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Advice on starter gear for vocals

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Re: Advice on starter gear for vocals

Postby cyrano.mac » Mon Jun 01, 2020 11:03 am

Mike Stranks wrote:BUT I do see a fair few of the mics from this package popping-up on EBay... Perhaps an indication of 'the weakest link'...?

OR...

These are selling in numbers and people believe the hype and move on to a "better" mic?

I've only seen the guts of one these. Typical 797 Audio stuff. Solid. If you have a good one, quite a decent mic. Knowing Focusrite support, they wouldn't risk selling something with lots of bad parts. But wadda I know? :shifty:

MXL has been doing this same thing for a long time. An MXL 2006 is still a wanted item. I kinda like the MXL mics I came across.
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Re: Advice on starter gear for vocals

Postby James Perrett » Mon Jun 01, 2020 2:02 pm

cyrano.mac wrote:Typical 797 Audio stuff. Solid. If you have a good one, quite a decent mic.

The problem with these budget LDC's is that they aren't always very consistent. Unless Focusrite are unpacking and checking every individual microphone you could easily end up with something that isn't as good as it should be. I presume that's why you say "If you have a good one".
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Re: Advice on starter gear for vocals

Postby ef37a » Mon Jun 01, 2020 5:42 pm

James Perrett wrote:
cyrano.mac wrote:Typical 797 Audio stuff. Solid. If you have a good one, quite a decent mic.

The problem with these budget LDC's is that they aren't always very consistent. Unless Focusrite are unpacking and checking every individual microphone you could easily end up with something that isn't as good as it should be. I presume that's why you say "If you have a good one".

This is also a problem with the very cheap 'Neewer/BM-800' microphones. I have been lucky and had two quite good ones. They are remarkably well made for the money and my two had a noise performance comparable to my AKG P150s. However there have been a lot of stories on forums of people getting samples that were noisy, low output and sometimes did not work at all.

They are however a decent alternative to the cheaper USB mics? The supplied cable means they will work straight into a 3.5mm laptop jack and give (given a good 'un!) very acceptable results for say podcasting. With proper AI and phantom power they can be used with a conventional XLR mic cable.

They are actually a bit of a cheat since the capsule is not that of an 'LDC' but is barely half an inch in diameter...But, twenty quid! "We" are very lucky with the gear available today and the amazing quality it can produce (I come from Ferrographs and DP4s!) but, 'Caveat bloody Emptor'!

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Re: Advice on starter gear for vocals

Postby CS70 » Mon Jun 01, 2020 9:09 pm

Mike Stranks wrote:Just a comment on the Focusrite 'package'...

I've never used one; never even seen one...

... BUT I do see a fair few of the mics from this package popping-up on EBay... Perhaps an indication of 'the weakest link'...?

I too would say it's because they probably sell in much higher numbers than anything else, and people then fell they need to "upgrade". Same reason for which there would be more Citroen than Ferrari in used car market?

I really like the AT2020 used properly in a good room, but having and using ISA preamps, I know Focusrite can do great kit.

As for consistency, I do not know and James can be right, but a company as Focusrite, which has built its experience in creating excellent analogue devices, should know a thing or two on quality control.. and also, perhaps, care a little bit more about it even for entry level gear than other companies starting with B...

So I would expect them to actually open or otherwise inspect the mics? The volumes they sell would (could) surely make possible, in cost amortization terms, to have a tech or two examining solderings or other weak spots and run a test or two on each item..

Focusrite just doesn't seem to be a company praying on its own brand... but of course I might be wrong.
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Re: Advice on starter gear for vocals

Postby cyrano.mac » Tue Jun 02, 2020 7:18 pm

James Perrett wrote:
cyrano.mac wrote:Typical 797 Audio stuff. Solid. If you have a good one, quite a decent mic.

The problem with these budget LDC's is that they aren't always very consistent. Unless Focusrite are unpacking and checking every individual microphone you could easily end up with something that isn't as good as it should be. I presume that's why you say "If you have a good one".

Yep. It all depends on the service...

To be fair, I buy stuff in China. Never had problems in the end. A few items were broken, some were incomprehensible. Every time got a working one in return, or a refund. Even for a 5 € gadget.

But I also know the stories. A friend bought an electric bike. That was good, so he bought another one. Expensive, even for China. Never got it to work. It's still being studied by the local tech school; a year after arriving...

Mics aren't very different from lawn mowers, I'm afraid :D
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