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U87 or M149 for vocals? Condenser Microphones
Old 23rd October 2015
  #1
U87 or M149 for vocals?

If you had your choice of owning only one of these microphones for vocals, which one would you choose and why?
Old 23rd October 2015
  #2
Lives for gear
 
Oldone's Avatar
Depends on the vocalist. For my voice, definitely the M149 which is what I ended up buying.

You can schedule an hour with the guys up at Vintageking in LA. They will set up everything from a T251 & Neumann U47 down to the TLM mics. I did this recently and it gave me a lot of perspective on the high end line. They even have the Pearlman mics as well as several other $3k and up mics.

Last edited by Oldone; 23rd October 2015 at 05:57 PM..
Old 23rd October 2015
  #3
Gear Addict
Have both so I don't need to choose :-)
But, I had the U87 first and it worked on the majority of voices.

The M149 works on all voices so far, but not as colorful as the U87.
I find the M149 to be quite natural, no hype.

In fact I use my True Systems P-Solo with it and I find that pre to be a tad too thin with the U87.

My go to pre with all other mics is a UA Solo 110.

Not sure what I would decide if I could keep only one. Probably the M149.

Dan
Old 23rd October 2015
  #4
Have both too.

No question, the M149 !

Why: More open and natural, compared with the U87.
The 87 are a great mic, but the 149 are fabulous.

My two cent...

R.
Old 23rd October 2015
  #5
Lives for gear
 

Hey Rolf, don't want to throw this off topic but saw you also have the 47Fet. From your experience, how does it compare to the 87 & 149 on vocals?
Old 24th October 2015
  #6
Gear Head
 
Stilus's Avatar
I have both... Depends on the source!
But last time I use U87 more... U87 -> Neve 1073dpa -> avalon eq (+ 2dB around 20kHz) -> Tube Tech CL1b is for me a killer combination
Old 24th October 2015
  #7
Quote:
Originally Posted by Oldone View Post
Depends on the vocalist. For my voice, definitely the M149 which is what I ended up buying.

You can schedule an hour with the guys up at Vintageking in LA. They will set up everything from a T251 & Neumann U47 down to the TLM mics. I did this recently and it gave me a lot of perspective on the high end line. They even have the Pearlman mics as well as several other $3k and up mics.
Lol so why didn't you pick this mic after trying it out!!! Mannn I went to vintage king and tried the Telefunken u47. Damn!!!!! Best Mic I've ever used!!!! If only it was 7k cheaper!!!


by the way to answer the ops question. I believe the day I went to vintage king I tried the m149 and the u87, I did prefer the u87 to it on my voice. Through a 1073
Old 24th October 2015
  #8
Quote:
Originally Posted by Stilus View Post
I have both... Depends on the source!
But last time I use U87 more... U87 -> Neve 1073dpa -> avalon eq (+ 2dB around 20kHz) -> Tube Tech CL1b is for me a killer combination
can't go wrong with that!!!!
Old 24th October 2015
  #9
Gear Addict
 

I have two m149, a u87ai and a u87i.
For me the 87s (both versions) don't come even close to the m149.
I'm selling both u87.
Old 24th October 2015
  #10
Neither - a 251.

That said, I've got access to a 251 clone, vintage 87, vintage 67 and an M149. Use them all for different vocalists, but the 251 is absolutely the one I'd choose if I could only pick one.

If I could only have one mic for multiple sources, it'd be the 67....closely followed by the 87. If it was one mic for female vox, it'd be the 251 again but then the 149 in 2nd place. Male vox 251 -> U67.

to cover ALL vocal styles, the 87 is simply the better all rounder. But my ADK 251 is better
Old 24th October 2015
  #11
Gear Head
I have worked with both. The m149 I worked with was usually amazing for the right singers, and the sessions I worked on often didn't have the luxury of time to do a mic shootout, so that was the go-to. Didn't quite understand the hype of u87 until I worked with it more and started to apply subtle eq to the recordings I'd made. It took to EQ so well.

The M149 can sound airy and open and completely amazing on some, a little shrill and nasally on others (at least the one I worked with). The u87 doesn't knock my socks off the same way but it is a workhorse. Probably choose the u87 for that reason.
Old 24th October 2015
  #12
Lives for gear
 
Callison's Avatar
An old 87 for me.. Owned a m149 and sold it. Not a bad mic it just wasn't my thing
Old 24th October 2015
  #13
Gear Addict
Quote:
Originally Posted by psycho_monkey View Post
But my ADK 251 is better
Which 251 do you have? The Z-Mod or the cheaper one?

Dan
Old 24th October 2015
  #14
..

Last edited by pencilextremist; 25th October 2015 at 03:58 PM.. Reason: quotes being manipulated
Old 24th October 2015
  #15
Quote:
Originally Posted by shobud View Post
Which 251 do you have? The Z-Mod or the cheaper one?

Dan
Z-mod. According to ADK though, a lot of the difference in price is in the build - sound should be very similar.
Old 24th October 2015
  #16
Gear Maniac
 
Black Ninja's Avatar
 

M149 for me too!
M149+ 149 Fearn Pad + Fearn VT1. Perfect in 90% of cases!
Old 25th October 2015
  #17
Gear Guru
 
drBill's Avatar
I've owned an old 87 for 20+ years and used the 149 many times in various studios. The U87 is a no brainer for me. Great mic, rarely the BEST mic, but always solid. If you have to record a diverse group of male, female, stringed instruments, etc. in a wide variety of styles and locations, the 87 is hard to beat. If you're mostly recording one or two voices, well.....then it's impossible to advise. Best to try a wide variety of mics to see what works best.
Old 25th October 2015
  #18
Lives for gear
 
Oldone's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by kangking View Post
Lol so why didn't you pick this mic after trying it out!!! Mannn I went to vintage king and tried the Telefunken u47. Damn!!!!! Best Mic I've ever used!!!! If only it was 7k cheaper!!!
I think you've answered the question.
Old 25th October 2015
  #19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Oldone View Post
I think you've answered the question.
Lol still!! thats a 5k mic!!! Might as well get the u47!!! Not that much more!!!!
Old 25th October 2015
  #20
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by pencilextremist View Post
the m149 has more colour, the U87 is less coloured, that's it really, there's no right or wrong choice.
Strange, I hear it the other way around.
But you are right with the right/wrong-statement. It's a matter of taste and source.
Old 25th October 2015
  #21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter Z View Post
Strange, I hear it the other way around.
+1

I hear it also the other way around.
The 87 is more coloured than the 149 !

Really strange... isn't it?

R.
Old 25th October 2015
  #22
Gear Addict
 
Fruition2k's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Woodwindy View Post
If you had your choice of owning only one of these microphones for vocals, which one would you choose and why?
The 149 for me is a bit more flexible, a few more patterns, has a current sound to me...love it in front of an acoustic guitar.
Cheers...
Dean
Old 25th October 2015
  #23
Lives for gear
 
Oldone's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by kangking View Post
Lol still!! thats a 5k mic!!! Might as well get the u47!!! Not that much more!!!!
I only paid $2500 for the M149. Who would pay retail? Are you still LOL?
Old 25th October 2015
  #24
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rolf Ebitsch View Post
Have both too.

No question, the M149 !

Why: More open and natural, compared with the U87.
The 87 are a great mic, but the 149 are fabulous.

My two cent...

R.
Totally agree with this. U87s are good mics, but there is something special about an M149. I think it's one of the best currently produced mics around, and I'll own one sometime soon.
Old 25th October 2015
  #25
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by kangking View Post
Mannn I went to vintage king and tried the Telefunken u47. Damn!!!!! Best Mic I've ever used!!!! If only it was 7k cheaper!!!
Did you try a Flea 47? $3800! Whole lotta mic for the money.
Old 25th October 2015
  #26
Gear Maniac
 
Tommyswami's Avatar
I've have both at my disposal . It friends who's singing akso which pre . I've been using the u87 a bunch with the pacifica sounds really clear and present with a beautiful clarity on the high end . I also use the neve and 710 great tone .
Old 25th October 2015
  #27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Oldone View Post
I only paid $2500 for the M149. Who would pay retail? Are you still LOL?
Lol!!!
Old 26th October 2015
  #28
Gear Nut
 
Adkins's Avatar
I'd say 149 into a fast preamp.
Old 26th October 2015
  #29
The only thing about the M149 that disappointed me is that it is not a full tube mic but a hybrid as Klaus pointed out on another thread.

" I had written in my forum that the M149 only uses its tube for the front diaphragm's processing (cardioid pattern), whereas the rear capsule side's processing is done entirely in the solid state domain."
Old 26th October 2015
  #30
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason rocks View Post
The only thing about the M149 that disappointed me is that it is not a full tube mic but a hybrid as Klaus pointed out on another thread.

" I had written in my forum that the M149 only uses its tube for the front diaphragm's processing (cardioid pattern), whereas the rear capsule side's processing is done entirely in the solid state domain."
There once was a discussion about the tubeless rear capsule.

In fact it turned out, the front and rear capsule signals are summed before the tube. So, no worries, the m149 is tube from all sides.
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