I need an awsome vocal mic and kinda already decided to go with the gold one, but it's not very clear to me what kind of difference is there between the cardioid one and gold one. Okay, so the cardioid is fixed in that mode, and is said to resemble more like some of the classic mics like U47 or C12...and the gold one should have wider response and it should be very "clear" sounding...
I'm going to need the mic for recording vocals and acoustic guitars in R&B, pop and ballads style...
Now I need that close, clear, wide response sound...but what throws me off, is that I've been on almost every studio/production company website skimming through their gear list...and almost no one has the Manley Gold...some have the cardioid one...
Like Aside Productions who have recorded Celine Dion and such people have the cardioid one. And then there's that Backstreet boys and Britney have used the cardioid one...I just want an awsome vocal mic.
And though C12, U47, Elam 251 are probably the greatest mics...those are quite much pricier than than the Manleys...and though VM1 KHE is the most awsomest mic (lol I use the awsome a lot) that's just a dream with it's I think 9000$ price tag (I think Usher is said to be using one).
Now what do you people who have actually heard these both...what's the difference sonically? Oh and if someone knows some mainstream songs that are recorded with either of the Manleys...could you tell the songs so I can check 'em out.
The Manley Reference and Reference Gold are truly great mics, but like everything you really need to hear the mic, especially at the price point you are talking about. The only difference between the standard and the gold version is that the gold version has variable polar patterns and the diaphragm is 3 mil as opposed to 6 mil thick. The Gold version has incredible detail and transient response. The standard has a slightly less immediate 'you are there' sound, but is still a world class performer. Both mics will do the job beautifully.
At this price point, you really need to hear as many mic as possible. There are lots of options out there to choose from.
My dad owns 2 of the Reference Gold ones. I was looking into a vocal mic a while ago and really enjoyed his Gold mic on my voice. He had demoed the cardioid only and didn't think it was in the same league as the Gold mic at all, not voiced as well.
I got a Pearlman, because I'm a little broker than he is and can't afford the Reference gold, and I'm really happy with my choice. It doesn't sound anything like the Manley, but still nice.
I have had one for years and really like it. If you have decided on the Manley I would definately vote for the multi-pattern model. I use the figure 8 and well as omni fairly regularly. Multi-pattern give you for real versatility, not just something to fiddle with or tweak. The Manley ain't cheap but I think it is well worth the money. It is a tool that I have gotten used to and would buy another in a minute if I lost mine. There are many other great mics out there, you have mentioned them.
My own bias on equipment purchases-- use your ears and then cast your dollar vote for the person or company that you believe in. Manley Labs is one off the companies that I have been happily doing business with for years. For the occasional problem I have had I would rate them A+++++++ on customer service.