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Author Topic: Affordable hypercards?  (Read 840 times)

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Offline thatjackelliott

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Affordable hypercards?
« on: October 27, 2017, 11:57:08 AM »
I'm thinking of trying hypercardioids to aim at an audience for generic music festival recordings. Anyone got a recco for a sub-$150 audience-grade microphone? The captured sound will be for ambience only, so fancy-schmancy Shoeps, etc., are not required.

Offline IMPigpen

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Re: Affordable hypercards?
« Reply #1 on: October 27, 2017, 12:06:52 PM »
You could get a pair of Naiant X-R remote capsules in HyperCard for $70/pair and then whatever you need for cables for $30-70 (XLR-3 for phantom, 1/8" stereo for PIP) depending on what you are going to plug them into to power them.
Mics: Neumann KM184s; Naiant X-R omnis
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Offline Gutbucket

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Re: Affordable hypercards?
« Reply #2 on: October 27, 2017, 03:36:32 PM »
Jon (Naiant) is a TS member/vendor and makes excellent value gear, and his mics are what came to mind when I first saw your cost-constrained inquiry.  I've only personally used his X-8S bi-directional mics (as Side mics for Mid/Side), which I like.  An outstanding value and I was able to figure out low-voltage powering options for them with his help for applications where I do not have phantom power not available.

In general, I find good-sounding low cost-super/hypercards rather elusive.  It's seems relatively easy to make a decent sounding low cost omni, harder with a cardioid and harder still with a super/hyper.  They often  have resonant issues to my ear.  But for an audience mic mixed in with the main program those issues are likely to be less obvious than if you were using them as a straight main stereo pair.
volition > vibrations > voltages > numeric values | numeric values > voltages > vibrations > virtual teleportation time-machine experience

Offline jefflester

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Re: Affordable hypercards?
« Reply #3 on: October 27, 2017, 04:21:03 PM »
« Last Edit: October 27, 2017, 04:43:16 PM by jefflester »
DPA4061 HEB/AT943 -> CA-UGLY -> R-09
Samson C02/Superlux S502 -> DR-680MKII
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Offline jcable77

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Re: Affordable hypercards?
« Reply #4 on: October 27, 2017, 04:33:01 PM »
I haven't had a chance to try the hypers yet but I can definitely say the Naiant x-r cards and Omni's sound amazing for the price point and size.

Mics- AT 4041's, akg 460's ck 61's/63's/ck8's, akg active  couplings>naiant pfa's, naiant x-r's (cards,omnis). Pre- SD-302, naiant x-y amp, apogee mini-me X2, Lunatech V-3, Decks- R-44, dr-40,dr-100mkiii,  dr-03.....
ISO- pair of ADK a51 tl's

Offline DSatz

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Re: Affordable hypercards?
« Reply #5 on: October 29, 2017, 04:51:46 PM »
Two general facts about the microphone market seem relevant here.

[1] Good omnidirectional condenser microphones are available in all price ranges from moderate on up. Pressure transducers of very decent quality can be designed and manufactured with skills and materials that are available at relatively low cost. So they're on the lowest end of two spectrums at the same time: directivity, and cost to design and manufacture.

Continuing along the spectrum: The low-end manufacturers mostly haven't moved into the territory between omni and cardioid yet, so the next stop is cardioid. Greater directivity, and greater sophistication and care are required to produce smooth frequency response and consistent polar pattern (i.e. a cardioid that remains cardioid beyond the midrange), along with low noise and distortion, reliability, and consistency. So there are fewer low-cost, high-quality options for cardioids suitable for stereo recording of semi-distant sound sources.

Move along further to supercardioid / hypercardioid / bidirectional, and the quality sorts itself by price to an even greater extent. Both design and manufacturing face considerably higher demands. Low-cost microphones with these directional patterns don't give you as much of what you could get from higher-end products, as compared with cardioids and especially omnis.

[2] Super- and hypercardioid microphones are nearly all designed mainly for speech pickup. They have reduced low-frequency response in order to tame room sound, and elevated high-frequency response to increase speech intelligibility. But you have to be alert sometimes to discern which microphones are made that way and which ones aren't. Note who the products are being marketed to, and which applications are discussed in the product descriptions. If the suggested applications emphasize public address, broadcasting, news gathering, etc., that product probably wasn't designed for music recording from a distance. And as I just said, that applies to most microphones that are "beyond cardioid" in their pickup pattern.

Spec sheets are notoriously unhelpful in this area, I'm sorry to say. Microphone manufacturers often show frequency response curves as they would theoretically occur under conditions of expected use. General-purpose cardioids are usually measured at a 1-meter distance--but a microphone intended for close speech pickup might be measured at 15 cm, where there is much greater proximity effect. At normal concert miking distances, the speech-tailored microphone may well have 10 dB less sensitivity at 50 - 100 Hz than a general-purpose microphone with a very similar published response curve--even from the same manufacturer, sometimes.

A well-made product will do what it was designed to do, whatever that is. The price competition is greatest for the most popular applications (in this case, speech pickup). Full-range music recording at typical concert distances isn't the application for which most super- and hypercardioid microphones were designed, particularly in the low and middle price ranges. And that only increases the "skew" in the market.

--best regards
« Last Edit: November 15, 2017, 09:10:37 AM by DSatz »
music > microphones > a recorder of some sort

Offline thatjackelliott

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Re: Affordable hypercards?
« Reply #6 on: October 29, 2017, 09:03:24 PM »
Dsatz, thanks for the detailed and helpful post.

Offline noahbickart

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Re: Affordable hypercards?
« Reply #7 on: October 29, 2017, 10:16:05 PM »
If you can find them, the AKG "Blueline" hypercard, the ck93, paired with the se300b microphone body work very well, for the price. I ran them for years. But it's going to cost a little more than your budget. You might also look at the oktava sdc hyper.
Recording:
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Offline rocksuitcase

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Re: Affordable hypercards?
« Reply #8 on: October 29, 2017, 11:54:44 PM »
I've been refraining from posting because my solution is more than $150. I own the Beyer M-201e, a dynamic hypercardiod, no p48 required, which is about $299 retail if you can find them. They are quite nice for the price.
https://www.ebay.com/p/Beyerdynamic-M201TG-Dynamic-Cable-Professional-Microphone/69847557

edit to add a link to a recent show with the M201: https://archive.org/details/twiddle2016-02-26.2016-02-26.Beyer201.16
« Last Edit: October 30, 2017, 08:02:39 AM by rocksuitcase »
music IS love

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Mics:         AKG460|CK61|CK1|CK3|CK8|Beyer M 201E
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Offline DATBRAD

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Re: Affordable hypercards?
« Reply #9 on: October 30, 2017, 07:06:04 AM »
I can attest to the usefulness of the Beyer M201, it's a great mic. Cylindrical like a SD condenser, not too heavy, and it sounds great. Not needing phantom and being impervious to humidity is a plus. I just added these to my gear bag last year and for summer shows, it's been great not worrying about rain or humidity ever affecting these mics. Good luck with your search. A decent hyper that is sub-$600 pair is only possible to find used, though...
AKG C460B w/CK61/CK63 or Beyerdynamic M201TG>Luminous Monarch XLRs>SD MP-1(x2)>Luminous Monarch XLRs>PMD661(Oade WMOD)

Offline fmaderjr

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AT853's (all caps)/CM-300 Franken Naks (CP-1,2,3)/JBMod Nak 700's (CP-701,702) > Tascam DR-680
Or Sonic Studios DSM-6 > M10

 

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