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Sennheiser 421 vs 441 Condenser Microphones
Old 24th July 2014
  #121
Here for the gear
 

Here is a recording of the 441 compared to a Neumann U47.

Channel strip is mics into the Neve 1073 DPA into a RME babyface.

We did this very quickly to help My Room Acoustics see how a small room like this sounds with a Cello since it's an instrument that is very room dependable.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6ggpsrshqiw

I have successfully used an SM7B on HH so I'm very interested in trying the 441 there too.
Old 24th July 2014
  #122
Lives for gear
 
jjblair's Avatar
Ever REALLY listen to the cymbal bleed in a 421? It's awful. I wish people would stop acting like lemmings, and use something else for toms, other than 421s. Their de rigeur use was probably a conspiracy by the people who built gates, which need to be used in mixing to minimize that awful off axis cymbal sound.

441s are very directional, which is handy for that purpose. Do they sound better on the tom? It would depend. But the leakage problem is very minimized by them.

Leakage is not a bad thing, btw. When I use C37As on toms, or D19s, there is a lot of leakage ... BUT IT SOUNDS GOOD. Almost never the case with 421s.
Old 24th July 2014
  #123
Quote:
Originally Posted by jjblair View Post
I wish people would stop acting like lemmings,
lemmings can't afford $900 Dynamic Mics for Toms.
They are on a lemming sized budget,
Old 24th July 2014
  #124
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jjblair's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Doc Mixwell View Post
lemmings can't afford $900 Dynamic Mics for Toms.
They are on a lemming sized budget,
Adam, there are so many great options for cheap, besides a 441s. Go buy yourselves M88s, or something. A million times better than 421s.

PS - I thought this was the "High End" forum?
Old 24th July 2014
  #125
Gear Addict
421's are useful mics for sure but 441 is my fave dynamic mic and can sound good on almost anything. Make sure you have a preamp with a lot of clean gain though. I rarely use dynamics on vocals these days but when I do, it's usually a 441.
Old 24th July 2014
  #126
Quote:
Originally Posted by jjblair View Post
Adam, there are so many great options for cheap, besides a 441s. Go buy yourselves M88s, or something. A million times better than 421s.

PS - I thought this was the "High End" forum?
Hmmm, thanks I will check that mic out,
oh wait...I have used it at least 10,000 times.

Maybe the other lemmings in my village have some ideas for cheap tom mics.
I only have one 441 and dammit it sounds great on my rack tom. Its a small lemming size drum set though.
Old 24th July 2014
  #127
Lives for gear
 
jjblair's Avatar
This is why I visit GS so infrequently. You can't express an opinion like "I wish people would stop acting like lemmings," without somebody taking it personally and getting passive aggressive.

How can I phrase it for the over sensitive?

It is my opinion that there are much better mics that cost less money than the 421, which do not do harm to the sound of your cymbals. I don't know quite how it became the trend to use 421s, because people have tended to use gates or faders rides to deal with this issue, when they could just use a mic that doesn't make your cymbals sound like crap.

There. Is that PC enough that I won't get **** for my saying it?

Seriously. It only ever takes two posts to remind me why I don't come here, and why my friends who have been making records for years say the same thing about this place.
Old 24th July 2014
  #128
Quote:
Originally Posted by jjblair View Post
This is why I visit GS so infrequently. You can't express an opinion like "I wish people would stop acting like lemmings," without somebody taking it personally and getting passive aggressive.

How can I phrase it for the over sensitive?

It is my opinion that there are much better mics that cost less money than the 421, which do not do harm to the sound of your cymbals. I don't know quite how it became the trend to use 421s, because people have tended to use gates or faders rides to deal with this issue, when they could just use a mic that doesn't make your cymbals sound like crap.

There. Is that PC enough that I won't get **** for my saying it?

Seriously. It only ever takes two posts to remind me why I don't come here, and why my friends who have been making records for years say the same thing about this place.
You hurt my feelings,
I think you are insensitive to my desire for ****ty cymbal bleed,
Ever think of that???
Old 24th July 2014
  #129
Lives for gear
 
jjblair's Avatar
Knock yourself out!
Old 25th July 2014
  #130
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jjblair View Post
Ever REALLY listen to the cymbal bleed in a 421? It's awful. I wish people would stop acting like lemmings, and use something else for toms, other than 421s. Their de rigeur use was probably a conspiracy by the people who built gates, which need to be used in mixing to minimize that awful off axis cymbal sound.

441s are very directional, which is handy for that purpose. Do they sound better on the tom? It would depend. But the leakage problem is very minimized by them.

Leakage is not a bad thing, btw. When I use C37As on toms, or D19s, there is a lot of leakage ... BUT IT SOUNDS GOOD. Almost never the case with 421s.
I love the 421 for many uses, but when I get a track to mix and it sounds like 421's were on the toms, unless the overheads are really badly placed (or intentionally just "cymbal mics") I usually just mute the tom tracks and use the overheads.....
Old 25th July 2014
  #131
Quote:
Originally Posted by jjblair View Post
Ever REALLY listen to the cymbal bleed in a 421? It's awful. I wish people would stop acting like lemmings, and use something else for toms, other than 421s. Their de rigeur use was probably a conspiracy by the people who built gates, which need to be used in mixing to minimize that awful off axis cymbal sound.

441s are very directional, which is handy for that purpose. Do they sound better on the tom? It would depend. But the leakage problem is very minimized by them.

Leakage is not a bad thing, btw. When I use C37As on toms, or D19s, there is a lot of leakage ... BUT IT SOUNDS GOOD. Almost never the case with 421s.
My 421s just sit on the shelf when I'm tracking drums. I can't believe the much better results I get out of those cheap CAD M179s. A matched set of 3 is the price of 1 MD421... and they sound virtually the same but NO UGLY LEAKAGE.

Quote:
Originally Posted by captainj View Post
421's are useful mics for sure but 441 is my fave dynamic mic and can sound good on almost anything. Make sure you have a preamp with a lot of clean gain though. I rarely use dynamics on vocals these days but when I do, it's usually a 441.
The 441 is a thing of beauty. The pinnacle of dynamic microphone designs... but such an awkward size and shape to use on toms!
Old 3rd February 2015
  #132
Here for the gear
I tried them both on toms today. With same placement and settings.
The MD 421 is way more "in your face" and hyped in the upper mids and highs. So it catches the impact better in my opinion.
But the MD 441 has a way more soft and warm low-end, that makes it sound more solid to my ears.
Alltogether i think it really depends on what you want it for...
If you record some metal, where you need that harsh attack and not that much bottom, you will go for the 421.
If you want some fat and warm tomsound maybe for some folk you better go with the 441 on your toms.
I really love the MD 421 on metal guitars! Therefor its my favorite mic at all! And i really like the 441 for clean guitars...
Old 23rd March 2017
  #133
I own both the 421 and 441. I have used the 421 on various toms and kick drum and guitar cab with good success. But the 441, for me, may be my "desert island" microphone. My main vocal mics are a Rode K2, Shure SM7b and a pair of 3U Audio Warblers. Like matching a wine to a meal, it totally matters what you're serving it with. The 441 gets "the call" for lead vocal tracks as much as any other mic, both for singing and voice-over stuff.

I find the notion of "condensers are better than dynamics" a bit funny too. Different tools for different jobs, but saying "I wouldn't pay almost $1000 for a dynamic mic" seems misplaced to me. It's a great mic. The Rode K2 lists at $1000 or thereabouts. It's a great mic. So is the 441. Why wouldn't you pay good money for a great microphone?

Chris
Old 23rd March 2017
  #134
Not considering off-axis response, especially around a drum kit, is an obvious sign of inexperience, IMO. So what if 421s sound great on toms if they muck up the cymbals? Gave up on those decades ago and don't miss them, although I wouldn't use 441s on toms, either, even though I love that mic. Much better options out there than 421s for toms. Even CM3s, which are probably 1/10 of the size of 421s (and way less expensive) are better on toms. Same with 57s, although I would EQ them more than 421s, but their off-axis response isn't as bad.

Granted, cymbal positioning plays a part, too.
Old 24th March 2017
  #135
Gear Guru
 
Sounds Great's Avatar
 

Love the 441, hate the 421. The 441 sounds open, clear, very hi-fidelity. Sometimes better than a condenser, a little more oomph that you only get from a dynamic microphone. The 421 sounds not as clear and very boxy to my ear. I've owned both.
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