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Re: How do you try out a mic? It's just not possible. new [Re: Ariosto]
      #988411 - 19/05/12 06:48 PM
Yeah but, I've heard that some mic's can easily become riddled with that AIDS.


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Ariosto



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Posts: 304
Re: How do you try out a mic? It's just not possible. new [Re: ]
      #988416 - 19/05/12 06:58 PM
Quote J.A.S:

Yeah but, I've heard that some mic's can easily become riddled with that AIDS.




You mean - Artificial Insignificant Deficient Sound? You get it from things with big nobs.


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Ariosto



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Re: How do you try out a mic? It's just not possible. new [Re: Ariosto]
      #988711 - 21/05/12 12:42 PM
Quote John Willett:


But it's a long way from London

And, as has been said, KMR is the place to go in London.




Hi John

Thanks for your help and information. (And all others too!)

I will try and phone KMR today and have a chat. I'm impressed by their website. I think maybe I need advice too as I'm not sure about going down the "ribbon" road anymore. (They do have ribbon mics though, including the Green Woodpecker). Maybe I just need a good condensor - maybe an omni.

Best regards

Ariosto




Yes, KMR are very helpful.

Talk to Stefan Pope, he is very good (you can mention my name and said I suggested you go to KMR - it gives me Brownie points )




I spoke this morning to Stefan and mentioned your name! He spoke very highly of you!

He is going to email me some suggestions having heard my problems and what sort of recording I do. So at some time in the future I hope to sort something out. (He mentioned that certain mics weren't even on his radar, and that I needed maybe a pre-amp to get good sound with a reasonable mic).




Hi John

I just wish some were as dedicated and helpful as you are.

I haven't heard a dickybird from KMR and I even emailed them to make sure they had my email correctly, as I know its easy enough to mis-hear on the phone.

I'm likely to go ahead with my purchase of a pre amp from Dav - in fact I'm in touch about it.

But the mic thing will be something I have to start with all over again, but with who, I just don't know!!

Best regards and thanks again.


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narcoman
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Re: How do you try out a mic? It's just not possible. new [Re: Ariosto]
      #988713 - 21/05/12 12:49 PM
go into KMR. Talk to them directly.


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Ariosto



Joined: 04/05/08
Posts: 304
Re: How do you try out a mic? It's just not possible. new [Re: narcoman]
      #988892 - 22/05/12 09:48 AM
I have received an email now, from KMR. However, the mic situation has to be on hold now for the next couple of weeks. I may even decide against a ribbon mic, as they seem to need special care and storage. Maybe I should reconsider getting a fairly normal condensor mic. But the pre amp I am going ahead with. Have to see how it all turns out.


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Hugh RobjohnsAdministrator
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Re: How do you try out a mic? It's just not possible. new [Re: Ariosto]
      #988927 - 22/05/12 01:19 PM
Quote Ariosto:

I may even decide against a ribbon mic, as they seem to need special care and storage.




Not particularly. I don't treat my ribbons any differently to any other mic. I try not to drop them on the floor, or hammer in long nails with them

Okay, so long ribbons are best stored with the diaphgrams vertical rather than horizontal, but that's not difficult, and it's wise to be careful about drafts and air gusts, but placing a plastic bag over the mic when not in use takes care of that.

Ribbons are great and deliver a sound character than you just can't get with capacitor mics. I wouldn't dismiss them so quickly!

Hugh

--------------------
Technical Editor, Sound On Sound


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Richie Royale



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Re: How do you try out a mic? It's just not possible. new [Re: Hugh Robjohns]
      #988931 - 22/05/12 01:48 PM
Quote Hugh Robjohns:

I try not to drop them on the floor, or hammer in long nails with them






Just short ones then?

--------------------
http://soundcloud.com/richie-royale
http://www.mixcrate.com/richieroyale


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Hugh RobjohnsAdministrator
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Re: How do you try out a mic? It's just not possible. new [Re: Richie Royale]
      #988937 - 22/05/12 02:01 PM
Yes, they're fine with short nails....

hugh

--------------------
Technical Editor, Sound On Sound


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Martin WalkerModerator
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Re: How do you try out a mic? It's just not possible. new [Re: Hugh Robjohns]
      #988972 - 22/05/12 04:23 PM
You realise this answer could come back to haunt you Hugh?


Martin

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YewTreeMagic


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Hugh RobjohnsAdministrator
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Re: How do you try out a mic? It's just not possible. new [Re: Martin Walker]
      #988975 - 22/05/12 04:32 PM
Yes... you're probably right!

hugh

--------------------
Technical Editor, Sound On Sound


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Gary M
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Re: How do you try out a mic? It's just not possible. new [Re: Hugh Robjohns]
      #989050 - 23/05/12 12:48 AM
Quote Hugh Robjohns:

Sorry I've been away for a couple of days...

Quote hollowsun:

So how do people cope with studio sessions where a mic's been used by maybe hundreds of different people, many of which will no doubt have had colds, coughs, flu and have partaken of far more dubious substances than two pints and a Chinese takeaway....




I didn't say I agreed with the policy, or that it had any scientific merit! I was merely offering an explanation as to why some retailers might choose not to offer mics on a sale or return basis and why their customers might not want to spend their hard-earned money on microphones that have been used by other people beforehand.

hugh




I may be wrong or being spun a yarn but from what I'm aware a used microphone can not be resold through a retailer. Some European law to do with spreading of germs or something. We had a few retailers that refused to demo field recorders for his very reason. It was a bit jobs worth in reality.

Cheers

Gary


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Ariosto



Joined: 04/05/08
Posts: 304
Re: How do you try out a mic? It's just not possible. new [Re: Ariosto]
      #989321 - 24/05/12 01:39 PM
I've aquired a DAV BG1 which I'm very pleased with, and my mics sound better. As to getting new mics, I will have to consider further.


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chew_rocket



Joined: 21/10/09
Posts: 452
Re: How do you try out a mic? It's just not possible. new [Re: Ariosto]
      #989352 - 24/05/12 02:46 PM
Did anyone mention that Audio Technica do a 'try before you buy' scheme where they post 2 mics for you to use for 2 weeks. I did it, ended up falling in love and bought a mic!

I'm not sure what company they used to post but I guess you gotta try a little patience if you want free use of some microphones!


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Persuazion



Joined: 29/10/05
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Re: How do you try out a mic? It's just not possible. new [Re: chew_rocket]
      #989637 - 25/05/12 08:09 PM
To be fair, you seem to be having more trouble than most. What would be wrong with re arranging with sE? Going in to KMR for a chat about what you want/need and hear some mics? Try Audio Technica?

Its a bit like you've struggled for a second to get the lid off your pistachios and just threw them away.

--------------------
http://www.loverslanestudios.co.uk


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Kaw-Liga
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Re: How do you try out a mic? It's just not possible. new [Re: Ariosto]
      #990130 - 29/05/12 06:44 AM
Book a studio session where they have lots of mics (check the studio homepage) and spend the first hour(s) finding the mic that suits your needs the best. I spent three hours doing that on Saturday. It was rewarding.


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The Red Bladder



Joined: 05/06/07
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Re: How do you try out a mic? It's just not possible. new [Re: Kaw-Liga]
      #990149 - 29/05/12 08:30 AM
Quote Kaw-Liga:

Book a studio session where they have lots of mics (check the studio homepage) and spend the first hour(s) finding the mic that suits your needs the best. I spent three hours doing that on Saturday. It was rewarding.




Perhaps the most intelligent comment here!

Firstly, on the subject of delivery, the OP is obviously not a company. He is not able to have somebody in during the day, to accept deliveries. Delivery companies cannot guarantee delivery at a certain time or even on the particular day. Some of the more foolish punters imagine that somehow the UPS (or whoever) guy can shoot up from between the flowerpots at 1735pm and that they have the right to be rude to them at 1745pm. They are not bag-boys at Walmart, but geared to supplying shops and offices that are manned from 9am to 5pm. (The worst are definitely people who order building supplies, but are not builders, but that is another can of worms.)

To the OP - you are not a company, so I would follow John Willett's advice and go to somebody who is.

But testing microphones requires skill, experience and time. No punter is going to be able to test a mic in a week, using just their DAW and a Focusrite preamp! Sometimes, a good or bad mic only reveals itself in mixing or even in mastering. That crystal clear budget job that was so impressive during the session, may be the reason why the final eq in mastering sounds edgy and wrong. That hi-hat mic may be the reason the drums sound distorted and the image is pants on the final mix. Shouting 'One - Two - One - Two!' into a mic, or even recording your favourite singer into it, will tell you very little. Weeks, months, or even years of use will tell you what it is good at and what it is not so good at.

That 'bright' condenser mic that sounds so clear at first, may reveal a nasty side when you pull up the highs on a really good analogue EQ. It may be OK in one room, but useless in many others, because of the off-axis response being uneven. Over many years, studios gravitate towards certain mics for certain uses. They do this, not because the owner feels the need to spend £2,000 on a Neumann, but because they work on vocals, when others do not.

I test mics on occasions and (on top of having far too many years experience in this game) I use test speakers, test mics (for comparison) and a whole collection of other mics to compare them with. I look at and compare performance using distortion meters, a range of specialist sig-gens and oscilloscopes. We also have sessions on the go and can use our little ears to compare some newcomer to the established 'players.' I can compare some new LDC mic with a 414 or an M149 and hear in the mix if they are all they claim to be.

Kaw-Liga's method of just going to someone with a range of mics and trying everything out and talking to to people who use these things at the rock face makes more sense.


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John Willett
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Re: How do you try out a mic? It's just not possible. new [Re: The Red Bladder]
      #990169 - 29/05/12 10:17 AM
Quote The Red Bladder:

Quote Kaw-Liga:

Book a studio session where they have lots of mics (check the studio homepage) and spend the first hour(s) finding the mic that suits your needs the best. I spent three hours doing that on Saturday. It was rewarding.




Perhaps the most intelligent comment here!

Firstly, on the subject of delivery, the OP is obviously not a company. He is not able to have somebody in during the day, to accept deliveries. Delivery companies cannot guarantee delivery at a certain time or even on the particular day. Some of the more foolish punters imagine that somehow the UPS (or whoever) guy can shoot up from between the flowerpots at 1735pm and that they have the right to be rude to them at 1745pm. They are not bag-boys at Walmart, but geared to supplying shops and offices that are manned from 9am to 5pm. (The worst are definitely people who order building supplies, but are not builders, but that is another can of worms.)

To the OP - you are not a company, so I would follow John Willett's advice and go to somebody who is.

But testing microphones requires skill, experience and time. No punter is going to be able to test a mic in a week, using just their DAW and a Focusrite preamp! Sometimes, a good or bad mic only reveals itself in mixing or even in mastering. That crystal clear budget job that was so impressive during the session, may be the reason why the final eq in mastering sounds edgy and wrong. That hi-hat mic may be the reason the drums sound distorted and the image is pants on the final mix. Shouting 'One - Two - One - Two!' into a mic, or even recording your favourite singer into it, will tell you very little. Weeks, months, or even years of use will tell you what it is good at and what it is not so good at.

That 'bright' condenser mic that sounds so clear at first, may reveal a nasty side when you pull up the highs on a really good analogue EQ. It may be OK in one room, but useless in many others, because of the off-axis response being uneven. Over many years, studios gravitate towards certain mics for certain uses. They do this, not because the owner feels the need to spend £2,000 on a Neumann, but because they work on vocals, when others do not.

I test mics on occasions and (on top of having far too many years experience in this game) I use test speakers, test mics (for comparison) and a whole collection of other mics to compare them with. I look at and compare performance using distortion meters, a range of specialist sig-gens and oscilloscopes. We also have sessions on the go and can use our little ears to compare some newcomer to the established 'players.' I can compare some new LDC mic with a 414 or an M149 and hear in the mix if they are all they claim to be.

Kaw-Liga's method of just going to someone with a range of mics and trying everything out and talking to to people who use these things at the rock face makes more sense.




Yes, this is very sensible; but booking a studio for a few hours will not necessarily be cheap.

A good dealer (like KMR or Funky Junk) will always be ready to help and good manufacturers will have loan mics available.

I am now the UK distributor for mikrotech Gefell and have a number of demo mics on hand. I recently sent a pair over to Funky Junk and another is on loan to a dealer down on the south coast for evaluation.

Many of the top microphone manufacturers / distributors have a similar arrangement that they will loan microphones to a dealer for demonstration purposes.

So if you want to try anything out, all you need is a sensible list of what you would like to try and the dealer should be able to help - OK, he will probably want to debit a credit card and refund on return as security, but it should all easily be possible.

--------------------
John - Sound-Link ProAudio
President - Federation Internationale des Chasseurs de Sons


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Ariosto



Joined: 04/05/08
Posts: 304
Re: How do you try out a mic? It's just not possible. new [Re: Ariosto]
      #990276 - 29/05/12 07:12 PM
Just to clarify - the UPS guy was about 36 hours late and came the next day AFTER the day the mic was down for delivery and tracked as such. I did wait in all day and there was no way I would wait in for a second day. He turned up late on the second day and as it happened I was in. No point in taking the mic as the arrangements I had made to try it out with others had been lost.

I find mics difficult because I record classical music - and I have tried out several mics in studios over several days when I've booked them for recording sessions. These mics are still on my list and range from ribbons to condensors.

I will go into KMR at some point and see what they say and can offer me. I hope it will be in the not too distant future and certainly this year. I may suddenly have some free time and will use it for mics if possible.

I'm really after clean accurate mics that are truthful and at the same time good for piano and strings.


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Persuazion



Joined: 29/10/05
Posts: 1627
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Re: How do you try out a mic? It's just not possible. new [Re: Ariosto]
      #990309 - 30/05/12 12:15 AM
Quote Ariosto:

Just to clarify - the UPS guy was about 36 hours late and came the next day AFTER the day the mic was down for delivery and tracked as such. I did wait in all day and there was no way I would wait in for a second day. He turned up late on the second day and as it happened I was in. No point in taking the mic as the arrangements I had made to try it out with others had been lost.

I find mics difficult because I record classical music - and I have tried out several mics in studios over several days when I've booked them for recording sessions. These mics are still on my list and range from ribbons to condensors.

I will go into KMR at some point and see what they say and can offer me. I hope it will be in the not too distant future and certainly this year. I may suddenly have some free time and will use it for mics if possible.

I'm really after clean accurate mics that are truthful and at the same time good for piano and strings.




Fair enough. Clean and accurate wouldn't be the Voodoo you were originally looking at. Clean and accurate, for me, puts me in mind of the AKG 414. In fact, i find them a little too clean and accurate. Certainly no stranger to piano and strings.

Good luck!

--------------------
http://www.loverslanestudios.co.uk


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Ariosto



Joined: 04/05/08
Posts: 304
Re: How do you try out a mic? It's just not possible. new [Re: Persuazion]
      #990877 - 01/06/12 07:07 PM
Quote Persuazion:

Quote Ariosto:

Just to clarify - the UPS guy was about 36 hours late and came the next day AFTER the day the mic was down for delivery and tracked as such. I did wait in all day and there was no way I would wait in for a second day. He turned up late on the second day and as it happened I was in. No point in taking the mic as the arrangements I had made to try it out with others had been lost.

I find mics difficult because I record classical music - and I have tried out several mics in studios over several days when I've booked them for recording sessions. These mics are still on my list and range from ribbons to condensors.

I will go into KMR at some point and see what they say and can offer me. I hope it will be in the not too distant future and certainly this year. I may suddenly have some free time and will use it for mics if possible.

I'm really after clean accurate mics that are truthful and at the same time good for piano and strings.




Fair enough. Clean and accurate wouldn't be the Voodoo you were originally looking at. Clean and accurate, for me, puts me in mind of the AKG 414. In fact, i find them a little too clean and accurate. Certainly no stranger to piano and strings.

Good luck!




Thanks!

What do people generally think of the AKG C 414 XLS ? Strangely enough I've come full circle and I thinking of getting one.


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John Willett
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Re: How do you try out a mic? It's just not possible. new [Re: Persuazion]
      #990926 - 02/06/12 09:26 AM
Quote Persuazion:

Clean and accurate wouldn't be the Voodoo you were originally looking at. Clean and accurate, for me, puts me in mind of the AKG 414. In fact, i find them a little too clean and accurate. Certainly no stranger to piano and strings.





Personally I do not like the AKG C414 for piano.

For clean and accurate I would look at:-
Sennheiser MKH 20 or MKH 8020
Neumann KM 131 or KM 131-A (or the KM 183 or 183-A if you want it brighter).
The Schoeps and DPA omnis are also good as are the Gefell M296 and M221.

--------------------
John - Sound-Link ProAudio
President - Federation Internationale des Chasseurs de Sons


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Ariosto



Joined: 04/05/08
Posts: 304
Re: How do you try out a mic? It's just not possible. new [Re: John Willett]
      #990943 - 02/06/12 11:46 AM
Quote John Willett:

Quote Persuazion:

Clean and accurate wouldn't be the Voodoo you were originally looking at. Clean and accurate, for me, puts me in mind of the AKG 414. In fact, i find them a little too clean and accurate. Certainly no stranger to piano and strings.





Personally I do not like the AKG C414 for piano.

For clean and accurate I would look at:-
Sennheiser MKH 20 or MKH 8020
Neumann KM 131 or KM 131-A (or the KM 183 or 183-A if you want it brighter).
The Schoeps and DPA omnis are also good as are the Gefell M296 and M221.




Thanks for the info John. The Sennheisers are pretty expensive and I have used the Neumann's before (183's/184's), and whilst they are OK they are maybe not the sound I am looking for. I've looked at Schoep's and DPA (which are also recommended by a friend of mine who records a lot professionally) but they are expensive too. I have no idea how the Gefell would sound on strings or piano although I know they are supposed to be OK.

Many years ago the old AKG C414's were used by the BBC and I was recorded on a daily basis with these mics and found them OK for strings, but they have gone through some changes since the mid 1970's. The Coles ribbon was very fine too, but I'm moving away from ribbons somewhat now, as they are a bit too delicate for my use and I want something a bit tougher.


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Ariosto



Joined: 04/05/08
Posts: 304
Re: How do you try out a mic? It's just not possible. new [Re: Ariosto]
      #991072 - 03/06/12 08:37 AM
Oh, I know this is getting tedious for you all - and for me especially - but I've been looking at the Royer R101. OK, I know it's a ribbon, but apparently it's a slightly tougher one - and I'm hearing it may be pretty good, although not quite as good as the R121, its earlier (and more expensive) model.

One concern I have is that the output will not be enough for my DAV BG1 pre-amp? They also say it needs an imput (load?) impedance on the pre of at least 1500 Ohms, and I'm not sure what the DAV BG1 is.

Edited by Ariosto (03/06/12 08:40 AM)


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Ariosto



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Re: How do you try out a mic? It's just not possible. new [Re: Ariosto]
      #992051 - 09/06/12 10:43 AM
I have no problems in reccommending Funk-Junk in Hornsey Road, North London, since they have given ne excellent advice and service, allowing me to try several mics and then sending me the wav files to listen again at home. I also have some on trial at home, for a few days. Excellent service from real professionals and especially Josh who I have been dealing with. I hardly need say that I have no connection with this company, but have just been impressed with their service.

I would also like to thank John Willett for his help and advice, and his reccomendation of the Gefell M300 cardoid mics which I thought blew all of the other mics in that near price range out of the room. They would be my choice for instance over the Neumann 184's and if I'm correct may be a bit cheaper?

I'm hoping next week may be the time that I shell out some cash at Funky when I try one or two more mics. (I am of course looking for mic(s) that work well with both piano and strings and in classical chamber music context, so my needs are in a certain direction! I doubt that I will ever record drums, but you never know, friends who are jazz musicians might involve me one day!)


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moo the magic cow



Joined: 25/10/06
Posts: 1147
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Re: How do you try out a mic? It's just not possible. new [Re: Rhetro]
      #1044382 - 21/04/13 09:03 PM
Quote Rhetro:

Yeah, a long way from Texas as well!

Nice to know that I can at least send it back if I don't like it.




Rock N Roll Rentals, Austin TX. At Oltorf @ Lamar. Won't mail it to you, require a lot of information to rent, not unlike furniture rental companies. Stellar rental prices, loads of gear.

--------------------
gentle robot - chapel hill rock band


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Mike Senior
SOS Mix Specialist


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Re: How do you try out a mic? It's just not possible. new [Re: narcoman]
      #1044410 - 22/04/13 05:49 AM
Quote narcoman:

remember; NOBODY responds to a demand. Moan sympathetically with the seller ABOUT UPS.




With a bit of extrapolation, this is probably one of the wisest things I've read on this forum for a while.

--------------------
Recording Secrets for the Small Studio
Mixing Secrets for the Small Studio.


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Jorge
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Re: How do you try out a mic? It's just not possible. new [Re: Ariosto]
      #1044575 - 23/04/13 02:01 AM
I have always had trouble hearing a mic live and guessing how it would sound in a recorded mix. Has anyone tried out mics in a store by recording the test singing dry off the preamp for all the mics on your list, taking the recordings home and comparing all the tests in your studio?


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