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Good Budget Matched Condensor Pair Mics?

Drewboy

Member
Messages
646
Hey Gang, Im sure this was asked before, just wondering if they are any good matched pair condensor mics out there that are price friendly, Im not doing anything more serious than laying ideas down and basic band demo's on my Mac/Presonus/Logic Rig, so I really dont want throw a bunch of stamps down on mics. Just need them for basic drum OH mics and if they multipurpose as well, super. Also any suggestions on a good vocal condensor not very expensive as well would be appreciated. Thanks, take care.
 

loudboy

Member
Messages
27,346
Unless you're recording classical music, you shouldn't pay extra for a matched pair.

That said, look for some Oktava MK-012s.
 

Scott Whigham

Member
Messages
3,530
Unless you're recording classical music, you shouldn't pay extra for a matched pair.

That said, look for some Oktava MK-012s.
While I think the Oktava MK-012s are a good suggestion, I disagree with the idea that you shouldn't get a matched pair unless you are recording classical music. It's very common to use stereo techniques like ORTF, X-Y, and NOS for recording any acoustic instruments (guitar, piano, cello, etc). In those instances, part of the foundation of those techniques is built on the microphones being matched. It's not a requirement but you'll potentially spend a lot more time dialing in the right position if they aren't matched.

If you're going to get a pair, I suggest you get a matched pair. You'll save yourself that extra 5-10 minutes per session that way.
 

Scott Whigham

Member
Messages
3,530
There are lots of good "budget" mics - but what's "budget" to you? How much total are we talking? There's a difference in the suggestions you'll get if you say "I want to spend about $100" vs. "I want to keep it under $500".
 

scredly

Member
Messages
230
I think a pair of MXL 603's w/ shockmounts goes $199. A serviceable mic that you can have modified later to improve its performance.
 

rob2001

Member
Messages
16,939
I've had a pair (not sure if they are matched) of Studio Projects B-1 for a while and they've served me well. They do have a sheen in the upper Q's but after getting to know how they are I can deal with it in the mix. I think I paid about $175.00 for the pair 5 years ago.
 

Snap

Member
Messages
390
They're not matched, but I've gotten a lot of good use out of the MXL 991's.
Quite affordable, and they sound pretty decent.

If you're looking to spend more then try Shure SM81's (also normally not matched, but they still sound good).
Or you can go for matched AKG 451's or AKG 414's (much more pricey but excellent mic's).
 

WKG

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
496
I had a pair of SP C4's for awhile and they were really good mics, fairly closely matched and came with omni capsules. If you decide on SM81's pay attention to them and test them if you can. I had a few move through a set that while they still sounded good were much older and didn't match well in output and were a few dbs off. I could still match them but had to spend time making corrections.
 

Drewboy

Member
Messages
646
Hey guys, thanks a bunch. I wouldnt wanna spend more than 300 I suppose for a matched pair. Their main purpose will be OH Drum Mics, but like I said, if they can do more, great. I mainly do demos for cover bands and lay original ideas down with my power trio. I just want that big drum sound I guess. And can anyone recommend a good vocal mic for recording too, at about the 300 dollar range as well? I was looking into the Rode NT1 or 2, anyone have experience with these? Thanks again!
 

sodapopinski

Member
Messages
3,385
check out the Sterling Audio ST31, i use 2 of them for live drums and they sound great. plus they're only $99.
 

Nelson89

Member
Messages
3,608
I use NT5s as overheads, you can gt a matched pair pretty cheap sometimes, I got mine for like $400AUD couple of years back new on eBay, they'd probably go cheaper in the used market.

NT1a and NT2a...the 1 is a pretty good mic, as I've found with most rodes, you gotta play with it a little differently, if you give it a little more space than normal, you can achieve quite a decent sound, if you get too close it can become a big harsh on the top end, my favorite uses for it are for soft vocals, drum room or acoustic guitar, but at the end of the day, the NT1a is really their mic for the real budget contious people, so some of it's short comings are because it's built to a smaller price. The NT2a is a FAR better mic, and if you were looking between the two I'd spend the extra on the 2. Essentially it uses a different capsule to the NT1a, the whole frequency range is a bit smoother and you can switch it between cardioid, fig 8 or omni, so not only is it a better sounding mic, it's much more versatile as well. To finish I'll probably mention that Rodes customer service is second to none down here in Australia, so I'm pretty sure if something went wrong, they'd help you fix it ASAP.
 

disfrontman

Member
Messages
198
+1 on the NT-5s. In the States I bought a pair from Music Center in Kenosha, WI. I got a great deal as a former employee, but if you price them out online and then give the MC guys a call, I think you will find them "receptive" to a deal to get your business.

FWIW, when I worked at a Sam Ash in suburban Chicago I would still buy my own personal gear from Music Center in Kenosha. The "nice guy" discount they gave me was better than my own "employee" discount @ Sam Ash. Go figure.
 

rokpunk

Member
Messages
1,819
when it comes to high end mics, i'd say $500 is about an "average" cost for a pencil-type condenser microphone. sure, there are cheaper, but i've yet to find a sub $500 mic that i can deal with the sound of. that being said, for just about $500/ea (a tad lower, in fact) you can get the new Shure Beta 181, and choose from 4 different capsules for it. it's a nice sounding mic for the price. the mic that just can't be beat, though, is the AKG 460 series. keep an eye out for them used on eBay. if you can find one for under $350-$400, i highly suggest buying it and keeping your eyes out for a second one!
 

Luke V

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
2,269
Check out AT Pro 37r they are nice overheads. I think you can get them for about $110-$115 a piece.
 

KidArchitect

Member
Messages
405
012s

Then get Joly to mod them

Or JJ Audio

I don't think matched is super important for budget mics (even more so if you're gonna get them modded) unless it's really intricate recordings in a really fantastic room with really amazing pre's. In which case you're probably using something closer to MC930s, KM84s, etc.

I definitely enjoy using my modded 012s.
 

headstack

Member
Messages
195
For vocal mics in your suggested budget, check out the ADK Vienna for a brighter LDC or the Hamburg for a rounder tone.

The LE are one removed from the latest (MK8) and can be had in the $250-300 range.

I picked up a pair of super clean used Hamburgs for $500 recently and with those and one more good LDC you could do the Andy Johns three mic technique for your BIG drums, and have a pair of OH for standard drum micing, plus you would have a matched pair of LDCs and another flavor from the third mic.

This also hooks you up nicely, for acoustic guitars, pianos, room mics etc.

for a newer engineer that is not independently wealthy from a lottery win or being a Rothchild, getting a few mics that can do multiple duty quite well is more useful than a few one trick ponies.

The other mic that is might cool for the money, are the Cascade Ribbon Series.

The Fathead or fathead II are great for amps, horns, some acoustic stuff when you want to mellow it out a bit, and their X-15 Stereo Ribbon mic is actually shockingly decent.

Especially when you can afford to drop the extra bucks for one with Lundahl transformers and a trip to Oktavamod for the 1.8 mil ribbons in place of the 6 mil ones.

Check out some of these miss suggested via shoetube or from manufacturers sound clips, keep the ones you like in the brain pan memory plant and look for clean used ones.

Do your best to audition them before you buy if it's from an individual.
 




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