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Old vs. new SM57's
Old 17th January 2005
  #1
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blackcom's Avatar
 

Old vs. new SM57's

Hey!

I've been hearing alot of people mentioning new 57's not sounding as good as the old ones.

Would anyone care to enlighten me a bit on this matter?

I can notice that my older 57's are a little different in tone and has a hotter signal, but I can't really tell what's better or worse.
Old 17th January 2005
  #2
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doorknocker's Avatar
Re: Old vs. new SM57's

Quote:
Originally posted by blackcom
Hey!

I've been hearing alot of people mentioning new 57's not sounding as good as the old ones.

Would anyone care to enlighten me a bit on this matter?

I can notice that my older 57's are a little different in tone and has a hotter signal, but I can't really tell what's better or worse.
I just got a new Shure SM7b, when it arrived I was mildly shocked reading the 'Made in Mexico' label as I've heard the talk about the old ones too.
Used it on 2 really good singers later.....awesome, this thing sounds GREAT.

Lately on live gigs during soundcheck, I've been paying attention to this too. One 58 or 57 will sound very different than another one, mostly it's about dirt buildup though.

I think the 'vintage' Shure theory is a load of crap, seems like people try to make money with anything old, sometimes with stuff that is clearly inferior to current lines:
A 70ies Strat used to be (in most cases) just a horrible, shoddily made guitar. Now it's an 'affordable vintage guitar that won't break the bank like a 50/60 Strat and therefore is a great value. All major credit cards are welcome.'

Andi

www.doorknocker.ch
Old 17th January 2005
  #3
Gear Addict
 
Jack Pettit's Avatar
 

I was recording a harmonica player and we decided to swap
his 57 for mine. They sounded completely different !
I guess because they are so common I thought that they
all sounded the same. Now I wonder.
Old 17th January 2005
  #4
Gear Addict
 
bobby yarrow's Avatar
 

I have some pretty old ones -- while I can't quite sort out how to date them, I think I might have one from the 60's. Anyhow, while they do sound a little different, the difference seems to be more mic to mic, rather than by era. The output on my oldest is pretty well identical to the output on my newest, for example.
Old 17th January 2005
  #5
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toledo3's Avatar
 

When did they switch to Mexico... I think it happened longer ago than people think- I have seen some pretty old Shure's that were made in mexico.

I really don't think there is a tremendous difference between new 57's and old... but there is a pretty significant difference between 57's and the old 545's and 546's....

BTW, you can still order 545's from Shure.
Old 17th January 2005
  #6
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max cooper's Avatar
 

My SM7 was made in Mexico and it's third hand, don't know how old, but it's not very recent.

Sounds great.

I didn't know if the new/old 57 thing was like 2004 vs 1994 or if it spans decades.

I have yet to plug one in and think "this doesn't do what it's supposed to" which I think is a sign of "so far so good".
Old 17th January 2005
  #7
Gear Addict
 

I can see it now in the classifieds section:

WTB: pre '80 SM-57
Old 17th January 2005
  #8
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Kestral's Avatar
 

I just sold a brand new SM57 plus a couple of brand new SM58's.

Comprared to the old SM57 and old SM58's I had, the new ones are horrible.

imo it should be illegal for Shure to call those mics by the same name. They are not the SM57's and 58's they used to be (the ones I have that are good are from the very early 80's).
Old 17th January 2005
  #9
Lives for gear
 

I'm pretty sure they didn't change the components when they moved the factory to Mexico. I do know that my SM7b rocks but I've never been a big fan of a 57 except on snare drum. I should give one of those Unidyne III's a spin. I think I know somebody who's got one laying around. I think those have some different components...

Anybody remember the first time you plugged in a 57 and stuck it in front of a guitar cab and thought "this is supposed to be that great mic for guitar cabs?" They havent wowed me since either.
Old 18th January 2005
  #10
I heard the difference years ago between the Unidyne III's and the Mexican 57's. A Shure engineer told me that when they moved the factory to the border, they didn't change out the stampers for the mylar diaphrams. If my old record cutting days are right, you need to change those or the pressings become deformed. Could also be different transformers in there?
I just notice an old one in great condition has better low end and a clearer top. The Mexican ones sound more like a megaphone in comparison.

Jim Williams
Audio Upgrades
Old 18th January 2005
  #11
Lives for gear
 
thermos's Avatar
Hey Jim!
How is Carsbad treating you? LA is like 1/4 as cool without you around.
Old 18th January 2005
  #12
SawSlut
 
OzNimbus's Avatar
 

I've got an older one that sounds like crap compared to the brand new one I just bought. Go figure.

-0z-
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