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  #1  
Old 03-13-2007, 05:07 PM
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k3ng k3ng is offline
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Default more misc mic matters

Ok, I'm a little tight on budget for my equips, but after much thought I need drum mics.

Firstly I plan on getting a condenser. I only have the cash for 1, so if you could recommend me some lower end condenser mics, preferably more 'popular' brands, since I don't get that many choices round about where I live. Bear in mind I'm only getting 1, if that makes any difference.

But that brings up another issue - would it be better to invest in a really cheap kit mic set, or a single very good condenser or reasonably good condenser?

Sorry about another mic thread, but I'm looking for cheap to cheaper condenser mics... So I can finally record some of my playing.
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Old 03-13-2007, 05:44 PM
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Default Re: more misc mic matters

Well it's probably best to get yourself on nice microphone. A room microphone perhaps, that would pick up the entire kit from a distance, that's an easier solution than close miking and the way it was done. For that purpose you're probably going to want a decent sounding room as well. Let's see what we've got...

Rode NT1

http://www.musiciansbuy.com/rode_nt1...e_nt1akit.html

Rode NT5 Pair

http://www.zzounds.com/item--RODNT5

These are fairly cheapish and good sounding, just for a start. There's no reason why you can't use a pair of microphones either, and the Rode pair are a useful set to have around.

Definitely get quality over quantity every time. There's no point in buying a cheap set of microphones and ending up hating them.
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Old 03-13-2007, 06:55 PM
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Default Re: more misc mic matters

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mediocrefunkybeat View Post
Rode NT1 & Rode NT5 Pair. These are fairly cheapish and good sounding, just for a start. There's no reason why you can't use a pair of microphones either, and the Rode pair are a useful set to have around.
I'll second that.

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Definitely get quality over quantity every time. There's no point in buying a cheap set of microphones and ending up hating them.
Indeed. Lots of cheap, crappy mics means lots of cheap, crappy sounds. Go for a quality condenser overhead mic (like the Rode which MFB suggested) and add a large-membrane dynamic microphone for your kick -- a vocal mic will do in a pinch. As an added bonus you'll have to learn to tune and play the kit with a good dynamic balance.
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Old 03-14-2007, 01:06 AM
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Default Re: more misc mic matters

I agree, focus on one or two mics at a time as you can afford them, rather than buying a bunch of lesser quality. I've never tried Rode out, but I'm happy with the few MXL mics I have. I use my MXL 2001 as a room mic a lot, especially during practices. As the only mic setup, I've found a good spot to place it so that it picks up the majority of my kit well- for demo purposes at least.

If you can only get one for now, definitely pick up a large diaphragm condenser. Get the best one you can afford, and be sure to read as many customer reviews as you can. Also keep in mind with a condenser you will need phantom power and with any mic a preamp. What are you recording to? Your computer? Do you have an audio interface that will accept the proper cable connections? Some things to keep in mind.
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Old 03-14-2007, 04:43 AM
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Default Re: more misc mic matters

Well I'm using my church's sound system so all that phantom power, preamp stuff all taken care of.

The hall is pretty large though, so i don't think room mic would suffice.or would it?

and one more thing...

whats the difference between a unidirectional condenser and an ordinary one?
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Old 03-14-2007, 04:50 AM
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Default Re: more misc mic matters

I know i'll be defamed for typing these words, but ill continue anyway:

Behringer C-2's.

A matched pair runs for 100 australian dollars. You could bargain this down to 75. I use them, they sound fine, i mic aocustic guitars with them, they do not sound tinny. People may refute me, and say they are behringer, but i couldnt be any happier with the money i spent. In fact the stands to hol;d them amounted to the same price.

With a decent mixer, soundcard and preamps they can sound fine. Plus they look cool. And come with a hardcase.
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Old 03-14-2007, 09:17 AM
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Default Re: more misc mic matters

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Originally Posted by k3ng View Post
whats the difference between a unidirectional condenser and an ordinary one?
Well, a unidirectional mic (or cardioid pattern) will pic up audio from one main direction. Think of it kind of like a spotlight. Then you can have say, an omni directional pattern. That will pick up sound equally from all degrees. Think of it kind of like a lantern. There are other mic patterns like figure 8, which picks up sound from opposing sides but kind of cancels out the perpindiculars.

The higher end mics will allow you to select multiple patterns. My LDC is only cardioid, but it still works great as a room mic. Omnis are probably better suited for the role though. I prefer an SDC omni mono overhead for my kit. If you can afford it, get a large diaphragm condenser that will allow you to choose from a few different patterns. You will be able to use it for multiple purposes. Keep that in mind too when you are mic shopping. Think about what else you can use the mic for. A lot of mics are suited for multiple roles. An LDC is great for a lot of things, so it's a perfect choice for a first mic.
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Old 03-17-2007, 07:09 PM
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Default Re: more misc mic matters

Ok some more bits...

I went a little mic shopping and stumbled upon this EXTREEEMELY cheap and most definitely terrible mic... but I thought I'd be good for experimenting.. just like how you buy cheapo guitars for experimenting and then chuck em when you're done..

Anyway, these are less than 20 US dollars each... I'm not Joking. Its RM60 so you go and do the conversion. The bit now isn't bout the mic but rather the cable. I'm used to seeing XLR cables for microphones but this one had a normal instrument jack hole. (that sounded wrong for some reason). Anyway, it's small head instrument jack instead of XLR cable, and I'm wondering how do I connect these to the mixer? If I connect them from jack to XLR would a DI box be required?(I remember something like that is required when changing from instrument jack to XLR cable)

I can't provide any extra info cos It's a weird local brand called YOGA and you won't find it on the net.
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Old 03-18-2007, 01:01 AM
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Default Re: more misc mic matters

A lot of real cheap mics use instrument cables (1/4") instead of XLR (ie. Radio Shack mics). Usually they are unbalanced. Does your mixer have an instrument cable input? Just put it there. You may need a preamp. I have a cheapo mic like this that I really like on my snare. I just plug it into the instrument input on one of my preamps.
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Old 03-18-2007, 05:23 AM
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Default Re: more misc mic matters

there's a small problem... all the wiring done from the mixer is internal and has the inputs at the stage... so unless I've got a reaaally long instrument jack, I need to hook it up to an XLR... any ideas?
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Old 03-18-2007, 05:44 AM
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Default Re: more misc mic matters

K here goes.. LOL mics that use either a 1/4" or 1/8" kinda jacks are unbalanced... And since they are designed for a higher imepedance kinda equipment there will be a level difference.. And those levels are way too low for either a balanced (XLR / TRS) kinda system. And plugging that into a line input unless you have lots of gain on that trim or gain pot you going to have to crank it so high on the fader that you will get noise (hiss or hum) If you want to plug em into a XLR connector on the end of a stage run you should really be using a line matching transformer at the input to that stage run. If you add all that wire to a high impedance circuit you are asking for noise. You could use a DI but I would recommend an active one. Behringer makes a decent one. About 40 bucks. USD. (DI-1000) If you go with using DI boxes they will have other uses down the road. Shure makes the transformers I mentioned. They are about 30 USD. And will only be useful for microphones. If you are looking cheap you could get just a cable adaptor. I would not recommend this route due to cable length, and the mentioned noise.

Hope this help ya out a bit.
Mike
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Old 03-18-2007, 06:16 PM
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Default Re: more misc mic matters

Thanks a big bunch Pearl Player... really good info.. took a while to digest.. but thanks.

I've already got the DI's ... so it shouldn't be a problem. I realise a lot of problems come from microphones that use ordinary instrument jacks instead of XLR types...

how much would a DI box 'cure' the buzzing sound? how significant would it be and would it be enough for a clean recording?
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Old 03-18-2007, 07:04 PM
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Default Re: more misc mic matters

Quote:
Originally Posted by k3ng View Post
Thanks a big bunch Pearl Player... really good info.. took a while to digest.. but thanks.

I've already got the DI's ... so it shouldn't be a problem. I realise a lot of problems come from microphones that use ordinary instrument jacks instead of XLR types...

how much would a DI box 'cure' the buzzing sound? how significant would it be and would it be enough for a clean recording?
Well Im am going to have to make a couple of assumptions here.. LOL When you say buzz. Im not sure if you mean HUM caused by AC line power bleeding into the cabling.. That the the reason that the 3 wire low impedance wiring scheme was invented. Most consoles have a filter switch on the channel strip... It may be called a high pass or low cut. That is typically around 80hz at the half power point, So for 60hz based mains (usa canada) pretty much useless for getting rid of the hum. For 50hz based main power you may get a little help. A lot depends on where this hum is getting into the system. Notice I am using the term hum. Buzz to me means something a little different. Now if the noise is getting into the line before the DI since most DI's dont have this filtering. Well the DI will pass that hum into the balanced circuit. And yes just because you are using a balanced circuit does not mean it may be totally free of hum. Most hum is induced but extension cords. So a couple of good practices may help with that. Mic cables should be kept away from AC line cables. Minimum of 1 foot so dont make it neat by bundling AC and signal cables together. Also if you have to cross an AC line use right angles. These are common practices but as with anything in the sound biz may not solve every situation.

Cheap mics for recording may work may not work. Depends on the mics. I have heard some decent recordings done with cheap mics. The problem is that sometimes cheap mics dont have the dynamic range to handle close micing of a kit. There are tons of micing schemes that may help with that. Now where I would start is by making sure the system is free of hum to start with. With all the input faders down and the channels muted is there any hum? If so you have problems with the system to start with. If its clean then you have a good place to start. Tracking down hum and other noises is the nightmare to most and the technologial art of a good versus great sound guy. Noise can creep into a system everyplace. Old snakes or wiring can pick up noise. Old AC wiring in the building can cause hum due to ground loops. Old ballasts in florecent lighting can cause hum New ballasts (solid state) can cause hum. Dimmers on lights can cause hum. And I could go on and on about sources. Frankly you are in the territory of experimentation.

I know this is a lot to digest but that is what us sound guys have to deal with. There is a great book called the Yamaha Sound Reinforcment Manual. We call it the bible around here. Goes into great detail along the lines we are talking about.

Hope this helps ya out where to start looking.

Mike
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  #14  
Old 03-19-2007, 04:21 AM
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Default Re: more misc mic matters

Thanks again PP...

I'm not actually a sound guy.. but it's always good to learn.

Cheers. I'll get right on it.
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