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Help with SDC's Condenser Microphones
Old 1st February 2011
  #1
Gear Addict
 
elamberth's Avatar
Help with SDC's

Hello all!

I am considering an SDC upgrade and would like to hear opinions. I have a pair of MXL 603s's which are OK, but would like something better that I can use long-term & not feel like I need to upgrade. Recording would be mostly acoustic guitar (Alvarez, not bright) but if they could be used for the occ. drum overhead & grand piano, that would be a plus. I am using i88x pre's. My ideas thus far are:

1. Avenson STO-2's. Some have said they are noisy, many said it's not a problem. Would sell the MXL's. Prob. would buy the B-stock's at $400/pr.

2. Avant CK-1's. Are these really in the same league as the Avenson's? I have liked some of the sound clips, and even really liked it on clean guitar cabs! That would be a plus! $300. Would sell the MXL's.

3. Upgrade the MXL's via Oktavamod. Electronics upgrade = $180, full upgrade $530. Really more than I wanted to spend right now...

4. Forget it, save the money, keep recording acoustic guitar with the Bluebird + Trion 8K for color...

Thanks!
Old 1st February 2011
  #2
Lives for gear
I had a Avantone CK-1 for a while but it didn't work for me on Ac Gtr (steel stringed). It was too bright for me. I much prefer Chameleon Labs TS-1 MK II which some dealers are still selling with the free LDC head. I also find the TS-1 works well on guitar cabs (a 5 watt 5F2 clone into a 8 watt Weber Blue Dog). However the TS-1 may be out of your budget and it's only a single.

The Oktava MK012 is popular on Ac Gtr - I haven't used it but it gets plenty of recommendations.

Maybe I'm nuts, but in general I find it difficult to get a bad sound from Ac Gtr with most mics I've tried, SDC or LDC. Unless you're addicted to having a pair, a better SDC with your LDCs would IMO be an improvement, perhaps get one and another later if you like it.
Old 1st February 2011
  #3
Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilDW View Post
Unless you're addicted to having a pair, a better SDC with your LDCs would IMO be an improvement, perhaps get one and another later if you like it.
Or maybe get one of your MXL 603's modded now and wait until later and get the second one modded. Just a thought on the same theme.
Old 2nd February 2011
  #4
Lives for gear
 
Michael_Joly's Avatar
 

[QUOTE=elamberth;6285796]Hello all!

I am considering an SDC upgrade and would like to hear opinions. I have a pair of MXL 603s's which are OK, but would like something better that I can use long-term & not feel like I need to upgrade. Recording would be mostly acoustic guitar (Alvarez, not bright) but if they could be used for the occ. drum overhead & grand piano, that would be a plus. I am using i88x pre's. My ideas thus far are:

1. Avenson STO-2's. Some have said they are noisy, many said it's not a problem. Would sell the MXL's. Prob. would buy the B-stock's at $400/pr.

MJ: A 1/4" electret capsule mic is going to have a higher self noise figure than the 603. And how do you feel about using omni mics for OH?

2. Avant CK-1's. Are these really in the same league as the Avenson's? I have liked some of the sound clips, and even really liked it on clean guitar cabs! That would be a plus! $300. Would sell the MXL's.

MJ: Same basic mic as all the other 22mm diameter mics like the 603, CM-90, GXL1200, Apex 180 etc. They claim to upgrade parts but every one I've seen still has the stock ceramic cap in the important capsule-to-FET location.

3. Upgrade the MXL's via Oktavamod. Electronics upgrade = $180, full upgrade $530. Really more than I wanted to spend right now...

MJ: I respect budget limits. But if you want KM 184-level results this will do it.

4. Forget it, save the money, keep recording acoustic guitar with the Bluebird + Trion 8K for color...

MJ: Sounds like your best bet.
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