Blue microphones: Baby Bottle vs Bluebird vs Spark

Discussion in 'Recording/Live Sound' started by radtone, Mar 4, 2011.

  1. radtone

    radtone Member

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    I've been very interested in Blue Microphones for quite a while now and I'm in the process of looking for an affordable home studio condenser mic. Does anyone happen to own/record or compared any of these three mics? Any thoughts on them? THANKS!
     
  2. buddaman71

    buddaman71 Student of Life Silver Supporting Member

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    I've recorded many vocals and acoustic guitars with my Baby Bottle over the years and think it's a fantastic mic.
     
  3. vashuba

    vashuba Member

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    i have a bluebird. Like it alot. recorded all my vocal tracks with it. run it through an apogee ONE. Check my link for sound clips
     
  4. radtone

    radtone Member

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    Thanks for the quick reply! That is the model I've been kinda leaning toward for the style of recording I do the most.
     
  5. radtone

    radtone Member

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    Vox sound nice and clear!
     
  6. bronco1891

    bronco1891 Member

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    i would go for the bluebird! i love mine and i am going to pick up another
     
  7. harpinon

    harpinon Gold Supporting Member

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    The bluebird IS NOT application sensitive. The baby bottle has its own sound and is considered by many pro's to be superior for SOME applications.
    The spark has some good reviews and some that claim it to be a mere toy. I saw it and it certainly did look like a toy. So much I didn't even bother trying it.
    I have a bluebird and I seriously doubt it would be better.

    The BB can be used on vocals, guitar cabs, overheads, acoustics and even mic'ing drums. A very good mic that everyone should have one of in the locker.
     
  8. jmoose

    jmoose Supporting Member

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    Truth!

    I have a pair of Baby Bottles with serial numbers in the low double digits. Love 'em for some things. When they work their awesomely great. When they don't work they're pretty freakin' terrible. There's a big midrange push, almost a frown curve with rolled off top and bottom... very much like a ribbon mic.

    Great for high gain distorto guitar, great for brass and woodwinds... terrible drum overhead. Vocals? Ehhh... sometimes. Dies more often then it lives. Not a "general purpose utility" mic by any stretch.

    I haven't tried the Spark or Bluebird though I have tried and own some of their other mics. The Dragonflys are pretty killer, very open and airy like a nice old brass capsule 414 or C12. My pair sees plenty of use...
     
  9. Curt

    Curt Member

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    I have Spark and a Baby Bottle.
    In almost all the applications I've used them, I preferred the Spark.
    It's far from a toy....and I don't buy or not buy microphones based on their looks.
     
  10. LSchefman

    LSchefman Supporting Member

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    The Bluebird is a great little general purpose mic that sounds excellent on a lot of things, certainly way beyond its price. It's a lot like the Dragonfly in that it is very versatile. I've got a pair of them. I use them where others might use an SDC, though I've used them on guitar cabs and even vocals to good effect.

    As others have pointed out, the baby bottle is a more specialized mic, and it either works very well, or doesn't work at all, on a given source.

    I have no experience with the Spark, though I'll probably buy one to at least give it a shot, as I like Blue's products a lot, and at that price, it's not in me to simply dismiss it without trying it out, though it really IS weird looking.
     
  11. Bassomatic

    Bassomatic Supporting Member

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    My Baby Bottle was also in first few months of their entry into the market. Agreed that it was just the thing, with its odd curve, for certain sources. I even got a vocal track that I liked out of it once (my voice in a certain range).

    That said, I'm happier with the Blue Bird overall, especially in terms of flexibility. Definitely a very nice mic for certain voices/applications. I've also liked it on some percussion tracks. Hard to believe for the dough. It's supposed to be good on guitar. Will reserve judgment until I try it, of course.

    That said, major gripe is that cool retro pop filter, which is doesn't work, and a shock mount which is prone to slipping (you've gotta really crank that thumbscrew thing and it seems it'll strip out sooner or later). I'd have gladly shelled out a few more bucks for accessories that worked. Happily, I already have good pop filters, and the shock mount is replaceable.

    Haven't tried the Spark.
     
  12. radtone

    radtone Member

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    Got the Spark a couple days ago and ran a few vocal tests the day I got it. Sounded pretty great, but I haven't done a 'real' test with it yet. The build quality on this is great considering how inexpensive they are. I'm thinking about getting the Baby Bottle as a compliment to it, as they seem to have different voicings.
     
  13. radtone

    radtone Member

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    I def agree about the pop filter being kinda useless.... That was the only potential problem I noticed with the Spark... I've got other that I'll be using. I read about others installing another rubber washer in the thumbscrew clamp to remedy the stripping. Seems like that would work well... I didn't have a problem with the shock mount, so maybe Blue fixed the problem...?
     
  14. LSchefman

    LSchefman Supporting Member

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    When I put up a Bluebird, I don't use their pop filter; it's really more of a spit filter than anything else. It hasn't got enough mesh to prevent a pop.

    I also don't use their shock mount; most Blue shockmounts have been a pain in the rear. So for those mics, I use an inexpensive aftermarket shock mount made by Sabra-som that suspends the mic from elastic bands, has a quick-release mount, and works great.

    The one that Blue supplies for the Mouse and the Kiwi has the old-fashioned spring clips that slide onto the mic with a little felt padding, and unless you're very, very careful, it's easy to damage the finish of the mic (I'm careful, but it's silly-difficult to use). And of course, the thumbscrew thing is as much of a pain as their other thumbscrews. Unfortunately the Sabra-som shock is a bit too small for these mics.

    The Dragonfly and the Blueberry use an even weirder setup, that looks cool and is less bulky and easier to position into a tight spot, but isn't much of an improvement in ease of use. Same thumbscrew, too.

    However, I really like Blue's microphones, top to bottom of the line. I've used the Bottle, and wow, what a great mic, though for TV commercial work, I really don't need a vocal mic of that caliber. If I was making records, though...
     
  15. Bassomatic

    Bassomatic Supporting Member

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    Les- did you prefer the Bottle to the Mouse for vocals? I'm thinking of that particular male artist you produced some years back, with the stellar mix I heard.
     
  16. LSchefman

    LSchefman Supporting Member

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    Thanks for the compliment Basso; I used a Mouse for that entire record. It's my number one mic for a lot of sources.

    I've used a big Bottle on tracks made at other studios, but I don't own one. I should have brought my Mouse, put the capsule that matches it on the Bottle, and compared them, but I didn't think to do it.

    And since we used a different capsule, I can't really make a comparison.
     
  17. coreybox

    coreybox Supporting Member

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    Les,

    Do you know what bottle capsule matches the one on the mouse?

    thanks,
    Corey
     
  18. LSchefman

    LSchefman Supporting Member

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    >>Les,

    Do you know what bottle capsule matches the one on the mouse?<<

    Since I couldn't recall the capsule I was originally told matched (I thought it was either the B0 or 6), I just did a search, and found some info that says it isn't exactly like any of the Bottle capsules.

    Evidently, it's a tunable capsule, and none of the B capsules are an exact match.

    So my big test wasn't gonna come off anyway. Go figure.
     

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