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Thread: Favorite Dynamic mic Mandolin for live use?

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    Default Favorite Dynamic mic Mandolin for live use?

    So for outside gigs and quiet indoor gigs I have had great luck with condensers . However I started playing bars again and they are often just too loud for this. Which leads to the impending purchase of some dynamic mics for instrument micing.

    I have used 57s and 58s . The 57 works pretty well. The 58( I know it's meant for vocals) has been terrible. This seems weird to me because I have heard that they are pretty much the same. Does anyone have any other favorite dynamic mics for instruments? Particularly Mandolin?

    In the live vocal mic thread the AKG was recomended as a more modern better alternative to the SM58. Is there something like this for instruments?

  2. #2

    Default Re: Favorite Dynamic mic Mandolin for live use?

    Info from the other thread would suggest to me that the AKG D5 would be a great choice for both live performance voice and mandolin/instrument. Same with the Shure Beta 57 and Beta 87.


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    Registered User almeriastrings's Avatar
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    Default Re: Favorite Dynamic mic Mandolin for live use?

    1) Beyer M-201 TG - very tight pattern, excellent transient response.
    2) Shure Beta 57A - be careful to avoid the fakes out there.
    3) AKG D5 - yes, it works on instruments too, quite well.

    I would not totally rule out condensers. I get excellent results with a Shure SM-94 even in some quite tricky situations.
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    Default Re: Favorite Dynamic mic Mandolin for live use?

    A foam windscreen also works like a soft bumper, so close Mic placement
    won't go bump over the speakers, so loud.
    [or scratch the finish, around the soundhole F.]


    my Fave Dynamic is the Schertler, Pickup, on the soundboard..
    Dyn M .. Dyn is for dynamic, M is for mandolin ..
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    Default Re: Favorite Dynamic mic Mandolin for live use?

    Quote Originally Posted by almeriastrings View Post
    1) Beyer M-201 TG - very tight pattern, excellent transient response.
    2) Shure Beta 57A - be careful to avoid the fakes out there.
    3) AKG D5 - yes, it works on instruments too, quite well.

    I would not totally rule out condensers. I get excellent results with a Shure SM-94 even in some quite tricky situations.
    A 2-300.00 mic for gigs paying 50-100.00 per man? C'mon, get real. OP, use the 57 and call it a day. The idea is to maximize one's equipment investment to be able to make a profit while having fun playing music one loves. If a given player were a fulltime touring musician or a studio cat then getting the best possible, world class equipment would be basic to one's needs. Otherwise, it's overkill.

    Btw, while playing bass in an I/C band we had an opportunity to do a local TV show. I was expecting to be miked w/a super high-end Neuman or at least an AKG C-3000. Guess what? They used an SM-57. It sounded GREAT.

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    Mando accumulator allenhopkins's Avatar
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    Default Re: Favorite Dynamic mic Mandolin for live use?

    Quote Originally Posted by mandogoshen View Post
    A 2-300.00 mic for gigs paying 50-100.00 per man? C'mon, get real. OP, use the 57 and call it a day. The idea is to maximize one's equipment investment to be able to make a profit while having fun playing music one loves. If a given player were a fulltime touring musician or a studio cat then getting the best possible, world class equipment would be basic to one's needs. Otherwise, it's overkill….They used an SM-57. It sounded GREAT.
    The SM57 is a workhorse mic, proved over decades. Lots of people use them, and are familiar with them. They cost somewhere around $100, give or take.

    The Beyer -- which I haven't used, so no opinion on its quality -- costs around $300. If you really prefer the Beyer, the cost difference is four of those "$50 per person" gigs. We're not talking about a multi-$K investment. I don't think the difference is between the part-time musician and a "full-time touring musician or studio cat" demanding "world class equipment." (Which, by the way, that musician wouldn't probably buy him/herself, but would be provided by the venues where he/she played.)

    As a person playing music "full time" in my retirement, I've dropped a few buxx into sound equipment, and my ears are always out for good stuff at reasonable prices; I have MXL and Behringer gear that "full-time musicians and studio cats" would probably turn up their noses at. But spending $300 on a live-performance mic that really suits your needs doesn't seem extravagant to me, even if you're just playing weekends for $50 a pop.
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    Default Re: Favorite Dynamic mic Mandolin for live use?

    Look at the Heil microphone lots of gain and condenser like frequency response and not that far from an Sm57 in price
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    Default Re: Favorite Dynamic mic Mandolin for live use?

    Quote Originally Posted by mandogoshen View Post
    A 2-300.00 mic for gigs paying 50-100.00 per man? C'mon, get real. OP, use the 57 and call it a day. The idea is to maximize one's equipment investment to be able to make a profit while having fun playing music one loves.
    So-ooo, what kind of mandolin are you pickin' these days?

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    Default Re: Favorite Dynamic mic Mandolin for live use?

    Given a really good mic can last decades (some of mine are 30 years old), and that they hold their value extremely well, I don't really see the problem...obviously, if you prefer playing a Carlo Robelli through a mic from Radio Shack or Walmart that's entirely up to you.
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    Default Re: Favorite Dynamic mic Mandolin for live use?

    Quote Originally Posted by almeriastrings View Post
    ....and that they hold their value extremely well...
    Mics can also slip through the cracks value-wise, which is why I have so damn many...
    Can't resist a $5 SM57 or a 30.00 Beyer M201, and haven't bought a dead one yet...

  12. #11

    Default Re: Favorite Dynamic mic Mandolin for live use?

    I like my Sennheiser 441 that I got years ago for a really good price.

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    Default Re: Favorite Dynamic mic Mandolin for live use?

    Yes... this is the point. Really good equipment holds its value for years (and even increases if you get it for a good price) as well as delivering top class results every time you use it. Good stuff is also easy to sell any time you want to. Cheaper stuff loses value the most....and in the meantime, you can be struggling with less than optimum sound, and poor reliability. Not saying the SM57 is in that category, but the principle still applies. Some may say the Neumann KMS 105 is over-the-top for a live vocal mic (around $700), but if you get a mint, used example at a good price, you are unlikely to ever lose a penny on it if you look after it well. In that sense, it could end up costing you less than a knock-off SM58.
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    Default Re: Favorite Dynamic mic Mandolin for live use?

    Thanks those of you who have actually suggested some mics to look into. The question was what are some of your favorite dynamic mics for live use? Not, how much do you think I should spend on mics for the gigs you think I am playing for x amount of money.
    I have absolutely no problem paying 2 or $300 for a mic iif it really works for me . I could still be using this for another 30 years. I believe in buying good tools. I paid almost $2000 for my guitar amp. Was it easy for me to come up with that money? Absolutely not.
    That was almost 10 years ago and the money is long forgotten. It is still working and sounding perfect. I sacrificed A lot to buy my Kimble mandolin, but I never regret it. IT IS PAYED FOR AND EVERYDAY IT MAKES ME HAPPY TO PLAY IT. I want a mic that sounds great is reliable and is easy to work with. Something that picks up without neccesarily being right up against it and has a lot of gain before feedback.Something that just works well so I don't have to stress out quite as much about whether there are going to be tech problems.
    Having said all that I am leaning toward the D5 or Beta 57, because the store I teach at carries both and I can go downstairs and try at least one of them and get either of them at a discount. This is a great option if one of them works for me(which I think will be the case).If they didn't I would buy the Beyer, if it worked better for me.
    I am playing solo and duos mostly. Occasionaly trios. It isn't like I am planning on buying 5 of whatever I decide on. Besides the other people aresponsible for their own gear .
    Thanks for all the help, and if anyone else has a favorite, I would love to hear it!
    Thanks,
    Carleton

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    Default Re: Favorite Dynamic mic Mandolin for live use?

    Hi Carleton
    You've probably gathered from other threads that I'm a big fan of the AKG D5 for vocals. I'm also a fan of the Shure Beta57A for instruments. Better than the D5 for this purpose; and miles better than the older SM57. It is sensitive enough to allow a good range of distance from the mic, which in turn allows the player better control of dynamics by 'working' the mic. Not quite as tight a pattern as the D5, so the player can be a little off-axis without hurting the sound too much. They can withstand high sound pressure levels, which makes them very versatile. I've used them for mandolin, guitar and double bass, miked guitar and bass amps with them, and they are hands down the best snare drum mike I've found. I even recorded some high harmony vocals with one on our last CD; sounded fine! (It's a long story why this was necessary!) Good kit, and well worth the money.
    Best wishes
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    Default Re: Favorite Dynamic mic Mandolin for live use?

    Hi Carleton, I special ordered a Sennheiser e 945, a super-cardioid lead vocal stage microphone from Guitar Center for about $160. When it arrived I compared it to every decent dynamic mic they had and found it superior for my vocal range and style. I don't have a particularly loud voice so I was looking for maximum boost before feedback. It's very well balanced w/o noticeable coloration. It sounds like me, just louder. I also play some penny whistle and it works great for that too. I've had it for about a year, using it with a (very loud) acoustic folk band through a Bose L2 (w/ a small sub-mixer). Likewise I do not mind spending more to get more. Great investment, I'd buy another w/o hesitation.

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    Default Re: Favorite Dynamic mic Mandolin for live use?

    Quote Originally Posted by 1-2-many View Post
    ...a (very loud) acoustic folk band...
    Oxymoron?
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    Default Re: Favorite Dynamic mic Mandolin for live use?

    Another vote for the Beta 57. Hypercardioids are perfect for loud venues.
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    Default Re: Favorite Dynamic mic Mandolin for live use?

    Quote Originally Posted by allenhopkins View Post
    I don't think the difference is between the part-time musician and a "full-time touring musician or studio cat" demanding "world class equipment." (Which, by the way, that musician wouldn't probably buy him/herself, but would be provided by the venues where he/she played.)
    I dunno, when I invited Austin Powers*, International Mandolinist of Mystery, to perform his concerto with our mandolin orchestra, he brought his Neumann along with him...

    *Not his real name.
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    Default Re: Favorite Dynamic mic Mandolin for live use?

    ...a (very loud) acoustic folk band...
    Oxymoron?
    better have a really Good sound guy on the board for that one..

    and hearing protection for everyone in the room, particularly the Band.
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    Default Re: Favorite Dynamic mic Mandolin for live use?

    Oops, I replied to the wrong thread. I do not use this mic to amplify instruments (besides whistle and pipes). I purchased it first and foremost as a vocal mic. Apologies.

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    Default Re: Favorite Dynamic mic Mandolin for live use?

    No Problem!

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    Default Re: Favorite Dynamic mic Mandolin for live use?

    I have been battling with this dilema for some time now... Switching between my DPA, Shertler, & 57...

    I played a loud pub gig on the weekend ( full band with drums ) and the sound guy put a http://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/E609Silver on my mando... It sounded great! The recording i took from the desk had the mando sounding thick and juicy too. Plus i didn`t bump into the mic due to its design... : P

    I think i shall purchase one for myself and sell the schertler.

    I know some people have great success with the schertler, but i can`t find happiness with it myself.

    Anyways, thought i throw my vote in for the E 609 Silver. : )

    Pick on!

    : )

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