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What's a good mic for Voice Overs?

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
I've got a budget of $1000 and I'd like to get the best mic for the money.

I've been reading about the Neumann TLM 102 and AT4047 being quite good Are those the best I can get or is there even better?
Edited by acuriousman - 11/3/13 at 10:15am
post #2 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by acuriousman View Post

I've got a budget of $1000 and I'd like to get the best mic for the money.

I've been reading about the Neumann TLM 102 being quite good. Is that the best I can get or is there even better?

Probably the most popular VO and broadcasting mic is the EV RE 20. It is prized for its lack of proximity effect which means that its tone tends to remain the same as you move closer to it or further away from it.

http://www.fullcompass.com/product/296431.html





Just one of many well known on-the-air personalities that use the RE20. No political statement should be implied. This one is custom gold plated, the regular ones are TV-friendly gray.
post #3 of 10
In that price range check out the Neumann TLM 103. The 103 uses the same capsule as the U 87, which is an industry standard in recording studios. If you're doing VO work for clients, then it also might get you more work by owning a Neumann, rather than having a run of the mill DJ mic.
post #4 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by acuriousman View Post

I've got a budget of $1000 and I'd like to get the best mic for the money.

If it were me I'd get an Audio Technica 2020 ($100) or 4033 ($300) and pocket the difference. Both are excellent microphones. Years ago you really did have to spend a lot of money to get a great condenser mic. Today with everything made in China good microphones are a commodity item.

--Ethan
post #5 of 10
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ethan Winer View Post

If it were me I'd get an Audio Technica 2020 ($100) or 4033 ($300) and pocket the difference. Both are excellent microphones. Years ago you really did have to spend a lot of money to get a great condenser mic. Today with everything made in China good microphones are a commodity item.

--Ethan

Are those open and airy? I'd like to get a mic that sounds somewhat bright for my voice.
post #6 of 10
Then get a Shure 58 and call it done...
post #7 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by acuriousman View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ethan Winer View Post

If it were me I'd get an Audio Technica 2020 ($100) or 4033 ($300) and pocket the difference. Both are excellent microphones. Years ago you really did have to spend a lot of money to get a great condenser mic. Today with everything made in China good microphones are a commodity item.

--Ethan

Are those open and airy? I'd like to get a mic that sounds somewhat bright for my voice.

Both of these mics have strong susceptibility to proximity effect which makes them tend to sound heavy in typical VO usage.

This web page has a sample of what a RE20 sounds like:

http://www.coutant.org/evre20/re20.mp3

It is an example of VO work, natch. Notice the crisp natural sound with good body but no artificial bass boost. Ordinary cardioids like the others recommended have proximity effect which is like a tone control that cranks in more bass boost the closer your mouth is to the mic. In contrast the RE20 will sound equally well balanced over a wide variety of uses. The bass boost of cardioids is handy for vocalists who hold the microphone while they sing and use it like a tone control to give their vocal pats more expression. In VO work the usual goal is consistency and intelligibility as well as natural sound.

This pamphlet describes the RE20 in more detail:

http://www.coutant.org/evre20/

For example this is the vendor's FR graph for the AT 4033: The LF filter is provided to overcome the proximity effect. The RE20 has no need for this because it is inherently resistant to the proximity effect.
Edited by arnyk - 11/6/13 at 12:59am
post #8 of 10
For the record the 58 comment was a joke... The RE20 is "the" radio/VO mic. Some of the ribbons are also pretty good, e.g. Royer and the old RCA's (a fortune if you can find one). Some of the end-fire condensers (in omni mode) also work well.
post #9 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by DonH50 View Post

For the record the 58 comment was a joke... The RE20 is "the" radio/VO mic. Some of the ribbons are also pretty good, e.g. Royer and the old RCA's (a fortune if you can find one). Some of the end-fire condensers (in omni mode) also work well.

I took it that way. ;-)

People who want to audition mics can try this:

http://www.zenproaudio.com/clipalator.aspx
post #10 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by acuriousman View Post

Are those open and airy? I'd like to get a mic that sounds somewhat bright for my voice.

Those Audio Technica microphones are excellent, and sound great as is. Of course, you can always tweak with EQ to taste if you'd like. I record all of my educational videos with an AT 4033, and I never need EQ. I'm not a professional announcer! But still it sounds acceptable. Here's one example:

AES Audio Myths

--Ethan
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