#1
I'm on the look out for a good mic, I record most of the time direct in, but I can't do that with my voice or my acoustic (it doesn't have built-in elecronics). So I'm looking for a budget mic to cover mostly a) voice (speech and singing) and b) acoustic instruments. I'm on a tight budget as a student living alone so every cent counts. I'm pretty sure I should get a large-diaphragm condenser, so these two are my top options:

https://www.thomann.de/gb/audio_technica_at2020.htm

https://www.thomann.de/gb/akg_c3000_b.htm

I don't have a set in stone budget, but I need to save as much money I can. What is the general consensus on these two mics? Can you recommend something better? I have cables and a decent audio interface so I only need the mic. Thank you all for any advice
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#2
I'm partial to the Sontronics STC-2 for budget vs. sound quality, and it's not that far out of your budget:

https://www.thomann.de/gb/sontronics_stc2.htm

I have one and I use it on all voices I record.

Another microphone I love for it's price is the MXL V69M. Nice and warm C-12 styled clone. I've used these and also think they're pretty good for value:

https://www.thomann.de/gb/mxl_v69m.htm


The 2 mics you listed are very brittle sounding, meaning the 2kHz range is hyped and the sound is slightly 'crunchy', and not in a musical sense.
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#3
Both of those mics look pretty fantastic (I could buy the MXL V69M based on it's looks alone), but I am not even sure if I can afford the cheaper mics and still eat. I have a strict student budget. But hey, if I find a part time job, then maybe.

Honestly, I could just look into a used Shure SM57/58, they'd work decently for speech and I could use them for electric instruments better as well. Singing and acoustic instruments might suffer though.
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#4
AT2020 is fine, the C3000 is a bit better as I have both of them. Either one will do well, the AT2020 is a bit more round as the C3000 is a bit brighter but I like them both for the price. You might also look into a AT4040 used which will be about the same price as the two mentioned above but more robust.
#5
I've never tried the V69M linked above, but the V67 is an amazing mic for the price that's very underrated:

https://www.thomann.de/gb/mxl_v67g.htm?ref=search_rslt_v67_182732_0

I use two of these for overheads on drums most of the time and they sound great. Most cheap condensers are very bright and all have a cheap sound to them; the V67 is one of the few I've found under $1000 that actually sounds warm, like a good condenser should.
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#6
Quote by diabolical
AT2020 is fine, the C3000 is a bit better as I have both of them. Either one will do well, the AT2020 is a bit more round as the C3000 is a bit brighter but I like them both for the price. You might also look into a AT4040 used which will be about the same price as the two mentioned above but more robust.


AT4040 might be out of my budget, but the 2020 seems like the best option out of those two.

Quote by MatrixClaw
I've never tried the V69M linked above, but the V67 is an amazing mic for the price that's very underrated:

https://www.thomann.de/gb/mxl_v67g.htm?ref=search_rslt_v67_182732_0

I use two of these for overheads on drums most of the time and they sound great. Most cheap condensers are very bright and all have a cheap sound to them; the V67 is one of the few I've found under $1000 that actually sounds warm, like a good condenser should.


Well, this definitely got me interested. It's a great price, looks great and I know your opinion has some weight. The truth is that I don't need an amazing mic with bells and whistles, I only need a decent one. If I can do a decent acoustic guitar track, and record speech well, I'm all good. I'll keep that MXL in mind.
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#7
Quote by Kevätuhri
Well, this definitely got me interested. It's a great price, looks great and I know your opinion has some weight. The truth is that I don't need an amazing mic with bells and whistles, I only need a decent one. If I can do a decent acoustic guitar track, and record speech well, I'm all good. I'll keep that MXL in mind.

FWIW, I know a lot of people around here like the 2020, but I can't stand that mic. If you want to look at Audio Technica, I'd highly suggest the 2035 over the 2020. The 2020 is a small diaphragm condenser in an LDC's body, while the 2035 is true large diaphragm. It has a far less harsh sound, more similar to the more expensive mics in the range.

I think the MXL has really flown under the radar because of the reputation of their other mics. Honestly, I can't name another product made by MXL I'd even consider buying, but those V67s are cool. I actually own a pair of Beyerdynamic MC930s that have gone largely unused lately in favor of the MXLs.
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#8
For all rounder in the under $100 category I'd definitely pick the AT2020, if you can go with the 2035 - by all means. I still can't say that there's anything particularly nasty with the AT2020 as compared to the cheap MXLs that are mostly harsh and overhyped. Still, even these with some judicious eq can be usable and since we're talking budget, honestly there isn't any one mic that will be stellar. I'd still recommend the AT2020 in the under $100 category as it seems the least unpleasant.