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Author Topic: SM58 Research - Why do you use 58's?  (Read 5390 times)

Rafi Singer

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Re: SM58 Research - Why do you use 58's?
« Reply #10 on: May 27, 2011, 11:52:08 pm »

Why, in your opinion, is the SM58 so popular? Is its popularity merited?
It's cheap, pretty durable, aesthetically looks like your prototypical "vocal mic." Some people like it's sound.

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Under what circumstances did you use an SM58 for the first time? When was that?
Probably back when I was in summer camp, around age 15. It's what they had.

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Do you use SM58's regularly? When do you choose the SM58 over other mics? Why?
Yes, at my house gig. Usually, I end up using my own vocal mics (either Sennheiser e835's or EV PL80's) because I feel they sound far superior. I will opt for the house mic when I have either neglected to bring my own, or else I don't trust the artist to take care of my gear.
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When would you use a different vocal microphone?  What mic would that be? Why?
Almost any day of the week, if I had my choice. The e835 and e935 sound way smoother to my ears, they both have a better frequency response, tighter pattern, and WAY higher gain before feedback.

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the SM58 had an impact on your sound career? On live sound in general?
Maybe? I suppose the 58 has become ubiquitous with rock vocals and it is the one mic that most everyone knows about.


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If the SM58 did not exist, what microphone would be the standard for live vocals? Why?
There is no standard.

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Dave Dermont

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Re: SM58 Research - Why do you use 58's?
« Reply #11 on: May 28, 2011, 01:42:26 am »



Why, in your opinion, is the SM58 so popular? Is its popularity merited?
The SM58 sounds good and lasts a long time. Well cared for ones last decades. Abused ones last decades, with only the need to replace the "ball".

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Under what circumstances did you use an SM58 for the first time? When was that?
A band I worked for replaced their six white Peavey mics with brand new SM58s in 1976. The keyboard player from that band still has his.

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Do you use SM58's regularly? When do you choose the SM58 over other mics? Why?
I carry an SM58 in my road case. Very often, I don't make the choice. It's either asked for by the talent, or it's what's in the mic box.

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When would you use a different vocal microphone?  What mic would that be? Why?
When I use my personal mics, I have Audix OM3s and an EV  N/D 967 for singing drummers

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Has the SM58 had an impact on your sound career? On live sound in general?
The SM58 is a lot of people's first "good" microphone. It's biggest impact on live sound in general is that it has become the benchmark by which other mics are compared.

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If the SM58 did not exist, what microphone would be the standard for live vocals? Why?
The Shure 565SD. It was the predecessor to the SM58, and was used extensively on stage at the Woodstock Festival in 1969. Bill Hanley, the man in charge of the audio at Woodstock, and a lot of other high-profile events of the period would A/B the 565 with other popular mics of the day (often Electro-Voice mics, which were popular with broadcasters at that time) for non-believers and anyone else who cared to listen.
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Tim Kerbavaz

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Re: SM58 Research - Why do you use 58's?
« Reply #12 on: May 28, 2011, 08:22:50 pm »

It seems this should be more of a business case study that "technocultural" study whatever that means. At least the other mic manufacturers might want to read your paper.

JR

This paper is on the history, impact of 58 - I want the "culture" behind the "techno." I guess It's coming off via these questions as more of a Shure Puff piece. Obviously I'm not asking the right questions.

The 58 is unquestionably popular, but perhaps that popularity was more of being in the right place at the right time than the mic's inherent merits? It sounds like a lot of people resent the 58.

(To be fair, I use the e835 for live vocals. I bought them as an experiment, and I haven't really had a chance to do a real head-to-head, but I'm thus far happy.)
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Tim Kerbavaz

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Re: SM58 Research - Why do you use 58's?
« Reply #13 on: May 28, 2011, 08:39:19 pm »

The Shure 565SD. It was the predecessor to the SM58, and was used extensively on stage at the Woodstock Festival in 1969. Bill Hanley, the man in charge of the audio at Woodstock, and a lot of other high-profile events of the period would A/B the 565 with other popular mics of the day (often Electro-Voice mics, which were popular with broadcasters at that time) for non-believers and anyone else who cared to listen.


You seem to have the history of the 58 down pat.  Could you point me to a couple books or websites that have a good history?  I'm not finding anything comprehensive in my search of the campus library.
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Fred Merkle

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Re: SM58 Research - Why do you use 58's?
« Reply #14 on: May 31, 2011, 01:00:20 pm »

Have you spoken with Shure?  I know they've got a published book about the history of the company.  It certainly has a large amount of space dedicated to the 58.

Also, look up Ernie Seeler.  He was the engineer in the Mic Lab that developed the Unidyne III.

Also, some other tidbits.

1) The SM57 came first.
2) The 57 was intended for studio use.
3) Ernie Seeler hated rock music

-Fred
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Gus Housen

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Re: SM58 Research - Why do you use 58's?
« Reply #15 on: May 31, 2011, 02:39:41 pm »

I use them because
they dont break
they are consistant
almost nobody says no to them
I am used to eqing them
I have 32 of them
Nothing says Rock like a '58

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Jim McKeveny

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Re: SM58 Research - Why do you use 58's?
« Reply #16 on: June 01, 2011, 10:48:57 am »

For all of their foibles, they are a known quantity. I can fly in and listen to a system, talk thru a 58, and get to where I need to be quickly.

The world has witnessed how many fantastic shows where a 58 was the source on vocals? There are weaker links in the deliverance chain...
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Paul Dershem

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Re: SM58 Research - Why do you use 58's?
« Reply #17 on: July 10, 2011, 12:30:22 am »

The 58 shares the cultural stage with the VW Beetle and McDonalds hamburgers; they may not be the best, but they sure are recognizable! Notariety has become more important than quality. Was Warhol right?
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Charlie Zureki

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Re: SM58 Research - Why do you use 58's?
« Reply #18 on: July 10, 2011, 03:01:09 pm »

Have you spoken with Shure?  I know they've got a published book about the history of the company.  It certainly has a large amount of space dedicated to the 58.

Also, look up Ernie Seeler.  He was the engineer in the Mic Lab that developed the Unidyne III.

Also, some other tidbits.

1) The SM57 came first.
2) The 57 was intended for studio use.
3) Ernie Seeler hated rock music

-Fred

   Hello,

  I own a couple of the Shure 565 Mics and one of the Unidyne Mics. 
 
 I don't know if this has already been posted here...but, the switch cover could be taken off and adjusted for either a low or high impedance output.

  Cheers,
  Hammer
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Jonathan Johnson

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Re: SM58 Research - Why do you use 58's?
« Reply #19 on: July 11, 2011, 01:04:49 am »

How often does it happen that the performer has a SM58 in hand as a prop... but the real sound is from something else like a hairline mic (or, heaven forbid, a prerecorded track)?

I remember watching The Statler Brothers Show and noticing that when they sang, they were using wireless handheld mics (don't remember the brand) but when they'd stop singing and talk, the mics were at their sides and you could hear them just fine.
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