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#1931619 - 07/24/12 12:46 AM Any microphone recommendations?
JoelW Online   content
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/12
Posts: 5435
Loc: USA
I want to start recording things from my computer, but the built-in mic is crap of course. Any cheap recommendations? (I'm not looking for pro sound.)

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#1931641 - 07/24/12 03:09 AM Re: Any microphone recommendations? [Re: JoelW]
Hakki Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 3527
Cheap? How cheap?
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#1931688 - 07/24/12 07:02 AM Re: Any microphone recommendations? [Re: JoelW]
lisztvsthalberg Offline
Full Member

Registered: 04/27/10
Posts: 122
Try the Zoom recorders. If you are willing to take some more time with the setup and use the computer for recording, I would recommend a USB audio interface like the M-Audio Fast Track Pro with a pair of omnidirectional microphones (Behringer B5s are cheap with relatively low noise) for even better results.

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#1931704 - 07/24/12 07:57 AM Re: Any microphone recommendations? [Re: JoelW]
Entheo Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/12/04
Posts: 1275
Loc: chicago, il
yes, echo hakki -- what's your definition of cheap?

i upgraded from a zoom q3 to dedicating an older laptop with Studio One DAW, AudioBox 22VSL and two AKG 420 mics. not counting the cost of the laptop the whole upgrade was under $800.

example result: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=twMMHvm8jpg
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#1931875 - 07/24/12 03:08 PM Re: Any microphone recommendations? [Re: Entheo]
opus88 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/01/10
Posts: 59
A pair of Rode NT5's will work well with piano. They can be found used for about $300. Crystal clear sound that needs a bit of low end boost.
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#1931878 - 07/24/12 03:24 PM Re: Any microphone recommendations? [Re: opus88]
Hakki Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 3527
Originally Posted By: opus88
A pair of Rode NT5's will work well with piano. They can be found used for about $300. Crystal clear sound that needs a bit of low end boost.


ditto.

Those are the mics I use (with omni capsules)
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#1931915 - 07/24/12 04:54 PM Re: Any microphone recommendations? [Re: JoelW]
wouter79 Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/14/10
Posts: 4459
Any cheap mic probably bring you a long way.

I used the built-in mics from my video camera with pretty decent results.

Make sure you have manual volume control.

And of course make sure the piano sounds good to start with
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#1931956 - 07/24/12 06:10 PM Re: Any microphone recommendations? [Re: JoelW]
ChopinAddict Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/29/09
Posts: 6432
Loc: Land of the never-ending music
Maybe you can try to find a decent second-hand one.
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#1932095 - 07/25/12 01:20 AM Re: Any microphone recommendations? [Re: JoelW]
pants Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 06/21/12
Posts: 11
Loc: Banned
I'll let you borrow my Blue Yeti.

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#1932506 - 07/26/12 02:43 AM Re: Any microphone recommendations? [Re: Hakki]
trigalg693 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/17/08
Posts: 760
Originally Posted By: Hakki
Originally Posted By: opus88
A pair of Rode NT5's will work well with piano. They can be found used for about $300. Crystal clear sound that needs a bit of low end boost.


ditto.

Those are the mics I use (with omni capsules)


Same here!

At the very minimum you want a outboard audio interface with everything packaged into it, such as the Tascam US122 mk___. Omnidirectional microphones tend to have the wide frequency response needed to capture piano well, I believe Naiant makes some inexpensive ones that are well rated. 300-400 probably does the trick?


Edited by trigalg693 (07/26/12 02:53 AM)

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#1932593 - 07/26/12 09:42 AM Re: Any microphone recommendations? [Re: JoelW]
Entheo Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/12/04
Posts: 1275
Loc: chicago, il
from personal experience, due to the many variables involved in home recording i want a mic whose pattern (cardioid, omni, etc.) is configurable. although plenty of folks suggest omni is the way to go for recording acoustic piano, i found that within my particular environment that a cardioid setting was the most pleasing to my ear. with the many switchable mic options, why limit your options?
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#1932756 - 07/26/12 02:52 PM Re: Any microphone recommendations? [Re: Entheo]
trigalg693 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/17/08
Posts: 760
Originally Posted By: Entheo
from personal experience, due to the many variables involved in home recording i want a mic whose pattern (cardioid, omni, etc.) is configurable. although plenty of folks suggest omni is the way to go for recording acoustic piano, i found that within my particular environment that a cardioid setting was the most pleasing to my ear. with the many switchable mic options, why limit your options?


Options cost money. I'm sort of regretting my Rodes, because I have no use whatsoever for the cardioid capsules. I should probably try to get paid to record stuff for people to put them to use or something.

I am not aware of a low end cardioid mic that has acceptable bass response for a piano, but "acceptable" might mean something different to you than to me.


Edited by trigalg693 (07/26/12 02:53 PM)

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#1932781 - 07/26/12 03:48 PM Re: Any microphone recommendations? [Re: JoelW]
Kreisler Offline


Registered: 11/27/02
Posts: 13827
Loc: Iowa City, IA
scherzojoe seems to have disappeared from the conversation, but it would be helpful to know what his actual budget is.

For some people, "cheap" means $50, for others, "cheap" means $500.

For decent stereo recording, the minimum would probably be in the $75-100 range.

Plus, we need to know if he needs a USB interface or if he has an interface that will accept an XLR input and provide phantom power.
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#1933211 - 07/27/12 02:47 PM Re: Any microphone recommendations? [Re: JoelW]
Thrill Science Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/04/11
Posts: 589
Loc: California
I just got a pair of Cascade Fathead II ribbon microphones for $399 (and it comes with a Blumlein bar). So far, I've been very pleased with them, especially for the price. (If your budget is bigger, try the upgraded version with the better transformers.)

See http://www.cascademicrophones.com/cascade_FAT_HEAD_II_Stereo_PK.html

I'll post some audio samples later this weekend.


Edited by Thrill Science (07/27/12 02:49 PM)
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#2152283 - 09/17/13 04:05 PM Re: Any microphone recommendations? [Re: JoelW]
KillerCharlie Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/21/09
Posts: 142
I didn't want to start a new thread so I'm bumping this one. I just got a pair of lightly used Rode NT5 mics and I'm planning on buying the omni capsules. I've found tons of info on mics, saying for the price that NT5s, especially with the omni capsules, are good for acoustic piano. My computer has a high quality recording card (without a preamp in it)

However I have trouble finding any info on preamps, which are required.

What are your suggestions for a preamp that matches the NT5? I need something that sounds good but isn't higher quality than it needs to be to match the NT5.

I was looking at Art brand tube preamps which get great reviews. I also see the Presonus BlueTube mic preamp ($200) recommended in a couple posts. Any other suggestions?


Edited by KillerCharlie (09/17/13 04:15 PM)

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#2152410 - 09/17/13 07:42 PM Re: Any microphone recommendations? [Re: KillerCharlie]
TheHappyMoron Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/06/10
Posts: 1166
Loc: UK
Oh my god! KILLERcharlie?? I must remember not to argue with you!!!
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All theory, dear friend, is grey, but the golden tree of life springs ever green.

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#2152456 - 09/17/13 08:29 PM Re: Any microphone recommendations? [Re: JoelW]
ABC Vermonter Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/20/09
Posts: 259
Hi JoelW,

The two mics and interface for the following recording costs about $380:

https://soundcloud.com/abcvermonter/beethoven-appassionata-iii-by

The mics are Line Audio CM3, about $130 each. There is a waiting list for the mics. The interface is Steinberg UR22. It costs about $120 on ebay. With your computer (and of course a mic stand and two mic cables), you are ready to go.

Do not know whether $380 is cheap enough for you, but this is what I have. smile

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#2152526 - 09/17/13 09:29 PM Re: Any microphone recommendations? [Re: JoelW]
JoelW Online   content
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/12
Posts: 5435
Loc: USA
Woah, this is old!

Thanks everyone but I have acquired a couple mics since I made this thread. smile

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#2152527 - 09/17/13 09:29 PM Re: Any microphone recommendations? [Re: TheHappyMoron]
JoelW Online   content
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/12
Posts: 5435
Loc: USA
Originally Posted By: TheHappyMoron
Oh my god! KILLERcharlie?? I must remember not to argue with you!!!


lol

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#2152604 - 09/17/13 11:05 PM Re: Any microphone recommendations? [Re: TheHappyMoron]
KillerCharlie Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/21/09
Posts: 142
Originally Posted By: TheHappyMoron
Oh my god! KILLERcharlie?? I must remember not to argue with you!!!


Then you must tell me what preamp you use!

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#2152812 - 09/18/13 08:00 AM Re: Any microphone recommendations? [Re: KillerCharlie]
Steve Chandler Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/18/05
Posts: 3087
Loc: Urbandale, Iowa
Originally Posted By: KillerCharlie
I didn't want to start a new thread so I'm bumping this one. I just got a pair of lightly used Rode NT5 mics and I'm planning on buying the omni capsules. I've found tons of info on mics, saying for the price that NT5s, especially with the omni capsules, are good for acoustic piano. My computer has a high quality recording card (without a preamp in it)

However I have trouble finding any info on preamps, which are required.

What are your suggestions for a preamp that matches the NT5? I need something that sounds good but isn't higher quality than it needs to be to match the NT5.

I was looking at Art brand tube preamps which get great reviews. I also see the Presonus BlueTube mic preamp ($200) recommended in a couple posts. Any other suggestions?

I recently acquired a Focusrite Scarlett for about $150 (2i4, the 2i2 was out of stock). It sounds much nicer than the Presonus preamp I had been using. In fairness to the Presonus it didn't have analog to digital converters and that made it necessary to use the internal D/A converters of my laptop.


Edited by Steve Chandler (09/18/13 08:25 AM)

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#2153134 - 09/18/13 04:22 PM Re: Any microphone recommendations? [Re: KillerCharlie]
TheHappyMoron Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/06/10
Posts: 1166
Loc: UK
Originally Posted By: KillerCharlie
Originally Posted By: TheHappyMoron
Oh my god! KILLERcharlie?? I must remember not to argue with you!!!


Then you must tell me what preamp you use!


I don't use one i swear!! please, i can't die yet, there's so many Strauss Waltzes i am yet to remember the names to! They're all just so damn familiar, oh WHY can't i remember their names??
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All theory, dear friend, is grey, but the golden tree of life springs ever green.

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