7 Justifications for Staying With Your Current Mic

by | Dec 13, 2016 | Mics, VO Business | 4 comments

Guys…I’m talkin’ mostly to you.  Some of us (ahem) tend to be geek/tech heads about voice acting (you know who you are!).  We can easily make the mistake of believing that a better mic/preamp/DAW/mic cable/mixer/shockmount/USB interface/yada/yada/yada will make us sound better.

That’s true up to a point of diminishing returns, usually reached quickly.

Comparing your AKG mic to so ‘n’ so’s Sennheiser, or her Rode NT-1 to his Neumann is chasing the wind.  What works best for your voice, your studio, your audio chain, your DAW???

In that spirit, I’d like to humbly submit my

7 reasons why your present mic is good enough:

  1. Most mics will last a looooong time if you keep them fairly clean and dry.  That means covering it when it’s not in use.
  2. Only about 1/10th of 1% of anyone listening to your auditions is going to be able to tell the brand of the mic you’re using or how much it cost.  They’re just gonna want to know that your voice over sound is clean, has a low noise-floor, and you can get that same sound consistently.
  3. You haven’t tried re-arranging your voice over studio environment to better take advantage of your mic’s unique characteristics since you bought it.  Right?
  4. Get feedback on ways to improve your mic technique from someone like Dan Lenard , Dave DeAndrea, or Dan Friedman.  Send them a couple of auditions you did recently, and ask them purty-please to give you some feedback.
  5. How are you addressing the mic?  Meaning:  how are you positioning the mic in relation (distance, angle) TO your mouth?
  6. Read up on how your audio interface/preamp/DAW is set to work with mics in general and your mic specifically.  Talk to someone else who has your mic…experiment with new ways to tweak the settings.  You might be surprised at the results.
  7. Is your mic hanging down, or sitting up?  Change it around, and see what happens. Adjust your pop filter’s distance from the mic.

….and the honorable mention reason why your present mic is good enough:  “Oh, so you have a few extra hundred dollars lying around to buy a new one?”

CourVO

Comments

comments

4 Comments

  1. Howard Ellison

    To adapt an old gag: A man with two mics is a bigamist. A man with more is an even bigger mystery.
    Well indeed I have one wife and two microphones. The ribbon, oh so smoochy and flattering, became my passion until one of those expert gentlemen you mentioned pulled me up on it : “What will you do about the hisss?”
    Some people have very sharp hearing!
    Although one of the best (Coles 4038) a low-output ribbon was not the best choice for my typically low-key voicing.
    So it’s back to the low-noise Rode condenser for everyday work – particularly when I hear it will be edited in alongside other contributors and has to match.
    You offer great tips on positioning – that really does help. Someone said you even get a difference between left and right of mouth, though I’m blowed if I can hear it! Can anyone?

    Reply
    • CourVO

      Howard,

      You’re my most consistent blog reader/commenter… that means a lot to me. Thanks!

      Laughed out loud to the comment about the man with two mics…true! A couple of years ago, I stopped buying mics. The ones I have are good enough. I reserve the right to consider another one in the future, but what I have is good enough. The rest of my success will have to rely on talent. Pray for me!

      Best,

      Dave Courvoisier

      Reply
  2. David Beneke

    Get Foam, yes Foam windscreens, to protect your mics when not in use. If they take a tumble, the foam will protect the head basket, and absorb some of the shock. They also help keep dust and moisture from the capsule, I use them in tandem with a mic cover. If the foam starts to break down in the least, get a new one, or else your mic capsule and head basket will be covered in a dusty goo that will likely destroy the mic. The old u87s had a yellow foam insert under the capsule, which after 30 years, destroyed mine, well repairs would have been $1,500.00, so I spent that money elsewhere. Neumann no longer uses the foam in the u87, but keep an eye on the TLM 102, they have an inner foam windscreen insert, that you can take out, or leave in, mine is out and therefore, no worries.

    Reply
    • CourVO

      David,

      Thanks for this addendum… makes total sense.

      I appreciate your reading and commenting.

      Dave Courvoisier

      Reply

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