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vocal mic test - sm57, beta58, pg58, e845, e865, e965, vx10lo, re510, kms105, dfacto
Old 3rd April 2016
  #1
Here for the gear
vocal mic test - sm57, beta58, pg58, e845, e865, e965, vx10lo, re510, kms105, dfacto

Intention of this test was to find best mic capsule for the money for live situation, as we are going to buy new wireless mics for our theatre.

Some of tested mics are not available in wireless version. This was intentional for direct comparison, as some of these mics are well known.


Behringer X32 preamps, gain setting are written in file names, set against loud pink noise filled space. Singer did the best job possible in keeping the distance from the mics even.

Played and recorded at 48kHz 24bit through USB to Ardour (backing tracks was unfortunately converted from mp3 files).

Backing tracks was played to main PA at concert loudness level. Backing tracks was also played to the monitor in front of singer, side monitor was not used. Vocal in PA and monitor was compressed to accommodate peaks. Hall reverb (1.5s) on vocal was used for signal going to PA. Main PA signal had some ~3dB notch filters to avoid feedback.

PA is Martin Audio 4x H2, 2x S218. Monitor is Martin Audio F15. Crown Macrotech amps.


Microphone files contain live situation stage bleed. Files have no processing, so you can play them on your system as if the real signal from vocal mic was there (except different acoustics for bleed, maybe different PA and no monitor, mics and singer needed).

We recorded each song on three mics in a row to keep vocal consistent, then next song, then next one. Mics were changed after three songs on three mics were recorded. Some takes was redone, no cut.

Order of recording:
- sm57, beta58, pg58
- e845, e865, e965
- vx10lo, re510, kms105
- dfacto


After recording I did some extensive tests with equalizer and compressor on the vocal alone and mixed with backing music on the same PA (less singer abuse). I was looking for how easy it is to EQ the mics for our particular space (and this particular vocal).

My favourites: dfacto (natural, very present), kms105 (velvety)

Surprised by e865 (in this particular situation and after some eqing e865 and dfacto, they sounded pretty similar, but dfacto more detailed and natural).

Surprised by re510 (I really liked the color of this microphone, making it my second after kms105)

I found e965 too sibilant (no use without deesser). It also had biggest problems with plosives (for me comparable to SM57) despite of singers distance.


FILES: https://drive.google.com/folderview?...kk&usp=sharing

Photos coming soon on the same link.

ARTIST: Katt Music


Hope you find this test interesting. Thank you for interest and attention.
Old 3rd April 2016
  #2
Gear Head
From my own experience:
I always found that 965 sounded better than the 865. The 865 can be a bit booming around 250/300 Hz. Is my experience.

Still D:Facto is truth to the voice, kms105 has more couler.

As with most DPA-mics there off axis frequency response is quite even on different frequencies. It's hard to distort by clipping.

It is expensive compared to a lot of other vocal mics
Old 3rd April 2016
  #3
Lives for gear
 
Aisle 6's Avatar
Were the condenser mics set to cardioid or hyper-cardioid?

This will also effect the outcomes. I personally know the 965 very well and love it in carded mode but not so much in hyper-cardioid.
Old 4th April 2016
  #4
Here for the gear
Sennheiser e965 was in hypercardioid, no pad, no hpf, sorry for missing cardioid.

Strong plosives are audible when singing from bigger distance, kind of wind sound. If you try to do the same close to the grille, it sound much better. Anyway, this was not the problem with other mics.

Photos are now online as well.
Old 4th April 2016
  #5
Lives for gear
 

Man, really wish you'd had EV N/D 767a and 967a on that list. Their bleed rejection is amazing. If you're ever thinking of testing more mics those need inclusion.
Old 6th April 2016
  #6
Here for the gear
Hi, I was interested in condensers as you see from the list. Dynamics are just for comparison and justifying higher detail that's expected and wanted.
Old 6th April 2016
  #7
Gear Addict
 

Unfortunately no plans to offer the Audix VX10 in wireless currently. Worth listening to the VX5 capsule on our new wireless when it hits soon.
Old 7th April 2016
  #8
Here for the gear
 

I run sound for a ten piece Latin jazz band and the lead vocalist has been using a Neumann KMS104 which sounds real nice but is horrible for leakage. I convinced him to try a Shure Beta 57 one night and he has been using one since. The rejection is much better with the super cardiod Beta 57 than the cardiod KMS104.

I also run sound for an 18 piece big band and use Beta 57's on everything except grand piano and overheads.

Ymmv.......Webjammer
Old 7th April 2016
  #9
Lives for gear
Nice test ... but you do realize that "wireless" likely perform very different from their wired siblings. Especially true with analog wireless (digital systems are much better at it).
Old 19th July 2016
  #10
Here for the gear
So we finally bought two wireless e865 in june. They are amazing sounding mics, battery life is great and they look nice well as well.
Old 25th July 2016
  #11
Lives for gear
 
Aisle 6's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by chickensk View Post
Sennheiser e965 was in hypercardioid, no pad, no hpf, sorry for missing cardioid.

Strong plosives are audible when singing from bigger distance, kind of wind sound. If you try to do the same close to the grille, it sound much better. Anyway, this was not the problem with other mics.

Photos are now online as well.
I use a 965 often with a particular, and very talented singer and i never like it in hyper-cardioid. I always use the cardioid setting.
Old 25th July 2016
  #12
Lives for gear
 
hbphotoav's Avatar
 

I, too, have found the E865 to my liking on RF bodies... but the 845 dynamic is pretty dang close. My "go-to" vocal mic is still one of the three wired Beta 87As in my SKB. They simply give me better vocal sound with less futzing about than anything else I own.

One old guy's opinion.

HB
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