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The Pro Audio Suite

A must listen Podcast if you're in audio or voice over. Our panel features industry professionals, George 'The Tech' Whittam, Robert 'Source Connect' Marshall, Andrew 'Realtime Casting' Peters and Darren 'Voodoo Sound' Robertson, plus special guests.

Each week we dive into topics that will resonate with Professionals and home studio owner alike...

Jun 3, 2024

In this episode of The Pro Audio Suite, we dive into the results of our recent Facebook group poll on favourite microphones. From the Shure SM7B to the Sennheiser MKH 8060, we discuss the mics you love and why. Robbo, George, AP, and Robert share their insights on the top picks, including some surprising mentions like the Austrian Audio OC18 and the affordable Audio-Technica AT875R. We also touch on some great customer service stories from Sennheiser and explore the nuances of various microphone features and performance. Join us for a passionate discussion about the tools that shape our sound!

Episode Highlights:

  • Introduction and shout-outs to our sponsors: Tribooth and Austrian Audio.
  • Overview of the Facebook group microphone poll.
  • Detailed discussion of popular microphones including the Shure SM7B, Rode NT1A, Neumann TLM103, Audio-Technica AT2020, and the Sennheiser MKH 416.
  • Insights into user preferences and experiences with these microphones.
  • Special mention of the Austrian Audio OC18 and its popularity among listeners.
  • George's recommendation of the Audio-Technica AT875R as an affordable shotgun mic alternative.
  • Stories of exceptional customer service from Sennheiser.
  • Discussion on the Sennheiser MKH 800 Twin and its advanced features.
  • Encouragement for listeners to join the Facebook group and participate in the ongoing conversation.

    A big shout out to our sponsors, Austrian Audio and Tri Booth. Both these companies are providers of QUALITY Audio Gear (we wouldn't partner with them unless they were), so please, if you're in the market for some new kit, do us a solid and check out their products, and be sure to tell em "Robbo, George, Robert, and AP sent you"... As a part of their generous support of our show, Tri Booth is offering $200 off a brand-new booth when you use the code TRIPAP200. So get onto their website now and secure your new booth...


    And if you're in the market for a new Mic or killer pair of headphones, check out Austrian Audio. They've got a great range of top-shelf gear..

    We have launched a Patreon page in the hopes of being able to pay someone to help us get the show to more people and in turn help them with the same info we're sharing with you. If you aren't familiar with Patreon, it’s an easy way for those interested in our show to get exclusive content and updates before anyone else, along with a whole bunch of other "perks" just by contributing as little as $1 per month. Find out more here..
    George has created a page strictly for Pro Audio Suite listeners, so check it out for the latest discounts and offers for TPAS listeners.

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    “When the going gets weird, the weird turn professional.”

    Hunter S Thompson

    #ProAudioSuite #Microphones #AudioEngineering #Podcasting #Voiceover #SoundDesign #AudioProduction #MicReview #ProAudioTips #RecordingGear

    Y'all ready to be history? Get started. (0:02) Welcome. Hi.


    Hi. Hi. Hello, everyone.


    (0:05) To the pro audio suite. These guys are professional, they're motivated. (0:09) Thanks to Triboose, the best vocal booths for home or on the road voice recording.


    (0:14) And Austrian Audio, making passion heard. (0:17) Introducing Robert Marshall from Source Elements and someone audio post Chicago. (0:22) Darren Robert Robertson from Voodoo Radio Imaging, Sydney.


    (0:25) Next to the VO stars, George the Tech Whittem from LA. (0:28) And me, Andrew Pinkers, voiceover talent and home studio guy. (0:32) Line up, man.


    Here we go. (0:36) And welcome to another pro audio suite. Thanks to Triboose.


    (0:39) Don't forget that code, T-R-I-P-A-P 200 to get $200 off your booth. (0:45) And Austrian Audio, making passion heard. (0:48) We've had a bit of a passionate response to our new Facebook group, (0:52) which is the pro audio suite podcast group.


    (0:56) And Rubbo threw up a survey about microphones, (1:00) which one people would like to use and do use and don't use. (1:04) Yeah, I just, I kind of figured a robust discussion about microphones is always well received. (1:10) So I figured I'd start one and it's only a small sample because we've only just started the group.


    (1:15) But some of the results sort of had me thinking a bit. (1:18) So basically what I did was I did a poll. (1:20) And I didn't go with my favorites.


    (1:23) I just went with the microphones that as a freelance audio engineer, (1:27) when I'm walking into other studios, I come across a lot. (1:30) And I stuck them up there with an option for people to put their own up there as well. (1:34) So the ones I put up were the SM7B, the NT1A, the TLM103, AT2020, 416, of course.


    (1:43) And that was about it. (1:44) And then left it open for people to sort of put their own up. (1:48) And the question was, which one's your best mate? (1:51) So what's the microphone that you choose in your studio? (1:55) Now, I've got to be honest, I kind of did figure that the 416 would feature fairly heavily and it has.


    (2:02) I mean, the 7B sort of comes in fairly close and the TLM103 are exactly the same in terms of response. (2:11) But then some of the ones in the comments were sort of interesting as well. (2:15) Well, the one I thought was interesting was someone jumped on to Bill.


    (2:21) Now I've got to try and get his name right. (2:25) Bill Answa. Is that right? (2:26) Answa.


    (2:27) Yeah, I think it's Bill Answa. (2:28) Anyway, sorry, Bill, if I got your name wrong. (2:31) He is using the Austrian audio OC18 into an SSL2.


    (2:36) Well, someone's been listening to our podcast. (2:38) And is he using the 4K button? (2:40) He says. (2:41) Yes, he does.


    (2:42) Yeah, he goes, yes, indeed. (2:44) Thanks for teaching me that. (2:44) Yeah, and Phil writes on the Lewitt, which doesn't feature fairly.


    (2:49) Yeah, we mentioned it on the show, but I don't see it a lot. (2:55) What else was the other one? (2:56) What's the 875R? What's that, a shotgun? (3:00) It's an excellent, excellent bargain shotgun mic. (3:05) Is it? (3:05) Right.


    (3:05) It's the one that you recommend, George, isn't it? (3:07) It's so good. (3:08) Like, it's only Achilles heel is that it's not the quietest mic. (3:12) Self-noise is, you know, not as good as a 416.


    (3:15) But it's a damn good substitute. (3:18) You know, it sounds similar. (3:20) I have one.


    (3:21) So one of these days we'll pull it out and we'll compare it. (3:23) Yeah, I'd love to hear it. (3:25) But it sounds similar.


    (3:26) It's not quite as large. (3:28) It's sort of like a short shotgun. (3:30) Is the polar pattern as tight as a 416? (3:32) I would say no.


    (3:33) I would definitely say it's not as tight at all. (3:37) It's a more, nowhere near sophisticated mic. (3:40) It doesn't have that very complex line tube interference design.


    (3:45) Yeah. (3:45) So anyway, it's a very simple mic, but it just sounds good. (3:49) And they're always under 200 US, 175 maybe.


    (3:53) So that one's a... (3:54) 169 B? (3:55) That one's a great value. (3:56) And we've been recommending it a lot to folks who want a stunt mic. (4:00) Well, this is an interesting one from Jeff Berlin.


    (4:03) Obviously the obligatory 416. (4:06) But he also has a Bosch or Soundalux U195. (4:10) I don't know that microphone.


    (4:12) What do you say? (4:12) I have a Soundalux U99. (4:15) And it is basically a clone of a U67 using an actual EF86 tube. (4:22) And the Soundalux mics became Bach.


    (4:25) Yeah, that's right. (4:27) Yeah. (4:28) And they are pretty high-end mics.


    (4:30) They got bought by Universal Audio. (4:32) Yeah, that's correct. (4:33) Oh, really? (4:33) Yeah.


    (4:33) Wow, that's too bad? (4:35) Is that too bad? (4:36) I don't know. (4:36) I don't know. (4:37) I mean... (4:38) It's kind of weird.


    (4:38) I thought they bought Sphere microphones. (4:40) They had to buy all of them microphone companies. (4:42) So I threw all the mics that were in the comments, I think, into the survey.


    (4:46) So it's easier to see. (4:49) And it's going to make it easier for people to continue voting. (4:51) But did you see anything that surprised you here? (4:55) Not me.


    (4:55) Nothing really. (4:56) I mean, there's certainly plenty of ones that you don't see regularly in professional studios, (5:01) not that that means jack shit. (5:02) Because in a professional studio, you're looking for a workhorse that will do a whole bunch (5:07) of things, I guess, especially in post-production houses, as opposed to music studios.


    (5:13) There's just no representation of a PZM mic here. (5:16) Come on. (5:17) There's no crown PZMs? (5:19) Oh, man.


    (5:21) Like, turn my wall into the microphone. (5:22) Yeah, that's right. (5:24) The MK4, the Sennheiser, what's an MK4? (5:27) It's like a lower end shotgun.


    (5:29) No, actually, no. (5:30) It's their entry-level side address LCD. (5:34) Large diaphragm.


    (5:35) Oh, okay. (5:36) Large diaphragm. (5:37) It's like, I mean, I think in character, it's somewhere very similar to a TLM102 or (5:43) 103.


    (5:44) It's in that range. (5:45) Is it kind of like the AKG perception? (5:48) Kind of. (5:48) It's like that zone.


    (5:50) But I mean, it's not that cheap. (5:51) It's still a $400 mic. (5:54) I think it's more like a two.


    (5:56) Oh, it's used. (5:57) Maybe it's used $200. (5:59) Yeah, maybe.


    (6:00) I mean, Guitar Center's got them, but maybe those are used. (6:02) But Sweetwater's trying to sell it for $400. (6:05) How much is an AKG perception? (6:07) LDC.


    (6:08) I don't know. (6:08) They're quite a bit cheaper, like 200 range. (6:13) So, yeah, the Sennheiser MK4 is not bad at all.


    (6:15) There's quite a few people who have those. (6:17) Well, speaking of Sennheiser, just as an aside, Chris McCallum, who we've (6:22) had on the show, he's probably one of Australia's best known location (6:25) recordists, put up a post about his Sennheiser. (6:30) He says, I have an interesting occurrence with a 10 year old Sennheiser (6:35) MKH8060 shotgun mic.


    (6:36) One day it stopped working without warning and only issued a static (6:40) frequency. (6:41) I've taken it to Sennheiser's service and they've discovered that they are (6:44) unable to open the mic as the special screws holding the electronics (6:47) inside the barrel are completely seized. (6:49) They say they can see no sign of corrosion, but are unable to open (6:52) the mic, sort of shoring it open.


    (6:54) What has surprised me is they have offered to take possession of this (6:57) mic and offer me a brand new one for an exchange of $700. (7:01) These mics now retail for well over $2,300. (7:04) So, I'm very happy with the outcome.


    (7:07) So, this is now the second new exchange I've had since the (7:10) original purchase, as there was a recall in the very early serial (7:13) numbers. (7:13) So, it was replaced then as well. (7:15) I can't really fault their response and commitment to their brand.


    (7:18) So, hey, that's... (7:18) Did you see my response on that? (7:21) No. (7:22) What's yours? (7:22) What did you say on that? (7:23) But they're charging him... (7:24) I was the original recording of the screws falling out. (7:30) They're basically saying they'll do the repair for $700.


    (7:33) So, they're basically giving him a brand new mic for $700, yeah. (7:36) As the repair? (7:37) As the repair, I guess, yeah. (7:39) I'd say yes if it came with a one year warranty.


    (7:41) Right. (7:42) At least. (7:42) Or whatever the new warranty is, I guess.


    (7:45) It's a bit of a bummer though. (7:47) But yeah. (7:48) I had a similar thing.


    (7:49) I actually had a similar thing happen with my 416. (7:52) It was an old one and it was playing up, (7:55) I sent it into Sennheiser and they kind of said, (7:57) look, we can fix it, but it's probably going to cost, (8:00) you know, almost the same price as a... (8:02) Probably about half the cost of a new one. (8:05) And then they... (8:06) Yeah.


    (8:07) But then they sort of said, look, you can fix it, (8:09) but we can't guarantee it because it is old (8:11) and there's components could let go. (8:13) Then did me a cracking deal on a new 416. (8:17) Nice.


    (8:17) As long as the mic wasn't cracking, that's a good deal. (8:19) Yeah, exactly. (8:20) Well, the first one was, the second one wasn't.


    (8:23) Are you making fun of this London accent? (8:25) So, that's 8060 is a step up from the 416 in terms of... (8:28) Yeah, it looks like it. (8:29) Yeah, yeah. (8:30) Better signal response, maybe.


    (8:32) Yeah. (8:33) The 8000 series is sort of their... (8:35) That's their new flagship line. (8:38) You know, small diaphragm mics in the head.


    (8:40) Did Chris mention it in the episode when we had him on? (8:42) I feel like he did. (8:44) I feel like he's sort of go to mine. (8:46) Yeah, yeah.


    (8:46) But see, Chris doesn't have a microphone locker. (8:49) He has a microphone walk-in wardrobe. (8:52) Yes, exactly.


    (8:53) That's right. (8:55) Yeah. (8:56) He's the Imelda Marcos of microphones.


    (8:59) I think Sennheiser makes a sight address version in that 8000 series. (9:03) It's multi-pattern and it's like $4000, (9:06) but it's supposed to be really excellent. (9:08) You know what I'm talking about? (9:09) 800.


    (9:10) Is it the 800? (9:11) Is that what it is? (9:11) It's a really odd little mic. (9:13) It's very small. (9:16) And let's see if I can share.


    (9:18) No, it's a multi-pattern. (9:19) It's not the little small tiny ones. (9:21) I know, but it's really small.


    (9:23) I mean, I saw it at NAB. (9:25) I was like, oh my God, that thing's tiny. (9:28) I think I saw your video.


    (9:29) I'm looking at the MKH 800 Twin. (9:34) This is a new model of microphone they just launched. (9:36) This is a different animal completely from what you're describing.


    (9:40) This one's 3200. (9:43) And it is their variable pattern mic where you just simply... (9:48) What's that? (9:49) MKH 800 Twin? (9:51) Yeah, this is it right here. (9:52) I have it on screen, I think.


    (9:54) Maybe. (9:54) There it goes. (9:56) There it is.


    (9:57) Look at that sexy baby. (9:58) Quite spendy. (9:59) This picture doesn't show... (10:01) Well, you see how small it is by... (10:02) Because you can see the XLR barrel.


    (10:05) The tail, it's small. (10:06) It almost looks like a mic port pro, the original one. (10:09) It is like the old KM86.


    (10:13) The Neumann KM86, which is a side address, multi-pattern, small diaphragm mic that people go kind of gaga over. (10:21) Well, that's quite a spendy mic, 3200. (10:24) Which is two symmetrical push-pull... (10:28) It's a dual diaphragm.


    (10:31) Is it dual output too? (10:33) Like, could we use it with our... (10:34) Yeah, so the way it works is you simply pot up and down the other capsule, and that's how you go. (10:40) So it's like... (10:41) But do you have a separate output of the other capsule so we can run it into our new software that you and I have purchased? (10:47) Right. (10:49) Yeah, it is quite a spendy mic.


    (10:53) You know, it's so funny. (10:54) I have video of me interviewing the Sennheiser rep at NAB on YouTube, and someone's like, (10:59) Hey, isn't that Julian Kraus standing right behind him? (11:05) It was Julian Kraus standing behind you. (11:08) It was, it was like I missed an opportunity to chat with him.


    (11:11) Oh, I saw it when I saw your video. (11:13) I saw him in the background. (11:14) He was having a look at the mics as well.


    (11:15) Is that Julian Kraus? (11:17) I'm like, son of a gun, it is. (11:19) There are so many YouTubers at NAB, of course, you know. (11:22) I saw a couple, they were always like in transit, you know, but I would love to send hello to Julian (11:28) and thank him for his unbelievable commitment to very, very consistent and dry videos about audio interfaces.


    (11:38) He's like the equivalent of the Sahara desert for YouTubers. (11:42) It is so freaking dry. (11:43) Yeah, but it's useful.


    (11:46) And big. (11:46) You know, we're the polar opposite, really, aren't we? (11:50) Exactly. (11:51) And in fact, on that note, if you do want to vote for one of these microphones or tell us what you have, (11:56) go to your Facebook and or the Facebook, as I saw people call it, and look for the Pro Audio Suite podcast group (12:05) and you'll find the thread down there somewhere.


    (12:07) Not the page, the group. (12:08) Yeah, the group. (12:09) We can even pin that, I think.


    (12:11) Maybe it might be a way to pin it. (12:12) Well, I will. (12:13) I'll pin it to the top of our Facebook page.


    (12:14) Oh, I can do it right now. (12:15) Oh, you can do that. (12:16) There you go.


    (12:17) Pin the feature. (12:18) There you go. (12:18) So yes.


    (12:19) Done. (12:20) Out. (12:21) Pinned.


    (12:24) Pinned. (12:25) So that was fun. (12:27) Is it over? (12:29) The Pro Audio Suite.


    (12:30) Thanks to drivers and Austrian Audio, recorded using Sauce Connect, edited by Andrew Peters and mixed by Blue Doo Radio Imaging. (12:41) Don't forget to subscribe to the show and join in the conversation on our Facebook group or leave a comment, suggest a topic or just say kiddo. (12:48) Drop us a note at our website