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Budget mic for home recording

Discussion in 'Amps, Mics & Pickups [DB]' started by jarop, Jul 22, 2012.

  1. jarop


    Sep 7, 2008
    Hi All,
    I'm looking to record some arrangements for bass (Closest thing that comes to mind would be ) and i'm looking for the best budget mic to handle the job. I have an external sound card that accepts mic inputs but DI doesn't seem to be a viable option for double bass (works great for electric bass though).

    I've read around on the forum and people seem to be saying that the AKG C2000B is a good budget option, but I've also heard good things about the RODE NT and NT2 and was wondering if anybody could shed some light on some potential options for me to explore?

  2. prd004


    Dec 3, 2010
    Budget AKG mics don't do anything for me, their top notch stuff is top notch but on the low end there are many better options IMO.

    Without knowing your price range it's hard to make suggestions. I have never used the Rodes you mentioned but have heard positive things.
    I had a pair of Rode small condensers but found them to be too hot. Later they came out with an upgraded model with a pad.

    Audio Technica make good budget mics as do Carvin. Although I don't think Carvin actually make theirs, but they are dirt cheap and perform well above the price point.
  3. pnut166


    Jun 5, 2008
    MF`s Deal Of The Day is a MXL V250 Condenser Mic, a steal at $49 today only. DUnno about double bass, but I used a friend`s once, and it sounded fantastic with acoustic guitar.
  4. jarop


    Sep 7, 2008
    Sorry I should probably clarify a bit. I'm looking something anywhere up to around $300 (seeing as I'll probably have to pay a bit extra to get it shipped to Sydney). I have a fast track pro to handle the input and will record the tracks straight to GarageBand for EQing. This is the first mic I've had to purchase so I'm coming in with very little experience as far as DIY recording is concerned.
  5. Michael Glynn

    Michael Glynn

    Feb 25, 2004
    There are a ton of decent options in your price range these days.

    One first thing to consider is what type of mic. You can get a good condenser mic in your range, and there are also some decent ribbon mics that are inexpensive now.

    The MXL V67G and Studio Projects B1 are good entry-level large diaphragm condenser mics. I've heard good things about both for recording bass, but have not used them myself.

    The Audio Technica AT2020 is similar, and also seems to be well-regarded in that lower price range.

    Inexpensive ribbon mics include models from Nady and Apex, a step up would be options from Cascade and ShinyBox. Ribbons can have a more mellow sound than some cheap condensers, but require more preamp gain and can be more noisy. Reliability can be an issue with the cheap ones as well. Here's a nice intro on ribbon mics:

    You could also get a dynamic mic, but in my experience the less expensive ones can be great for live use (less bleed, more feedback resistance) but do not get as good of a sound for recording use as similarly priced condensers or ribbons.

    There are also good small diaphragm condenser mics out there, but I've always preferred large diaphragm mics for bass.

    Anyway, you can see that there are tons of options, but in your situation I would probably go for a decent large diaphragm condenser mic. Once you narrow it down, look up reviews online.

    In any case, mic placement and the sound of the room are as important as the choice of mic.
  6. jarop


    Sep 7, 2008
    Thanks for the feedback, I'll have to give the V67G and B1s a look, it seems like condenser mics are the way to go for this. Will do some research and post back with anything I find!
  7. MikeCanada


    Aug 30, 2011
    Toronto, ON
    I am not sure if you have a good music shop locally, but another option could be the possibility of renting. A lot of places will rent pretty high end gear, and occasionally will also sell some of their gear that has been out on rental for a good price.

    Depending on the amount of time you need it for, how frequently you plan on recording etc. it could even be a more affordable option. If you plan on more recording in the future, it is also a good opportunity to check out gear that could currently be outside your price range, but could make a good investment when you have more cash to work with.

    As for brands and models and all that jazz, I'm sorry I don't have a whole lot of suggestions. I just figured this way you might have access to some gear you wouldn't have considered before on price point alone.
  8. tyb507

    tyb507 Supporting Member

    Sep 17, 2004
    Burlington, Vermont
  9. bdowd

    bdowd Supporting Member

    Oct 27, 2005
    New Hampton, NH
    My nod goes to the Audio Technica AT2020. It's about a hundred bucks American, is such a great all-around mic for home studio use, and it records upright fantastically. It is my go to mic for quick recordings.
  10. DDBASS7


    Jun 28, 2012
    I own a pair of AT2020s
    How do you record with that mic(s)
    I have the zoom R16, Toshiba laptop, M-Audio Fast Track Pro for remote
    Also a Mac Desktop -usually use Garage Band, Logic, Cubase, Audacity for editing.
  11. SoundThinker


    Jul 30, 2012
    The Superlux SMK-H8K matched stereo pair in a case with stereo shock mounts and measured response curves is only about $160 from http://www.superlux.us/.

    I am not affiliated in any way other than being a satisfied user.

    I friend with a fine recording studio here in Port Townsend did a microphone shootout a few days ago and I brought in my Superlux pair and a single mike performed better than a Neuman for recording an early Gibson guitar. We were all amazed.

    They require phantom power and about 50dB of trim gain, so some recording devices won't get the job done. I use a Mackie mixer with just over 60dB trim gain with these and they perform very well. I also have a Line6 USB recording interface with only 40dB gain and it won't do the job without the Mackie as front end.

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