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Mic recommendations for Acoustic and Vocal

Discussion in 'Recording In Progress' started by Jethro, Dec 1, 2012.

  1. Jethro

    Jethro Tele-Afflicted

    Feb 7, 2008
    Toronto, Canada
    Hi all,

    I'm quite new to this home recording thing, and I'm looking to get a good quality microphone for recording original acoustic guitar parts as well as vocals. I actually have a Shure Beta 58 which I think is probably fine for vocals alone, but I'm leaning more towards an all around versatile mic that could pick up a live room performance of either myself alone, or possibly me and one or two more players at the same time. Would an omni-directional type be most suitable???
    Am I asking too much??? Sorry if this is an unrealistic request, but I quite like some of the natural room sound I hear in certain recordings

    I'm thinking approx 500 bucks as my max

    Any help is greatly appreciated!!!

    Cheers,
    Jethro
     
  2. Rod Parsons

    Rod Parsons Friend of Leo's

    Age:
    69
    Sep 26, 2009
    Winchester, Va.
    You would probably like to have a "condenser" mike that runs on Phantom power..[active]. I don't know a lot about the brands, but others here know a lot, I'm sure.
     
  3. Del Pickup

    Del Pickup Poster Extraordinaire

    Mar 24, 2008
    New Zealand
    I've had a Rode NT1 for many years and it does exactly what you seem to be wanting. It does need phantom power but it records vocals and acoustic guitars very well.

    It's also good as a room mic for recording other instruments. I set it about 3-4 feet away from my amps and use the Rode for recording electric guitars as well.

    An all round excellent mic and not overly expensive.
     
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  5. krisls

    krisls Tele-Holic

    592
    Jul 24, 2010
    Sydney Australia
    I asked this question recently just to see what the guys at my local 'studio' shop would recommend. They tossed around a few possibles AT's, Senn but said in their view the best double up for vocal and acoustic that could be used live or studio is the Rode NT3. That would change if you went to vocal or guitar more exclusively though.

    Theirs a good youtube of Colin Hay 'Land Down Under' using a pair of them.

    Kristina
     
  6. Roekpoffen

    Roekpoffen TDPRI Member

    40
    Jan 30, 2011
    Sweden
    SE makes a mic called x1, its cheap and really good on everything that has to do with guitar. I believe it has some qualities on vocals aswell, but I havent tried that yet.
     
  7. Geoff738

    Geoff738 Poster Extraordinaire

    Age:
    52
    May 11, 2007
    Toronto
    First off, do you want to record singing and acoustic at the same time? Or would you be overdubbing?

    Do you have phantom power on your interface?

    Having a mic with omni or figure 8 patterns would come in handy to capture two people performing in a room.

    I'd probably suggest a large diaphragm condenser mic with multiple patterns. You will have to have phantom power though. There are lots of them in the $500 and under category now - none of which I've heard. The Stellar CM6 gets good reviews over on gearslutz. But there are plenty of others.

    If you only want or need a cardioid pattern, the AT 4033 is a fine acoustic guitar mic and ok for some vocals. It's going to be a big step up from the 58 clarity-wise. Voices are all unique though. Bono apparently uses that 58 mic in the studio quite often when he could use any mic in the world at any price. Which is a long-winded way of saying that for vocals, you really have to try the mics to know, and sometimes the cheaper one is the best.

    Cheers,
    Geoff
     
  8. String Tree

    String Tree Doctor of Teleocity

    Dec 8, 2010
    Up North
    I like the AKG C1000s Condenser.
    IF you don't have Phantom Power, it works just fine with a 9v Alkaline Battery.
    [​IMG]
    The new ones come with a Mic stand adapter and a windscreen.
    It was my first Condenser Mic AND my second!

    It will set you back about $200. Worth every penny.

    For Acoustic guitar and Vocals you would be well served.
     
  9. Jethro

    Jethro Tele-Afflicted

    Feb 7, 2008
    Toronto, Canada
    Thanks for the suggestions....

    Curious...anyone familiar with the Blue "Reactor" Mic??? Our local shoppe recommended it as it has cardiod, figure 8, and omni features.
     
  10. Jethro

    Jethro Tele-Afflicted

    Feb 7, 2008
    Toronto, Canada
    Sorry Geoff 738....I posted my last comment before seeing yours. To answer your question...I suppose I was hoping for a mic that would be good for a few different scenario's.

    Vocal solo
    Acoustic solo
    Vocal and Acoustic simultaneously
    Room situation with up to 3 players/singers simultaneously

    I wasn't sure if the last two scenario's were even realistic...as I said, I'm pretty green in this home recording thing, but I suppose I have fussy ears and would just like to capture as honest of a mostly acoustic recording as possible, and I tend to like that live off the floor dynamic. I wasn't sure if there was an all around mic that would be versatile enough.
     
  11. Rod Parsons

    Rod Parsons Friend of Leo's

    Age:
    69
    Sep 26, 2009
    Winchester, Va.
    A Shure Beta mike and the SM 57 and SM 58 are 'dynamic mikes and they are meant for singers or other applications where the mike wants to hear from close-up, and is made in a way so the it rejects sound that is farther away than a foot or two. This is so that a singer onstage doesn't have the loud guitars and bass, etc. going into his/her mike.... This is what causes uncontrollable feed back, also. The condenser mikes, [phantom power/active] can hear a long way off... like a penny drop from 50 feet? So a condenser is for your situation of miking a group all at once. Mike positioning is key to good balance... or two or three condensers for more control... Best of luck!
     
  12. String Tree

    String Tree Doctor of Teleocity

    Dec 8, 2010
    Up North
    Take home a pair of those AKG C1000s's.
    You will still be under $500.
    I think you'll love them.
     
  13. Old Cane

    Old Cane Poster Extraordinaire

    Sep 7, 2007
    Murfreesboro, TN
    Ditto. And those 1000s are worth having a pair of. Figure 8 would be a great option. I don't know any to recommend in that price range but I bet there are a bunch.
     
  14. Jethro

    Jethro Tele-Afflicted

    Feb 7, 2008
    Toronto, Canada
  15. Old Cane

    Old Cane Poster Extraordinaire

    Sep 7, 2007
    Murfreesboro, TN
    After looking at the cardiod pattern I thought it looked a lot like my b6 capsule. It's a very good head. I haven't seen this one but from the looks of it I like it (ok, I really don't like the looks of it but I can see me using one). I have a bottle rocket and I can't say enough good things about blue. Some guys here at work have the less expensive ones like Spark and Bluebird and we all love them. That seems like a good choice. It's right at the limit of your limit so make sure you just want one mic right now. There will be more. Just trust me on that.
     
  16. kiwi blue

    kiwi blue Tele-Afflicted

    http://www.soundonsound.com/sos/nov07/articles/rodem3.htm

    Looks like what you're after. Inexpensive and seems to punch well above its weight. Haven't heard it myself but it's on my shortlist.

    It's a small diagram condenser (SDC), but a decent large diaphragm condenser (LDC) will also do what you want. Matching voices to mics is pretty hit and miss, so maybe you should start with a decent mic for acoustic and take it from there.

    SDCs are more prone to popping on voice (use a pop shield and don't get too close) but are often preferred for acoustic guitar. LDCs are often preferred for voice and also work fine on acoustic. In reality you can use both types for either and get good, if slightly different, results. I'd rather use a good SDC on voice than a crappy LDC.

    I've got some pretty serviceable recordings of guitar and voice together on one LDC mic, with the mic positioned a couple of feet from the guitar, level with the shoulder of the fretting arm, pointing down towards the neck/body join. Adjust the mic position and your performance until guitar and voice are balanced. You really do need a condenser mic for that as you need to be some distance from the mic to capture both.

    The downside is you need a good performance from start to end on both guitar and voice as you can't punch in to fix errors, you need to get the balance between guitar and voice right during the performance as it can't be changed in the mix, and you also can't treat guitar and voice differently with EQ, reverb, and compression.

    Also, you may find you don't want that room sound after all. It really depends on the room. For most of us in rooms with less than ideal acoustics, the room sound needs to be minimised. Those reflections can mess up a recording.
     
  17. Old Cane

    Old Cane Poster Extraordinaire

    Sep 7, 2007
    Murfreesboro, TN
    I think a kiwi blue would work great too......
     
  18. Jethro

    Jethro Tele-Afflicted

    Feb 7, 2008
    Toronto, Canada
    Yeah, but I think the Kiwi's are 1000 ++ :eek:
     
  19. kiwi blue

    kiwi blue Tele-Afflicted

    They're rare as hens' teeth around here :p

    Not too many kiwis in Latvia either ...
     
  20. Jethro

    Jethro Tele-Afflicted

    Feb 7, 2008
    Toronto, Canada
    :lol::lol:
     
  21. Jethro

    Jethro Tele-Afflicted

    Feb 7, 2008
    Toronto, Canada
    I'm surprised they don't come out with a Kiwi all black :p Now THAT would be a rugged mic
     
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