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Shure KSM32 - like it, hate it, why?
Old 7th January 2005
  #1
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Kubilay's Avatar
 

Shure KSM32 - like it, hate it, why?

Huge fuss when they came out, now haven't heard zip in a while. Anyone care to comment on whether they like it or hate it, and if so, on what and why?

Just curious.

Old 7th January 2005
  #2
Jai guru deva om
 
warhead's Avatar
 

Maybe it's just me, but mine has ended up on hi hat use. I have a lot of mics and it's a great all purpose mic...but I typically have something better suited.

If you need one medium diaphragm condensor for percussion, some vocals, room mic, etc. go for it. I do not like it on acoustic guitar though.

War
Old 7th January 2005
  #3
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most of what i do is vocal work, and i like it for that. sometimes it's awesome, sometimes there's something (in my limited collection) better, but it has yet to suck.

i like it a lot w/ my DVC for VO work.
Old 7th January 2005
  #4
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I like it.....

Some vox, used it on acoustic bass once, was excellent...its very flat, with a lot of low end extension without fake tubiness.

I don't like it on Nashvillish acoustics, but I do on Beatlish acoustics/

I do aagree tho that it tends to get lost in the shuffle. I have recommended the KSM27 to several home studio types and they have all loved it.
Old 7th January 2005
  #5
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Good room mics. Very "real" sounding if that means anything. They don't flatter anything or anyone.



-Chris Parsons
Old 7th January 2005
  #6
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Waylon's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally posted by warhead
..... I do not like it on acoustic guitar though.

War
interesting.

One of my favs on acoustic guitars.. but hey, diff strokes..
Old 7th January 2005
  #7
Gear Head
 

It's a good general purpose mic. Like others have said, I never seem to be reaching for it as a first (or second) choice on anything. It doesn't suck. But I find the U195 more useful in the all-purpose category. I've tried the KSM32 on just about everything, but percussion and room are about the only places I thought it useful.
Old 7th January 2005
  #8
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Same experience as most others here--good ambient mic, good on percussion. If I had two of them, I'd use them for drum OH--I feel sure it would be great in that application, especially for jazz/folk/world kinds of stuff.

On acoustic guitar, I like it paired with a more forward SDC for stereo miking...by itself, it's a little too modest-sounding, for lack of a better word.

It's occasionally a good vocal mic. I had good success with it on a teenage girl with a big, bright, concentrated kind of voice (think young Michael Jackson). For darker or smaller voices that need some help to stay in front of the mix (like mine), it doesn't work as well.

By the same token, it's good for backup vocals. It has a fairly wide cardioid pattern with decent off-axis response, so you can put three singers on it comfortably.

Overall, it's a nice versatile mic that's at least OK on lots of things, but not great on very many things. In today's market, it's probably a bit overpriced.
Old 7th January 2005
  #9
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It's great for floor tom, and also fok.

Jason Livermore
blastingroomstudios.com
Old 7th January 2005
  #10
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Chris Parsons's Avatar
 

Oh yeah, I once got great tom sounds with them.

Honestly, they are a good mic that will get a good sound on a lot of things. I just don't find myself useing them a lot becasue we have a pretty sweet collection of high end mics here.

For the price, they are a deal IMO.

BTW, the KSM44 is my fav. on accoustic guitar!


-Chris Parsons
Old 7th January 2005
  #11
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stranger's Avatar
 

I use 'em for OH. Natural sound. I like 'em.
Old 10th January 2005
  #12
I can't say how much I love this mic. Like all Shures....really good on anything I tried. I suspect it will also sound good and somewhat consistant on many mic pre s. I do not own one, but have used them and loved them. Not at all like the KMS 44, which sounds hyped in comparison. More like an Sm81 (one of my faves).
The KMS 32 and the A.T 4047, really made me rethink the less expensive mic thing. I like both of them.

Steve
Old 12th January 2005
  #13
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It's a great mic thats not overly hyped in the top end. I have used it for years on many sources and it works most of the time. Now that being said, it's not my go to first choice most of the time, but great to have around when the feeling moves you to use it.
Old 12th January 2005
  #14
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gogo's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally posted by NewOrleansSteve
The KMS 32 and the A.T 4047, really made me rethink the less expensive mic thing. I like both of them.
Me too. I use them both more than my $$$ mics.
Old 12th January 2005
  #15
TER
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TER's Avatar
I have a pair of KSM32s that get used ALL the time. As overheads they are very nice, very real...they sound great on bowed strings (cellos, fiddles, etc.). Also a good mic for dobro, banjo...things that can be a little too biting. I also love the 4047 (have a pair of those, too). The 4047 gets much more vocal use here than the 32. I'm a huge fan of the KSM and 40 series mics...I have lots of them. Great mics from good companies. The KSM141 is a great little mic, too!

-tom
Old 12th January 2005
  #16
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used a pair of 'em in XY over the piano player's head last week. great attack, imaging, full & natural sound. didn't get to compare them to the 44's, though.

--jon
Old 19th November 2017
  #17
just wanted to resurrect this thread ...

my buddy just did a livingroom recording,vocal, through a blue mbox with a ksm32 and an acoustic guitar overdub 32 aswell.. i was blown away... wtf

I have an extensive mic locker ..great pre's and converters, great room and monitors.. hit play on the MP3 he sent me and WTF!! it sounds great! amazing weight in the low mids - and no distortion.. it HAS to be this mic! I have used them on overheads but not at my place..and it was a live sound situation..I liked them then but didn't want to go out and buy them the next day..now i need a 32...


unbelieveable ...
Old 19th November 2017
  #18
Ive been generally freaking out about several stripes of Shure mic lately too, and the KSM32 have been on my mind, thanks for the story.
Old 19th November 2017
  #19
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I know a guy that swears by the KSM32. He's a punk rock drummer / singer / songwriter.

Wish I could try one. I use KSM137 on my own drums.
Old 25th June 2018
  #20
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I’m really interested in this mic for vocals. My current mics are an Audio Technica AT4040, Miktek MK-300 and JZ V11. Wondering if the KSM32 would be a worthwhile addition?
Old 25th June 2018
  #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dickiefunk View Post
I’m really interested in this mic for vocals. My current mics are an Audio Technica AT4040, Miktek MK-300 and JZ V11. Wondering if the KSM32 would be a worthwhile addition?
I don't think it would bring anything new to the table for you, since the KSM32 is, like your AT4040 a utilitarian medium-diaphragm condenser mic. It's voiced very similarly.
Old 26th June 2018
  #22
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nightchef's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by thismercifulfate View Post
I don't think it would bring anything new to the table for you, since the KSM32 is, like your AT4040 a utilitarian medium-diaphragm condenser mic. It's voiced very similarly.
Having used both, I'd say, yeah sorta but not quite. The response graphs on the spec sheets actually show the difference I've experienced pretty accurately (first one is the KSM32, second is the 4040):

Shure KSM32 - like it, hate it, why?-screen-shot-2018-06-25-9.06.55-pm.png
Shure KSM32 - like it, hate it, why?-screen-shot-2018-06-25-9.07.05-pm.png

As the graphs suggest, the KSM32 in my experience has a bit more low/low-mid richness (though at the cost of some tightness), is slightly less forward in the midrange, and its presence peak is smoother, broader and higher.

For lead vocals, however, I don't like either of them. The KSM32 is a bit too scooped and the 4040 lacks warmth. They're both usable, but if you're looking for a vocal upgrade over the 4040, I think the KSM32 will give you a different flavor but probably leave you still looking for That Mic.
Attached Thumbnails
Shure KSM32 - like it, hate it, why?-screen-shot-2018-06-25-9.06.55-pm.png   Shure KSM32 - like it, hate it, why?-screen-shot-2018-06-25-9.07.05-pm.png  
Old 26th June 2018
  #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dickiefunk View Post
I’m really interested in this mic for vocals. My current mics are an Audio Technica AT4040, Miktek MK-300 and JZ V11. Wondering if the KSM32 would be a worthwhile addition?
it's a little higher quality than 4040 but not by much. For a step up from what you have, consider a tlm102
ksm 32 is a good mic for toms and distant gtr cab micing. It's a utility mic. It can handle high spl and a beating by drummers. Its boring and vanilla. IMO it only excels on really thin vocalists but so do lots of mics.
Old 26th June 2018
  #24
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Just think, for those who began reading this thread in 2005 and ran out and bought a new ksm32 at the time, the electret charge on the mic capsule is now 13 years old.

While there is varying consensus on how that factors in over time, I stopped buying electrets in 1975. I appreciate that electret tech may.....m-a-y .....have improved over the years, I just can't justify buying into that particular kind of circuitry.

I'll stick with good old 48v if considering a condenser.
Old 26th June 2018
  #25
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Mine are mostly used on toms these days.
Old 26th June 2018
  #26
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I like it as a kick drum mic, and have one setup that way at the moment.

It’s ok on a variety of things but that’s where it seems to shine for me. I guess next would be toms, possibly snare, acoustic guitars, even electric guitar or bass.

Not as big of a fan for overhead drums or vocals, or even the secondary tasks I list. Too many choices that far exceed the results of the KSM32. But they also cost a lot more. The KSM series, in general, are pretty ok for what they are, price point, spec.

But that clean, slightly scooped but not much, slightly hard sound, in combo with the built in pad, make for a very nice kick mic IMO.
Old 26th June 2018
  #27
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Ha I only really like them on toms as well. I haven’t found any other application where they shine as much.
Old 26th June 2018
  #28
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Thanks guys. I've had a Neumann TLM102 here and personally I preferred the AT4040. I found the highs on the TLM102 could get a little harsh on certain vocalists. Whilst the AT4040 is leaning towards being a bright mic it handled harsh vocalists much better.

Not sure which mic would be a clear step up from my current mics for vocals?
Old 26th June 2018
  #29
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All those mics - TLM102, KSM32, AT4040 are basically all in the same league and are all not particularly flattering mics on vocals - being more of workhorse/utility type mics. You’re honestly not going to get a real upgrade if you keep buying mics in that price range. I used to have a bunch of mid-priced mics and when I started buying high-end gear it was a real revelation. Living in the states, there is so much opportunity to buy second-hand high-end gear for much less than retail that it’s almost silly to buy brand new mid-tier gear. I know it’s hard to spend the extra money, but if you’re just looking for a nice vocal mic you could sell all your existing work ones and get one that’s really nice for not much out of pocket and you’ll be much happier. A new TLM is what 800 bucks? If you shop around 900 can get you a used Blue Kiwi, which is a very fine tube multi-pattern mic and it will absolutely work much better on almost any voice than any of those mid-priced mics.
Old 26th June 2018
  #30
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by dickiefunk View Post
I’m really interested in this mic for vocals. My current mics are an Audio Technica AT4040, Miktek MK-300 and JZ V11. Wondering if the KSM32 would be a worthwhile addition?
I agree with the other poster that says it’s pretty similar to what you’ve got. I’ve used them a lot on drums and they were fine, definitely a step up from the KSM27, but nothing to write home about.

IMO your money would be better spent on a Warm mic, I haven’t tried the WA14 but the WA87 is a winner. Also hear great things about Advanced Audio. And you may have heard this advice already but might I suggest that since you already have several condensers, you consider a dynamic like a SM7/RE20/421 or a budget-friendly ribbon like the Cascade Vinjet or a Shinybox. I would take any one of those over a KSM32 in almost every scenario.
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