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Complement to Soundelux 251 Condenser Microphones
Old 5th April 2018
  #1
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Complement to Soundelux 251

Hi all

I LOVE my Soundelux 251c, it's a great mic. But it doesn't always work on all voices (no mic does).

No surprise, I tend to like it on many male vocals but it's hit or miss on female vocals (at least in my room) because I can end up with some top end sibilance issues.

So I am looking for a mic to complement the 251.

My gut is telling me something in the U47 direction could be a good fit, sort of working toward the other end of the spectrum. The Lawson L47MP MKII looks interesting.

Of course there is always the standard U87, it's a workhorse for a reason (but I don't know if it is moving far enough away from my 251). Maybe a U99, could be really cool and that U67 vibe is always nice.

Anything else I should check out? Anyone have any thoughts on the topic?

Thanks in advance
Old 5th April 2018
  #2
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thismercifulfate's Avatar
Check out the Cathedral Pipes tube mics. I love my Regensburg Dom, but the Notre Dame is also a worthy contender. The latter is more of a straight U47 tube mic and the former is based on the U47 has some U67 flavor infused into it. At the studio I record most of my vocals at I'm either using the Brauner VM1 KHE, which sonically is in 251 territory, or the Regensburg Dom. It's very seldom that a singer doesn't sound fantastic through one or the other.
Old 5th April 2018
  #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thismercifulfate View Post
Check out the Cathedral Pipes tube mics. I love my Regensburg Dom, but the Notre Dame is also a worthy contender. The latter is more of a straight U47 tube mic and the former is based on the U47 has some U67 flavor infused into it. At the studio I record most of my vocals at I'm either using the Brauner VM1 KHE, which sonically is in 251 territory, or the Regensburg Dom. It's very seldom that a singer doesn't sound fantastic through one or the other.
Thanks... I never tried any of the Cathedral Pipes stuff, I will put that on the list.
Old 5th April 2018
  #4
Old 5th April 2018
  #5
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jpgerard's Avatar
The current U99 would make sense... very flexible, now has the Fat mode and a LPF too.
Old 5th April 2018
  #6
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toledo3's Avatar
 

You can’t exactly go wrong with any of the choices you listed.

You probably want to get something with more midrange emphasis, which will have a kind of yin/yang with the response of the 251...something with a k49/49, a k67, or m7 related capsule most likely.

Personally, I think the U87 is a great choice. It’s out of a truly top level company that has no problem providing support, parts, repair, etc, and plenty of third parties know how to work on them as well. It has a classic, familiar sound, and so much of making music is about evoking emotions. A U87 is just one of the major sounds of recorded history. A lot of slagging on it is from people selling crap from other companies, and people regurgitating that.

I don’t think anyone out there really nails a U47. IMO something like a Blackspade UM17 gets as close (closer really) than most of the 47 clones out there. The L47 is a great mic, but it has a different sound than a U47...more top, much less give/smoothness to the sound. Big and clean, in part because of those Jensen transformers he uses in the builds.
Old 5th April 2018
  #7
Gear Maniac
 

As a twist, I am finding Coil Audio CA-286 & CA-70 to deliver an amazing broad-range of sound as a preamp-based consideration for a 251.

I have only had the Coils for about two weeks and yesterday was my first opportunity to test my Tele 251 E with something other than my Pueblo Audio preamps.

The Pueblos are stunning with a 251 however, the Coil sounds and sound-shaping were a revelation. One can literally tune out the room, cut sibilance, add detail to taste and that is just with the preamp controls. On the 286, you can also swap out the input transformer which adds another level of variation.

Try them if you have an opportunity.

Quote:
Originally Posted by not_so_new View Post
Hi all

I LOVE my Soundelux 251c, it's a great mic. But it doesn't always work on all voices (no mic does).

No surprise, I tend to like it on many male vocals but it's hit or miss on female vocals (at least in my room) because I can end up with some top end sibilance issues.

So I am looking for a mic to complement the 251.

My gut is telling me something in the U47 direction could be a good fit, sort of working toward the other end of the spectrum. The Lawson L47MP MKII looks interesting.

Of course there is always the standard U87, it's a workhorse for a reason (but I don't know if it is moving far enough away from my 251). Maybe a U99, could be really cool and that U67 vibe is always nice.

Anything else I should check out? Anyone have any thoughts on the topic?

Thanks in advance
Old 6th April 2018
  #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Doc Mixwell View Post
budget?
Not as much as I will probably end up spending? Is that an option?

Ha!

Let's just say I would like to stay below $3k ish if possible.
Old 6th April 2018
  #9
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Thread Starter
Quote:
Originally Posted by jpgerard View Post
The current U99 would make sense... very flexible, now has the Fat mode and a LPF too.
That was on my list as well. I read some so-so reviews which makes me wonder, but I also don't put a lot of weight on an online review anyway.

I have been thinking of something a little darker and mid focused so it seems like the U99 would be a great fit, but I hear (without actually hearing it) that it is a little brighter even with the high cut.
Old 7th April 2018
  #10
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IanBSC's Avatar
Also consider the Wunder CM67, a new one is a little bit above your budget but they sound so good and are really versatile (even without the switches the U99 had). I use mine alongside a Bock 251 and Wunder CM7, and tends to get used most.
Old 7th April 2018
  #11
Quote:
Originally Posted by not_so_new View Post
Not as much as I will probably end up spending? Is that an option?

Ha!

Let's just say I would like to stay below $3k ish if possible.
Gefell UM92.1s
Old 8th April 2018
  #12
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Thread Starter
Quote:
Originally Posted by Doc Mixwell View Post
Gefell UM92.1s
You know, I was just thinking about Gefell yesterday as I have been contemplating my next mic purchase.

Why is it that Gefell doesn't get talked about a lot? The only thing I can think of is that they just make solid workhorse gear but nothing sexy "talk of the town."

I have never used a UM92.1s (or really any Gefell products at all), what is it's character? It leans toward a little mellower and forgiving in the highs I assume?

Thanks for the input.
Old 8th April 2018
  #13
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toledo3's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by not_so_new View Post

Why is it that Gefell doesn't get talked about a lot?
Because:

- none of their mics were ever really in widespread use on any “classic” records from the 60s to 80s.

- the pvc m7s they used for a long time are prone to becoming bass shy then unstable.

- the quality of materials was lackluster when Germany was divided and access was limited. (Inferior metals, tubes, transformers.)

- poor wiring choices/shoddy quality control leaves a lot of the older mics, well up to stuff made in the 90s, with RF related problems.


The main reason that they DO get talked about is that when Sennheiser bought Neumann they required certain dealer arrangements that many gear pimps bowed out of. Neumann was great one day and crap the next according to those types. Gefell was available and became an alternative for those sellers. Kinda like how some mom and pop music stores don’t sell Fender, and sell G&L.

Gefell HAS really improved quality over the past couple decades and has some cool mics (UM75 anniversary edition, UM900, 800)... but they’ve also kind of gone backwards with some models like the UM70.

None of them exactly has that same balance that some of the better actual Neumann mics do (u47, m49, 67, 87)...but they are good in their own right. Their M7 just has a certain signature in the top that doesn’t quite have the same cut as a Neumann, and then the bass end is kind of a moving target.
Old 8th April 2018
  #14
Quote:
Originally Posted by not_so_new View Post
You know, I was just thinking about Gefell yesterday as I have been contemplating my next mic purchase.

Why is it that Gefell doesn't get talked about a lot? The only thing I can think of is that they just make solid workhorse gear but nothing sexy "talk of the town."

I have never used a UM92.1s (or really any Gefell products at all), what is it's character? It leans toward a little mellower and forgiving in the highs I assume?

Thanks for the input.
The UM92.1s/m92.1s has a very natural tone that is neutral, even/balanced, nothing hyped..or overly weighty..but tippy top peaks are slightly softened and tubey (ef86 tube tone) But still laser like detail in the mids, (m7 capsule) focused and controlled on the bottom (narrower head shape) not bloated or too phat sounding. sits inside the mix easily, nice on top--Sweeter sounding, like an m49 maybe -- airy in the top, but drier overall, kinda like a U67. The bottom is very pleasent on most singers who need us to siphon off the bloat and "wider than a truck" in the mix type of mics. And, its not super sizzly bright. But its open and accurate.

Gefell is 90 years old in 2018
Old 8th April 2018
  #15
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A simple and cheap Miktek PM9 dynamic. Darker than my 251. Great world class sound. Sounds noticeably better than my SM7B. Works well on most voices.
Old 8th April 2018
  #16
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To me the 251 with a 47 is like the bread and butter combo for vocals. So I agree with your instinct on that.

My 251 is self-made but it's perfect on my voice. It uses an ADK capsule.

My "47" is a Peluso 2247 SE. I stuck a nice vintage tube in it and changed some of the Xicon caps to Vishay BC Blue and it's a pretty serious mic to be reckoned with.

there are a lot of "47" in the similar price range popping up lately (Golden Age Project, Stam, Warm, Signal Art Electronics, etc).
Old 8th April 2018
  #17
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Meriphew's Avatar
 

I have a Soundelux Elux 251. I’m planning on getting one of the new reissue Neumann U67’s to compliment it.
Old 8th April 2018
  #18
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Thread Starter
So I have been doing a lot of research and listening to samples and I am really interested in the Manley Reference Silver.

That just seems like the perfect example of what I am looking for, relaxed sibilance, some nice mid character, extended but not hyped lows and high end air.

I am somewhat surprised there isn't more talk about this mic. That mic seems to be flying way under the radar.
Old 8th April 2018
  #19
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I'd also put the Bock Soundelux U195, on your short list.

Sounds like a vintage U87 to me, with that smooooth midrange-I could nickname it "Karen" ala Carpenter. Open top too. And as you know, FAT switch too!

I'm still a ssomewhat ssibilant singer though, so I need to be at least a foot away and then it's fine.

Chris

P.S. Am thinking about eventually adding their iFET model too... (I really also like the FET 47 style sound on me)
Old 8th April 2018
  #20
Gear Nut
 

Silver mic is surprisingly fantastic
Old 9th April 2018
  #21
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Yes, IMHO the Manley Silver is impressive, also the 2 new Tonelux C37 versions.

Chris
Old 9th April 2018
  #22
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jpgerard's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by not_so_new View Post
I have been thinking of something a little darker and mid focused so it seems like the U99 would be a great fit, but I hear (without actually hearing it) that it is a little brighter even with the high cut.
The U99's high cut has to positions. It can get really dark if required!
Old 16th April 2018
  #23
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jdier's Avatar
 

As a Bock 241 owner (251 - cardioid only) I will +1 the U195 suggestion as a great option that gives a different sound, but I will also throw out the Senn 441. I find my primary vocal mics now to be b 441, 241, U195 and the SM7

Last edited by jdier; 17th April 2018 at 10:00 PM..
Old 16th April 2018
  #24
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Thread Starter
Quote:
Originally Posted by chessparov2.0 View Post
Yes, IMHO the Manley Silver is impressive, also the 2 new Tonelux C37 versions.

Chris
I am interested in the Tonelux mics as well but it doesn't seem like there is much going on with them yet..... makes me a little worried that it's vaporware.
Old 16th April 2018
  #25
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jwh1192's Avatar
have you looked at the Advancedaudio microphones ?? you could probably get one Tuned how you like from mr Thomas ... i have not used any personally but some here have ...

this one .. Advanced Audio Microphones CM47ve. | Advanced Audio Microphones

hey Doc, have you any experience with these advancedaudio mics yet ??? i love the Gefell as well .. and 90 years !! Sweet ... go Gefell !!!

thank you john
Old 17th April 2018
  #26
If you like the Soundelux Elux 251 (which I do) then I would suggest a Soundelux E47 (around 3 grand used). Complements the 251 very nicely.

If siblilence is your main worried, I would not go with the Soundelux U99 (I own all three of these mics and have used them regularly for about 15 years- I have not tried the new Bock 99); the U99 is a wonderful mic, but on the bright side (good when you want it).

The three of these, together with a good ribbon mic, cover just about everything you would ever want to do vocally.
Old 17th April 2018
  #27
Gear Head
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by not_so_new View Post
Hi all

I LOVE my Soundelux 251c, it's a great mic. But it doesn't always work on all voices (no mic does).

No surprise, I tend to like it on many male vocals but it's hit or miss on female vocals (at least in my room) because I can end up with some top end sibilance issues.

So I am looking for a mic to complement the 251.

My gut is telling me something in the U47 direction could be a good fit, sort of working toward the other end of the spectrum. The Lawson L47MP MKII looks interesting.

Of course there is always the standard U87, it's a workhorse for a reason (but I don't know if it is moving far enough away from my 251). Maybe a U99, could be really cool and that U67 vibe is always nice.

Anything else I should check out? Anyone have any thoughts on the topic?

Thanks in advance
Hi,
I like my L247 mic here and U87 ; but IMO, my most versatile microphone is the atlantic phonic renaissance mic. Very new company but at this price, difficult to find a better option. Don't know if it's possible now to find it in assembled unit ; it's a diy kit now.
Old 17th April 2018
  #28
Quote:
Originally Posted by jwh1192 View Post

this one .. Advanced Audio Microphones CM47ve. | Advanced Audio Microphones

hey Doc, have you any experience with these advancedaudio mics yet ??? i love the Gefell as well .. and 90 years !! Sweet ... go Gefell !!!

thank you john
I have used AA microphones before. I think they are pretty decent for the price. Nothing worth gushing over, but good utilitarian sounding condensers. Sorta clean, not too much vibe at all. Hope this reply is of assistance.

peace
Old 17th April 2018
  #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Doc Mixwell View Post
I have used AA microphones before. I think they are pretty decent for the price. Nothing worth gushing over, but good utilitarian sounding condensers. Sorta clean, not too much vibe at all. Hope this reply is of assistance.

peace
thx man !!!
Old 7th May 2018
  #30
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jpgerard's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by wildplum View Post
If siblilence is your main worried, I would not go with the Soundelux U99 (I own all three of these mics and have used them regularly for about 15 years- I have not tried the new Bock 99); the U99 is a wonderful mic, but on the bright side (good when you want it).
FYI the new Soundelux USA U99 has an HF contour switch that allows taming of the top end which coupled to the new smoother capsule yields a very creamy top end response (while being able to be used "open" hence brighter).
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