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The best cheap microphones that are actually worth collecting
Old 13th June 2017
  #31
+1 on 3U Audio. I have the Teal CM-1 which is one of their cheapest and it's really good.
Old 14th June 2017
  #32
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Drumsound's Avatar
Mentioning dates is important. Many good mics are now coming out of China. In addition to the above never count sE out of that mix. They even have a new dynamic mic (the V7) that sounds damn good.
Old 14th June 2017
  #33
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Paul Vnuk Jr.'s Avatar
A few low cost, great sounding and well built mics that have really impressed me in the past year have been in no particular order:

Lewitt LCT 240 Pro $150
Roswell Mini K47 $300
Aston Origin $300

All 3 in my opinion are mics that will stay in your mic locker and keep getting use as you upgrade.
Old 14th June 2017
  #34
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DougS's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ddageek View Post
Take a chance on some older reasonably priced dynamics...
This is good advice.

-I picked up a used (they don't make them anymore) Senny MD431 ProfiPower for $99 - Great Mic!

-First mic I ever bought was a Audix OM2 - didn't really respect it until I recently put it on acoustic guitar. Sounds great!

-and of course SM57 / SM58

Good thread.
Old 14th June 2017
  #35
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Spano's Avatar
What do you guys think of Audix's microphones? I've been offered an $85 deal on an Audi F15... i donno tho, I feel like someone would have mentioned it on this thread already
Old 14th June 2017
  #36
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Spano's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by DougS View Post
This is good advice.

-I picked up a used (they don't make them anymore) Senny MD431 ProfiPower for $99 - Great Mic!

-First mic I ever bought was a Audix OM2 - didn't really respect it until I recently put it on acoustic guitar. Sounds great!

-and of course SM57 / SM58

Good thread.
oops! i just saw this! my b!




ooo and edit: Thanks for saying this is a good thread! I'm a long time fan of this site but a new regular user... you're compliment made me feel good and I'm depressed so it feels even better! I appreciate the nice comment,

Last edited by Spano; 14th June 2017 at 04:23 AM.. Reason: I noticed something that I initially missed
Old 14th June 2017
  #37
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BTW, one of my college profs told me that if you take the pop filter off of a 58 than it's basically just a 57.... he also said if you duct tape it around the tip it becomes omni directional...

He's worked on successful records before so I think he knows his ****, tho he told my class that the MD420 is his "desert island" microphone, and I've heard alot of opposing opinions!

shrugs!
Old 14th June 2017
  #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Spano View Post
.... he also said if you duct tape it around the tip it becomes omni directional...
This is why you you'll hear people say that you should not cup a cardioid dynamic mic (like a 58) with your hand when singing into it. Blocking the mesh below the band defeats the cardioid pickup pattern - defeating the off-axis rejection and (in a loud live scenario) making the mic more susceptible to feedback.
Old 14th June 2017
  #39
Lives for gear
Quote:
he told my class that the MD420 is his "desert island" microphone, and I've heard alot of opposing opinions!
The only "MD420" I can find is a Wandel & Golterman talkback mic. Maybe he found one on a desert island.
If he said or meant a Senn MD421, OK, that's a mic that gets some love and not much hate.
Old 14th June 2017
  #40
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bushman View Post
The only "MD420" I can find is a Wandel & Golterman talkback mic. Maybe he found one on a desert island.
If he said or meant a Senn MD421, OK, that's a mic that gets some love and not much hate.
o ya i meant the md421
Old 14th June 2017
  #41
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Drumsound's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Vnuk Jr. View Post
A few low cost, great sounding and well built mics that have really impressed me in the past year have been in no particular order:

Lewitt LCT 240 Pro $150
Roswell Mini K47 $300
Aston Origin $300

All 3 in my opinion are mics that will stay in your mic locker and keep getting use as you upgrade.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Spano View Post
BTW, one of my college profs told me that if you take the pop filter off of a 58 than it's basically just a 57.... he also said if you duct tape it around the tip it becomes omni directional...

He's worked on successful records before so I think he knows his ****, tho he told my class that the MD420 is his "desert island" microphone, and I've heard alot of opposing opinions!

shrugs!
I should have mentioned the Rosewll. I reviewed it for Tape Op, and should get a pair some day. The iSK 2B is pretty amazing as well.
Old 15th June 2017
  #42
I would suggest sticking with studio standard type mics for a few reasons
-it's helpful to get to know popular mics
-they can be offloaded easily
-you can ask the forum "I like my AT4033 on vocals but the high end sounds bumpy on my acoustic" and a lot of people will know what you're talking about and be able to give recommendations like "the AT4050 has a similar sound but is much smoother"
Old 15th June 2017
  #43
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On the right voice, I feel that the Rode NT1a can sound very impressive. When it first came out, it was often called the budget U87, which I don't agree with, but on the right voice, it just sounds so great. On the wrong voice, it can be something you have to fight through with processing, or it may simply be unusable, which isn't a big deal if you have other mics, but if it is just for you, it may or may not be a good fit.

I know this mic gets a lot of hate on this board and any sibilance (at all) will make this mic sound bad. It can be harsh, it's hard to describe the voices it sounds harsh on, I use it mostly for Hip Hop. People who have higher pitched voices and really direct/hard start and finish of words can sound harsh, but a higher pitched singer can still sound great.

Just saying, it's not for everyone but if it is for you, I feel it is worth the investment. Mine is from around 2005-2007ish, to my recollection.

As stated, a SM57 is a very good universal mic.
Old 15th June 2017
  #44
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WKWizard's Avatar
I have a pair of Audix f15's that I used for live shows...mainly for my own personal in-ear mix to get more "stage" in the mix. However, I have used them in live recording situations too. Mine have been solid and sound pretty good. I purchased mine for around $70 for the pair. Musiciansfriend probably.
Old 15th June 2017
  #45
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brockorama's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Vnuk Jr. View Post
A few low cost, great sounding and well built mics that have really impressed me in the past year have been in no particular order:

Lewitt LCT 240 Pro $150
Roswell Mini K47 $300
Aston Origin $300

All 3 in my opinion are mics that will stay in your mic locker and keep getting use as you upgrade.

Just got the Origin today for father's day and it sounds great on my Gibson acoustic. Listening back it doesn't sound like a bang fer buck contender of the year. It just sounds like a nice microphone.
Old 15th June 2017
  #46
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Spano's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by 3rd Degree View Post
On the right voice, I feel that the Rode NT1a can sound very impressive. When it first came out, it was often called the budget U87, which I don't agree with, but on the right voice, it just sounds so great. On the wrong voice, it can be something you have to fight through with processing, or it may simply be unusable, which isn't a big deal if you have other mics, but if it is just for you, it may or may not be a good fit.

I know this mic gets a lot of hate on this board and any sibilance (at all) will make this mic sound bad. It can be harsh, it's hard to describe the voices it sounds harsh on, I use it mostly for Hip Hop. People who have higher pitched voices and really direct/hard start and finish of words can sound harsh, but a higher pitched singer can still sound great.

Just saying, it's not for everyone but if it is for you, I feel it is worth the investment. Mine is from around 2005-2007ish, to my recollection.

As stated, a SM57 is a very good universal mic.
It looks like used NT1as and NT2as are priced almost identically... (both I've seen running for around 100 bucks... the NT2a might be missing the fancy clip and box... I donno why they are so similar in price..

I've heard that the NT1a isn't necessarily inferior to the NT2a.. just differnet.... I wish I could gear one in hear life!! I think I'd pick the NT2a over the NT1 tho... what do you think??

I know it's not expensive but is the NT2000 so much better that it would be worth just saving up for that one? Or buying the NT1a and NT2a for the same price...not even,, I LOVE Rode microhpones... I'v been ery pleased with my NTK... I havve very limited expereince with U87s but from what I remember, I actually prefer the NTK....

Thanks again everybody! I'm loving this thread....

Oh and an update... I lost an ebay auction for the Oktava, there's another one for sale at the same price point but it's "rusted".. rust means water damage right? I'm not going to rish wasting the money...

I almost bought an AKG P170? The overhead mic that goes for 70-80 bucks... I was tempted when I thought I found a special deal but it's not that uncommon for that model to go for less than 100....

I am extremely interested and bummed about the Chinese condensor... I really wanted it but I'm worried I'll end up getting one of the lemons 8 (
Old 15th June 2017
  #47
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Spano's Avatar
btw no one helped me when I asked in another thread, I apologize for it being a tiny bit off topic, but an AT3035 is kind of a cheap mic especially used...

I have one that went through a TON of abuse at the hands of my disapproving father, since I didn't study programming or banking, I'm a complete disappointment. And I think he has a chip on his shoulder about music, because he ****ed up one of his ears in a bicycle accident when he was a child. Thus, my wonderfully compassionate and sweet father decided to throw out a Squire bass, sell my original Ibanez and Randall pratice amp, and move all of the remaining equipment I was naive enough to leave behind into his house's basement... resulting in humidity damage, a broken PA system, a broken Fender Princeton Amp... he never replaced anything....

But I was able to kind of rescue my AT3035.. unfortunately the top grill has come off and the bottom XLR output is slightly dented.... I can still get a decent sound out of the mic when I cover the whole with my SM7B's afro pop filter... but I want to know, do I have to worry about getting electricuted? The loose XLR jack and the exposed capsule make me nervous....

thanks!
Old 15th June 2017
  #48
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3rd Degree's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Spano View Post
It looks like used NT1as and NT2as are priced almost identically... (both I've seen running for around 100 bucks... the NT2a might be missing the fancy clip and box... I donno why they are so similar in price..

I've heard that the NT1a isn't necessarily inferior to the NT2a.. just differnet.... I wish I could gear one in hear life!! I think I'd pick the NT2a over the NT1 tho... what do you think??

I know it's not expensive but is the NT2000 so much better that it would be worth just saving up for that one? Or buying the NT1a and NT2a for the same price...not even,, I LOVE Rode microhpones... I'v been ery pleased with my NTK... I havve very limited expereince with U87s but from what I remember, I actually prefer the NTK....
I don't really know myself. Because I do limited vocal recording, if I were going to get a second LDC, I would probably go with a darker mic when the NT1a just isn't working. Not that familiar with any models but the K2 gets a lot of love from people I trust and is seemingly more universal, I just haven't used one. I was saving up for a U87 but the reality is, we typically record in the studio so that mic is basically always available and I don't record enough to justify the cost of the mic vs. studio time.

Another mic I just thought of, but haven't used is the M-Audio Sputnik. It's not typically dirt cheap online, used, but I have seen them locally for under $100 because nobody knows what it is and it never caught on.

The MXL V67G is something I may look into, I really didn't know they were that cheap.


That said, a decent preamp like a Gap or Warm will go a long way with these mics as well.
Old 15th June 2017
  #49
Gear Guru
 
Drumsound's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by brockorama View Post
Just got the Origin today for father's day and it sounds great on my Gibson acoustic. Listening back it doesn't sound like a bang fer buck contender of the year. It just sounds like a nice microphone.
Every time someone posts clips of that mic it sounds really good. I'm pretty tempted to try one.
Old 15th June 2017
  #50
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Spano View Post
Can anyone share their experience buying a MXL v67?

I'm shocked at how positive the reviews are... someone actually said they preferred it over the Rode NTK!!!!! HOLY SHxT!

for only $80 this seems like a must buy... but then i read some of the negative reviews....

Apparently, the company has problems with quality control... is there anyway to avoid the unfortunate possibility of the microphone breaking down?

Thanks again everybody!

It;s alittle off topic but I just saw a video on the ART Tube MO,,, Would
Have one, use one.

There's been a few times its been "the mic".
Old 15th June 2017
  #51
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Spano View Post
It looks like used NT1as and NT2as are priced almost identically... (both I've seen running for around 100 bucks... the NT2a might be missing the fancy clip and box... I donno why they are so similar in price..

I've heard that the NT1a isn't necessarily inferior to the NT2a.. just differnet.... I wish I could gear one in hear life!! I think I'd pick the NT2a over the NT1 tho... what do you think??

I know it's not expensive but is the NT2000 so much better that it would be worth just saving up for that one? Or buying the NT1a and NT2a for the same price...not even,, I LOVE Rode microhpones... I'v been ery pleased with my NTK... I havve very limited expereince with U87s but from what I remember, I actually prefer the NTK....

Thanks again everybody! I'm loving this thread....

Oh and an update... I lost an ebay auction for the Oktava, there's another one for sale at the same price point but it's "rusted".. rust means water damage right? I'm not going to rish wasting the money...

I almost bought an AKG P170? The overhead mic that goes for 70-80 bucks... I was tempted when I thought I found a special deal but it's not that uncommon for that model to go for less than 100....

I am extremely interested and bummed about the Chinese condensor... I really wanted it but I'm worried I'll end up getting one of the lemons 8 (
Nt1 is a good mic
not to be confused with the Nt1a
Old 15th June 2017
  #52
Old 16th June 2017
  #53
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brockorama's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Drumsound View Post
Every time someone posts clips of that mic it sounds really good. I'm pretty tempted to try one.
They say it's not harsh on top, and it isn't. Takes EQ well. It suits a male vocal nicely.
Old 16th June 2017
  #54
Gear Addict
 
E.Shostokavitch's Avatar
 

To echo some others here:

Electro Voice 635a (just acquired my own after Karloff70 kindly let me demo his) - a little bottomless but a very musical mic.

Older Shure 57's/545's - Very pre dependant, workhorse mics that can be manipulated to work on any source.

1st batch of Octava 319 (beware no two sound the same, the sweet ones are sweet) - Great 'darker' vocal mic/instrument mic - easily modded

Line Audio CM3/OM1 - flat as a ruler and very precise/natural sounding mics

RM BIV Ribbon - characterful and well built/designed ribbon mic - great for brass and some vocal work

3U audio Teal/Warbler - many flavours to be had but all stack well in a mix and are top quality.

ISK 2B Beauty - Should be your 1st (and possibly last..) tube mic; very flattering on vocals with or without a tube upgrade

Octava MC012 - Great as a drum overhead or darker guitar vibe, cheap and chips with switchable capsules.

These mics keep popping up for a reason..
Old 13th July 2018
  #55
Here for the gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Spano View Post
I have an SM58, SM7B, MD421mkii, and a Rode NTK for vocals...

I struggle for money, yet I'm trying to build up a decent and diverse collection of microphones for personal and professional recording.

Can anyone recommend any inexpensive mics that are worth picking up?

I love my SM7B, I'm disappointed with the MD421 but it does well with my snare...

I ADORE my Rode NTK, but friends of mine have sometimes described it as shrill. There's a part of me that truly regrets not spending the extra couple hundred bucks to get the upgraded Rode K2..... 8 (


I've been interested by the MXL R80 because I've always wanted a ribbon mic, and the R80 seems like it was specifically built for recording guitar amps...

I almost bought a pair of Fathead ribbon mics, but after I heard that they were intended for recording bass drums, I lost interest.

The Sennheiser e906 also looks very intriguing, but I lost interest in it for a reason I can't remember...

A couple of unreliable peers have told me the Baby Bottle mics are great for vocals,, I don't really believe them tho...

I'd really appreciate any help or suggestions.... Ribbon mics sound so nice!
With the influx of chinese stuff triggering a kind of race to the bottom, don't be surprised to see some of the traditionally mid-tier stuff taking on a kind of 'classic' air in the future. The following mics especially:

Sennheiser e609 and e906
Audio Technica 4033a, ATH 250DE, BP40
Earthworks M23/ Behringer ECM8000(for omni room stuff)
Beyerdynamic M160 and M88

just my 0.02
Old 13th July 2018
  #56
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Hot Vibrato's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by distantrelatives View Post
With the influx of chinese stuff triggering a kind of race to the bottom, don't be surprised to see some of the traditionally mid-tier stuff taking on a kind of 'classic' air in the future. The following mics especially:

Sennheiser e609 and e906
Audio Technica 4033a, ATH 250DE, BP40
Earthworks M23/ Behringer ECM8000(for omni room stuff)
Beyerdynamic M160 and M88

just my 0.02
The M160 and M88 have been considered "classic" mics for a long time. However, I've seen the price of used M160's and M260's go up considerably in the last five years or so, so I guess they've caught on.

I love ribbon mics, and there are many inexpensive choices which can sound excellent, but for quieter sources (vocals, acoustic guitar), inexpensive preamps are likely to be inadequate in terms of gain and signal to noise ratio. Cloudlifter technology can raise the gain to a more usable level, and while not prohibitively expensive, it does indeed impose another expense to take into consideration when shopping for ribbon mics.
Old 4th May 2019
  #57
Well worth spending the extra few dollars and getting either a USA made Unidyne III Sm57 (Pre 1985) or just around the same price the Shure 545s (or 545sh, which is slightly newer and is XLR). I highly recommend the latter.
Old 5th May 2019
  #58
Gear Nut
 

Currently in love with Beyerdynamic’s m201, m88 and m160.

Also good are the mk-012’s, especially if you can spring for omni and cardioid caps.

Have an AT3035 and got some mileage out of it but would trade it in a heartbeat for another m201.
Old 5th May 2019
  #59
Gear Nut
 

Oh wait, this is a zombie thread, innit?

Still a timeless question, I suppose.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Boom View Post
Currently in love with Beyerdynamic’s m201, m88 and m160.

Also good are the mk-012’s, especially if you can spring for omni and cardioid caps.

Have an AT3035 and got some mileage out of it but would trade it in a heartbeat for another m201.
Old 5th May 2019
  #60
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Miktek MK-300
Audio Technica AT-4040
Oktava MK-319
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