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Best cheap dynamic mic for VO?
Old 17th October 2008
  #1
Here for the gear
 

Best cheap dynamic mic for VO?

Hey there,

I'm a VO talent who is helping another VO put together her first home studio. Her recording environment is a bit noisy, so I don't want her to get a condensor mic until she has a sound booth. I think she's better off at first with a dynamic mic.

I have a Heil PR-40 in my collection that is pretty good, but more $$$ than she wants to spend. Same is true for the other usual suspects - SM-7b and RE-20.

Are there any other good cheap dynamic mics for her to consider? What about the Heil PR-30? Anthing else?

Thanks for your help!
Old 17th October 2008
  #2
Jai guru deva om
 
warhead's Avatar
 

SM58.

War
Old 17th October 2008
  #3
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Weasel9992's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by warhead View Post
SM58.

War
Totally. Can't beat it on the cheap. thumbsupthumbsup

Frank
Old 17th October 2008
  #4


I hate SM58s....

How about an Audix OM or a Heil PR22?




-tINY

Old 17th October 2008
  #5
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Really? For VO even? I've always thought of it as a singer's mic.
Old 17th October 2008
  #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FearlessRaccoon View Post
Really? For VO even? I've always thought of it as a singer's mic.
voice in voice out!!! It would be hard to beat if you dont have more doe!!
Old 17th October 2008
  #7


Maybe a used EV660 series from a school auditorium....



-tINY

Old 17th October 2008
  #8
Jai guru deva om
 
warhead's Avatar
 

Eh, I'm not a huge 58 fan but for $100 I figured that was more the price range.

The PR22 would get put above it for sure, for 50% higher cost of course.

War
Old 17th October 2008
  #9


I suppose, but I really hate the low-mid phasey mud that that mic puts out....



-tINY

Old 17th October 2008
  #10
Jai guru deva om
 
warhead's Avatar
 

Really is the range permits then, the PR30 would be the one. At that point, you may want to stretch into a PR40 then...?

War
Old 17th October 2008
  #11
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scrubs's Avatar
 

EV RE16 can be had used for less than $100.
Old 17th October 2008
  #12
Gear Maniac
 

I've had good results with a Sennheiser e935 lately. I will follow up with my experience with the PR40 in a few days.
Old 18th October 2008
  #13
Here for the gear
 

I have a bunch of EV 767a's that I have always been impressed with. They can be had cheap used. A 57 with a pop screen would be good as well.
Old 18th October 2008
  #14
Gear Maniac
 

If you're looking for a good sound for cheap, go with sm57 or sm58 or that PR22, and get a pop screen. Then spend some money treating the room. The room reflections will have more effect on your tone than the mic.

I saw an article on an interesting box-style treatment for voiceover work that will definitely improve the sound if you don't have a lot of cash to treat the entire room.
The New & Improved Voice Over ?Porta-Booth?
The idea is to have a box of foam around the mic, so you don't have to treat the room as much.

Here's a site for some ridiculously cheap foam: Pyramid Foam - Foam Factory Acoustics
It's not the best quality acoustic foam, but it'll do for voiceover if you're on a budget.
Old 18th October 2008
  #15
Gear Maniac
 
asap audio's Avatar
 

My opinion - there is no good sounding CHEAP dynamic for VO.
That's all I do is produce radio/tv commercials. Until you get to the RE20 or SM7B level, the others are just not a pro level.

I've tried and owned the Heil PR20 and 30 - nasally and harsh.

I'd get a MXL V67G for $99. Not overly bright and somewhat forgiving
of bad acoustics. You could do some quality VO with that mic.

ASAP Audio
Old 18th October 2008
  #16
Gear Maniac
 
Ubu4him's Avatar
 

kel hm-1 any body ? not dynamic but still ... whats phantom power cost ? you could also look at the Kel Hd-2
Old 18th October 2008
  #17
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TurboJets's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by gleemanstudio View Post
I have a bunch of EV 767a's that I have always been impressed with.
+1

Well-built, humbucking, rich sound, reliable, and can take being banged around or dropped once in a while.
Old 18th October 2008
  #18
Gear Maniac
 

I agree here with ASAP Audio...the Heils are lousy for voice - both the 30 and the 40...and I don't like them really on anything. I tried, really tried to get mine to work for a year and a half, but I was never happy with it. The backlash against Heil Sound is starting as people get over the hype and really evaluate the sound and I think five years from now Heil will be a four-letter-word for dynamic mic.

By contrast, the e935 isnt' thin and nasal. I asked an e-learning VO client if they would like the e935 instead of the TLM103 and sent them a clip. They said the e935 was "richer, deeper" and "liked the sound" but wanted to stick with the 103 so that all their modules would match. I was six inches from the e935 on the sample recording. I've compared the e935 downconverted for e-learning voiceovers and it's a winner, sounding much better than my other condensers and dynamics.

As for the v67g, I like it and use it as a travel mic. It doesn't pick up as much ambience, and for some reason it minimizes breathiness...I've heard this with many voices. You can also EQ it very easily to match a 103, but it won't be as smooth.
Old 18th October 2008
  #19
Gear Maniac
 
asap audio's Avatar
 

KEL HM-1...definitely. One of the better low end mics for VO.
Doesn't have that overly sibilant cheap sound.

I tried 'em all until I finally went expensive. But, the V67G and HM-1 are real nice sounding starter mics.

I like a neutral sounding mic for VO. I'm a producer, so I feel I can compress, hard limit, or EQ the VO to fit the copy. Tough removing sibilance without removing some presence.
Old 18th October 2008
  #20
Gear Maniac
 

I use the PR-20 and the PR-22 especially on certain female voices regularly. But...I agree with asap on going for a mic that is closer suited for VO range.
You can compare quite a few lower priced mics here:
VO Mic Test
Old 19th October 2008
  #21
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Yoda117's Avatar
 

Transom Tools: Transom Mic Shootout - Blindfold Test

Table of Contents

Not to down JoWillie, who is putting together what will eventually be a very good resource, but these are more accurate tests, especially transom's since all the samples are done in the same studio on the same sources.

And check out JoWillie's blog postings. Some good info for voiceover there.
Old 19th October 2008
  #22
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DamnYankee's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by FearlessRaccoon View Post
Hey there,

I'm a VO talent who is helping another VO put together her first home studio. Her recording environment is a bit noisy, so I don't want her to get a condensor mic until she has a sound booth. I think she's better off at first with a dynamic mic.

I have a Heil PR-40 in my collection that is pretty good, but more $$$ than she wants to spend. Same is true for the other usual suspects - SM-7b and RE-20.

Are there any other good cheap dynamic mics for her to consider? What about the Heil PR-30? Anthing else?

Thanks for your help!
Electro-voice RE-15: Bob Ohlson (legendary Motown engineer) still swears this is the best mic ever made for recording vocals. Tom Scholz/Boston used this mic to record his acoustic guitars on his 1st Boston album.

There ya have it...

DY
Old 20th October 2008
  #23
Gear Addict
 
jaz49's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Yoda117 View Post
Transom Tools: Transom Mic Shootout - Blindfold Test

Table of Contents

Not to down JoWillie, who is putting together what will eventually be a very good resource, but these are more accurate tests, especially transom's since all the samples are done in the same studio on the same sources.

And check out JoWillie's blog postings. Some good info for voiceover there.
Great! Thanks for posting the link. I think I have a better idea what my next mic purchase will be.
Old 20th October 2008
  #24
Here for the gear
 

>>ASAP sez: the V67G and HM-1 are real nice sounding starter mics.
>>Ubu4Him sez: kel hm-1 anybody?
>>Toxostomo sez: As for the v67g, I like it and use it as a travel mic. It doesn't pick up as much ambience...

I own the Kel HM-1, am glad that I have it but it’s too dark for my taste to be an everyday go-to mic. The V67G sounds intriguing though. The money I save on a $100 mic can be put toward a mini-VO-booth like the Harlan Hogan one (around $130 or build your own). It sounds like this might get better results for the buck for my cash-strapped friend than a mediocre dynamic mic – and will hopefully work well enough for her less-than-perfect environment.

Maybe I can talk her into a used dbx286a so she can use the noise gate?
Old 20th October 2008
  #25
SM7 or RE20.

I consider both cheap since they are around $350
Old 20th October 2008
  #26
Quote:
Originally Posted by asap audio View Post
My opinion - there is no good sounding CHEAP dynamic for VO.

I've tried and owned the Heil PR20 and 30 - nasally and harsh.


ASAP Audio

They don't sound that way to me. The PR20 is a little thumpy on the plosives and the PR30 can be a little thin...

But, I don't record hyped VO with tons of compression designed to grab your attention - seems to me that the EQs on either side of the compressor and the compressor itself are as important as the mic for that kind of work.




-tINY

Old 20th October 2008
  #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scrubs View Post
EV RE16 can be had used for less than $100.
You might pay a little more for a super-nice RE-15, which to my ears outperforms in still air (the RE-16 has a lot more windscreen). Good narrow cardioid pattern with smooth off-axis response. Some claim that RE-15 sounds better than an RE-20 or RE-27, ymmv.

-cheers.
Old 21st October 2008
  #28
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Yoda117's Avatar
 

I don't know about better, but it's a bit different.

A good mic, none the less. If given the choice, I prefer the RE-27 over other dynamic mics for my own VO (though to be honest I usually use LDC or tube mics for voiceover). That's a personal choice.

The pair of RE-15s sitting in my cabinet won't be tossed out any time soon. I've found too many uses for them, and for the cost, they're a bit of a dark horse in my arsenal.
Old 21st October 2008
  #29
Gear Nut
 
oldgreensock's Avatar
 

I agree with Tiny, Heil PR-20 can sound huge on spoken word. Watch the plosives. I have even had to double up with a windscreen and a pop filter at times with that bad boy.

I would also dare say that a typical "VO" sound often comes with copious amounts of leveling amplification or compression.

"IT STARTED................ AS A SIMPLE CAMPING TRIP.......!!!!!!!!!!!!!"
Old 21st October 2008
  #30
Gear Maniac
 

I couldn't disagree more with the poster slamming the Heils. As an all-purpose VO mic, the PR-40 is the absolute best dynamic I've tried. I use it every day for auditions, and I've booked ad campaigns, video game characters, and network narrations with it.

And I'm not talking about local cable spots or monster truck ads or small-market radio commercials. I mean the more profitable world of VO, where agencies want to hear the voice of an authentic human being (I'm not judging -- I'm just saying). Plus, I've even found it versatile enough to use for quieter, darker trailer copy. It's nice to have a high-quality audition mic that doesn't have to be switched out for different reads.

I didn't buy the PR-40 because of hype. And I won't be over it anytime soon.

My two.
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