CAD Audio M179 by daffy
I have now been using the CAD M179 large diameter condenser microphones for about 8 months and, after some initial teething problems, am extremely happy with them.
I work with a not-for-profit organisation and needed to be able to capture the results of rehearsal and workshop sessions quickly and easily, and at a reasonable level of detail, so I initially bought two of these mics for use as a stereo pair in general recording, running them off a Tascam US-122L portable I/O box into my laptop.
During the sessions I had the opportunity to try out many different stereo techniques, as well as use the mics individually on a range of instruments. In all cases they performed amazingly well, however I had some problems with noise and hiss. I talked to CAD and they immediately replaced one of the mics, and paid the return postage too - service from these guys is incredible. However the noise persisted. I noticed it was a bit inconsistent too - sometimes a mic would be great and other times it would be awful.
In the end I tracked the issue to the fact I was using a USB powered I/O box - even though I had the laptop plugged in, it appears the CAD M179 is particularly demanding of the phantom supply current, and so sometimes the USB current supply just wasn't enough, resulting in voltage dips that gave rise to the noise.
I have now run these mics from a number of wall powered I/O boxes and preamps, and the more stable phantom supply has resulted in a noise floor that's even better than I expected. These things are silent! So much so that I have now bought another 2 mics!!
I have now used these mics as a stereo pair for M/S work, X/Y, Blumlein, ORTF, spaced pair, drum overheads in RecorderMan configuration. The sound is rich, detailed and open with no harshness. On toms they just rock - such a good sound!!
But I think the biggest surprise, or rather satisfaction, I had was recording a female vocalist with a Taylor acoustic guitar. I was trying to use one mic to get both vocals and guitar, and so I set up the M179 directly in front of the performer, about 18" away, and about halfway between mouth and sound hole. OMG the sound of the Taylor was incredible! It just sang! There was the richness of the guitar with just enough string and fret noise to make the performance sound 'live' - these are now my go to mics for acoustic guitar!! The vocalist was also beautifully captured, but the guitar sound made the hairs on my neck stand up.
All in all, incredible mics for the price, great service from the company, just watch your phantom supply!!!