What microphone is best to record singing on a computer? I am searching for a microhphone, not too expensive, which can let me record myself singing with a great sound quality. I would like the high notes to not "scratch" or anything. A good studio microphone. What is best, a normal small microphone plug, USB plug? The big fat plug? Do I absolutely need a console for this?
not too expensive
What sort of budget ?
Personally i hate USB microphones.
If i may suggest a XLR mic, it would be an AT 2020.(100 USD) I love audio Tech. microphones. They're cheap. they can take a beating, and they sound great!
The AT2020 give a nice boost around 5K - 10K which sweetens up vocals (even if you sing at 700hz the overtones and harmonics will get that high.)
As for USB. you just have to look at the frequency graph. Use your better judgement and then look the microphone up. someone somewhere has written a review on it.
Another great company is Electro Voice. pl series. Love em.
Or just go with a basic Sure 58 (xlr as well)
The money is going to be in two things: The mic and the preamp. "USB microphones" are microphones with an integrated preamp and audio interface (so the computer recognizes it as a sound card). I haven't heard any USB mics that sounded to great either. There are some really compact preamp/interface combos out there that have a female XLR jack so you can plug in your own mic. I haven't heard any that sound too great either, but they do sound better than the mic/preamp/interface combos I've heard. Of the ones I've been able to try, these were better:
- If you're on a Mac, the Apogee One is pretty nice sounding.
- The Shure X2U is pretty nice for only about $100.
Things I havn't tried that might be cool or might suck:
I recommend against:
- CEntrance MicPort Pro
- Blue Microphones Icicle
And of course you'll need a decent mic to go with any of these. That's the hard part on a budget. I agree with kantouth's assessment of AT as a manufacturer. They make tough mics that sound great for the price. Shure make some decent mid-range condensers, too. I would definitely go with a condenser mic if you can afford it.
Hey! I've been working with those mic's for a while now ,and they sound just fine on almost all tipe of vocals and singing techniques.
- Neumann U87 condenser mic
- AKG 214 Condenser Mic
Or on a more affordable budget the:
- Shure Sm7b Dinamic Mic.
I use them with a GreatRiverME 1NV or a vintage API Preamp.
The signal goes straight on the D/A converter (RME fireface 800) so no meed for a mixing board.
First post in this thread is spam.
First post in this thread is spam.
I had a chance to use the SM7B, and I can agree that it is a hell of a mic. Smooth vocals and no problem using on a bass or guitar cab at all!
I will be purchasing one soon. As far as Dynamics go, it is the modern SHIT!
We have an RE20 and RE27 which are nice, but prefer the sound I heard in the SM7
I am sort of new at this as well. What I have found is the mic is not as important as the environment you are recording in. You have to have a space that does not have much echo and very quite. It is amazing how much sound a computer puts out just sitting there. Get the environment set up and working with the mic you already own then if you still need a better mic start looking. Look on YouTube for how to record singing. There are lots of hints. also look in to DIY pop filters and dead cats as well.
There is no such thing as a "good" cheap microphone. With microphones especially the case is definitely what you pay for is what you get. The two words good and cheap are never seen together. ! If you are a singer and want a sound which does not sound like a coke can on a piece of string a "ribbon" mic takes some beating and of course an anti plop screen attachment. Unless you happen to have a highly skilled voice and breathing technique.
You would go a long way to improve on a Samson "Condenser" SP01 or similar. a microphone which is suspended by an 8 point shock mount, the value of shock mounts cannot be under estimated and are standard equipment in recording studios and broadcast stations and go back many years. You occasionally get a "Samson" appear on EBay, but they keep their price if well looked after.
Environment is very important as well to overcome standing waves and other acoustical aberrations No amount of filtering is going improve a crappy recording.
Above all remember no two person's hearing is identical, what sounds good to you may sound poor to some one else, depending on whether you are are young or older, male or female. The recording parameters should be monitored electronically for a flat frequency response according to the industry standards. So many teenagers seem to feel that massive bass is good when it vibrates Mum's best vase off the dresser. That is achieved by the amplifier, not the recording. If the information is not there, then it cannot be reproduced its that simple....Keep it flat 50 hz to 16khz then .... you will hear everything, then you can filter, cut and boost to your heart's delight.
When recording keep amplification at a common reference point in the early stages. Remember with each additional stage of amplification, noise, distortion, hum and other nasties are going to be amplified.
If you are recording a single clock ticking or a crowded airport terminal, you want a recording that people can hear and identify with. However they a large differences in recording techniques from recording a single bird to flock of birds, from a single voice to a riot.
I agree with nicStage. USB mics that come with cameras and sound cards are rubbish. they cost a few cents to make in some factory in the swamps of China.
Names like Shure, Grundig, Samson and National etc who have supplied the home and industrial market for years are the way to go.
Avoid plastic bodies which have the cable hard wired, these mics are definitely going to be microphonic and also the cables. Choose a diecast "internal framework" together with a metal housing and head. The cable should be individually screened and it is preferable with handheld mics to have a built in impedance match transformer which can be switched. Failing that the input to the preamp should have impedance matching. Of course the microphones should have international standard audio plugs on the cable to match the socket on the mic. The plugs should not be molded on, but removable so you can replace a damaged cable end. Amphenol of course !
"Microphonic" = Where a mic transfers vibrations from the body and cables and transform them into electrical impulses thus acting like a microphone in themselves when ever they are moved, touched. This was a common fault in valve amplifiers.*** A "good" mic will only pick up sounds via the element only and no where else.
If you are serious about recording through a microphone learn the names and types of the plugs and sockets. See if you can get a copy of the old National Handbook of Audio or a similar book on basics, visit your local library and do an internet search. It is far better "suhanee" to refer to a 1/4" or 6.5mm standard jack plug and socket than a "big fat plug" Assuming you have a sound card, its far better than traveling halfway around the internals of your computer from the USB port, which is slow, to put the microphone directly into the sound card. I have answered your questions above about "scratch" etc... Keep it Flat 0db = 1mV at 1000khz into 600 ohms
Confused now? This is what I mean about getting books on the raw basics. Read, read and read some more.
I have one sample uploaded
it starts and ends with Australian Magpies, with up several different species getting in on the act. The was part of a bird identification series I made. If you are Australian see how many you can identify !
***Many music groups still prefer Valve Amplifiers 813"s in parallel/ push pull running in class A --- anyone ??? LOL
Dave. (retd Electronics and Broadcasting Engineer)