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What vocal mics are the singers out there using live?

#1 User is offline   Jinder 

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Posted 11 September 2018 - 04:59 AM

Hi all,
I was wondering today what kind of vocal mics my fellow warblers on the forum are digging at the moment...I used dynamics for years (principally SM58s, but later a Lewitt and AKG D7), but have recently switched to a live condenser, a Sennheiser E865, and will never go back to using dynamics.

The difference is like listening to an album on cassette and then on CD-The crispness is wonderful, and the tone is so neutral and natural, just like singing in room. I never have to sing “around” the mic’s natural tonality, I just do my thing and it replicates it.

I run through a TC Helicon Voicelive 3, which I use for some light compression and EQ, along with a short “wooden room” verb which just makes things a little broader without a messy tail taking up bandwidth in the mix. I’m naturally quite a sibilant singer, so the de-esser in the VL3 adds a subtle dusting of studio style magic too.
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#2 User is offline   Murph 

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Posted 11 September 2018 - 05:49 AM

I'm still using an SM58 for vocals.

But then, I don't have the kind of money you and Sal have...….
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#3 User is offline   BluesKing777 

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Posted 11 September 2018 - 06:21 AM

I am not playing live but the Shure SM58 is great for vocal where you want to get right in it for some ‘proximity effect’. The megolamaniac in me comes out! I can’t really do that with condensers I own, while I seem to be hanging back and avoiding plosives and breathing noise.

And my Shure SM58 got back in the good books after I bought the Boss VE8 with the ‘Enhance’ knob just a piece of magic.......specs say it is a combo of compressor and eq tailored for vocals but on half setting, it brings the vocals right ‘forward’ and the SM58 is a million bucks!

So I am sure there would be other preamps and gadgets that make the 58 even more versatile than it is in plain wrapping.

I was testing my pickups in a friend’s new PA last week and ended up singing and playing with SM58 for vocal and Baggs M80 on my guitar. Add a splash of a combo delay/reverb he used and I felt like I was in a bar. Kept thinking an announcement of something was coming.... I also got to play his Martin with Baggs M1 Passive, Gibson BK with Baggs Anthem and his Maton dread with Maton AP5-Pro pickup....all direct to his desk and sounding fabulous with no gadgets.



BluesKing777.

This post has been edited by BluesKing777: 11 September 2018 - 06:29 AM

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#4 User is offline   ThemisSal 

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Posted 11 September 2018 - 06:39 AM

SM58..... Something I never have to think about.
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#5 User is offline   kidblast 

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Posted 11 September 2018 - 06:56 AM

I've grown tired of SM58s IMO they just don't have enough output and they are just lifeless sounding.

so I've moved to Sennheisers Been using an E835 lately. much more snap then the SM58, but you gotta stay right on top of it

The mic's were using in our Band are not SM58s either, same problem, they sound lifeless compared to the mics we've recently started using (some AKGs) I'll have to get the #s.
but you also need to be right ontop of them. They also less prone to feeback.

I sill have my 58s, they do what they do..
/Ray
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#6 User is offline   blindboygrunt 

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Posted 11 September 2018 - 07:18 AM

Sm58 beta

I liked the nice grey colour



Not being a gifted vocalist I use the proximity to cheat a little

And when I play with the little blues group it works well also

I’m in the murph camp.
And certainly ain’t gonna start carrying bags and bags of gadgets to gigs
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#7 User is offline   QuestionMark 

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Posted 11 September 2018 - 07:29 AM

For live gigging, have been using Behringer mics for about 13 years now. I have found that for acoustic sets, the relatively inexpensive Behringer mics do the job more than satisfactorily whether it be for vocals, mic’ing a guitar acoustically, or adding an acoustic guitar mic to a plugged in guitar. I find the sound spectrum of acoustic music is more than adequately covered by the Behringer Mic product(s), keeping in mind, of course, that using all sound equipment is always a balancing act between what’s being mic’d, the speaker or speakers, the sound amplification (and watts, and whether it’s newer or older technology), types of cables, etc.

Just my experience.

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This post has been edited by QuestionMark: 11 September 2018 - 11:36 AM

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#8 User is offline   vacamartin 

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Posted 11 September 2018 - 09:26 AM

View PostMurph, on 11 September 2018 - 05:49 AM, said:

I'm still using an SM58 for vocals.

But then, I don't have the kind of money you and Sal have...….





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#9 User is offline   tpbiii 

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Posted 11 September 2018 - 11:03 AM

SM58S for dives, AT-4033s for churches, concert halls and hockey rings.


Never criticize a musician until you have walked a mile in his shoes. Then you will be a mile away and you will have his shoes.
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#10 User is offline   fretplay 

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Posted 11 September 2018 - 01:31 PM

I'm a SM58 fan too.
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#11 User is offline   Southern Son of Gilbert 

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Posted 11 September 2018 - 06:42 PM

Shure 87Beta 87A's are the best. Crisp and clear!
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#12 User is offline   AngelDeVille 

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Posted 11 September 2018 - 09:05 PM

I have had a Senheiser 835 for about 20 years now with an Audix OM-7 for backup,

I have never used my backup.
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#13 User is offline   dhanners623 

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Posted 12 September 2018 - 02:56 AM

Last year, a buddy sold me one of his AKG C3000 mics (he was upgrading) and I have become a big fan. In fact, I've done a gig or two where that's all I used -- just me and the guitar through the AKG. Placement is key, but once you figure that out, it's a great microphone. For me, anyway.
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#14 User is offline   EuroAussie 

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Posted 13 September 2018 - 08:54 AM

View PostJinder, on 11 September 2018 - 04:59 AM, said:

Hi all,
I was wondering today what kind of vocal mics my fellow warblers on the forum are digging at the moment...I used dynamics for years (principally SM58s, but later a Lewitt and AKG D7), but have recently switched to a live condenser, a Sennheiser E865, and will never go back to using dynamics.

The difference is like listening to an album on cassette and then on CD-The crispness is wonderful, and the tone is so neutral and natural, just like singing in room. I never have to sing “around” the mic’s natural tonality, I just do my thing and it replicates it.

I run through a TC Helicon Voicelive 3, which I use for some light compression and EQ, along with a short “wooden room” verb which just makes things a little broader without a messy tail taking up bandwidth in the mix. I’m naturally quite a sibilant singer, so the de-esser in the VL3 adds a subtle dusting of studio style magic too.


Actually Ill chime in here as these days my main area of interst is vocals than guitars, but its probably just a phase for now ..

Anyways, Im still going through a stands SM-58, Ive tried the pricey ones, also have from ex singer as SM-58beta and tried a few more of the higher in the range. I still prefer the SM-58 because of the warmth it delivers. I find the SM-58beta and similar are just too clear and cold, and too crisp, which you seem to like, but i miss the warmth, even after dickin' around with EQ.

I just got a VL-3 and its quite overwhelming, there are just so many options that its giving me headache. Might drop you a PM sometimes about your set up and how you use it. Ive been using Play acoustic for vocals (which i love) and its been perfect, but i just wanted to have the play acoustic with looper and guitar effects box all in one, so I got a used VL-3 last week.

btw: what do you mean the 'de-esser' in the VL-3 ?

This post has been edited by EuroAussie: 13 September 2018 - 09:01 AM

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#15 User is offline   bayoubengal1954 

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Posted 13 September 2018 - 03:41 PM

 Jinder, on 11 September 2018 - 04:59 AM, said:

Hi all,
I was wondering today what kind of vocal mics my fellow warblers on the forum are digging at the moment...I used dynamics for years (principally SM58s, but later a Lewitt and AKG D7), but have recently switched to a live condenser, a Sennheiser E865, and will never go back to using dynamics.

The difference is like listening to an album on cassette and then on CD-The crispness is wonderful, and the tone is so neutral and natural, just like singing in room. I never have to sing “around” the mic’s natural tonality, I just do my thing and it replicates it.

I run through a TC Helicon Voicelive 3, which I use for some light compression and EQ, along with a short “wooden room” verb which just makes things a little broader without a messy tail taking up bandwidth in the mix. I’m naturally quite a sibilant singer, so the de-esser in the VL3 adds a subtle dusting of studio style magic too.


I’m with you Jinder regarding the condensers. I lucked out twice. My main mic is a Neumann KMS105 that I bought used for $250. Then later I bought the Sennheiser E865 as a back up on sale for 99.95. One caveat: Both mics pick up your voice very well...the good and the bad. It makes me concentrate more. 😀
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#16 User is offline   jjrpilot 

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Posted 13 September 2018 - 07:35 PM

Don’t hate me but I know NOTHING about mics and about 2.5 years ago I ran across a church that had closed its doors. They decided to sell literally everything they had. Everything was fair game and stuff that wasn’t marked with a price was still for sale you just had to make an offer.

They had 3 mics in a corner which weren’t marked. I grabbed all three and said “I don’t know anything about mics but would you take 15 bucks for all three?” The guy was like “Yup! And in fact take the cables too!”

I got: some pencil condenser mic and two SM58 Betas and gave them to my small church that needed mics.

It wasn’t til later that I was talking to our sound guy and he was like ya we have some nice mics now. I told him ya I paid 15 bucks for all three.

His jaw hit the floor. Apparently SM58 Betas are nice mics haha

This post has been edited by jjrpilot: 13 September 2018 - 07:35 PM

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#17 User is offline   drathbun 

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Posted 13 September 2018 - 10:58 PM

If you sing into a mic on a stand because you are playing your guitar, the SM58 is really the mic to beat. If you are a handheld mic singer, the Beta58 is exceptional. The main difference between them is the pickup pattern; where the SM58 is cardioid (less focused and wider) and the Beta58 is super-cardioid (tighter focus, narrower, and therefore a little hotter).

BTW, while I was at L&M, I sold a sh*t ton of the SM58s. We had a gondola full of SM58s and a cupboard behind the till FULL of SM58s. We probably had 25-30 SM58s in stock all the time. I was topping up that cupboard almost every Thursday. The Beta58s, we would have about five in stock at any one time.

This post has been edited by drathbun: 13 September 2018 - 11:01 PM

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#18 User is offline   EuroAussie 

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Posted 14 September 2018 - 03:39 AM

View Postdrathbun, on 13 September 2018 - 10:58 PM, said:

If you sing into a mic on a stand because you are playing your guitar, the SM58 is really the mic to beat. If you are a handheld mic singer, the Beta58 is exceptional. The main difference between them is the pickup pattern; where the SM58 is cardioid (less focused and wider) and the Beta58 is super-cardioid (tighter focus, narrower, and therefore a little hotter).




I tend to agree with this, SM-58 is good for amateurs as it allows you go make a few mistakes, as its not as clear and crisp as the higher end mikes. The Beta58 for example give you less room for error, and I reckon they are ideal for the seasoned singer, or somebody who is only on vocal duties.
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#19 User is offline   Murph 

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Posted 14 September 2018 - 05:57 AM

View PostEuroAussie, on 14 September 2018 - 03:39 AM, said:

SM-58 is good for amateurs The Beta58 for example give you less room for error, and I reckon they are ideal for the seasoned singer.


I guess I'm just a seasoned amateur...
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#20 User is offline   Jim Wilson 

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Posted 14 September 2018 - 07:16 AM

View PostMurph, on 14 September 2018 - 05:57 AM, said:

I guess I'm just a seasoned amateur...

Good morning from one seasoned amateur to another.
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