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Thread: Microphone recommends for home studio recording?

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    Default Microphone recommends for home studio recording?

    Hey Mandolin geniuses,

    I'm now looking to do some home recording. Any acoustic players out there have a recommendation for getting a great mandolin sound through a microphone? I have a pickup option but like the options using a mic can offer. I would be recording acoustic guitar, mando, and banjo. I'm in the $300-400 range. What are you all using?
    Thanks,
    Eastman MD605

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    Registered User Rich Benson's Avatar
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    Default Re: Microphone recommends for home studio recording?

    Shure SM-81
    Rode NT5
    Rich

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    Default Re: Microphone recommends for home studio recording?

    Shure SM81 would be a great choice in your price range as is Shure KSM 137. Personally I would not recommend Rode NT5. It's a great mic for the money but personally I always prefer more flat response mics for mandolin, banjo, acoustic guitar. The NT5 seems tailored after the Neumann KM 184, both have a significant treble boost. The old favourite is Neumann KM84, the modern is Schoeps MK4 - both have a perfectly flat frequency curve.
    Or spend a little more and find an used AKG C414 - swiss army knife for almost any recording situation.
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    Registered User Billy Packard's Avatar
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    Default Re: Microphone recommends for home studio recording?

    We’ve just started using the Shure KSM-137 for live performances. A little experimenting with recording has produced a great sound also. I like it very much for a one mic suits-all-option.

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    Registered User Isaac Casas's Avatar
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    Default Re: Microphone recommends for home studio recording?

    I've only used a Rode NT1000 that I bought around 10 years ago or more and I've used it for acoustic instruments and voice. I've never felt like I needed to buy anything else, although I'm not a pro and can't even compare it with other models.

    You can check the sound it gets from my mando in the few videos that I've recently recorded here (for the octave I mix the sound from the mic plus its internal K&K):

    https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCQy...V2KKG1uTJcg_Mg

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    Default Re: Microphone recommends for home studio recording?

    AKG P420 & AKG C1000s

    The P420 in Omni mode seems to be very un-coloured & transparent.

    I like the C1000s for mandolin & it's versatile for stage use too.
    Eoin



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    Default Re: Microphone recommends for home studio recording?

    The akg p420 has a very aggressive high pass filter at 300Hz. Pity it doesn't have an option for the standard 80Hz.

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    Default Re: Microphone recommends for home studio recording?

    Warm Audio has some really nice mics out on the market. I have heard good things about this one: https://www.sweetwater.com/store/det...ser-microphone


    But to be honest, you can get an SM57 or an AT2020, both of which will produce some great recordings if you know how to set them up to capture the sound of your particular instrument. The audio interface is also a big part of the equation. What are you using for an audio interface? A mixer or something like a Focusrite Scarlett?
    There's nothing better than first-hand experience.

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    Default Re: Microphone recommends for home studio recording?

    Shure mic usb converter https://www.shure.com/en-US/products...-usb-interface,
    lets you use your workaday SM 57~ 58 in the home studio (available discounted bought with the Mic)
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    Default Re: Microphone recommends for home studio recording?

    Hi Mandobar,

    Quote Originally Posted by Mandobar View Post
    What are you using for an audio interface? A mixer or something like a Focusrite Scarlett?
    Yes, I'm using a focusrite scarlett 4i4, which I have been using for a ton of analog to digital transfers of old music without any problems at all. However, I haven't done any recording with it. What do you think for an audio interface?
    Eastman MD605

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    Default Re: Microphone recommends for home studio recording?

    Thanks everyone.

    I think I am down to three, maybe four. There's just so much to consider. Ugh, but it's a fun ugh. Yes, I will be using it with a focusrite 4i4 as the audio. If anyone has any thoughts feel free to through them out there.

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    Registered User jefflester's Avatar
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    Default Re: Microphone recommends for home studio recording?

    Shure SM7B seems like an odd choice, it's a dynamic mic primarily for vocals. I think you'd be better off with your LDC choices.

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    Default Re: Microphone recommends for home studio recording?

    Quote Originally Posted by DevinG View Post
    Hi Mandobar,



    Yes, I'm using a focusrite scarlett 4i4, which I have been using for a ton of analog to digital transfers of old music without any problems at all. However, I haven't done any recording with it. What do you think for an audio interface?
    That's a good audio interface. So if you have more than one input, why not consider a pair of NT5's?

    https://www.sweetwater.com/store/det...er-microphones

    I have a 3rd generation 18i8 scarlett, and it takes a bit of experimentation to get things set up right. But you can space the NT5s however far apart you need to to get a more natural sound from the room you are recording in.

    Warm Audio also has a set, but they are a bit pricier: https://www.sweetwater.com/store/det...eo-pair-nickel

    I know someone who is using a WA-84 and loves it for mandolin: https://www.sweetwater.com/store/det...rophone-nickel

    But if you are going to get a Shure, why not the SM81?
    There's nothing better than first-hand experience.

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    Default Re: Microphone recommends for home studio recording?

    Me again - just remembered I did some comparison some time ago: Five condensers and one ribbon on a Collings MF5 mandolin. Here we go:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LIUL...naFrg&index=38
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    Default Re: Microphone recommends for home studio recording?

    Quote Originally Posted by jefflester View Post
    Shure SM7B seems like an odd choice, it's a dynamic mic primarily for vocals. I think you'd be better off with your LDC choices.
    Hi jefflester,

    I will talk more about this later in this thread. It is a dynamic mic, one of the better ones with loads of street cred. Yes, lots of vocals but also instruments. The low output can/is offset with dboost or cloudlifter, etc.
    Eastman MD605

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    Default Re: Microphone recommends for home studio recording?

    Hi mando geniuses,

    Thanks for the feedback. After quite a few conversations, I really went down the rabbit hole on this one, I choose the sm7b with a cloudlifter. Yes, I know It's a dynamic mic and acoustic instruments would prefer a condenser. Ultimately, I spoke with a couple of friends. One is a guy who was the studio engineer on all of my studio recordings. The other is an emmmy award winner for Universal Studios and monster bass player. Ultimately it came down to this. Condensers are harder to work with picking up street noise, refrigerator hum, the neighbor talking, etc -- particularly with a newbie in terms of recordi. If I get a condenser it should be a great condenser (Mohave MA300, AKG 414, spend $1500 or so). Instead, spend more time learning mic placement and working with room tone, which is 85% of it. The sm7b will be more than enough and when I get a good condenser the sm7b will still be great with vocals, amps, drums. The reviews are also pretty fantastic. I'll keep you posted either way.
    Eastman MD605

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    Default Re: Microphone recommends for home studio recording?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mandobar View Post
    That's a good audio interface. So if you have more than one input, why not consider a pair of NT5's?

    https://www.sweetwater.com/store/det...er-microphones

    I have a 3rd generation 18i8 scarlett, and it takes a bit of experimentation to get things set up right. But you can space the NT5s however far apart you need to to get a more natural sound from the room you are recording in.

    Warm Audio also has a set, but they are a bit pricier: https://www.sweetwater.com/store/det...eo-pair-nickel

    I know someone who is using a WA-84 and loves it for mandolin: https://www.sweetwater.com/store/det...rophone-nickel

    But if you are going to get a Shure, why not the SM81?
    I looked at matched pairs. After talking with some friends they both urged me to get good at miking instruments with a single mic, I'm not that new at studio recording but it's been a while. I went with simple for now.
    Eastman MD605

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    Default Re: Microphone recommends for home studio recording?

    You might want to look at this option. The reviews were very positive, saying it does come very close to the Neumann U-47. No affiliation, just passing this along.

    https://techzoneaudioproducts.com/co...ser-microphone

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    Default Re: Microphone recommends for home studio recording?

    Has anyone tried an Ear Trumpet "Edwina"? ...asking for a friend,,,
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    Default Re: Microphone recommends for home studio recording?

    I use a Myrtle which is a spring mounted edwina. I love it for a range of different uses from guitar to singing. It's kind of my main go-to for everything with good results. I've also used it to mic a bass amp and it worked well. It's of course great for live performance too.

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    Default Re: Microphone recommends for home studio recording?

    I looked at frequency-response charts and the polar patterns of some mics and chose the Shure KSM 32, a modern large-diaphragm design. It is very forgiving of angle, as the frequency response is the same off-axis as straight on.

    $500 and well worth it, very smooth and I will be releasing a recording of solo playing that used that mic.
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    Default Re: Microphone recommends for home studio recording?

    I like the akg 100, and the cs 1000....on a budget...I have a shure 44 ...it went bad and shure said 500$ to return it flat fee , no matter what the problem was.....ill never own any more shure mics of any kind....if you got the dough id get a at 4050

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    Default Re: Microphone recommends for home studio recording?

    Like many other people, I've used mostly AT condensers. I admit I like the medium-capsule AT varieties a bit better than the large-capsule ones because they're just a little less sensitive to surrounding noise, etc.

    Recently I've seen some great results from Aston microphones - specifically the Aston Origin. Sounds terrific and seems easy to use. Could be worth a look.

    Enjoy!
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    Default Re: Microphone recommends for home studio recording?

    I second the Myrtle for recording mandolin. Good for vocals too but we liked it best on the instrument.
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