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Old 20th August 2016
Lives for gear
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Originally Posted by Vesta View Post
All right, let's understand something in rational way, with as little emotion as possible. (I understand some people must really love their Neumann mics.)

We have two mics on the table. One is over ten times more expensive than the other. But when we record the same source and drag and drop a very simple high frequency eq dip into the file of the cheaper mic, the two files become extremely hard, if ever possible, to tell apart.

If this is correct -- and I have seen sufficient evidence that it is -- then, by perfect logic, the expensive microphone is overpriced and hardly necessary for most working musicians to even consider as an option.
Yes, but you putting the price into the equation is actually emotional. And you're making a judgement call on what "most working musicians" could ever consider as an option.

What you're doing is buying into the marketing put forth by these companies who make inexpensive microphones, and comparing themselves with companies like Neumann, older Telefunken, and AKG. Those are the main big dogs.

By your logic, if a more expensive mic and a cheap mic are "extremely hard, if ever possible, to tell apart," — that makes expensive mics "overpriced."

Overpriced only means that a specific product is priced higher. A $5K U87Ai would be "overpriced." A $3K U87Ai is a fair market price. "Expensive" is relative.

Understanding all this in a "rational way," a working musician/engineer has a level of service they provide to a market. The tools, and their costs, would be calculated into the overall operation costs of the service within that market.

Ya' gotta do what you gotta do. There are very real reasons why working musicians and engineers invest in professional tools.

Now, a very cool thing is that even very high-end working professionals have found DAWs and software to give them as good if not better results than a huge console and a big rack of outboard gear. But people are still investing the lion's share of their studio budgets into the analog products that can't be emulated in a DAW—mics preamps, mics, AD/DA converters, monitors, headphones, room acoustics...

Some day we won't need any of that, and will just work in an all-inclusive VR cloud-based field of some kind of atmospheric energy blob. But until then there's a place for serious professional analog equipment.

Hearing one mic or preamp against another one on one source gives only a very small snapshot of a much larger moving picture of using them on multiple sources, and multiple people, in multiple rooms, over multiple sessions, and over multiple tracks—and the cumulative effects.

There are blogs and personalities in the recording world that love to appeal to the emotional level of their audience, and get everyone jumping up and down about how all they need is a laptop and a $100 mic to make "great recordings." (Quotes are theirs, not mine.) And people eat it up. Their conclusions are not logical. They are highly emotional, and highly uninformed.