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Author Topic: Am I jumping in too quickly/seeking general input for first set of mics  (Read 1253 times)

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Online kindms

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my first set of mics that i purchased were a stereo set of AKG414XLS/ST

Needless to say my GF now wife was not thrilled to be told the real price of the mics.

but I still own them so theres that.

I guess the only advice is to go to as many shows as you can where you are "taping" by that I mean pretty anchored to a single spot, dealing with drunks, talkers, the curious. blocking etc. Its that stuff that will turn this hobby in to a pain in the ass. So if you know the deal / drill that way go for it. I was using rocksuitcases rig (461>GP DMIC 20 >D8) for several years before finally getting my own (414 >UA5 >USB/COAX >Laptop).

I guess that brings up another option. Slutty taper buddies. If you have taper friends running their rig or borrowing is always a good way to go. You get to be a taper and see if you like it before spending any $
AKG414 XLS/ST> TCM-Mod Tascam HDP2
Musichall Mambo > VR-2's

Offline Walstib62

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The Avanotnes are great mics for the price. Having multiple capsule options will also allow you to try out different patterns for different situationss. In the meantime you can get some shows under your belt and trade up to something else if you want to. My first set of mics were the CK1's and they served me very well! I made some great recordings with them.

Offline capnhook

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Get a 20dB in-line 1/8" TRS attenuator, and you'll be safe for those hot board signals.  The DR-22WL is a fine machine.  I've made internal mic recordings with it, and they come out fine.  Placing it flat on a bar table in the sweet spot works better than screwing it onto a mini-tripod....it captures more low end signal on the table, than when it's a couple of inches off it.


I’ve been looking for a 20 dB 1/8” TRS attenuators with no luck. Any leads?


I bought mine from Len at Core Sound for about $22, I think.  He's in the retail section here.
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Offline wforwumbo

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Wanna chime in here as I recently did precisely what you are considering doing. Firstly, I want to say I’m glad the taping bug has bit you, and that my old DR-40 served you as well as it did me.

I asked nearly the same question here in November or December, and I got many of the same responses you are getting here. The AT4031 was my first pair of SDC mics for taping, and they do sound quite good, and I did think the tape I pulled was listenable, even bordering on great. But there were two downsides: 1. There were others in OTS with MUCH nicer mics who made what imo are better recordings so I patched off them for the rest of the run and 2. Full bodied mics really are significantly more cumbersome to set up on a stand than smaller modular systems, and I do value less hassle during setup/takedown plus I spent more time worrying about my mics on the stand wrt weight.

So I sold them a month after taping with my first rig and just saved up for the Schoeps that I wanted, as Noah has said here. From personal experience I am 100% in agreement with him here. It isn’t meant to discourage you at all - I know firsthand the experience of owning your first pair of taping mics and the excitement of sticking em up in the air for the first time. It truly makes you feel like a legitimate member of the section with your own first full rig. BUT we are all more than happy to give you patches, and continue taking notes and listening to different mics to decide what mics you actually want to end up owning. Otherwise you will always look at the more expensive mics and wonder “how much better can my tapes sound, if I dump more money into my rig...?” In retrospect the AT4031 rig I bought was 1/6 the cost of my first pair of Schoeps caps, which when I looked at it that way I realized I should have just stashed aside a small chunk of each paycheck and reserved it for the caps I eventually bought, to save time and money. Yes I could have - and did - just end up selling everything I bought here on YS, but I could have saved myself lots of time and hassle had I just yielded this admittedly unpopular and seemingly discouraging advice.

Now that said, if you are planning on going to shows where you are the ONLY taper, there is nothing wrong with getting a cheaper pair of SDCs in the meantime just to have something to record the shows with. Alternatively, get networked in your local team board here and start talking to people about shows you are planning on taping; many of us would love to go to a show just to tape and be part of the hobby/community.

For the record, you are welcome to patch off my mk21s at Tahoe and if you make it out here Curveball.
2x Schoeps mk21 (matched pair) -> nbob KCY -> Naiant PFA -> Sound Devices Mixpre 6

Offline heathen

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Don't jump on the Schoeps hype train too quick here.  Listen for yourself.  You may find you prefer MG, Neumann, Telefunken, Milab, AKG, or any number of other mics.  It all comes down to personal preference, after all.  While I am not much of a fan of Schoeps for the type of recording most people on here do, I also realize that's just my own taste (and that I'm likely in the minority).  Just follow your own ears...and if they lead you to modestly-priced mics that may not be the envy of other tapers, so be it.
Mics: Core Sound TetraMic | AT4031s | AT AE5100s | AT853s (C/SC) | Line Audio CM3s | CA-14 omnis | Studio Projects CS5
Pre: CA9200
Decks: Zoom F8 | Roland R-05

Offline hoppedup

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^Agreed.

I'm running akg391 into a Tascam DR-60D and really don't see a need to upgrade. I ran CA-11s and CA-14s for years before buying "big boy" mics.

There are any number of mics you can pic up at a decent price to get started. The Avantones make great recordings. As do the Line Audio, Berliner CM-33,  any number of Audio-technica mics, And you can always keep gear for when you need to run two or three rigs at a festival, or want to do a permanent install at a local venue.

I will probably own Milab VM-44s again at some point and maybe even splurge on an SD multi-channel recorder. But then again, I may not.
AKG SE300B CK91
CA-14 omnis
JB Mod NAK 300 CP1 - CP2
CAD C9
CA 9200
Tascam DR-40, Tascam DR-60D, Tascam DR-70D, Tascam DR-22WL
↑↑↓↓←→←→ BA Start
         


My recordings on bt.etree
  
My recordings on LMA

Offline rigpimp

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Just a secondary thought to always keep your eyes peeled in the yard sale.  You'll save a ton if you buy used gear, as you probably already know. 

Most sellers here are either vetted, or pretty easy to vet.  The only thing in my rig that I bought new was the recorder and it was because I was an early adopter.

Follow your ears...
Mics: Schoeps MK5 G MP, Schoeps CCM 4 Lg MP, Schoeps MK8 MP, nBob cables > PFA, KCY 250/5 > PFA
Pre/A>D/P48: Sonosax SX/M2, Sonosax SX/M2-LS, E.A.A. PSP-2, Naiant Tinybox, Neumann BS48i-2 (for sale)
Recorders: Sound Devices Mixpre-6, Sony PCM-M10

http://archive.org/bookmarks/kskreider

Offline MakersMarc

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Don't jump on the Schoeps hype train too quick here.  Listen for yourself.  You may find you prefer MG, Neumann, Telefunken, Milab, AKG, or any number of other mics.  It all comes down to personal preference, after all.  While I am not much of a fan of Schoeps for the type of recording most people on here do, I also realize that's just my own taste (and that I'm likely in the minority).  Just follow your own ears...and if they lead you to modestly-priced mics that may not be the envy of other tapers, so be it.

This. Listen to a lot of different mikes and save up for what you like best. Search by mikes in archive.org for what you want to hear. I did the incremental upgrades and downsizing up to what I run now, and it cost me thousands in lost value when I sold it all on YS.

Or not. I had a lot of fun running different stuff. 😀👍
Mk4v/41v>Nbob kcy x2>nbox platinum/baby nbox/Naiant PFA/Naiant IPA>Oade warm mod Marantz 661 x2/Sony pcm m10x3

Offline Jhurlbs81

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a $2,000 set of mics is not required to make smoking tapes, and I think it discourages people from getting into to the hobby when people say you should just wait until you can afford the absolute best.  I think part of the fun is learning what works, what doesn't and your personal preferences. If I wanted to get into race cars I wouldn't start with a ferrari.

Offline aaronji

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Don't jump on the Schoeps hype train too quick here.  Listen for yourself.  You may find you prefer MG, Neumann, Telefunken, Milab, AKG, or any number of other mics.

You forgot to mention that goodness from Denmark!!!

With respect to wforwumbo's post, I chimed in on his initial post to agree with noahbickart that he should save and get what he wanted.  His situation was a little different, though, as he had a lot of experience, in the studio and hanging around the section, and was already talking about Schoeps or DPAs.  In this case, I think I would see if you can borrow a pair of mics for a while.  Lots of tapers in the Bay Area, and many have two, or three or, well, multiple sets of mics.  Maybe somebody would lend you a pair (perhaps with a security deposit or something).  Then, you could get out there and tape some shows and compare your results with other tapers, while saving some money and taking some time to figure out where you want to end up.  Think twice and buy once and all...

Offline jcable77

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a $2,000 set of mics is not required to make smoking tapes, and I think it discourages people from getting into to the hobby when people say you should just wait until you can afford the absolute best.  I think part of the fun is learning what works, what doesn't and your personal preferences. If I wanted to get into race cars I wouldn't start with a ferrari.
Thats what im saying. If I waited till i got shoeps ( which I dont want) to start taping, i would have never started taping. And full bodied mics are cumbersome in the taperssection? The dude hasnt recorded a show yet and your talking about shoeps active cables? Sorry you thought you had to fit in in the phish taperssection with shoeps actives but that advice is just bunk. Dude said his budget was $300. Maybe get the avatones and tape as much as you can in a year. Get stands, clamps, batteries, bags, accessories. Find venues you like to record in. Then when you figure out what and how you like to tape live music, invest in something else. Absolute no reason to spend $3,000 on a hobby you havnt even tried yet.
Telefunken m60’s tk60’s,61’s,62’s
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R-44 or Dr-100mk3 and a Dr-40
Iso a pair of ck62’s

Online larrysellers

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I don't know if I have ever seen a thread here started where someone regretted buying good microphones. You can pretty much always resell them for a comparable price. Amortize the mics over 10 years. You'll never see them as a good value if you look at them as a short term asset.

Online djphrayz

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Don't jump on the Schoeps hype train too quick here.  Listen for yourself.  You may find you prefer MG, Neumann, Telefunken, Milab, AKG, or any number of other mics.  It all comes down to personal preference, after all.  While I am not much of a fan of Schoeps for the type of recording most people on here do, I also realize that's just my own taste (and that I'm likely in the minority).  Just follow your own ears...and if they lead you to modestly-priced mics that may not be the envy of other tapers, so be it.

What heathen said... I taped all of the MSG Phish shows last year with a set of AT4031s.  If you look at the comments on my final BD pull posted on bt.etree, you can find the opinion of someone who downloaded and listened to every source that was posted in a timely manner and see that for many of those shows, he picked my source as the best sounding source (over Schoeps, DPA, and other sources).  Mind you this was just one guy's opinion, and just like assholes, everyone has one.

My point is that you can compare a lot of different mics and setups by downloading and listening to some shows where a lot of tapers taped from a similar spot in the room, and you should follow your own ears, rather than the opinions of others, for what mics sound the best.  You should also be aware that mic configuration (angle between microphones and space between them) plays a big role in the sound of tapes, so only paying attention to the mic/pre/recorder will not tell you the complete picture.  Also, my recordings sound a little louder than most tapes due to the post-production work I do, so this can play a role as well.

Used gear is a solid recommendation, so if you find that taping is not for you, you can recoup most of your investment.  It's a fun hobby, so I recommend you grab what you can afford, and go out there and have fun!
Mics: AT4031, CA-14 cards and omnis
Recorders: Tascam DR-40, Zoom H6, Sony PCM-M10
Pre: CA Ugly 2

Offline ycoop

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Thanks again for the input and support. I’ve already received an offer via pm about borrowing some equipment for the Tahoe shows.

Still on the fence about the Avantones. I’ll be taping a friends gig in a few weeks (hopefully with a board feed) and the thought of making my first matrix with a pair of my own mics is quite appealing. Looks like I could sell them for around what they are asking for if I decide they aren’t for me. Would then seek to borrow a clamp/mic bar for a bit from someone in the area.
Avantone CK-1s > DR-60d mkII

Offline wforwumbo

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Seems my comments were taken a bit directly as “save up for Schoeps” and I want to clarify, that’s not what I meant at all.

The purpose of my post above, was to simply state that patching allows you to try LOTS of different types of gear and microphones in different positions and spacings, so you can sample without buying and eventually hone in on the microphones you *actually* want to buy. Cost is less of a factor here - maybe you really like the sound of two inexpensive electrets stuck on the end of some coat hangers, which I’ve done in the studio. The key is to be absolutely 100% sure that you’re buying gear you actually want to use, rather than fitting gear into your budget simply to serve a purpose.

That said, if you find a good deal on gear that IS within your budget and has the sound you want, by all means go for it.
2x Schoeps mk21 (matched pair) -> nbob KCY -> Naiant PFA -> Sound Devices Mixpre 6

 

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