Recording Studio Microphones
Do You Know What Recording Mic Is Right for You?
With all the mics and mic types on the market, choosing a recording microphone can be daunting. We’re here to help! While every recording studio mic for sale in our store is top notch, it’ll help to know what different mics are made to do. Here’s the rundown:
Recommending a mic based only on price range is difficult. Microphones often sound quite different based on the vocalist using them. The room acoustics (floor, ceiling, and wall materials) and the mic pick-up pattern are also important when it comes to choosing the "right" mic.
Still have questions? Don't see what you are looking for? Just ask us! We can special order just about anything for you. A music recording expert is just a phone call away: 928-284-1619.
- Omnidirectionals hear sound at the same level all the way around the mic.
- Cardioid microphones pick up best from directly in front, rejecting sound directly from the rear.
- Figure eights pick up from in front and behind but don't hear the sound coming from the sides.
- Dynamic microphones, while generally used more in live settings, can be used for rock recordings (usually with a pre-amp) for a thicker, warmer sound.
- Condenser mics are preferred for recording in most other situations due to their detailed high end and the very low noise produced by the mic itself.
The Midi Store Quick Microphone Guide - our guide to choosing the best mic for your application.
For Vocals: a Large-diaphragm cardioid
condenser mic is a great choice if you have "noisy" room. An omni Large-diaphragm would make more sense of the room is very "dead". Pop filters should be used in most cases.
Dynamic mics can and are often used for male rock vocals to cut through the backing tracks.
Bass & Guitar & Bass:
really your choice, if the mic sounds good then use it, though for bass
it's important to use a mic with good low-frequency extension. Both
dynamic and condenser mics are used in front of guitar cabinets, having a
high SPL is a really the only requirement. The key to getting a good
sound here is as much in the positioning of the mic as the mic itself.
Overheads: Small-diaphragm condenser mics are the choice here, sometimes ribbon mics are used to tone done the high end of the cymbals. On the other hand, Dynamic, cardioid-pattern mics are the best bet for Close-miked drums and this is about the only place size and shape are important so the drummer has freedom to play. Kick-drum Mics are usually dynamics with a very high SPL and excellent low end response. A dedicated kick drum mic is an essential purchase.
Small-diaphragm cardioid condenser mics work best again for a
"noisy" room, but an omni-pattern
microphone will usually give a more natural sound. Large-diaphragm
cardioid condensers can work quite well, and depending on the type of
music being played, dynamic or ribbon microphones may be used, but they
do require a pre-amp so noise can be an issue.
It's really all about the SPL here, horns produce the highest SPL of any instrument, especially if you mic them close-up. Large-diaphragm condenser mics and
good-quality dynamic mics with
cardioid-patterns will generally work fine for this application.
For Percussion: Small-diaphragm capacitor mics are the first choice here, large-diaphragm (as long as they usually used for vocals) can also work quite well.