I was looking to see what mics people are using, particularly boom mics. If you have one, or several, what do you think of it/them. If you have one on your wish list, what is it? I am looking for something that works well, but doesn't set me back too much. Any ideas?
There are many options, depending on your needs and budget. If you're looking for something to use mostly outdoors, a used Sennheiser MKH-416 is quite affordable. The Rode NTG-3 is another good mid-priced mic. The cheaper (and less good sounding) Sennheiser ME66/K6 & Rode NTG-2 are often used on low budget productions.
If you are recording mostly indoors, a super-cardioid SDC might be a better option for you. The Oktava mk 012 sounds quite good for the price (especially after modification), but is very susceptible to handling noise.
MKH416 is oldschool, newer MKH8060 is smaller, less colored off-axis and less noisy. MKH60 is good choice too and probably less expensive than 8060 2nd hand.
Then there is neumann kmr81 and 82. Some like their character better than sennheiser. Sennheiser can be a bit too bland at times. However sennheisers are special with how they can work in higher humidity.
Schoeps CMIT is very popular for the character too. CMC6 body with MK41 hypercardiod capsule is THE mic for indoor dialog recording.
Then there is sanken... but I know very little about it.
Out of these I have mkh60, which I like very much, very clean and very well behaving mic. I use it mostly for gathering FX outside when I need to minimize some noise and can't bring the job inside. It also works great as VO mic. I don't have booth in my studio and while it is quite dry, sometimes you want your VO really clean and dead. Cardiods won't do it, carefully positioned MKH60 can.
I also have MKH30 for MS (with MKH60 and old MKH405). It's a matching companion , super low noise, very neutral and clean.
My experience with schoeps is limited to pair of CMC6 with MK21 capsules. These are wide cardiods, so it's not suited for dialog recording, it's more of an instrument or main pair (over the orchestra) microphone. What I like about them is the ability to capture room/space very well. With less good mics room sounds are often ugly and you work hard to get rid off them. MK21 can be placed quite far and it sounds like instrument further from the microphone, not mushy indistinct colored mess. MKHs can do that too, but there is something special about the resolution/reach of schoeps. At least it's like that to my ears. So I expect MK41 is really great.
Recording outdoors is something I would like it to do, for sure. I just wish there was a store I could walk into and check stuff like this out. I know its cheaper online, but I like to get my hands on it before I make a commitment to buy something. That's why I appreciate everyone's input here, because they have had their hands on it.
Thanks for the input. I have used the Sennheiser MKH-416, but haven't found a used one moderately priced one around me.
There is always something on e-bay.
2nd hand mics hold their value quite well if you buy them for a good price. That means if you sell them afterwards, you won't loose money (on average). So here you go, it works as if you borrow it .
Getting to know your tools takes time, of course you know something in 30 minutes, but you need to use it in various conditions, scenarios, applications... and finaly try some postproduction to see where your results fall short (or not).
Also with these top class mics, if your results are not 100%, the problem is not with the tools .
I was pampered in film school with top notch supplies at our disposal (we use the RED Scarlet and the RED Epic). While I dived into cameras, screenwriting and editing, I didn't pay attention enough to sound. I haven't even started the ProTools Certification yet, but I look forward to doing that next year. I know my way around Audition though...
But when it comes to know what tools to use, I'm clueless. I bought the Zoom H4n, because we had access to them. We usually used the Zoom R24 for getting audio. I never bothered to check what mics we were using. I should get on that.
Thanks for this input. I'm just weary of buying used, but will probably go that route.
I have an Rode NTG3, it is perfect, broadcast standard, with a low signal to noise ratio.
I wouldn't want anything else for booming, unless I consider the Sennheiser MKH-416 which is practically the same microphone, with less low energy response.