy, more magic. Not sure what, exactly. But neither sounds exactly mindblowing. And that's simply because the room is an uninteresting space. And the vocalists are competent but uninteresting vocalists.
Well, lets not get too pedantic. The female singer is definitely good enough for shootout purposes. Is she perfect from the technical standpoint? No, she kills the top notes - especially in the first stanza. However, you gotta agree about one thing for sure - she SINGS! Her lines have a nice flow and pitches have some sustain (and I actually like the "quality" of her voice). Based on her singing I can easily see how "musically" both mics work.

With the dude it's almost like listening to some voice over shootouts. And I really wanted to hear male singing...
Old 12th April 2012
  #27
Gear Head
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by christus View Post
The CD is called: "The BRAUNER & VOVOX Live Experience" (recording from 23. and 24. January 2005 - Gamma Recording - Switzerland)
Can I download \ buy the whole CD somewhere?
Old 24th June 2015
  #28
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IkennaFuNkEn's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by hotab View Post
Can I download \ buy the whole CD somewhere?
Plus 1, interested too
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