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Old April 13th, 2008, 04:06 AM   #1
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Not another "best cheap mic" thread!

Hey everyone,

Sorry to clutter the audio boards with yet another "please tell me which is the best mic" to buy thread. But hey, if you don't know, ask.

As some background information, my set up is a Canon XH-A1. I'd be looking for a mic or mic package that can perform well in a variety situations, and one that is on the forgiving side when it comes to user incompetence. For the most part it would be attached to a boom pole, but the boom operator would be a volunteer with more enthusiasm than experience.

Ideally I'd like to spend around $500-1000, obviously less would be better. It would be used for short independent film productions with both exterior and interior locations.

I have read Mr. Brockett's very informative articles "As I hear it" and "Low Cost Shotgun Mic Comparison", and so I know there is no such thing as a "best" microphone. Bascially what I need is a workhorse able to provide a consistent sound, even if it isn't necessarily the best sound.

Specifically, I was wondering how the microphones reviewed in the "Low Cost Shotgun Mic" article (especially the Senn ME66/67) compared with the newer offerings from Audio Technica, like the AT875R.

Right now I am leaning towards picking up the AT875R and the Oktava MK-012. But I am a little concerned that lowballing my audio gear, while a good solution for right now, will just end up costing me in the end when I finally learn enough to make use of higher end microphones, and that makes the Senn K6 system seem a little appealing.

Thoughts?
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Old April 13th, 2008, 05:23 AM   #2
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Hi Jeff, I'm in a similar situation to you in that I'm looking for a mic setup at present within the range (Price and quality) of the ME66 and AT875R (All my audio gear was stolen recently so I'm rebuying and re-researching). Now people here will probably be able to help you more but I'll chime in anyway and relay what I've been finding.

Before everything went on holiday I had an ME66 and it was a good mic for the types of low budget short film and eng/interview work I did, but like a lot (all?) shotguns for indoors it's less than ideal due to the rear pickup. It is also a bit tinny sounding and less warm compared to a lot of other mics so I was looking to see if there was anything a little better sounding. In the end I realised that I should probably get 2 mics. A shotgun for outdoors and a hyper-cardioid for indoors. Listening to samples and keeping budget in mind I decided to get the Rode NTG2. It's warmer sounding than the ME66 and a little cheaper at about US$250 as compared to US$400 for ME66/K6. From my tests it had a little more noise than the ME66 and was less hot (ME66 is one hot mother) but more than adequate for what I need and many people seem to use it. I would say however that it's pretty entrylevel pro gear.

Then I will augment the setup with an Oktava MC/MK012 with hypercardioid module as this mic still seems to be great bang for the buck. You will however need to shockmount and wind protect it well.

This link (http://www.dvcreators.net/shotgun-shootout/#) has a good little shootout between mics within your range and I suggest going there to have a listen.

With that all said, I get the feeling that you may be inclined to go a little higher in budget than me, but the general opinion seems to be that spending more on the ME66 isn't really worth it, so it's probably better to jump up another little bit to a mic like the AT4073a if you want.

Good luck
Aaron
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Old April 13th, 2008, 08:04 AM   #3
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My two favorite inexpensive shotguns are the Rode NTG-1/NTG-2 and the AudioTechnica AT875R.

Wayne
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Old April 13th, 2008, 12:11 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff Yin View Post
Specifically, I was wondering how the microphones reviewed in the "Low Cost Shotgun Mic" article (especially the Senn ME66/67) compared with the newer offerings from Audio Technica, like the AT875R.
I believe you want to read this new article by Dan Brockett:
http://www.kenstone.net/fcp_homepage..._brockett.html

The AT875R is one of the mics, and it is strongly rated. Based on the review, I recently bought this mic. It is small and has good handling characteristics if used on a boom by someone inexperienced.

The article also reviews other mics you may be considering.
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Old April 13th, 2008, 02:02 PM   #5
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Thanks for the responses everyone. Sounds like I can't go too wrong with the ATR875R and the Oktava.

Mr. Walker, thanks for the link. I actually have read that article, and it was through reading it that prompted my current curiosity as to how the shotgun mics reviewed in it compared to the mics he reviewed in his earlier article, especially the ME 66.
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Old April 13th, 2008, 02:06 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aaron Koolen View Post
This link (http://www.dvcreators.net/shotgun-shootout/#) has a good little shootout between mics within your range and I suggest going there to have a listen.

With that all said, I get the feeling that you may be inclined to go a little higher in budget than me, but the general opinion seems to be that spending more on the ME66 isn't really worth it, so it's probably better to jump up another little bit to a mic like the AT4073a if you want.

Good luck
Aaron
Aaron,

Thanks for the analysis and the link. After listening to the samples, I tend to agree with your conclusion regarding the ME 66. Previously I had sort of set my heart on the Senn mic, especially because as it's what I used to rent from the local gear shop. But I liked the sound of the RODE NTG-2 and I really like the price range.
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Old April 14th, 2008, 02:24 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aaron Koolen View Post
Hi Jeff, I'm in a similar situation to you in that I'm looking for a mic setup at present within the range (Price and quality) of the ME66 and AT875R (All my audio gear was stolen recently so I'm rebuying and re-researching).
Dude. Ouch That sucks about your gear. If you make it down to Chch, I've got an at 4073, oktava mk-012 and schoeps cmc641, if you wanted to do some live comparisoms.

cheers,
-andrew
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Old April 14th, 2008, 04:32 PM   #8
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Dude. Ouch That sucks about your gear. If you make it down to Chch, I've got an at 4073, oktava mk-012 and schoeps cmc641, if you wanted to do some live comparisoms.

cheers,
-andrew


Ahh Andrew, that would have been awesome if I'd been looking a couple of months ago, I was down in ChCh. Thanks for the offer though, and maybe next time!
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Old April 14th, 2008, 04:48 PM   #9
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It's difficult to bet the Oktava for price/quality.
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