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#1
So, my dilemma is.

I'm after a new microphone. I'm currently looking at getting the Blue Bluebird.
Thing is, if I buy it that's it, nothing else.

If I go for the MXL990/990, or AKG Preception 220, I'll have 100 pounds for some other goodies. Which would be the best in the long run?

Because I was thinking of buying this as well!
Digitech JamMan Stereo - Thomann UK

And then maybe just the MXL 990? Because I also have an Audio Technica AT2020.

And I could always DI my acoustic guitar?
#2
The AT2020 you already have is way better than the MXL 990. You already have a low end condenser, no point in buying another. Is used an option? You'll probably be able to get the Blue mic and your pedal for the cost of just one of them
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#3
Quote by MatrixClaw
The AT2020 you already have is way better than the MXL 990. You already have a low end condenser, no point in buying another. Is used an option? You'll probably be able to get the Blue mic and your pedal for the cost of just one of them


I've been looking round, and I can't seem to find a used Bluebird. :/
#4
For what it's worth, I shelled out $275 for a brand new Bluebird and when I opened the wooden box it's stored it, the mic had broken into three pieces and was rattling around. I temporarily reattached the wires inside just to hear it before I returned it, and it was a dull and uninspiring sound, no vibe at all to match the looks. It just plain doesn't sound special.

I would recommend NOT getting the bluebird, the 2020 is good enough.

Does your interface have two inputs? You should DI your acoustic AND mic it (remember, you don't necessarily want to aim the mic at the sound hole, but rather the 12th fret area) then pan that out in stereo. Group the two tracks and bus them in stereo to a nice compressor and/or reverb. I think you'll be shocked at how good it sounds.

Also, the jam man is terrible. I borrowed one for a while and it has awful sound quality, it completely digitizes and degrades your tone. You could spend about 50-60 bucks on a midi foot controller and use that to control loops in your DAW. Just a thought to consider.
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#5
I think my interface has 2 inputs yes. Edirol UA EX 25.
But I'm just thinking. What if I want to sing, and play guitar at the same time? Would I only DI it then? And use the mic for vocal? Should I maybe go for the AKG Preception 220 instead?
Last edited by Gingerlocks at May 31, 2013,
#6
Quote by Gingerlocks
I think my interface has 2 inputs yes. Edirol UA EX 25.
But I'm just thinking. What if I want to sing, and play guitar at the same time? Would I only DI it then? And use the mic for vocal? Should I maybe go for the AKG Preception 220 instead?

If I were in that situation, here is what I would do:
Vocal through mic, guitar DI. Then record the guitar a second time through the mic, and pan the two takes in wide stereo. Basically the same thing. It will make the sound much fuller, most every band will double track guitars, especially acoustics.

For what it's worth, I've been recording music for about 3-4 years, and I have never used two mics at the same time. Always a combination of one mic (on vocals or whatever else) and a DI. I've never had an interface with more than two inputs, but I do have an extra single-input 1/4" interface in case for some reason I need an extra DI track.

Maybe later tonight I can bounce out a mix of a song I just did with the acoustic guitar panned out with the Mic/DI combination. The mix is with my mastering engineer right now, but I figure you don't want to wait 2-3 weeks to hear the example haha
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#7
Quote by Sid McCall
If I were in that situation, here is what I would do:
Vocal through mic, guitar DI. Then record the guitar a second time through the mic, and pan the two takes in wide stereo. Basically the same thing. It will make the sound much fuller, most every band will double track guitars, especially acoustics.

For what it's worth, I've been recording music for about 3-4 years, and I have never used two mics at the same time. Always a combination of one mic (on vocals or whatever else) and a DI. I've never had an interface with more than two inputs, but I do have an extra single-input 1/4" interface in case for some reason I need an extra DI track.

Maybe later tonight I can bounce out a mix of a song I just did with the acoustic guitar panned out with the Mic/DI combination. The mix is with my mastering engineer right now, but I figure you don't want to wait 2-3 weeks to hear the example haha


But regarding the mic purchase. Should I buy a cheaper mic, like the AKG, and then perhaps buy something else?
#8
Quote by Gingerlocks
But regarding the mic purchase. Should I buy a cheaper mic, like the AKG, and then perhaps buy something else?

In my opinion, I do not believe you need to purchase another mic.

Is there something in the sound of your recordings that you're not happy with? Is there a part of your workflow that's slowing you down or inhibiting your creativity? If so, tell us what that is and we can recommend a quality product that will solve your problem on your budget.

If not, then stop worrying about buying something new and just focus on being creative. It seems like you're letting your gear psych you out into thinking that you can't be a good musician unless you're using a bunch of gear.

I'm gonna drop a big ol' advice bomb on you here, something I think goes for EVERYONE on this website, myself included:

Spend your money on time. However you need to do that, use your money to solve problems that are keeping you out of the studio, or keeping you from practicing/playing/writing music. Save your money, and take a day off of work to spend at home writing and recording songs. Give your girlfriend a stack of cash and tell her to go to the mall and buy something so that you can have some peace and quiet to write/record.

Whatever your particular situation is, use money to increase your time writing and recording. If that means you need to buy a second mic to speed up your workflow, then so be it. If it means taking a day off of work to have more time to spend with your single microphone, then you should try that and see how it works out for you.
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#9
Quote by Sid McCall
In my opinion, I do not believe you need to purchase another mic.

Is there something in the sound of your recordings that you're not happy with? Is there a part of your workflow that's slowing you down or inhibiting your creativity? If so, tell us what that is and we can recommend a quality product that will solve your problem on your budget.

If not, then stop worrying about buying something new and just focus on being creative. It seems like you're letting your gear psych you out into thinking that you can't be a good musician unless you're using a bunch of gear.

I'm gonna drop a big ol' advice bomb on you here, something I think goes for EVERYONE on this website, myself included:

Spend your money on time. However you need to do that, use your money to solve problems that are keeping you out of the studio, or keeping you from practicing/playing/writing music. Save your money, and take a day off of work to spend at home writing and recording songs. Give your girlfriend a stack of cash and tell her to go to the mall and buy something so that you can have some peace and quiet to write/record.

Whatever your particular situation is, use money to increase your time writing and recording. If that means you need to buy a second mic to speed up your workflow, then so be it. If it means taking a day off of work to have more time to spend with your single microphone, then you should try that and see how it works out for you.


I will take this advice on board. Thanks a lot. Well. I'm just thinking. At the moment I have.
Edirol UA Ex 25 (interface)
Audio Technica AT2020

With that, I record it into logic. I'm just thinking. Having more mics, then I could perhaps record more in live time, if I got a friend over to record on cajon?
#10
Theoretically, yes, you may as well have a second mic for that situation.

In practice, I tried to do the exact same thing- record one vocal, one guitar, one cajon at the same time. Here's a fun fact- Cajon is SUPER ANNOYING to record with only one mic. The best way to record it will involve 2-3 mics simultaneously. But yeah, for a live scratch take, you may as well buy a second mic.

Now here's something I propose, that might give you more to think about- what about another 2020? Then you will have two of the same mic for stereo applications. You can record your guitar with two mics, or the cajon with two mics, etc. It won't offer a new tone to your arsenal, but having a set of stereo mics can be even more useful, especially if you already like the sound you get with the 2020.

Also, if your source volume are balanced nicely, you could mic up the whole room with your two 2020s in stereo, and then sing/play with as many people as you want. I think this would work ESPECIALLY well for acoustic/vocals/cajon, and give a great live vibe. If I were you, this is what I would do.

One more edit: I know you're in the UK, but we have this pack in the US: http://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/AT2041sp/

Perhaps you can find something similar? Then you get the second 2020 for 'matched' stereo applications, and a pencil condenser for when you need a different tone. Then if/when you go for a larger interface in the future, you will have three mics you can use at once.
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Last edited by Sid McCall at May 31, 2013,
#12
Quote by Gingerlocks

Nope, those are crap. Especially compared to your 2020. I thought a few people already told you that? The MXL pack would be a downgrade and a waste of money. No question.

Buy another 2020 for stereo, you want two of the same mic for that. See if you can find the AT pack I linked to, it will be a consistent sound and a higher quality purchase (for not much more money).

Edit: here ya go! http://www.audiovisualuk.com/1.2.0/product.php?id_product=15250

(can you tell I'm having a slow day at work? haha)
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Last edited by Sid McCall at May 31, 2013,
#13
Quote by Sid McCall
Nope, those are crap. Especially compared to your 2020. I thought a few people already told you that? The MXL pack would be a downgrade and a waste of money. No question.

Buy another 2020 for stereo, you want two of the same mic for that. See if you can find the AT pack I linked to, it will be a consistent sound and a higher quality purchase (for not much more money).


Cool man! =) I'm thikning about not buying anything at all now though, and just being creative!
#14
Quote by Gingerlocks
Cool man! =) I'm thikning about not buying anything at all now though, and just being creative!

Well, if you do decide to buy something, this is my recommendation: http://www.audiovisualuk.com/1.2.0/product.php?id_product=15250

If that money is burning a hole in your pocket, this is a good way to spend it. Good luck!
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#16
Just to chip in, I agree with pretty much everything Sid said.

You've already got a solid mic and you're not going to notice a big enough difference to justify buying another, slightly better large-diaphragm condenser.
#19
Quote by Gingerlocks
Is there perhaps anything else I should buy?

He's saying that buying another slightly different mic won't be very helpful. It seems as if he supports my 'buy another 2020 for stereo room use' suggestion, but I don't want to put words in his mouth

Glad I could help, feel free to PM me if you ever need any advice and don't feel like turning it into a thread. I'm always happy to help!
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#21
Quote by Gingerlocks
If we're not talking about mics, would there be something else I need?

Is anything not working the way you want it to?

It's best to wait until there's a need to be filled before buying something. Just because someone recommends something, that doesn't mean you need it yet.

For instance, you 'need' a 32-channel SSL desk, two Apogee Symphony units, a Mac Pro, two Neumann U87s, 10 SM57s, An AKG C12, and a 7.1 Focal monitor setup.

Do you really need that? Hell no. Is there an engineer somewhere who does? Yep, there are a bunch of them.

Are you making an accurate record of the song that you've written, relative to your engineering skills and guitar/vocal skills? If so, then you're good to go.


But I guess I could ask, since you seem to have that cash burning a hole in your pocket, do you have monitors? That's something that pretty much everyone needs, regardless of level. That said, you can get by with headphones, so you don't technically 'need' anything else.
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Last edited by Sid McCall at May 31, 2013,
#23
Quote by Sid McCall
Does your interface have two inputs? You should DI your acoustic AND mic it (remember, you don't necessarily want to aim the mic at the sound hole, but rather the 12th fret area) then pan that out in stereo.

Meh, I wouldn't.

I've yet to hear an acoustic guitar that I'd actually want to use the DI on it in a recording. Convenient for live use, yes, but not a substitute for a good 2-mic setup.
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#24
Quote by Gingerlocks
Yes. I've got monitors! =) Maybe I should just put it in the bank.

Yes, that. Do that! Save it for a rainy day. Now get your butt off the computer and go write and/or record a song

Quote by MatrixClaw
Meh, I wouldn't.

I've yet to hear an acoustic guitar that I'd actually want to use the DI on it in a recording. Convenient for live use, yes, but not a substitute for a good 2-mic setup.

I'll post a link later to mine, then! It's an early 90s Seagull, under saddle piezo through a GAP73 (Neve 73 clone). Tiny bit of ITB EQ and it sounds perfect.
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Last edited by Sid McCall at May 31, 2013,
#25
Normally it involves rolling off all the top end. I find DI'd acoustics are fine when they're in a mix... but on their own or the main focus... nah. Way better of micing it.
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#26
Quote by ChemicalFire
Normally it involves rolling off all the top end. I find DI'd acoustics are fine when they're in a mix... but on their own or the main focus... nah. Way better of micing it.

I don't think I would ever DI and not Mic. I never recommended that in this thread, always DI and Mic and then pan them wide.

I find the two methods combine to bring in the full spectrum of the instrument. The DI provides the lower half of the frequencies, and the mic gets the high end to sound its best.
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#27
I'm actually leaning more towards the MXL pack. Because then I can buy a second screen for my MacBook!
#28
Quote by Gingerlocks
I'm actually leaning more towards the MXL pack. Because then I can buy a second screen for my MacBook!

Look, dude, please listen to me. The MXL pack is garbage, You either want to buy something that is an upgrade, or buy nothing at all. If you want a second screen for your macbook, then buy that and don't buy any mics until you can afford something that is on the same level as your 2020.
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#30
Quote by Gingerlocks

I feel like this thread is going in reverse...

But to answer your question, the 2035 bundle would be an upgrade. The mic stand is probably not going to be useful since it doesn't have a boom, so you might want to buy a boom arm for it.

You could also just get another 2020, like I said before, which would be better for stereo micing a room (which will give you the best results with the instruments you have).
http://www.thomann.de/gb/audio_technica_at_2020_bundle.htm
Then spend the money you saved on another stand.

But yes, if you want to buy a different mic, buy the 2035, not the perception or mxl. I highly recommend scrubbing those two mics out of your brain as potential options.
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#31
Awesome. But I will only buy the screen for now, and then I'll take it from there. I'll be creative!
#32
I spoke to the studio guy at my college today. And he said either to get the Bluebird or the Beyer Dynamic M201TG? Does anyone agree?
#33
Well, I posted my thoughts on the bluebird earlier in the thread, being that is is a piece of junk that arrived in pieces. It looks way cooler than it sounds, too.

Beyerdynamic make good mics, I looked it up and it seems really really nice. Also, if you're taking classes with this guy, I'd definitely follow his advice.

I say go for the M201TG.
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#34
I really like my Beyer M201TG on electric guitar and snares... but I don't know what you'd use them for. There are better mics out there for vocals, and I certainly wouldn't use a dynamic mic for an acoustic as a first choice (not that I haven't tried it with the 201... it actually sounds pretty good, but unless you're really digging into the strings or have a great preamp with a low noise/gain ratio, a dynamic is going to create a lot of noise micing an acoustic, because you're going to have to crank the preamps to get a decent signal)
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#36
It would work well for the cajon, though.
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#37
Quote by Gingerlocks
Well, I will be using it for acoustic guitar.

Just stick with what you have, then.

It's a nice sounding mic, but definitely not my first choice for acoustic, not even by a long shot.
Quote by Dave_Mc
I've had tube amps for a while now, but never actually had any go down on me
Quote by jj1565
maybe you're not saying the right things? an amp likes to know you care.





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#38
Quote by MatrixClaw
Just stick with what you have, then.

It's a nice sounding mic, but definitely not my first choice for acoustic, not even by a long shot.


what would you choose for acoustic guitar? Not too expensive.
#39
The AT2020/20201 combo is absolutely perfect for acoustic guitar.

If you can be more specific with exactly how much you want to spend, we can recommend something that will be exactly the price you want to pay.
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#40
Hmm. Around 150 GBP. I can stretch it to more, but I'd rather not.

And. Would you recommend it to be a Small Diaphragm condenser for the acoustic guitar?
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