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So what's next (to buy)? Condenser Microphones
Old 28th December 2010
Gear Head

So what's next (to buy)?

I love this place. Since I've been lurking here, I have learned so much from this friendly community. Now I have a question for you: so what's next?

What I have:

Rode nt1a
Audix Om6 (for live usage)
Apogee Duet
Reason/Record and all the refills
Yamaha hs80m
Up to $1000 to invest

One man production crew here (pop rock: think Five or Fighting and Lifehouse): no need for multiple inputs. Not particularly thrilled with the nt1a (recording acoustic guitar is okay), and would like a better vocal mic. Any suggestions for another LDC? Maybe the sm7b is what I'm looking for.

Should I invest in a mic preamp if the Duet has a nice "clean" one already? Replace the Duet with an ULN-2?

Your suggestions are much appreciated
Old 28th December 2010
Gear Head

If you haven't already, I would go with room treatment.

I invested thousands of dollars in my home recording setup. The $400 or so I spent in room treatment after I bought gear actually made a huge impact in terms of sound quality. I wish I would've done it sooner.
Old 28th December 2010
Gear Addict

+1 for room treatment. Personally, I own the MXL V67G and 2003a LDC's...Love them both. But no matter how high end the gear, if your room sucks, you're not going to be making any headway.
Old 28th December 2010
Room treatment is great, Gik acoustic's room kits are great but a little pricy. The Se Reflection filter is good on a budget. I have a apogee ensemble(same as pre's as yours) and the preamps are good. As you noted you should consider a new mic. One that could double as a Vocal/Guitar condenser mic.

Below are some LD condensers that are great and can often be found on ebay for a big discount.

Akg C214
Akg C414 tl or xl II
Beyer mc740, mc840 or mc834
Neumann tlm 103
Mojave ma-200
Old 29th December 2010
Lives for gear
enroper's Avatar

Room treatment, of course

And the book 'mixing audio'. It's like a textbook but very easy to read. My nose will be firmly planted in it for the next few weeks learning as much as I can from it.

Also, good mic stands. I've had flakey mic stands actually inhibit me, even as a solo performer. Nothing is more frustrating trying to get a mic setup, when you have a musical thought, and having to wrestle with a mic stand for 10 minutes

I got some atlas and k&m stands on the way. I wanna be able to set it and forget it.
Old 29th December 2010
Lives for gear

a wife
Old 29th December 2010
Gear Head

So what's next (to buy)?


I'm pretty sure that'll cost me more than 1k

Sound treatment is in progress, and I actually am reding through "Mixing Audio" right now. Great, insightful, and clear book.
Old 29th December 2010
If you can build your own room treatment, you will save more than a little bit of money. You can then dump your cash on fun stuff. I was able to snag 12 panels of OC 703 off a local insulation supply house for about $60. Cheap wood and fabric to wrap up bass traps and reflection panels should total around another $60. Of course, it's helpful to already have a good drill and saw.

I'd invest most in mics. A good vocal mic like an SM7 or whatever works best for your voice. At least one SDC (maybe a pair) for acoustic guitar. Maybe a ribbon or multi-pattern LDC so you can experiment with different micing techniques.

Since you are a one man set up, it is important to find mics that work best on your sources. I've sold off some mics that were great but just didn't help my voice sit well in the mix. I've sold off SDCs that captured great details but kept grabbing that peaky harsh spot on my guitar, etc. Don't be afraid to give up on a mic after you've put it through its paces. Research as much as you can, buy used, and you will minimize your regrets.
Old 29th December 2010
Lives for gear
GAP pre73/sm7! hahaha....nah i also vote for room treatment at this stage, you'll get better results out of the NT1a, if you can't/not allowed to treat the room, then things similar to the sm pro audio mic thing can get you halfway there.

The preamps on the duet are the least of your worries for now. I have the sm7b is a good mic, but treat your room first, it'll benefit more of your setup, you'll probably have money left over anyway to get an sm7b, or a cascade fathead (ribbon), or both...
Old 29th December 2010
Lives for gear

Originally Posted by kevinwagn View Post
Any suggestions for another LDC? Maybe the sm7b is what I'm looking for.
Seeing that an SM7B is not an LDC (it's a dynamic mic), it probably isn't what you're looking for.
Old 29th December 2010
Gear Head

So what's next (to buy)?

I really don't understand why people get hung up on MUST having an LDC. If you are I would go with the Shure KSM32 or MXL V67 with swapped tube through a nice pre. But here is what I would buy:

Room treatment
Rode Nt-5

If you want go for something with more character to compliment the duet Pre's go with the gap-73, blue robbie, or focusrite Isa one. But than with everything else it would be stepping out of 1000. The only reason why I chose the dmp-3 is because it will drive the sm7 and just happens to sound good with a price of 150$$.
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