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Author Topic: Studio Projects C4 alternatives?  (Read 776 times)

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Online Chanher

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Studio Projects C4 alternatives?
« on: October 13, 2022, 01:12:58 PM »
I have the original C4 version from the early 2000's (card and omni) and I read on this forum that someone from Studio Projects said that the new version is pretty much the same except for a slightly less noise and it wouldn't make a difference when recording amplified venues. Well I've got some really cool projects coming up including orchestral, nature, and even studio applications where maybe the new version might help a little. That and I want a hyper cap! I'm also planning on gifting my old C4 set to my nephew at some point as he's expressing an interest in recording and taping.

I tape in a lot of rugged environments and prefer these cheaper condenser sets (under $300). I want the flexibility of omni card and hyper. I also feel like the C4's have a bit more low end that I like. I've been digging my at853rx but there's the missing low end common with electret's. I posted an ISO for the full newer C4 set in the yard sale, but if anyone has any recommendations for alternatives I'm all ears. I remember that these were a part of the cheap chinese condenser wave that sprang up in the early 2000's, has there been significant changes in the last 20 years? Have cheap condensor sets gotten better? Thanks in advance!
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Online Chanher

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Re: Studio Projects C4 alternatives?
« Reply #1 on: October 13, 2022, 03:21:19 PM »
I just read about the Vanguard V1 set, looks like 4 capsules and the hypers held up really well against mk41s in a blind comp. Anyone have personal experience with alll the caps in quiet and amplified situations? TIA
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Offline fireonshakedwnstreet

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Re: Studio Projects C4 alternatives?
« Reply #2 on: October 13, 2022, 05:12:51 PM »
The C4 hypers a great bang for the buck, as you know. Great from the section. The Octavia set is maybe a little over $300. Heard good things about the Sennheiser e614. It's a supercard. Happy hunting!
Mics: AT 3031; AT 853Rx (c, o); CA-14(c); Naiant X-R (h); Studio Projects C4 (c, o, h); Nak 300/Tascam PE-125/JVC M510 (cp-1, cp-2, cp-3, JVC M510 superdirectional caps)
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Re: Studio Projects C4 alternatives?
« Reply #3 on: October 13, 2022, 07:19:54 PM »
The C4 hypers a great bang for the buck, as you know. Great from the section. The Octavia set is maybe a little over $300. Heard good things about the Sennheiser e614. It's a supercard. Happy hunting!

Thanks man. I had the Jolly mod Octavia set before I got the C4's. Nice mics but like everyone says, a bloated low end. I thought the C4's were a better balance with the lows. Really wanna try the hypers sometime.

Love the size of that Sennheiser but really want capsule flexibility. I've been reading reviews about the Vanguard V1 line (albeit studio reviews) but every single one of them praised the wide cardioid capsule. 4 different capsule options, 5 if you get the Lolli kit! VERY intrigued by that, and then this thread about a V1 hyper and MK41 blind comp is quite intriguing:

https://taperssection.com/index.php?topic=200239.0;all

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Offline fireonshakedwnstreet

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Re: Studio Projects C4 alternatives?
« Reply #4 on: October 13, 2022, 07:46:41 PM »
The Vanguards are indeed VERY nice. Very good comp against THE hyper capsule. May be a step up from the C4s, especially with the subcard caps. Damn this hobby, indeed. Thankfully, I have everything I need for now until I am ready to join the "big leagues" many years from now  :yack:
Mics: AT 3031; AT 853Rx (c, o); CA-14(c); Naiant X-R (h); Studio Projects C4 (c, o, h); Nak 300/Tascam PE-125/JVC M510 (cp-1, cp-2, cp-3, JVC M510 superdirectional caps)
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Re: Studio Projects C4 alternatives?
« Reply #5 on: October 13, 2022, 09:10:15 PM »
Same, I'm many years from the "big leagues" haha. I still can't imagine bringing $2k mics into some of these rowdy venues. I taped a friends band last month and it started raining so i just draped a walmart bag over my mics and let it roll, caught a memorable second set, not even worried about it. One day I'll splurge :)
« Last Edit: October 13, 2022, 09:41:49 PM by Chanher »
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Re: Studio Projects C4 alternatives?
« Reply #6 on: October 13, 2022, 10:33:38 PM »
did a bunch of listening to the Vanguards on youtube. these are not very bright mics, the highs aren't as pronounced like other cheap mics. can't decide if I like that or not, I'll admit I might be basic and prefer a brighter mic. i thought the mids were ok, not bad not good, want to hear more though. the wide cardioid definitely sounds the juiciest. the lolli capsule cardioid kinda sounded better than the regular cardioid capsule. interesting sound, someone described them as being almost ribbon-like, i agree. kinda flat and natural. that wide cardioid tho...
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Offline jbell

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Re: Studio Projects C4 alternatives?
« Reply #7 on: October 14, 2022, 12:49:42 PM »
At that price point you will get the same quality as the studio projects you already run. 
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Re: Studio Projects C4 alternatives?
« Reply #8 on: October 14, 2022, 01:40:33 PM »

If you are willing to flex your budget a little you can find used sets of Peluso CEMC6 SD mics for pretty cheap. Interchangeable capsules are available and are relatively inexpensive. I ran the SP C4s for quite a while they were my starter taper mics. I didn't think they were nearly as bright as other bargain mics like MXL and stuff in that range.

I have a pair of Cascade mics I'd let go for cheap if you are interested. Card caps only though. They are bright.
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Re: Studio Projects C4 alternatives?
« Reply #9 on: October 14, 2022, 02:24:26 PM »
At that price point you will get the same quality as the studio projects you already run.

this is the conclusion i am coming to. while i do believe there is a mid-range microphone category, the small performance upgrade they provide is hard to justify cost-wise, at least for those on a budget. better to work on maximizing the gear i already have.
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Offline jbell

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Re: Studio Projects C4 alternatives?
« Reply #10 on: October 14, 2022, 03:45:12 PM »
I would suggest trying to find some used AKG ck61 & ck63 caps.  They would cost more, but be an upgrade.  They are harder to find since they have been discontinued.

At that price point you will get the same quality as the studio projects you already run.

this is the conclusion i am coming to. while i do believe there is a mid-range microphone category, the small performance upgrade they provide is hard to justify cost-wise, at least for those on a budget. better to work on maximizing the gear i already have.
Mics: DPA ST4011ER & 4018ER 500 | AKG ck61 & ck63> Nbob actives
Preamps: DPA mma 6000
Recorders: Sound Devices Mixpre-10 II | Sony PCM A10

-22        -12         -6        TDS   (32/48)     
]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]][}   
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Offline voltronic

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Re: Studio Projects C4 alternatives?
« Reply #11 on: October 15, 2022, 07:16:54 AM »
If you're willing to live without the hyper pattern, you might consider Line Audio mics. See my signature for many samples and reviews of their amazing quality for the price, including comparison against Schoeps.

With the euro tanking, you can get a pair right now for under $270 shipped to the US. So you could get a pair each of C4 cardioid and Omni1 for $500, and the sound quality would probably beat most anything out there until you double the price.
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Re: Studio Projects C4 alternatives?
« Reply #12 on: October 15, 2022, 03:05:02 PM »
I ran the SP C4s for quite a while they were my starter taper mics. I didn't think they were nearly as bright as other bargain mics like MXL and stuff in that range.

C4's are one of the more balanced "cheap" mics for sure, it's why I like em. I like bright, just not harsh bright like a lot of bargain stuff.

I would suggest trying to find some used AKG ck61 & ck63 caps.  They would cost more, but be an upgrade.  They are harder to find since they have been discontinued.

That AKG sizzle. Will strongly consider these one day, I find them to be bright but smooth, no? I wonder why they would discontinue these...

If you're willing to live without the hyper pattern, you might consider Line Audio mics. See my signature for many samples and reviews of their amazing quality for the price, including comparison against Schoeps.

With the euro tanking, you can get a pair right now for under $270 shipped to the US. So you could get a pair each of C4 cardioid and Omni1 for $500, and the sound quality would probably beat most anything out there until you double the price.

Good point, pretty crazy that the global economy can help our taping budgets haha. I've heard they're pretty backed up on orders, is that still true? I'm interested in these, they seem to be held in high regard in the studio world. I've looked at these a bunch on youtube, including head to head comps with schoeps and I found them  to be pleasant and a bit bright (not in a bad way). Didn't have the defined mids (and low mids) of schoeps but who does? I'll have to listen to some concert stuff in your links, especially the quieter non-amplified examples. the lack of hypers isn't ideal, but the more you think about it, the situations where one uses hypers (amplified shitty clubs/venues) doesn't necessarily benefit a significant amount from high end mics IMO.  Just last night I ran my at853rx hypers into mp2 (great budget combo imo) at hi dive (small "dive" club), managed to finagle a mono sbd feed and I'm VERY pleased with the results. Even if I didn't get the sbd feed, how much better would a mk41 really be? you're at the mercy of the room, soundguy, and your location in the room. plus we went out for a drink afterwards and ended up walking the dark streets with my gear, I felt much better with this basic rig.

I just got done mixing/mastering the headliner, Mamalarky, a nice quirky female-led 4 piece from Texas. Soundguy forgot to switch my sbd feed on before they started, I let him make adjustments to the mix in the room then gently reminded him during the 2nd song haha. You can hear the (albeit subtle) difference when the sbd kicks in during track 2. I've learned to mix sbd's very gently, especially if the mix is a bit off as it almost always is. Track 7 is one of my favs, although I like everything they did.

https://www.dropbox.com/sh/4jbswl8tamtgqv1/AAAOXLjcLAcK32i3DFmMRQYOa?dl=0

« Last Edit: October 16, 2022, 01:01:00 AM by Chanher »
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Offline Twenty8

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Re: Studio Projects C4 alternatives?
« Reply #13 on: October 15, 2022, 05:09:10 PM »
I have a low serial number Busman BSC/K1-4 set I would be willing to part with.
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Re: Studio Projects C4 alternatives?
« Reply #14 on: October 17, 2022, 08:19:15 PM »
I have a low serial number Busman BSC/K1-4 set I would be willing to part with.

I've always liked what Busman has done but unfortunately I started exchanging emails with JP from nohypeaudio haha, we'll see what happens.

I was reading about how Busman started altering/ revised his capsules, I'd be interested in hearing the differences between revisions.
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