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Author Topic: Vocal microphones  (Read 83243 times)

Scott Holtzman

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Re: Vocal microphones
« Reply #60 on: August 13, 2015, 02:21:14 am »

Gordon, that is a unique opinion, just what do you find so deficient?  What do you consider a modern, general purpose vocal mic?  I saw Susan Tedechi on Live at Infinity Hall.  She sounded amazing with a 58 as do countless other very talented folks.  The

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Scott AKA "Skyking" Holtzman

Ghost Audio Visual Solutions, LLC
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Gordon Brinton

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Re: Vocal microphones
« Reply #61 on: August 13, 2015, 07:30:35 am »

Gordon, that is a unique opinion, just what do you find so deficient?  What do you consider a modern, general purpose vocal mic?  I saw Susan Tedechi on Live at Infinity Hall.  She sounded amazing with a 58 as do countless other very talented folks.  The

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One thing that I've learned in the studio is that EQing begins with the mic. If you find that you need to EQ something pretty strongly on the mixer channel, then you may be using the wrong mic. Modern mics are tailored to have more personality and a variety of physical characteristics for a reason. It is our job as sound engineers to use those qualities to our advantage in every situation...as tools, so-to-speak.

To me, the 58 just seems so generic and doesn't have much to offer when it comes to problem solving a unique voice. And isn't every voice unique? Using it for everything and everyone is like an artist painting every picture using the same generic brush. Then add to that, thousands of painters who rave about how wonderfully that one brush works for every painting they do.

Call me a fool if you must, but I just don't see it as "the most wonderful mic in the world" like others do. I can't get excited about a mic that, to me, just sounds ho hum. Isn't running sound, in itself, an art? Give me more. Give me variety. Give me the freedom to create.

All of you 58-lubbers should not be offended by my opinion. If it works for you, then keep on doing what you do. I didn't say that it sucked; I just said that I feel it is over-glorified for all that it is.
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lindsay Dean

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Re: Vocal microphones
« Reply #62 on: August 13, 2015, 03:02:07 pm »

THE SM-58
not my favorite but,
Instantly recognized as a microphone icon
  Dependable
     rugged
acceptable sound
   predictable
    affordable
  work horse .
at around $100 as long as i can remember.
 Like and old freind that will help with anything you ask, just not that great at it.
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Scott Wagner

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Re: Vocal microphones
« Reply #63 on: August 13, 2015, 03:12:58 pm »

The simple fact is that if you are an audio provider, you'd better have at least a half-dozen SM-58s. Are there other mics? Absolutely, but you shouldn't buy any until after you've satisfied my first statement. I can't tell you how many times I've been ordered to strike my "fancy" vocal mics in favor of 58s.
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Scott Wagner
Big Nickel Audio

Gordon Brinton

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Re: Vocal microphones
« Reply #64 on: August 13, 2015, 04:06:43 pm »

The simple fact is that if you are an audio provider, you'd better have at least a half-dozen SM-58s. Are there other mics? Absolutely, but you shouldn't buy any until after you've satisfied my first statement. I can't tell you how many times I've been ordered to strike my "fancy" vocal mics in favor of 58s.

...And if I don't have any to put up? Who wins? I doubt they will fire me on the spot because the show must go on. Worse case...they may decide not to hire me again. But I'll take the gamble that I can change their minds by the end of the first set with my fancy mics. Besides, there are a million local bands out there looking for a good sound guy. Many of which aren't so narrow minded.
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frank kayser

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Re: Vocal microphones
« Reply #65 on: August 13, 2015, 04:46:16 pm »

...And if I don't have any to put up? Who wins? I doubt they will fire me on the spot because the show must go on. Worse case...they may decide not to hire me again. But I'll take the gamble that I can change their minds by the end of the first set with my fancy mics. Besides, there are a million local bands out there looking for a good sound guy. Many of which aren't so narrow minded.
THE SM-58
not my favorite but,
Instantly recognized as a microphone icon
  Dependable
     rugged
acceptable sound
   predictable
    affordable
  work horse .
at around $100 as long as i can remember.
 Like and old friend that will help with anything you ask, just not that great at it.
Folks at all levels of performance recognize the 58 and feel comfortable using them.
It is a known quantity. I don't carry 58s in my kit, but one place I work has a bunch.

Live is not like studio where one has time to check and experiment.  Many times there is no sound check at all (small venues, bars)  Many times one can't get a level on the mic because no one actually sings at their normal voice during what ends up being little more than a line check.
I've had a number of folks show up with their own mics - the latest, an old Radio Shack switched dynamic of some sort - I know the 58 will sound better (anything would) but all I can do is put it up.

The 58: An old acquaintance, jack of all, but master of none. Not entirely sure you want to be seen together in a nice place. Someone you know that "cleans up well".
frank
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Scott Wagner

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Re: Vocal microphones
« Reply #66 on: August 13, 2015, 11:17:03 pm »

Besides, there are a million local bands out there looking for a good sound guy. Many of which aren't so narrow minded.
Local bands looking for a sound guy? That's not exactly the clientele I'm looking for. My picky clients get what they ask for, and you'd be surprised how many tech riders specify SM-58s for vocals. Are they my favorite vocal mic? Nope, but any sound provider would be foolish not to have a half-dozen or more in their mic inventory.
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Scott Wagner
Big Nickel Audio

Scott Holtzman

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Re: Vocal microphones
« Reply #67 on: August 13, 2015, 11:35:11 pm »

Local bands looking for a sound guy? That's not exactly the clientele I'm looking for. My picky clients get what they ask for, and you'd be surprised how many tech riders specify SM-58s for vocals. Are they my favorite vocal mic? Nope, but any sound provider would be foolish not to have a half-dozen or more in their mic inventory.

I too have been asked to pull a "better" mic in favor of an SM-58.  Unless you work more than once with the artist and can choose a mic that matches their performance style it's a risk management maneuver.  Ditto with guitar players and 57'd.  They just don't want to take a chance.

I have not had this happen on average bar bands, usually better regional acts where I am working for the venue.

My personal mic box is Sennheiser heavy but I have a 3 58's, 2 beta 58's and  2 57's in case the artist doesn't want an 835, 945, 906 etc.

I have also had a few drummers turn down my Audix D6 so I now also carry a Beta 52 as a CYA.   
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Scott AKA "Skyking" Holtzman

Ghost Audio Visual Solutions, LLC
Cleveland OH
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Gordon Brinton

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Re: Vocal microphones
« Reply #68 on: August 14, 2015, 05:21:53 am »

Local bands looking for a sound guy? That's not exactly the clientele I'm looking for. My picky clients get what they ask for, and you'd be surprised how many tech riders specify SM-58s for vocals. Are they my favorite vocal mic? Nope, but any sound provider would be foolish not to have a half-dozen or more in their mic inventory.

I hear ya. I'm not completely bullheaded about it. If I start to get demands for them, (I haven't yet,) or I sense that it is costing me jobs, then of course, I'll break down and buy some.

Maybe I've been lucky. Thus far, none of my local bands have had the presence of mind to make any demands. The few rock-star singers that brought their own mics were easily converted once we had A/B'd mics at sound check.

(Thanks, guys. Good discussion.)
« Last Edit: August 14, 2015, 05:24:21 am by Gordon Brinton »
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Steve Loewenthal

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Re: Vocal microphones
« Reply #69 on: August 14, 2015, 08:02:04 am »

are you in the business of getting and providing a sound system, or are you in the band (or the "regular" mix tech of the band)
if the first, you stock 58, 57, b52, plus optionally anything else you might actually like.
if the 2nd, you start trying on shoes till you get a good fit.

I'm just speculating on the 1st, I'm in the 2nd category.
However, if a "real" sound person of the 1st category suggests I try something different, I listen.
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Steve Loewenthal

"I'm, just the guy in a band that owns the PA and I'm trying to figure out how it works. (Been trying to learn somethin' about it for about 20 years and I hope somethin' learns me soon)"

ProSoundWeb Community

Re: Vocal microphones
« Reply #69 on: August 14, 2015, 08:02:04 am »


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