SM57s suck!!

Discussion in 'Recording/Live Sound' started by Mook, Jun 12, 2006.

  1. Mook

    Mook Senior Member

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    I hate SM57s......I just hate 'em. I think the sound is flat.....lacking harmonic content, plus, I feel they don't capture subtle playing......if you back off on the guitar volume, they just don't capture it. For full blast volume, they are decent, but for capturing sensitive stuff, they don't work in my opinion.....

    So, what can a guitar player use for live (and studio) work??

    I've heard the Sennheiser 421 is good. Ken Fischer suggested an Audio Technics one, but I forgot the model number.

    I don't mind the price.....so, what's a GREAT mic for:

    1) not distoring under high pressure/sound levels
    2) keeping a "natural" sound by not imparting it's own "voice".
    3) being able to capture all the subtleties of playing, such as very light picking or rolling back the guitar volume....


    Thanks for your help!!!

    Mook
     
  2. NuSkoolTone

    NuSkoolTone Member

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    Mook,

    A mic is only as good as the rest of the chain. If you're using a cheap mixer and sound card going in, no matter WHAT you use will probably sound like ass. So what are you using? What style of music are you playing?

    1.) If you're managing to distort a 57, you need to turn it down bro. There is a point past "Letting the tubes work" and just being stupid about volume. A 421 is a great mic, but IME has less high end and mids than a 57 on guitar.

    2.)No matter what mic you use, it will impart a "voice". Choose a flavor you like.

    3.)If you are looking for detail, try a condensor mic. It might end up being a little harsh on the high end though.
     
  3. Greggy

    Greggy Member

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    SM57s are outstanding, 421s are outstanding. I use both. Lots of variables involved between your fingers and your hard disk/tape. What NuSkool said.
     
  4. Antero

    Antero Member

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    Ribbons are badass for guitars. Would hardly call them "uncolored," but it's a GOOD color, karu?

    You could always take a pair of clean condensors and set them up in a room-that-doesn't-suck, turn up and see what happens. Could be cool.
     
  5. loudboy

    loudboy Member

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    Royer R-121.

    I've yet to find anything that captures the true sound of the amp better than this mic.

    Pricey, but I'd have to say it's the single best purchase I've made, as far as studio gear goes.

    Loudboy
     
  6. 6789

    6789 Member

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    For Studio work I use a Studio Projects LSD2 large stereo diaphragm condenser microphone.

    I think it sounds great for everything. Acoustic guitar, vocals, Electric guitar amp, bass guitar amp, drums.

    www.studioprojectsusa.com
     
  7. flicker180

    flicker180 Member

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    akg c414's are awesome also.

    dave
     
  8. 6789

    6789 Member

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    For live, I've seen lots of people starting to use a Senheiser microphone.
    there are two models that look the same. I don't know which one people are using.

    Senheiser e906 and the e609 Silver
     
  9. thesedaze

    thesedaze Member

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    The greatness in the 57's is in their workhorse characteristics, as well as the basic fact that you'll rarely ever have to EQ a 57 on an amp. Any sort of condensor will need some EQ.

    AKG C414's are nice on guitars.
     
  10. jharpersj

    jharpersj Silver Supporting Member

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    My soundguy switched fro 57's to Senheiser e609's the E609's seem to nail the exact sound I hear on stage, me Id go with them
     
  11. 6789

    6789 Member

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    For recording, ever since I started using The Studio Projects stereo mic I previously listed, I rarely have to EQ anything I record.
     
  12. DiazDude

    DiazDude Member

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    Just the simple fact they've been around forever and have been
    used more than most any other mic proves it doesn't suck.:dude
     
  13. Jim Soloway

    Jim Soloway Supporting Member

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    I like the SM57. I'm sure there may be better mics available, expecially when coupled with real engineering expertise, but to a recording hack like me, the 57 is incredibly easy to use and seems to sound good almost regardless of placement or amp type. Given it's hstory, I find it hard to imagine how anyone would claim that it sucks.
     
  14. DANOCASTER

    DANOCASTER Supporting Member

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    A Royer-121 is pretty hard to beat

    But get a good pre or two first. You'll need it for a Royer anyway and then you'll discover that SM57s DO NOT suck:AOK

    If you can't get GREAT guitar sounds w/ a 57, don't blame the mic. It's probably something else
     
  15. Bassomatic

    Bassomatic Silver Supporting Member

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    Tape sucks, too.

    So do hard drives.
     
  16. Unburst

    Unburst Member

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    SM57's are extremely positionally sensitive, they can sound great to awful within an inch of movement.

    Try a Senheisser e906.
     
  17. pbradt

    pbradt Senior Member

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    Uhh, it's the cook, not the kitchen.
     
  18. stratovarius

    stratovarius Supporting Member

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    I don't know what I'm doing, but I get fantastic results with a BLUE Dragonfly. Compared to the Dragonfly, the SM57 sounds like it's losing about half the tone. There are countless examples of great guitar recordings using an SM57, but I don't think one could describe the SM57 as hi fidelity or transparent.
     
  19. Mook

    Mook Senior Member

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    Everywhere I play (and my rhythym guitarist, too, for that matter), the sound guy sticks an SM57 in front of my amp (and his amp....). I don't do the sound....and, it's not my mic or mic positioning.

    But, when I hear the live sound mix, it's terrible. Especially since I control MY volume/distortion with my guitar volume....so, when I roll back the guitar volume, my sound TOTALLY drops out.....so, it doesn't pick up the subtleties. If I play full blast, it's decent, but when I back off the guitar volume, it's a different story.

    Next time I play at a place, I want to be able to give the sound guy MY mic for him to use.....

    Mook
     
  20. Don L

    Don L Member

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    What's the difference between Senheiser e609 and e906?
     

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