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Favourite dirty, dusty, honky, funky sounding mics..? (AKA THE UNHIFI MIC THREAD!) Dynamic Microphones
Old 21st March 2010
  #1
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Favourite dirty, dusty, honky, funky sounding mics..? (AKA THE UNHIFI MIC THREAD!)

Hi guys

I'm about to start an album production and to add to the tonal pallette I'm looking for suggestions for utterly un-hifi mics - I very much like to 'paint' with mics when tracking - going for some quite extreme colours.

So I'm after honk, colour, dusty old sounds - whatever, stuff for effect... A range of distinctive colours..

Rather than buying random old carbon mics say off ebay (most of which probably wouldn't work) I thought I'd ask here in case anyone had ideas..

Examples of things I already use for this sort of application would be... Shure Green Bullet (fab for making dusty old backing vocals), Sontronics Sigma ribbons (instant sonic sepia).

Anyone else found anything really cool and funky, just plain weird or lovely and dusty sounding? Bring out your weird stuff!

Old 21st March 2010
  #2
Old 21st March 2010
  #3
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dustyreels's Avatar
 

How bout wiring a telephone so you can plug it in a preamp?
Old 21st March 2010
  #4
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ianbryn11's Avatar
 

or plugging a headphone into an amp and singing into it... Havent tried that myslef, but i thought it was a cool suggestion when i heard it...
Old 21st March 2010
  #5
i have a newer electro-voice dynamic mic that my brother dropped: the damage really narrowed the frequency range of the mic and gave it this weird super mid-range spike that makes it cut through the mix like nothing else...works great every once in a while for certain things. so maybe take your spare u87 and smash it on the ground to give it a little extra special flavor?
Old 21st March 2010
  #6
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beingmf's Avatar
 

Old 21st March 2010
  #7
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Ken Walker's Avatar
How about this?
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Favourite dirty, dusty, honky, funky sounding mics..? (AKA THE UNHIFI MIC THREAD!)-mr-mic.jpg 
Old 21st March 2010
  #8
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dustyreels's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by goldendeathmusic View Post
so maybe take your spare u87 and smash it on the ground to give it a little extra special flavor?
I tried this this morning and my '76 u87 no workie no more!?

Man, this was some bad advice. Maybe I shouldn't have thrown it down so hard on the wet concrete outside?!
Old 21st March 2010
  #9
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dustyreels's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken Walker View Post
How about this?
I could've just mic'd the speaker with my now dead u87.
Old 21st March 2010
  #10
ah,damn,i forgot to mention, it only works if you smash it on an old vintage console (my brother got time at abbey roads to do ours, but any console will probably work, as long as it's way overvalued) it really imparts the vintage warmth of the console into the mic somehow...don't ask me how,i'm not a tech guy
Old 21st March 2010
  #11
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dustyreels's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by goldendeathmusic View Post
ah,damn,i forgot to mention, it only works if you smash it on an old vintage console (my brother got time at abbey roads to do ours, but any console will probably work, as long as it's way overvalued) it really imparts the vintage warmth of the console into the mic somehow...don't ask me how,i'm not a tech guy
Well then it's partly your fault! Will you buy me a u87? A new ai version will be fine. PM me and we'll work it out. heh
Old 21st March 2010
  #12
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BudgetMC's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by dustyreels View Post
Well then it's partly your fault! Will you buy me a u87? A new ai version will be fine. PM me and we'll work it out. heh

Seems only fair to me... but Dusty should pick up shipping.
Old 21st March 2010
  #13
Gear Nut
 

ampex 2001 has enough high end to kill every cat within a 3 mile radius.
Old 21st March 2010
  #14
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This is all excellent advice. I'm blown away.
Old 21st March 2010
  #15
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I like to use baby monitors sometimes.Cool for vocals or to get a dirty distorted ambient drum sound.
Old 21st March 2010
  #16
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audiogeek's Avatar
 

have two cell phones, one in each hand. dial one with the other, answer, then turn it upside down so they're facing each other and feeding back... you can control the amount of feedback by playing with distance between the two.

now, bring your mouth close to one of them, and start singing/talking/whatever.

i've always wanted to tap off the line from the phone i'm not singing into, and capture that... probably pretty cool sounding.

this is what i daydream at work.
Old 21st March 2010
  #17
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Anything by behringer and nady.
Old 21st March 2010
  #18
Quote:
Originally Posted by OneginO View Post
This is all excellent advice. I'm blown away.
glad i could help!

also, i managed to pick up a lot of about 30 microphones for super cheap off craigslist from the smelliest individual i've ever met the other month.
after letting the mics sit in the garage for a week (they litterally had soaked up the smell of his B.O...) I have tons of different lo-fi sounding mics. The ones that I like the most so far are a couple Realistic/Radio Shack battery powered stereo condenser mics, and a CB Radio Talk mic that you have to press a big button on use...sounds like you are broadcasting straight from the 50's when you record with it. I bet you could find these types of mics for pretty cheap at your local flea market or pawn shop/thrift store and they work great for some lo-fi flavor. I remember someone saying up here a while ago that there's no such thing as a bad mic, and I took this to mean that even the "worst" sounding mic can find a welcome place in a song if it's used the right way.
Old 22nd March 2010
  #19
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dustyreels's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by BudgetMC View Post
Seems only fair to me... but Dusty should pick up shipping.
Sure, I'll cover shipping!
Old 22nd March 2010
  #20
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go to a ham fest and get some ham radio mics or old tape recorder mics

i find it easier to do using hi and low pass filters and some tinny slap .. that way I can adjust it to the song
Old 22nd March 2010
  #21
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Michael_Joly's Avatar
 

Oktava MD-186.

Sounds like it swallowed an AM radio signal chain and transmitter. Not easily obtained though.
Old 22nd March 2010
  #22
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trompetfreak's Avatar
 

How about a really old version of the MD21?
I have a Grundig GDM121, wich is quite terrible!
Old 22nd March 2010
  #23
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Batchainpuller78's Avatar
 

I have some old Telefunken & Philips microphones, those little plastic table top things, Old AKG dynamics can be very funky, I have an AKG D120 that's a bit busted but sounds great, an AKG D125 which sounds very strange but is not broken, and the old AKG D25 which has a great honk to it in the low region. A Green Bullet to put things in overdrive, oh yeah and an old announcers mic from a Bus, which also goes straight to overdrive.

Another way is having hifi mics but putting various sources through amplifiers & speakers of all sorts. good way to quickly get to dirty dusty funky stuff.
Old 22nd March 2010
  #24
Gear Head
 

'mics' out of old drivers like the NS 10 woofer...

Great stuff !!! Recently i have spotted old TV sets dumped and thought of taking out the drivers for some try outs in this field..
Though i bet the day i wander around with that screw driver there wont be any old tvs on the pavement and i will be swiftly arrested for looking suspicious with a screwdriver !!! '' you say you want to make a mic out a speaker??? sir??.!!! yeah right!!! ..Lock him up!!!''
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