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Thread: Shure sm57

  1. #26
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    Default Re: Shure sm57

    As you can see, this can get as complicated as you want it to get.
    Keep it simple and get a 57. It'll get plenty of use, even if you get something fancier later.

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  3. #27
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    Default Re: Shure sm57

    Quote Originally Posted by UsuallyPickin View Post
    Well .... The SM series mics are good , solid , usable instruments. They are also hardy. The thing about mics, any mics, is that you will find situations where they are not optimum. Having a transducer in your instrument coupled with a quality pre-amp and a good mic yields a combination of gear that will "handle " most any sound reinforcement situation. For my gear I have an SM 57 , an AKG C1000S a K&K mini and an L.R. Baggs Para Acoustic D I preamp. I also pack extra cords in my "gig bag". Good luck in your quest for a collection of gear that suits your particular needs and budget.
    Dynamic mics (57/58) tend to work better with high sound pressure levels. Condensers, such as the 1000s, are also worth considering. It needs phantom power but, although Iíve never tried it, you can run it with an internal battery. They also come with an adapter to turn it from a cardioid pickup pattern to a hyper-cardioid which is better at rejecting feedback. They will also take reasonably high sound pressure levels as they were designed as a vocal mic but they sound great on mandolin for not much more money than a 57.

  4. #28

    Default Re: Shure sm57

    If you get a 57 buy the optional screw attached windscreen. You may need to get your Mando very close to the mic and this will prevent you from bumping into the mic. You also may find it will help to play a bit harder. A 57 works well but is not really sensitive to soft playing if you aren’t right in top of it.

  5. #29
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    Default Re: Shure sm57

    As mentioned there are numerous threads on this, all worth the read. At some point, each of us go down this rabbit hole and find our spot on the chessboard. Trick is to not lose your head!

    Played two gigs over last two Friday's, same band different situations. First was mostly acoustic (no drummer) and so we mic'd the Dobro and mandolin using SM57s. With a dedicated sound person the levels were perfect and only once did I hit the mic from getting too close (no ding! *whew*). Really enjoyed this set-up.

    Last Friday, played a much louder gig with drummer and a another sit-in percussionist, some keyboards even (from yours truly). Dobro was still using the SM57 while mandolin used a Baggs Radius through a Para DI. When things got louder, Dobro was left behind as everyone else's volume increased. So it goes.

    Without a doubt mic'd just sounds more natural, but 'horses for courses' is the way to go in the end... porque no los dos, amigo?

  6. #30
    Registered User Lucas's Avatar
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    Default Re: Shure sm57

    I agree with the comments from Ray, Tim, and Michael about the pros and cons of the SM57. I know that many here like the SM57 but a condenser mic is worth considering. In my particular band situation, I find condenser mics have worked out better for me for either vocals or mandolin.

  7. #31
    Registered User gspiess's Avatar
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    Default Re: Shure sm57

    I have a couple of SM57s that are at least 30 years old. A few years back one of them just stopped working, and I've been asked multiple times "how do you break a '57?"
    Being right is overrated. Doing right is what matters.

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  8. #32
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    Default Re: Shure sm57

    I broke the barrel on one. I don't remember how. Wish I did; that would be a story. A little duct tape, off I went.
    But that's just my opinion. I could be wrong. - Dennis Miller

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  9. #33
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    Default Re: Shure sm57

    You could probably break the barrel on one if you drove over it with a truck!

    The good old British Broadcorping Castration, in celebration of Paul Simon’s 80th last week, featured the S&G concert from Central Park and, guess what, they were singing into - SM57s.

  10. #34
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    Default Re: Shure sm57

    Quote Originally Posted by gspiess View Post
    ...SM57s that are at least 30 years old...
    Bought the first SM57 in '86 and another around '92. Have always kept them in their bags too, so they are in perfect condition even after so many decades. True friends at this point.

    Random aside: I also have a 20' 1/4 cable and same length XLR that were made at the local music shop, and those also still work and get regular gig use to this day.

  11. #35
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    Default Re: Shure sm57

    Quote Originally Posted by Ray(T) View Post
    You could probably break the barrel on one if you drove over it with a truck!
    That ain't what did it. I really wish I knew. Might have been just the accumulated wear and tear from years of use and abuse. It was a proud moment, though, when I noticed it. Didn't think it was possible. A true achievement.

    Oh, and speaking of cables, I still have and use the first 1/4" cable I ever bought, a 6' (3 meter) Whirlwind cable with blue plaid fabric covering. I've used Old Blue on every gig since 1978 except for a handful. It has a lifetime guarantee, and so far, it's holding steady.
    But that's just my opinion. I could be wrong. - Dennis Miller

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  12. #36
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    Default Re: Shure sm57

    I performed for a while with microphones (usually the 57/58s), however, I got lots of feedback on noisy stages and switched to mandolins with built-in pickups which worked much better for me. I'm currently using the Godin A8.
    For recordings, a good Condenser will completely outperform the 57.

  13. #37
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    Default Re: Shure sm57

    I agree -- the A8 works really well for noisy situations, though I find myself cranking up the reverb a bit. And, likewise, a condenser works really well for recording -- I record directly off a clip-on AT on mando or guitar. On the other hand, I always have my ancient 57 for those times when toughness and reliability are at a premium, and it's also the perfect back-up.

  14. #38
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    Default Re: Shure sm57

    Man, (or, Woman!) I havenít played ďoutĒ since February or early March of 2020. Iíve played guitar and mando/OM plenty of times acoustically through a 57 into a main board or Fender Passport without issue, but have always felt a good pre-amp makes a world of difference when playing with a pickup (on guitar and mandolin), especially when itís a loud environment. The pre-amp also gives me more control over my EQ, though the guy on the board always wins any true battles there, lol. Thereís lots of good advice here, but I agree that you can get a lot of mileage out of a 57, at least until drums, keys, and electric guitar enter the mix (I play a ton of bluegrass and old time, but also have headed up the youth praise band at church for 10 years or soÖ). If you have feedback issues, a preamp can help.

  15. #39

    Default Re: Shure sm57

    Dynamic mic's are picky about how close you are. If you like to move around while you play, Audio Technica makes a clamp on with a goose neck that sounds pretty natural. It's a small diaphram condenser which requires phantom power, but all PAs have that these days.

    The down side of that arrangement is you have to regulate your volume by how hard or soft you play as opposed to moving in and out on the mic. You can always just try shooting the banjo player dirty looks, but I've never found that that helped.

  16. #40
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    Default Re: Shure sm57

    Quote Originally Posted by Rob Roy View Post
    Dynamic mic's are picky about how close you are. If you like to move around while you play, Audio Technica makes a clamp on with a goose neck that sounds pretty natural. It's a small diaphram condenser which requires phantom power, but all PAs have that these days.

    The down side of that arrangement is you have to regulate your volume by how hard or soft you play as opposed to moving in and out on the mic. You can always just try shooting the banjo player dirty looks, but I've never found that that helped.
    You can always use both, jump around while playing backup, and walk up to the mic for a solo.
    THE WORLD IS A BETTER PLACE JUST FOR YOUR SMILE!

  17. #41
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    Default Re: Shure sm57

    My problem with mics is that they are proximity sensitive. There is a sweet spot, and if you deviate from it, youíll lose your volume. Turning the mic up only invites feedback. I move around way too much on stage to be glued to one spot. Thatís why I went with a piezo. You sacrifice some tone for even, constant volume and mobility. Used with a pre amp, modern piezos have come a long way from the early ones that quacked like a duck.

    Having sad that, the SM57 or 58 is a workhorse mic that would work in your application. Just be prepared to keep it in the sweet spot.
    Livingí in the Mitten

  18. #42
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    Default Re: Shure sm57

    I apologize for using my experience in the jug band for example, but I did do a lot of learning during my tenure there, and we were more interested in musical quality than most would assume when thinking of jug bands. The proof of this is they're still at it, thirty-five years on.

    But what Fearless Leader suggested was a mix of piezo signal and mike (Shure 58) - the piezo for a steady signal, the mike for a different sound input, thus fuller (see above), and lean in for solos. He called this "the magic sound," and it truly was. It worked wonderfully. And sometime back then, at a bluegrass festival, where Hot Rize/Red Knuckles was one of the headliners, I was knocked out by Tim O'Brien's sound. I tracked him down after the set and asked him about it. He gestured to a little box sitting on top of their gear about the size of a Peterson tuner, and explained it was a sound mixer. It would mix together the sound of his piezo pickup and a lavalier mike clipped to the soundhole, and he could dial it right in to where he wanted. The guitarist used the same set-up. I could scarcely believe they were using the same approach. I felt so validated.
    But that's just my opinion. I could be wrong. - Dennis Miller

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  19. #43
    Registered User Tug's Avatar
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    Default Re: Shure sm57

    Minnesota state law requires that you own an SM57 and an SM58 before buying a condenser mic or pickup.

    My wife and I have had these for 25+ years.

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