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Large diaphragm mic for vocals.

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Large diaphragm mic for vocals.

Postby Arpangel » Sat May 15, 2021 7:34 am

How many times have we seen posts like this? and I’m here, asking the same question, simply because I still don’t have a large diaphragm condenser in my draw.
Yesterday was very frustrating, some of you know my music, it’s all over the place regarding "technical quality" it’s not really an issue, but creatively, I’m not getting the results I need, mostly, from the mic’s I have.
Yesterday I tried a Beyer M201, it wasn’t bad, it had a very intimate, breathy, sound, that picked up all my mouth noises, which is what I’m after, but it’s not very sensitive, and I needed massive amounts of gain to get a good sound about a foot away from the mic, it’s a dynamic, that’s to be expected, and my voice, isn’t drums or a trumpet, it’s very quiet, and the gain level started to make background noise a bit unacceptable.
I tried an SM58/57, awful, terrible, bad sound for my voice, and gain problems too.
I’m starting to think an LDC might be a better choice all round, if I was to find the right one, my voice is very quiet, breathy, and I like to be close to the mic, I know it’s difficult making recommendations, but any suggestions as to the right ball-park would be helpful, I need it to be good quality when needed, most of my stuff is low-fi, but I need the flexibility to be clean when I need it.
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That would be an ecumenical matter.

Re: Large diaphragm mic for vocals.

Postby Wonks » Sat May 15, 2021 7:57 am

So, standard reply no.1 - what's the budget?
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Re: Large diaphragm mic for vocals.

Postby Kwackman » Sat May 15, 2021 8:24 am

Arpangel wrote:Yesterday I tried a Beyer M201, it wasn’t bad, it had a very intimate, breathy, sound, that picked up all my mouth noises, which is what I’m after, but it’s not very sensitive, and I needed massive amounts of gain to get a good sound about a foot away from the mic, it’s a dynamic, that’s to be expected, and my voice, isn’t drums or a trumpet, it’s very quiet, and the gain level started to make background noise a bit unacceptable

Move the 201 closer, but off axis a bit to avoid plosives?
Also, if you don't have one, try a good quality wind shield with the 201.
They don't list one, but maybe Rycote could provide one?
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Re: Large diaphragm mic for vocals.

Postby shufflebeat » Sat May 15, 2021 8:30 am

I've been eyeing up a Beyer m88 for some time now but haven't really been able to justify it to myself. The "research" I've done would suggest it's worth considering.

Or, if you like the sound of the m201, just put a Fethead or Martiaudio inline preamp on it.

I've used the basic foam-dom that came with the m201 for vocals and the loss of quality has not been the main limiting factor.
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Re: Large diaphragm mic for vocals.

Postby Kwackman » Sat May 15, 2021 10:43 am

shufflebeat wrote:I've used the basic foam-dom that came with the m201 for vocals and the loss of quality has not been the main limiting factor.
Would it be yellow by any chance?
I got mine 2nd hand many years ago, it came with a large yellow windshield.
My previous employer had several M201s, and they also had these yellow ones.
Is it a M201 "thing"?

(Apologies to Arp for the meander from topic)
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Re: Large diaphragm mic for vocals.

Postby Hugh Robjohns » Sat May 15, 2021 10:44 am

Haven't you got an MKH40? I'd use that. Plenty of output level, so gain wont be an issue. And if it was good enough for Enya.... ;-)
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Re: Large diaphragm mic for vocals.

Postby Bob Bickerton » Sat May 15, 2021 11:07 am

The answer is - it depends!

Is it just for your voice? In which case find a mic that suits your voice the best. Do you play as you sing? Multi-pattern, including figure of eight could be good. Budget (as has been said).

M201 can work well, I’d tend to eat it a little more than you suggest and use its bespoke pop sock. MKH40 - why not? I’ve had good results with MKH8040 and 8050s.

First vocal mic out of locker for me at the moment (could be different tomorrow) - UMT 70S - but it all ‘depends’.....

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Re: Large diaphragm mic for vocals.

Postby Mike Stranks » Sat May 15, 2021 11:12 am

Budget is the crucial factor of course... along with the match between your voice and any mics characteristics.

If you like the sound of the 201 but the gain issue is the stumbling-block then get an in-line preamp like a Fethead or Cloudlifter.

I don't have a lot of experience of decent LDcs, but I do like the Rode NT1 - a classy mic that punches way above its weight.
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Re: Large diaphragm mic for vocals.

Postby shufflebeat » Sat May 15, 2021 11:23 am

Kwackman wrote:
shufflebeat wrote:I've used the basic foam-dom that came with the m201 for vocals and the loss of quality has not been the main limiting factor.
Would it be yellow by any chance?
I got mine 2nd hand many years ago, it came with a large yellow windshield.
My previous employer had several M201s, and they also had these yellow ones.
Is it a M201 "thing"?

(Apologies to Arp for the meander from topic)

I have two, one inoperative and both have cute little foamdoms in funereal black.

Not all of us can carry off such an ostentatious fashion statement like you, Kwack.
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Re: Large diaphragm mic for vocals.

Postby shufflebeat » Sat May 15, 2021 11:26 am

Mike Stranks wrote:I don't have a lot of experience of decent LDcs, but I do like the Rode NT1 - a classy mic that punches way above its weight.

Are you referring to the original nt1 Mike? I hear it's a very different animal to the nt1a.

I have an nt2 which, when it sound good it sounds great and is multi-pattern, harder than the m201 but sometimes that's the goal.
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Re: Large diaphragm mic for vocals.

Postby Wonks » Sat May 15, 2021 11:36 am

The current iteration of the NT1, which is different to the earlier NT1, and which itself was different from the original NT1. It has been a much-used descriptor by Røde.
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Re: Large diaphragm mic for vocals.

Postby Tim Gillett » Sat May 15, 2021 11:59 am

Arpangel wrote:Yesterday I tried a Beyer M201, it wasn’t bad, it had a very intimate, breathy, sound, that picked up all my mouth noises ...my voice is very quiet, breathy, and I like to be close to the mic...

A quiet voice can seem breathy, with prominent mouth noises, sometimes overly sibilant simply because the meat in the voice is weak in comparison. If so this is not a mic issue but voice. Singing harmony regularly in a band for some years I learned to strengthen my voice so that it was more full bodied ... relaxed, louder in the vowel sounds but without strain, and things like mouth noises, breath noises seemed to recede by comparison even though they remained at the same level.

Sure the mic needs to be good but it can be a temptation to blame the mic or some other piece of gear for what may also be a voice production issue. I say that having not heard your voice Tony, just speaking generally.

Another thing is that when you perform live at various venues as I have, you often have to sing with whatever mic, system and operator is provided, and to do the best you can with it. I realized that the one thing I could control and hopefully develop was my own singing voice especially as I always carried it with me.

I watch a lot of YT live performances by vocalists and often there are so many other factors involved in the final vocal sound we hear that the exact type of vocal mic (make and model) so long as it's a reasonable one, which it usually is, seems only a small factor.
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Re: Large diaphragm mic for vocals.

Postby Kwackman » Sat May 15, 2021 12:17 pm

Tim Gillett wrote:
Arpangel wrote:Yesterday I tried a Beyer M201, it wasn’t bad, it had a very intimate, breathy, sound, that picked up all my mouth noises ...my voice is very quiet, breathy, and I like to be close to the mic...

A quiet voice can seem breathy, have prominent mouth noises, sometimes overly sibilant simply because the meat in the voice is weak in comparison. If so this is not a mic issue but voice.

You quoted Tony, but missed an important bit out- he's not complaining about his voice quality...

Arpangel wrote:Yesterday I tried a Beyer M201, it wasn’t bad, it had a very intimate, breathy, sound, that picked up all my mouth noises, which is what I’m after
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Re: Large diaphragm mic for vocals.

Postby Tim Gillett » Sat May 15, 2021 12:22 pm

Kwackman wrote:
Tim Gillett wrote:
Arpangel wrote:Yesterday I tried a Beyer M201, it wasn’t bad, it had a very intimate, breathy, sound, that picked up all my mouth noises ...my voice is very quiet, breathy, and I like to be close to the mic...

A quiet voice can seem breathy, have prominent mouth noises, sometimes overly sibilant simply because the meat in the voice is weak in comparison. If so this is not a mic issue but voice.

You quoted Tony, but missed an important bit out- he's not complaining about his voice quality...

Arpangel wrote:Yesterday I tried a Beyer M201, it wasn’t bad, it had a very intimate, breathy, sound, that picked up all my mouth noises, which is what I’m after

Kwackman, Hugh says Tony already has, apparently, an MKH40 and asks why he doesnt try that. I second that.
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Re: Large diaphragm mic for vocals.

Postby shufflebeat » Sat May 15, 2021 1:36 pm

Wonks wrote:It has been a much-used descriptor by Røde.

Great for not avoiding confusion.
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