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SDC Suggestions? But theres a catch..
Old 1st April 2018
  #1
SDC Suggestions? But theres a catch..

The weakest part of my microphone arsenal has always been my SDC department. LDC, we're well off. Dynamic Microphones? More than fine. But SDCs always have been the runts of my litter so to speak. Now, I have the finical backing to upgrade my SDCs finally. There is, however, a catch. I've been hired and merged into a small audio company. Whenever I've identified a flaw in my studio set up my business partner has taken care of it. However, I always have to give a good reason why we would benefit from said upgrade. So along with suggestions I need a decent pitch as well, explaining why I could use them. I'm looking for something thats middle of the line. Like 600-700 for a pair or even less if possible. A list of possibilities an old professor of mine suggested were

AT Pro 37s
AT4031's
And then maybe KM81 territory.

Any thoughts on the AT Pro 37s or AT4031s? I would love to hear opinions on them and some other suggestions.

For reference the only SDCs I have are a single AT2021, A single AKG C1000S, a pair of Samson CO2s and a pair of iSK Little Gems. :face palm: I mean. Not awful but not nearly on par with the rest of my equipment.
Old 1st April 2018
  #2
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TurboJets's Avatar
What applications will you be using them for?
Old 1st April 2018
  #3
Gear Guru
 
Drumsound's Avatar
I've been using Pro 37s since the beginning of my career. Mine are old enough to be marked Pro 37r, in fact. They are anything but flat. That isn't necessarily a bad thing, it just is. They have a certain 'hardness' to their tone. They are really great on acoustic guitars in more dense recordings. I've often been doing some sort of acoustic guitar recording that isn't popping thought the way I'd like. If I swap out whatever mic(s) I'm using for Pro37, the acoustic become easily heard and present. They are great on mandolin and banjo as well. Surprisingly, they also work really well on guitar cabinets. I did a "nu-metal" record years ago and one of the guitar players parts were often done with a Pro37 right up on the speaker. We had multiple amps in the room. and would be changing tones a lot, and we'd audition mics and choose the Pro37 A LOT.

I've had good luck with them on toms a few times and even room mics. They are OK on overheads, but a little brash for my liking most of the time.

I do believe the Pro 37 is one of the best bargains in the microphone world.

For a smoother sound, the Octava MC012 is a wonderful and useful mic.
Old 1st April 2018
  #4
Gear Nut
 

Warbler 127-C-Flat is cardioid pattern transformer coupled SDC mic with smooth top end said to sound like the legendary KM84.

3U Audio Warbler 127-C-Flat Small Diaphragm Condenser Microphone Cardioid SDC | eBay

There are some sound samples posted on one of the threads in this forum.

Oktavas are great as well.
Old 1st April 2018
  #5
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matucha's Avatar
Well, generally you use SDCs when you want great transient detail and uncolored off axis. This makes them well suited for recording ansambles at a distance, where it's easy to get mushy/fogy sound with very colored reverbation if you don't have a suitable mic. Even sounding off axis is also advantageous in situation where there's bleed, because it makes it much more usable (less ugly).

When you might not want to use SDCs? On really quiet stuff, because generally SDCs are noisier than LDCs.


Line Audio mics. Poor mans Schoeps. Ridiculously cheap for the quality.

Gefell. 2nd hand M300s are rather cheap and great. Vintage M582 (with M58, M62 capsules) are really interesting/special sounding mics (like thinner sounding KM54, a lot of soft detail) and the prices are mindblowingly low.

Neumann. You can take advantage that KM184 are much hated and buy them for cheap. Might not be everyones taste, but still very capable mic.

Oktava O12. Budget classics.

Sennheiser MKH405. Vintage, runs on tonader so you'll need some phantom to tonader conversion barrels. Cheap, low noise, fat (goes really low), detailed.


And then there is also the more expensive stuff, which I think is worth every penny. Won't suggest any of that because it seems like out of your budget after reading your list.
Old 1st April 2018
  #6
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If you can stretch by $100 or so, the Shure KSM141s are a great utility mic. The switchable pattern makes them very versatile. In omni mode they will give you incredibly deep and lifelike low end, much more so than you'll get from any LDC (with the tradeoff of a noticeable flattening of the high end that you may want to correct for with some EQ). In cardioid mode they are not overly bright and impart relatively little of their own character, which makes them eminently useful.
Old 1st April 2018
  #7
Line Audio mics. Poor mans Schoeps. Ridiculously cheap for the quality.





Which model CM3 or OM1?
Old 1st April 2018
  #8
Gear Guru
 
monkeyxx's Avatar
I have bought and sold over a dozen SDC mics in the past 15 years. I don't know why but I hardly liked any of them. From the cheap to the more expensive.

The only ones I really like any more are the KSM137, and the KSM141 already mentioned (adds omni) and for more money the KM184 by Neumann (also mentioned.)

I prefer the Shures on drum overhead, and the Neumann on acoustic guitar, of course there are more applications than those, but those are my most common everyday use for SDC. Those strike me as 'best case' sounds. Both are good for certain electric guitar sounds as well.

I also kept an Avenson STO-2 Omni but that is more of a specialty mic that I usually reserve for room miking. I guess I just like omnis on rooms pretty often. Of course you could use it for more than that, I just haven't really tried.
Old 1st April 2018
  #9
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matucha's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by NoteKnotion View Post
Which model CM3 or OM1?
Both are good. CM3 is wide cardioid, OM1 omni. Depens on what are you looking for.

Wide cardiods give you more room sound, so if your room sucks it might be less desirable. On the other hand the proximity effect is weaker so you can get closer w/o getting that boomy lowend.


TurboJets asked a very good question. Without answering it, you'll only get general suggestions and not much more.

Quote:
What applications will you be using them for?
Old 2nd April 2018
  #10
Gear Head
 
dranzangos's Avatar
 

Another proud parent of the KSM 141s, though they pretty much stay parked on overheads. MK012s get a lot more floor time for other acoustic instruments. Lots of cool colors in the multi cap sets.. Especially that 101 cap...
Old 2nd April 2018
  #11
Gear Addict
 
Seb RIOU's Avatar
 

Hello there,
hate to be the posh guy but to me you won't find a GREAT pair for 700.

I am a "Shoeps only" regarding sdc, and bought mine 700$ each (second hand) and never failed me on .. anything. Beautiful always.

I've used most of the old suspects :

Oktava MK012 : sturdy and reliable but not "clear" at all, very coloured, pleasant though. Much better with omni cap.


KM184 : precise, silent, boring but good !

AT4031 : workhorse, noisy, a bit harsh, but friendly.

Shure KSM 131 : silent, good on overheads, kinda useeless on everything close.

Never used those Line Audio fellowes.

Good luck !
Old 2nd April 2018
  #12
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Seb RIOU View Post
Shure KSM 131 : silent, good on overheads, kinda useeless on everything close.
I assume you mean either the 137 or the 141. I'm curious why you found them "useless" on anything close. I used one as a close mic on banjo recently and got a great sound.
Old 2nd April 2018
  #13
Gear Addict
 
Seb RIOU's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Whoopysnorp View Post
I assume you mean either the 137 or the 141. I'm curious why you found them "useless" on anything close. I used one as a close mic on banjo recently and got a great sound.
137 that is, yes sorry for mispelling.
"Kinda useless" is maybe a little radical, ANY mic can be the mic for a situation.
But I stick with the fact that it's not a first choice for any full sounding acoustic instrument, or loud speaker.
A banjo is ,well, neither of that
Old 2nd April 2018
  #14
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monkeyxx's Avatar
I really like the Shure KSM 137/141 on close mic positions as well. I've had good results.
Old 2nd April 2018
  #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seb RIOU View Post
137 that is, yes sorry for mispelling.
"Kinda useless" is maybe a little radical, ANY mic can be the mic for a situation.
But I stick with the fact that it's not a first choice for any full sounding acoustic instrument, or loud speaker.
A banjo is ,well, neither of that
Fair enough. I've never tried it on a guitar amp. I don't find condensers to work very often in that application. It also wouldn't be my first choice on acoustic guitar, but I prefer LDCs for that.
Old 9th April 2018
  #16
Here for the gear
 

As mentioned above, it really depends on what you'll be using them for. IMHO, Michael Joly-modded Oktava 012s would be very hard to beat in your price range. The cardioids are the most commonly used, but I love the clarity and open quality of the omnis. And you can always add more capsules later, as needed. Check out the clips posted on Joly's website or RecordingHacks.com.
Old 14th April 2018
  #17
Here for the gear
I have spent a few weeks going through most of the posts I could find on the these 3U Audio microphones. They seem to be very impressive. I am working on a small home studio and have bought several mics to compare, but now I am definitely interested in a matched set of the Warbler 127's. This might be a stupid question, but how do you know which capsules to choose with your matched pair? I will mainly be using just one to record acoustic guitar, but I might also have the option of using them for drum overheads at a friend's studio. Thanks in advance.
Old 14th April 2018
  #18
Gear Maniac
I've recently been on the hunt for SDC for acoustic guitar. Warbler and Beesneez Lulu definitely look/sound promising, Shure 141 also on the short list. i went with an AKG 451e and so far like it a lot.
Old 14th April 2018
  #19
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timtoonz's Avatar
I'd recommend Advanced Audio Microphones stereo SDC set. I auditioned them recently and they were just great sounding on drums, guitar, piano. And the set comes with cardioid, hyper, and omni caps. The only reason I didn't keep'em was that I was specifically hunting for piano mics, and I liked their 87 style mics better in that use. (And I have some other great SDCs').

Also, the Oktava MC012's are pretty good of course, and I just got mine back after they were modded by Michael Joly - really happy with them now and way less 'pointy' on drum overheads.
Old 16th October 2018
  #20
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rojaros's Avatar
Just received a matched pair of 3U Warbler 127 C-Flat. Here is a first casual recording:

Dropbox - 12_3Us_127CFlatNOS.wav

My first impression is they are very impressive mics.
Old 16th October 2018
  #21
Gear Nut
 

Used pair of Josephson C42's would be great. I've had mine for years and they never disappoint. Insane clarity and detail. Bright, for sure, but not in a bad way at all. Built like tanks too. Heavy, solid. ORTF OH configuration can be amazing. Love them on acoustic guitars, sometimes mono, sometimes XY. Excellent room mics too.

SM81's are good mics. I always wish I held on to mine. I enjoyed it quite a bit on acoustic guitars. 141's are really nice too. The omni is cool to have. I'd say they're more hi-fi than 81s. 81s, to me, had a slight darkness to them that I found appealing.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #22
Here for the gear
 

Hi all warbler users!

What do you think about them by now? Still solid?
Thanks for your time!
Old 3 weeks ago
  #23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Maggot Brain View Post
SM81's are good mics. I always wish I held on to mine. I enjoyed it quite a bit on acoustic guitars. 141's are really nice too. The omni is cool to have. I'd say they're more hi-fi than 81s. 81s, to me, had a slight darkness to them that I found appealing.
+1 on the SM81 recommendation. They’re within your price range and are super useful, flattering SDC’s.
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