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Which mics to add to my collection?
Old 4 weeks ago
Here for the gear

Which mics to add to my collection?


I'm a drummer with too much gear who's slowly turning into a live and remote engineer...
I've done quite a number of live jobs over the last three years (mainly Jazz, both club and open air), but would like to do more remote recording jobs as well. Just expanding my mic collection for that purpose.

I'm using a RME UFX+ with Octamic XTC on madi, expanded with Audient ASP880 and/or Octamic D / Quadmic as needed.

You can see my collection and main uses below, but I'll start with what I'm mainly in the market for:

(at least) one more M160 - there is no alternative to this mic, is there? Maybe Xaudia modded Oktava ML19??

Pair of "quality" SDC: Should I just get KM184 because that's an "industry standard" recognized by clients? Can I cut corners and get a pair of SE8 or WA84? Should I step up? If so what to - MKH 8040, Schoeps MK6, DPA?

(Pair of) 414ish workhorse LDC: stick to the classic (vintage?), get a cheaper pair to get started (Lewit LC441T, SE T2, WA-14?), or go OC818? (I like the small form factor, so AA CM414 is not my favorite).

MD441?? I know it's a great mic, but I haven't worked with one yet so I wonder if I really need those or if I should just stick with the M201s I know and like...

There is no actual budget, if I'm really convinced I can spend some serious money, if I look on the returns I got so far, maybe I shouldn't...

Thanks for your feedback, Peer

Mics I usually bring to shows:

2*Revox M 3500
2*Beyer MC930
2*Beyer Opus 87
1*Sennheiser 845
1*Beyer TG-X 58

Mics I usually don't bring to live shows:

3*Kel 7U
2*Kel 3C
2*Fathead II (stock transformer, might upgrade)
2*AKG C4000B -> might sell

Mics I just purchased:

1*M160 (vintage)
2*M130 (not arrived yet)
1*EV ND686 (not arrived yet)

What I tend to do for live shows or "quick and easy" / "demo" recordings: MC930 OVH, M201 snare (pointed at the rim), M88 / D6 Kick, M201/M3500 (or clients pair of MD521) reeds/guitar/trumpet, M88/DI/borrowed DPA upright, M88 trombone, club's pair of ATM33a piano (often there is none...), singer's own mic/M88/M69/SM58/845 vox, video guy's pair of KM184 room

What I like on my own Round Badge Gretsch kit: 7U over shoulder, 7U/RE20 kick out, M201 snare (sometimes M88) for jazzy sounds, add Beta 91 kick in, M88 floor tom, M 3500 rack tom, , KEL 3C underheads for processed electronic sounds. Loved the first impression of M160 as overhead to blend with the shoulder mic.
Old 1 week ago
Gear Head
Hi man

Assuming you are okay with your mic placement here's what i would suggest :
SN UP + SN Down : AKG C452 EB + SM57 ( SM57 out of phase)
HH : C452 EB
Toms : C414 EB &/or B ULS (cardioid mode) - No need to get C414EB with "Brass Capsule" but if you do that one will let you record voices in it as well - this is the best transistor mic to me but still quite expensive on 2nd hand market
Kick : D12 E or D12 VR - D112 is nice
OH ... well that's the hard part, the one that kills your wallet ...
Telefunken C12 or AKG C12 or C12 VR
AudioTechnica AT5045 (way more affordable)
Neumann U67

For live situation i would recommand same kit but with C452 EB as Over Heads - C414 B ULS are fine too but my preference goes to C452. they will work fine in studio situation as well.

All of these into 1081 Neve Preamp (models with or without EQ)
I can assure you that there is no EQ to use in the mix with that combinaison or mabe, a slight one on the Kick only.

There might be also another combinaison to add like 88RLB pre in order to emulate the 88RS.
Wich means : mic+1081+88RLB
BUT, i haven't tried that combinaison so i might be completely wrong saying that.
Besides the 88Rs has a amazing stereo enhancer wich of course you won't get using Neve pres only.

If 1081 are out of your budget then you may have some really good result using TLAudio 5001 Ivory II (mabe some little EQ will be needed) - or simply buy 88RLB instead

PS- All C452 EB with CK1 capsule
Old 1 week ago
Gear Addict
lukedamrosch's Avatar

Looking at your equipment list and typical jobs, I would strongly recommend (if you haven't already) looking up some of Steve Remote's excellent and thorough documentation, here on this forum. He has shared setup photos, equipment lists, and overall philosophy on many jobs which would likely give you valuable input.
Old 1 week ago
Yes, you do need to have a pair of M160's. I will mention that those AEA preamps with the ribbon-specific EQ will make them and your Fatheads a lot more versatile.

I would rarely consider putting C12's or U67's on a live stage. Bad stuff happens. Every house engineer will recognize a pair of 414XLS's and be more likely to let you swap them in than if you bring something exotic. Perhaps the OC818's will one day have that level of acceptance, but not yet.

You will never regret owning a pair of Schoeps, and there are some good deals on CMC6 pairs right now as dealers roll inventory to make room for the new small-body versions. That said, I think MKH8040's are a real bargain, and I like them much better than KM184's.

What are you doing for the money channel when you have a jazz vocalist? I don't see anything obvious on your list. People will recognize a Neumann badge. No singer will ever look askance at a U87, and you can use it on brass soloists too. An alternative (and my choice) would be a pair of TLM 170's, so you can deploy them on piano when there's no singer.

David L. Rick
Seventh String Recording
Old 1 week ago
Here for the gear


sorry for not responding sooner, thanks for your replies.
@ tracks : Cool, I know your favorite drum recording chain now But it's not my intention to replace every single mic I own with another one some one else prefers... And vintage C12 is way beyond what I'd want to spend and take on stage.
@ lukedamrosch : Thanks, I did find his remoteness already and I'm a big fan
@ David Rick : Yes, I did get a second M160 by now, I might even go for a third one to pick a closer pair for the OVH and have one left for i.e. saxophone. At the moment I'm not shopping for "boutique" amps (more likely a second XTC for remote control and just solid clean sound), but I'll keep the AEA in mind.
The money channel is a good question. So far, I didn't get vocalists that often and if I did, they used their own handheld. I also have to get a balance between investing now to get better jobs and getting more jobs first to justify the investments... So maybe one cheeper 414-style stereo set and one higher end mic that I can upgrade to a set later on could be an option.

By the way, the other mics I added since my first post are two MD441 and two CM4.

Cheers, Peer
Old 5 days ago
Gear Head
Hello PeerSoe

surely it really was not my intention to tell you to replace every mic you have but, i found it interessing to give you other mic options - wich btw is likely what Al Schmitt uses.

Of course and as i said for live situations, i of course would surely not use U67s or C12s but the C452s as OH
Old 5 days ago
Here for the gear


right now I'm trying to figure whether I should shop for bang for the buck or rather resale value....
The current state of my business wouldn't justify buying mics like an U87 for instance but would suggest looking at sE 4400 or the AA line at max. However, I do have some savings (and interest rates are close to zero any ways) so I was wondering whether buying the classics second hand wouldn't be a better idea (as I've been doing with the Beyer stuff...). If things to fine, I have great mics and use them. If things don't go well, I'll probably loose less money reselling my purchases in some years than I would with lower level stuff. Problem is mics that don't go second hand yet - from what I've read, the OC818 / OC18 is incredible bang for the buck (as is the Line Audio stuff), but buying those I'll definitely loose more money on a potential resale as I have to buy new.

One more thought - I was wondering if I'm better off having "lots" of (somewhat similar) options to make the perfect pick for a given situation or if I should mainly stick with one main workhorse model of SDC/LDC/ribbon/dynamic. (That's what I basically did with my M201s so far - put one up unless I know exactly which other mic I'd prefer).

I'll have to think about it some more I guess.

Cheers, Peer
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