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Why should I spend 4k on a mic?
Old 26th January 2007
  #1
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Beardhead's Avatar
 

Why should I spend 4k on a mic?

Recently I had the chance to experience some vocal tracking using a Horch microphone worth 4000,- € through an Amek Pure Path. I didn't like it. I asked the engineer about the this mic and was told it was absolutely neutral and cuts trough in the mix (I have my own thoughts on that).
Well, I own two Schoeps mics, which I love and also use for vocals. From what I know they are concerned kind of a standard with recording classical music because neutrality. One costs 1000,- €.
Tell me, why should I spend four times as much for a mic as big as a wine bottle?
Cheers
Claus
Old 26th January 2007
  #2
Quote:
Originally Posted by HIGHENDONLY View Post
He is right more expensive mics are more neutral,and clear and detail. They have a very nice richness to them and vocals sit well in the mix. BUT u have to have a very good room with them since their more sensitive.
Yeah we had to make a ghetto vocal booth out of a duvet and carpet so there ws no way we were going to be able to use a high end mic, even a $2000 Neumann would have picked up all the room noises. We made do with an NT2 through an ART tube pre-amp set to warm vocal, and boosted the input a good bit.
Ended up sounding pretty nice and clear.

Eck
Old 26th January 2007
  #3
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Beardhead's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by HIGHENDONLY View Post
He is right more expensive mics are more neutral,and clear and detail.
Er...we're talking about 4k. And a VERY big thing it is, which I wouldn't call useful for a mic in every aspect. My Schoeps are neutral...how much more linear can you go?

Quote:
They have a very nice richness to them
Explain that to me, what does that mean? In technical terms? What can I do with it that I can't do with my Schoeps?

Don't get me wrong. Being an engineer myself, I am willing to accept that stuff can be worth that money. But is it? Is it really? Is it so much better?

Claus
Old 26th January 2007
  #4
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DontLetMeDrown's Avatar
 

Was it really that bad? Perhaps you are overanalyzing things? What really is the problem? Are you unhappy with your tracking results, or are you just getting opinions about purchasing a mic?-- 2 entirely separate issues. If you can come here and tell us you don't like the Horch mic, why on Earth would you consider buying one? That mic is obviously not your flavor. Try another. The dollars have nothing to do with it. When you get into that price range, you can't really quantify the results dollar for dollar-- the sound is just "different".
Old 26th January 2007
  #5
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Better is in the ear of the beholder.


Who cares what we think. It's what makes you happy that counts. If it costs you 4k to be happy...it's more than worth it. If it only costs you 1K, your a lucky man.
Old 26th January 2007
  #6
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Beardhead's Avatar
 

I see.
Old 26th January 2007
  #7
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ISedlacek's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Beardhead View Post
Recently I had the chance to experience some vocal tracking using a Horch microphone. worth 4000,- € through an Amek Pure Path. I didn't like it. I asked the engineer about the this mic and was told it was absolutely neutral and cuts trough in the mix (I have my own thoughts on that).
Well, I own two Schoeps mics, which I love and also use for vocals. From what I know they are concerned kind of a standard with recording classical music because neutrality. One costs 1000,- €.
Tell me, why should I spend four times as much for a mic as big as a wine bottle?
Cheers
Claus
Horch certainly does NOT sound absolutely neutral. Vocals on Schoeps are possible and can sound nice, but sound usually a bit too plain, small and unexciting to be placed in a (pop, folk, rock) song ... The same for a spoken word.
Horch and similar top end vocal microphones (U47, Wunder etc.) do a kind magic for the human voice. They open lot of details, emotions and depth in it and make the lead vocal sound great.
Old 26th January 2007
  #8
Gear Addict
Maybe it just didn't work on that particular singer? I don't think there's a microphone that works great on all voices. M49 or 251 would be my bets to be the most universal but you never know, do you? I've often found 47s annoying on certain voices. Heh.. maybe 57 would have worked better? Maybe your singer didn't have a proper breakfast? Who knows.. whose nose. 2 pennies..

Antti
Old 26th January 2007
  #9
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djui5's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Beardhead View Post
Tell me, why should I spend four times as much for a mic as big as a wine bottle?
Cheers
Claus
Because they sound f'n amazing, when you find a great mic. That mic you heard was being run through a "not my preference" pre-amp, plus it could have been the singer and or the room. You never know.

When you hear what a great mic will do, you'll never go back. It's like flying first class, literally.
Old 26th January 2007
  #10
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Beardhead's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ISedlacek View Post
Horch certainly does NOT sound absolutely neutral.
Quote:
Horch and similar top end vocal microphones (U47, Wunder etc.) do a kind magic for the human voice. They open lot of details, emotions and depth in it and make the lead vocal sound great.
I agree with all that taken the assumption that it is not neutral , which it isn't of course.
Didn't work with that particular guy, then.
Old 26th January 2007
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beardhead View Post
Tell me, why should I spend four times as much for a mic as big as a wine bottle?
I have no clue.
Old 26th January 2007
  #12
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Scinx's Avatar
 

Why purchase anything? I would think it would come down to three reasons. (1) Desire for the item/service (2) Need for the item/service (3) Force/Duress.

If you want it due to desire or need (or have a gun to your head) - then you have to determine what the consequences or lost opportunities to not having said item/services are, and whether it outweighs the cost. In this case, do you like the microphone? Do you need the microphone (for a certain purpose including prevention of harm/extinguishment to your existance)? How about renting the microphone in question and seeing how important it might (or might not) be to you? Just a thought.

As such, what exactly is the question? Is the question 'why is microphone X worth $Y"?

I guess I just don't understand the question/joke
Old 27th January 2007
  #13
Gear Nut
 

i can't remember where i first heard this, but the saying goes that this is a game where 35% of the financial investment buys you 98% of the sound quality.

those last two can really be a ****er though...
Old 27th January 2007
  #14
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uncle duncan's Avatar
 

If I was trying to impress a new musician/girlfriend, and she really wanted a $4k mic to sing through, and I had the money, I'd buy it. Other than that scenario, I can't imagine spending that much on a mic.
However, if I gathered up all the cheap crappy gear I've purchased over the years and sold it for list price, I could buy that $4K mic and have money left over. But in that case, I'd skip the Horsch and get an old 47. At least people have heard of Neumanns, and they don't look like a wine bottle.
Old 27th January 2007
  #15
Yeah nutreul mics kinda suck.
The point of getting an expensive mix is the very low noise, the clarity and also the colouring is does to the signal, this along with a tasty pre-amp suited to the great mic can yield amazing results.

Eck
Old 27th January 2007
  #16
[QUOTE=pegleg;1095556
Last year, we had a Neumann M49 at the studio for a week. It was the noisiest mic in the place, the most expensive, and two clients chose it as their favorite sounding mic in a blind shoot-out. (Those clients knew nothing about microphone makes and models, only what their ears told them.)[/QUOTE]
I dont see wy anoyone would want to use a noisy mic.
I would ahve thought that the best vocal recording would come from the lowest amount of noise, and the most detail. Colouring is more personal preference, and to do wtih how the singers voice works with the colouring.

Eck
Old 27th January 2007
  #17
AB3
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You shouldn't buy a $4000 mic. You should spend a little more and get the Wunder CM7 if you want an LDC IMHO!
Old 27th January 2007
  #18
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Windtaken's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by AB3 View Post
You shouldn't buy a $4000 mic. You should spend a little more and get the Wunder CM7 if you want an LDC IMHO!
lol, ya, $4k is right in between the high end and super high end :P

This post seems stupid to me. It feels like it's trying to make a point but it's a point out of ignorance.
Old 27th January 2007
  #19
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popmann's Avatar
There's a difference in being neutral...and being natural.

A VERY BIG difference.
Old 27th January 2007
  #20
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foldback's Avatar
Matching the mic to the source makes a world of difference. One mic does not fit all sources. Just because it sounds bad on one source does not mean it's a bad mic, just a bad fit.

With regards to price, just because it stretches your budget and doesn't sound right on the source does not make it a bad mic, just a poor choice for the given situation.

One mans pleasure is another mans pain.
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