Advice sought: Will a B1, C1 or V67G best complement a TB1?

Discussion in 'rec.audio.pro' started by Per Baekgaard, Aug 30, 2003.

  1. *** Background >

    After a lot of investigations, some listening and quite a lot of reading
    here on RAP and elsewhere, I have now ordered a couple of large
    diaphragm condensers (Studio Projects TB1 and B1) for my project studio,
    and will probably have them here next week.

    I have checked many other mics, but decided agains at least some of them
    for various reasons; i.e. I find the NT1000 to be a tad too bright,
    needing too much EQ, the AE5400 is difficult to get here, the AT4050 is
    nice, but too expensive for me, the AT4040 does not have enough
    character, the Baby Bottle is also very nice, but expensive and maybe
    have too much character as a general mic, etc ;-)

    Anyway, the TB1 and B1 will live here together with a couple of Dynamics
    (Shure SM58, AKG D-3800), a so-so medium sized electret condensor of
    some unnamed brand and 2 Behringer ECM-8000 small diaphragm omnis.

    The idea with the TB1 is to have a nice, warm and smooth mic for vocals
    and acoustic instruments (guitar, some percussion, maybe a bit of
    alto-sax and flute), though still one with some sizzle and top.

    For backing vox and not-so-in-front acoustic tracks, and for variety, I
    was planning to use another (cleaner) solid-state mic, and ended up with
    the B1 as a first attempt, since I guess it has a resonably un-coloured
    sound.

    *** Questions >

    My worry, though, is that since the TB1 and the B1 uses the same
    capsule, will they sound too identical, giving rise too a 'signature
    sound' on my recordings?

    If I stick with the TB1, is the B1 then a good complement? Or would I
    have a greater sonic palette if I keep the TB1 and get e.g. an MXL V67G
    or a C1 instead of the B1?

    I know these sound somewhat different than the B1, but as a general
    purpose mic, do they go well together with a TB1 valve mic... or would I
    be better of dropping the valve mic now, and just get a B1 and either a
    C1 or a MXL V67G to go with it?

    Your comments will be much appreciated,


    -- Per.

    PS: In case Ty or someone else would ask, I _can_ easily hear the
    difference on e.g. www.thelisteningsessions.com between a recording done
    between any of these mics, or between one of them and a more expensive
    classic, such as a TLM103, AKG-414, U87, etc. I just don't have the
    budget to invest more at the moment, and I'm not really asking which of
    those mics are "just like an U87" ;-) I know none of them are, but it
    seems to me that the SP C1, B1, TB1 and MXL V67G are all OK for their
    price, and will be useful.
  2. Wayne

    Wayne Guest

    >I know these sound somewhat different than the B1, but as a general
    >purpose mic, do they go well together with a TB1 valve mic... or would I
    >be better of dropping the valve mic now, and just get a B1 and either a
    >C1 or a MXL V67G to go with it?
    >
    >Your comments will be much appreciated,
    >
    >
    >-- Per.
    >

    FWIW and you asked. There's a lot of hype for LD condensers these days and the
    Chinese imports are very inexpensive, however

    I have a SP C1 and a MXL67G and my EV RE-20 makes it to tape more times. It's
    a much smoother mic and you can use it almost anywhere for anything and get
    good results, sometimes great results. I'd also opt for the two small diameter
    cardiod condensers (MXL603s) to give you more versatility of applications.

    Of course YMMV.

    Wayne
  3. Jeff Maher

    Jeff Maher Guest

    --

    "Wayne" <ybstudios@aol.com> wrote in message
    news:20030830131030.06150.00000243@mb-m10.aol.com...
    > >I know these sound somewhat different than the B1, but as a general
    > >purpose mic, do they go well together with a TB1 valve mic... or would I
    > >be better of dropping the valve mic now, and just get a B1 and either a
    > >C1 or a MXL V67G to go with it?
    > >
    > >Your comments will be much appreciated,
    > >
    > >
    > >-- Per.
    > >

    > FWIW and you asked. There's a lot of hype for LD condensers these days

    and the
    > Chinese imports are very inexpensive, however
    >
    > I have a SP C1 and a MXL67G and my EV RE-20 makes it to tape more times.

    It's
    > a much smoother mic and you can use it almost anywhere for anything and

    get
    > good results, sometimes great results. I'd also opt for the two small

    diameter
    > cardiod condensers (MXL603s) to give you more versatility of applications.
    >
    > Of course YMMV.
    >
    > Wayne


    Beat me to it, Wayne. To the original poster, I echo Wayne's notion that
    your 2nd vocal mic (particularly one you want to use for backing vox) does
    not need to be a 2nd large diaphragm condensor. The RE-20 that Wayne
    mentions is a great mic (but maybe not the first thing you'll reach for on
    acoustic gtr, which you mentioned as well.)

    For a budget mic that'll do both reasonably well for you, I'd recommend a
    used AT-4033. It's a small/mediumish diaghrapm cardiod condensor with low
    cut and pad. It has a pronounced but smooth rise in the high end that I
    find ideal for most backing vox and many (but not all) acoustic guitars. I
    think I saw one for sale on here a few days ago for $175.

    Jeff Maher
    Garage Mahal Recording
    Austin, Texas
  4. Mike Rivers

    Mike Rivers Guest

    In article <biqimm$2tg1$1@news.cybercity.dk> baekgaard.remove.this@get2net.dk writes:

    > My worry, though, is that since the TB1 and the B1 uses the same
    > capsule, will they sound too identical, giving rise too a 'signature
    > sound' on my recordings?


    If your recordings have a "signature sound", it won't be because of
    your choice of mic. Your sound is a function of your songs and your
    arrangement. If they all sound the same, you can record each one with
    a very different mic and to anyone who's listening to the music and
    not the microphone, they'll sound the same. If your songs are varied,
    then people will hear your songs, not your microphones. Choosing the
    right mic is mostly to make the engineer, the producer, and the singer
    feel comfortable.

    > If I stick with the TB1, is the B1 then a good complement?


    I would think so. One adds a "toob" character that the other one
    doesn't have.



    --
    I'm really Mike Rivers - (mrivers@d-and-d.com)
  5. Jeff Maher wrote:

    >For a budget mic that'll do both reasonably well for you, I'd recommend
    >used AT-4033. It's a small/mediumish diaghrapm cardiod condensor with
    >low cut and pad. It has a pronounced but smooth rise in the high end
    >that I find ideal for most backing vox and many (but not all) acoustic
    >guitars. I think I saw one for sale on here a few days ago for $175.


    I probably didn't check this well enough, but I thought the 4033 and the
    4040 were similar 1" mics, one of them just being an "updated" version
    of the other, probably a bit cheaper to produce. Apparently not so!

    It doesn't say anything on the AT site on the size of capsule, only that
    it has a 2 micron one. I'm not sure how much it matters, but the C1 and
    probably also the MXL V67G uses a 6 micron foil, whereas the B1 uses a 3
    micron diaphragm. Maybe part of the sound is the thickness, as a thinner
    diaphragm in general means less coloration?


    Anyway, a side question: Will a B1 benefit from the Scott Dorsey mod? I
    know it cannot be applied directly since the PCB has a different size,
    but I guess that the same schematics could be used, just making another
    PCB. Has anyone tried this? Or has anyone any ideas of whether it will
    improve the B1 or not? And in what direction?


    Thanks in advance,


    -- Per.
  6. Garthrr

    Garthrr Guest

    In article <bitijt$b17$1@news.cybercity.dk>, Per Baekgaard
    <baekgaard.remove.this@get2net.dk> writes:

    >I probably didn't check this well enough, but I thought the 4033 and the
    >4040 were similar 1" mics, one of them just being an "updated" version
    >of the other, probably a bit cheaper to produce. Apparently not so!


    I think the 4033 is a 3/4" diaphram and the 4040 is a 1". Havent heard the 4040
    so I dont know about the sound of it.
    Garth~


    "I think the fact that music can come up a wire is a miracle."
    Ed Cherney
  7. Ty Ford

    Ty Ford Guest

    In Article <bitijt$b17$1@news.cybercity.dk>, Per Baekgaard
    <baekgaard.remove.this@get2net.dk> wrote:
    >It doesn't say anything on the AT site on the size of capsule, only that
    >it has a 2 micron one. I'm not sure how much it matters, but the C1 and
    >probably also the MXL V67G uses a 6 micron foil, whereas the B1 uses a 3
    >micron diaphragm. Maybe part of the sound is the thickness, as a thinner
    >diaphragm in general means less coloration?


    Maybe at that quality level there are more impactful design questions that
    mitigate the importance of the 3-6 micron question.

    Regards,

    Ty Ford

    For Ty Ford V/O demos, audio services and equipment reviews,
    click on http://www.jagunet.com/~tford
  8. Ty Ford wrote:
    > In Article <bitijt$b17$1@news.cybercity.dk>, Per Baekgaard
    > <baekgaard.remove.this@get2net.dk> wrote:
    >
    >>It doesn't say anything on the AT site on the size of capsule, only that
    >>it has a 2 micron one. I'm not sure how much it matters, but the C1 and
    >>probably also the MXL V67G uses a 6 micron foil, whereas the B1 uses a 3
    >>micron diaphragm. Maybe part of the sound is the thickness, as a thinner
    >>diaphragm in general means less coloration?

    >
    > Maybe at that quality level there are more impactful design questions that
    > mitigate the importance of the 3-6 micron question.


    Could very easily be so, although I suppose quite a substantial part of
    the difference between the sound of the B1 and C1 _could_ be caused by
    the differences in thickness of their foil. Everything else aside, a
    thinner foil is usually more expensive to produce, so why put one in, if
    you don't have a good reason? In this case, maybe to have a different
    top end from the C1?

    Of course, my acoustic courses are a bit old now since I've changed
    field, and I really haven't made any mic dimensioning since back in the
    early 80'ies, when I was shortly working with building simulation tools
    and models used in dimensioning the first cardioid 40xx mics from B&K.

    But you're right, the electronics (and a lot of other issues) makes a
    big difference as well, I'm sure.

    I didn't mean to say that the use of 3 micron foil made the B1 sound
    just like an AT-something mic. And I didn't say above that an even
    thinner foil would make it sounds as a DPA 4011... Alas, as I'm not
    native english, I might have said something different from what I meant ;-)


    -- Per.
  9. Ty Ford

    Ty Ford Guest

    In Article <bj0cbs$pnq$1@news.cybercity.dk>, Per Baekgaard
    <baekgaard.remove.this@get2net.dk> wrote:
    >Ty Ford wrote:
    >> In Article <bitijt$b17$1@news.cybercity.dk>, Per Baekgaard
    >> <baekgaard.remove.this@get2net.dk> wrote:
    >>
    >>>It doesn't say anything on the AT site on the size of capsule, only that
    >>>it has a 2 micron one. I'm not sure how much it matters, but the C1 and
    >>>probably also the MXL V67G uses a 6 micron foil, whereas the B1 uses a 3
    >>>micron diaphragm. Maybe part of the sound is the thickness, as a thinner
    >>>diaphragm in general means less coloration?

    >>
    >> Maybe at that quality level there are more impactful design questions that
    >> mitigate the importance of the 3-6 micron question.

    >
    >Could very easily be so, although I suppose quite a substantial part of
    >the difference between the sound of the B1 and C1 _could_ be caused by
    >the differences in thickness of their foil. Everything else aside, a
    >thinner foil is usually more expensive to produce, so why put one in, if
    >you don't have a good reason? In this case, maybe to have a different
    >top end from the C1?
    >
    >Of course, my acoustic courses are a bit old now since I've changed
    >field, and I really haven't made any mic dimensioning since back in the
    >early 80'ies, when I was shortly working with building simulation tools
    >and models used in dimensioning the first cardioid 40xx mics from B&K.
    >
    >But you're right, the electronics (and a lot of other issues) makes a
    >big difference as well, I'm sure.
    >
    >I didn't mean to say that the use of 3 micron foil made the B1 sound
    >just like an AT-something mic. And I didn't say above that an even
    >thinner foil would make it sounds as a DPA 4011... Alas, as I'm not
    >native english, I might have said something different from what I meant ;-)


    Per,

    Your English is about 3.72 time s better than many yanks who post here. (I'm
    a yank.)

    I heard the C1, C3 T3 and found them to be very similar to many of the
    chinese mics. (Hey, why don't we call it The China Syndrome; cheap condenser
    mics that are not consistent, have high self noise and are skritchy, but are
    very attractive because of their price.)

    I'm working on review of three mics that use pure nickel diaphragms. I'll
    have to get specs on their thickness.

    Regards,

    Ty Ford

    For Ty Ford V/O demos, audio services and equipment reviews,
    click on http://www.jagunet.com/~tford
  10. Bob Cain

    Bob Cain Guest

    Ty Ford wrote:
    >
    > I'm working on review of three mics that use pure nickel diaphragms. I'll
    > have to get specs on their thickness.


    What is the purported advantage of a solid metal diaphragm
    over metal sputtered a few molecules thick onto a light
    plastic film?


    Bob
    --

    "Things should be described as simply as possible, but no
    simpler."

    A. Einstein
  11. Scott Dorsey

    Scott Dorsey Guest

    Bob Cain <arcane@arcanemethods.com> wrote:
    >Ty Ford wrote:
    >>
    >> I'm working on review of three mics that use pure nickel diaphragms. I'll
    >> have to get specs on their thickness.

    >
    >What is the purported advantage of a solid metal diaphragm
    >over metal sputtered a few molecules thick onto a light
    >plastic film?


    It's different. For one thing, it's lighter. But the overall motion is
    rather different because it's stiffer as well. I tend to like nickel
    diaphragms like the B&K measurement mikes and the old Schoeps 221.
    --scott
    --
    "C'est un Nagra. C'est suisse, et tres, tres precis."
  12. Hal Laurent

    Hal Laurent Guest

    "Bob Cain" <arcane@arcanemethods.com> wrote in message
    news:3F550187.E70ADFF9@arcanemethods.com...
    >
    > Ty Ford wrote:
    > >
    > > I'm working on review of three mics that use pure nickel diaphragms.

    I'll
    > > have to get specs on their thickness.

    >
    > What is the purported advantage of a solid metal diaphragm
    > over metal sputtered a few molecules thick onto a light
    > plastic film?


    I was there for part of that test, and I can say that the nickel diaphragm
    mics
    were quite a bit louder than the other mics being tested. Don't know
    if that was 'cause of the nickel diaphragms, though.

    Hal Laurent
    Baltimore
  13. Bob Cain

    Bob Cain Guest

    Scott Dorsey wrote:
    >
    > Bob Cain <arcane@arcanemethods.com> wrote:
    > >Ty Ford wrote:
    > >>
    > >> I'm working on review of three mics that use pure nickel diaphragms. I'll
    > >> have to get specs on their thickness.

    > >
    > >What is the purported advantage of a solid metal diaphragm
    > >over metal sputtered a few molecules thick onto a light
    > >plastic film?

    >
    > It's different. For one thing, it's lighter. But the overall motion is
    > rather different because it's stiffer as well. I tend to like nickel
    > diaphragms like the B&K measurement mikes and the old Schoeps 221.


    Really? I have a hard time believing that it could be
    lighter and a hard time understanding how lower compliance
    would be advantageous but ya never know. Anybody know of a
    technical report on such diaphragms?


    Bob
    --

    "Things should be described as simply as possible, but no
    simpler."

    A. Einstein
  14. Scott Dorsey

    Scott Dorsey Guest

    Bob Cain <arcane@arcanemethods.com> wrote:
    >Scott Dorsey wrote:
    >>
    >> Bob Cain <arcane@arcanemethods.com> wrote:
    >> >Ty Ford wrote:
    >> >>
    >> >> I'm working on review of three mics that use pure nickel diaphragms. I'll
    >> >> have to get specs on their thickness.
    >> >
    >> >What is the purported advantage of a solid metal diaphragm
    >> >over metal sputtered a few molecules thick onto a light
    >> >plastic film?

    >>
    >> It's different. For one thing, it's lighter. But the overall motion is
    >> rather different because it's stiffer as well. I tend to like nickel
    >> diaphragms like the B&K measurement mikes and the old Schoeps 221.

    >
    >Really? I have a hard time believing that it could be
    >lighter and a hard time understanding how lower compliance
    >would be advantageous but ya never know. Anybody know of a
    >technical report on such diaphragms?


    Ask your local B&K rep for the B&K book "Microphones" which is a compendium
    of old articles from the B&K journal.

    Also, there are a bunch of old BSTJ articles on the physics of the Western
    Electric 640AA microphone, which was the granddaddy of all of these designs.
    --scott

    --
    "C'est un Nagra. C'est suisse, et tres, tres precis."

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