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Old April 7th, 2006, 11:57 PM   #1
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Mic Shootouts ...

I don't know about you, but I have found these mic shootouts to be very useful. It might even be worthwhile making this a sticky. The only thing is that while Shotguns are often tested, I cannot find any sort of a Lav Shootout or much in the way of Hypercardioid Shootouts. A lot of people here recommend the AT899 or AT4053a, but it would be great to compare the AT899 to a Countryman B3 or even a Giant Squid, etc. -- so I would encourage anyone with a lot of lav or hypercardioid mics to do a similar shootout - it would really fill a missing gap. If you know of other online mic shootouts that include downloadable audio or video comparisions, please post the Mics reviewed and the link. Thanks, Shawn

Mic Shootouts

Audio Technica AT897, Rode NTG-2, Sennheiser MKH-416, Sennheiser ME-66/K6, Audio Technica AT4073A, Rode NT3-Hyper Cardioid, Rode VideoMic
http://dvestore.com/theatre/mics_guide.html

Blue Baby Bottle, Neumann TLM103, Neumann TLM127, SE Gemini, Shure KSM 44, Shure SM57, Shure SM58
http://www.audiomidi.com/classroom/p...SEShootout.cfm

Studio Projects B1, Sennheiser 421, AKG 414 B-ULS, Neumann TLM 103, Shure SM7, Neumann U-87, Shure SM-58, Rode NT-1, Audio Technica 4050, Shure SM-57, Schoeps P48 preamp with interchangeable capsules, Shure KSM141, Shure KSM27, Shure KSM32, Shure KSM44, Oktava 319, AKG C-3000m, Electrovoice RE-27
http://www.transom.org/tools/recordi..._shootout.html

DOES NOT INCLUDE SAMPLE AUDIO
Neumann M147, Neumann KM184, Studio Projects C1, Audio Technica AT4050, Audio Technica AT4047, AKG 414 B-ULS, AKG 451B, Shure SM57, Oktava MC012, AKG C1000S
http://www.digitalprosound.com/2002/...c_shootout.htm
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Old April 8th, 2006, 12:57 PM   #2
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Just a clarification - the Countryman B3, Giant Squid, and AT899 are three very different mics, very different costs, addressed to different markets.

A shootout among those would be interesting indeed, but if you have something with 3.5mm inputs that's be the Giant Squid, if you have xlr on a budget, that is the AT899, xlr not so tight a budget, Countryman B3.

More interesting might be some shootouts within those rough markets. For example, Tram, Sanken, Sony 77/88, and Countryman. Maybe the AT gets included in that group, or goes against some of the lower-cost Sony. Not sure if the Giant Squid has any real competitors, don't know much about that area of the market.
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Old April 8th, 2006, 03:11 PM   #3
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Shawn - thanks for that info.
I think it's a really useful post and i support the idea of it being made a sticky.

I found the dvestore shotgun test particularly intreresting. Listening to the samples on a Sony 7506, you can really hear the differences.
The MKH416 sounds almost like it's in your head it's that good. I also thought the Rode NT3 was great, if quite bright and tonally quite different to a lot of the others. Clear differences between some of the Rode mics and the Sennheisers.
I think the low-output level of the AT897 was evident as i could hear the floor hiss as the level was obviously brought up to match the other mics. But apart from the hiss, i thought the 897 was very good.
Shame they didn't manage to put the Videomic on a stand (it was handheld) but you can clearly hear how, despite the VM being a great mic for $150, how the others were simply better. Terrific comparison.

cheers
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Old April 8th, 2006, 06:47 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seth Bloombaum
Just a clarification - the Countryman B3, Giant Squid, and AT899 are three very different mics, very different costs, addressed to different markets. A shootout among those would be interesting indeed, but if you have something with 3.5mm inputs that's be the Giant Squid, if you have xlr on a budget, that is the AT899, xlr not so tight a budget, Countryman B3.
Thanks Seth - I think that it is the comparisons spanning a broader range of mics that really helps one to hear the differences. If you look at the dvestore shotgun shootout, they do compare across a pretty broad range of costs and quality. Also, the last time I checked, BH sells the B3 for $223 which is just a few dollars more than the AT899 at $199 - and they both output to XLR. Maybe you're referring to the AT899cW with the TA5 Connection for ATW-U101 since that is about $140 - yes? Certainly the GS lav is not in the same price range, but isn't that why this lav has created such a stir - great quality at a lower cost - but as you say, XLR is not an option with the GS. In any case, I think it would great to hear samples of them all in the same environment.
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Old April 8th, 2006, 06:52 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stu Holmes
Shawn - thanks for that info. I think it's a really useful post and i support the idea of it being made a sticky. I found the dvestore shotgun test particularly intreresting. ... Terrific comparison. cheers
Stu - I thought the dvestore shootout was very impressive and the best of all the shootouts. Having the video and audio was so helpful just to see what was happening. I really hope that they will consider doing more mic comparisons. As far as this being a sticky, I would think that the moderators would be glad to have anything that might alleviate the next "Which shotgun should I get?" question. ;) Thanks, Shawn
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Old April 10th, 2006, 02:36 PM   #6
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Hey all, Guy here from the DVeStore (I recorded the shotgun samples in the link above)

OK, how many votes do we have for a lav shootout? If there is enough interest, I'll see if I can beg/borrow/steal some more studio time...

Lavalier models that we would potentially record:

Audio Technica AT-899
Countryman B3
Countryman B6
Sennheiser MKE2
Sennheiser ME2 (included in Evolution wireless)

Any other models in the $100-$400 range?
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Old April 10th, 2006, 05:38 PM   #7
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Guy

Fully support a lav shootout.

How about adding one or more of : Sony ECM44B / 55B / 77B?

Also although they are very inexpensive, how about a Giant Squid omni ?
- they're supposed to sound great.
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Old April 10th, 2006, 05:43 PM   #8
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How about the Audio-Technica MT830? A lot of people compare the Sennheiser EW100 and Audio-Technica U100 kits.
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Old April 10th, 2006, 08:32 PM   #9
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Supported...

Guy,
I fully agree; a lav comparison would be very helpful.
I already have the ME2 & B3; I'd be very interested to see (hear) your comparisons/c onclusions and see if they are the same as mine.
Rgds, Ross.
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Old April 10th, 2006, 08:48 PM   #10
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Another supporter for a lav shootout here.

To the other people who say certain mics are better than others - how exactly do you determine which is better than another? I don't have Sony 7506 headphones, but I do have Sony 7505 - is there a huge difference? While I can clearly hear differences between the mics, I can't really say which is "better," so what criteria do you base your claim that one is better?
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Old April 11th, 2006, 10:15 PM   #11
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YES Vote!

I vote a big YES for a lav test. I agree in adding the Sony ECM 55/66 and also suggest the AT831 since Spot has given that lav so much press and it's a directional lav -- a couple hypers such as the NT3 and AT4053a would be great to compare as well. ;) Would also second the review of a Giant Squid omni.

I may be wrong on this, but doing the lav test in a live room instead of a studio would make the test more useful IMHO. I think the ability of the lav to handle echo is just as relevant as its sound quality. The shotgun test made a lot of sense in a studio since shotguns are typically used in places of low reflection (e.g. outside or in a studio), and I'd probably use my best shotgun if I was in a studio. So consider a live room since that may make the testing easier and the results more helpful. Anyone agree? Disagree? (Like I have to ask ;)

Thanks Guy for your consideration in doing another excellent review, Shawn

Last edited by Shawn Redford; April 12th, 2006 at 01:03 AM.
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Old April 11th, 2006, 11:31 PM   #12
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The AT4073A is a hypercardioid, not a shotgun? Or...are shotguns hypercardioids?
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Old April 12th, 2006, 01:03 AM   #13
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Meant to say the AT4053a - my mistake - I've edited the post. However, I would mind hearing a AT4073a in a live room as well.
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Old April 12th, 2006, 02:46 AM   #14
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So are shotguns hypercardioids are are they not? Does shotgun = hypercardioid?
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Old April 12th, 2006, 03:59 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alex Thames
So are shotguns hypercardioids are are they not? Does shotgun = hypercardioid?
Alex - see if this helps: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Microphone#Directionality
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