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Re: mic recommendations; champagne recording on a beer budget


 Ahh yes, the electret mic element. mass produced,used
by rich and poor. It all depends on how well your ears
work comparing them and how much money you want to put
into the case for it. 

--- Mech <mech@m3ch.net> wrote:

> At 3:21 AM -0700 6/16/07, RICK WALKER wrote:
> >
> >I've always had to attempt champagne living on a
> beer budget
> >throughout my musical career as a professional 
> >producer/drummer/percussionist/band leader.
> I can wholeheartedly agree with the same philosophy.
>  So, in the same 
> spirit, here's another mic tip.
> Back in the mid-80's, I was going through recording
> technology 
> classes at university.  Our teacher -- who was also
> a professional 
> studio owner of a pretty darn nice studio for its
> day, mostly 
> catering to overflow from the Nashville market --
> showed us this 
> trick:
> He took a fairly high-end AKG microphone which cost
> several hundred 
> dollars (I think it was the original C1000), and
> scoped it on the 
> RTA.  He then brought out this *thing*.  It looked
> like a soda straw 
> with a bunch of electrical tape and a jack on one
> end.  He plugged in 
> that mic and scoped it, then compared the two
> snapshots -- the 
> frequency response was identical!  We spent a little
> more time doing 
> blind tests between the real mic and this little
> homemade thing, and 
> none of us could tell the difference.
> Here's what he had done.  He had gone down to Radio
> Shack, and 
> purchased one of the mic elements they sell in the
> parts section. 
> He'd then soldered wires to the terminals, and run
> the element 
> (rear-end first) down an ordinary drinking straw,
> merely taping 
> around the sides to hold it in place.  On the
> opposite end of the 
> wires running down the inside of the straw, he
> soldered a standard 
> XLR jack.  Later, he showed us a more "advanced"
> model where he'd 
> soldered an adapter for a 9-volt battery and a cheap
> switch, so he 
> wouldn't have to rely on phantom power.
> It turns out that the Rat Shack mic elements were
> from the exact same 
> parts source as those in the AKG.  The only
> difference was that AKG 
> would put them through a bit more QC.  Occasionally,
> he'd have to use 
> two or three elements before finding one that was
> perfect.  The soda 
> straw was merely a quick and easy housing to build
> everything around. 
> You could just as easily use something a little more
> sturdy.
> Considering the cost (95 cents for each mic element,
> $1.95 for a good 
> XLR jack, and a few pennies for wire, solder, and a
> straw), it was 
> worth the time to check a couple of elements. 
> Especially since you 
> were getting a $400 mic for less than $5.
>       --m.
> -- 
> _____
> "I want to keep you alive so there is always the
> possibility of 
> murder... later"

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