I realise the question is a bit like asking how long is a piece of string, but consider my scenario. I have a Berringer B1, which cost about €80 I think. I know that I can get a good vocal sound from it, but we are hoping to embark on recording an album for release and I want to buy ( if I need to ) a better vocal mic. My problem is I understand very little of the difference between an €50 mic and a €5000 mic in terms of how much it will add to the end result, other than the fact that I assume there is some 'law of diminishing returns' at work here.
I would be glad to continue using the B1 but I suspect that at €80 it may not be good enough considering the top of the pile mics cost several thousand.
Could anybody give me any guidelines.
I am looking mainly at recording single male and female vocals and acoustic guitar, mainly folk/rock/jazz in style.
My other gear (and studio):
- A to D: MOTU 8pre and Traveller
Outboard: I don't compress or treat the sound going down, just straight into the Moto units. I have a DBX tube preamp but I dont use it that much. I would use plugins for my reverb etc.
DAW: Cubase sx3
PC: .. windows xp sp1 ... a bit out of date.
Mics: Other than the B1, a good few dynamics, 57/beta58's, a pair of cheap drum overheads ( tbone )
Speakers: Tannoy Reveals
Studio: single room, treated with panel bass traps ( 4 low 2 mid ) and a slot resonator. Natural diffusion via bookcases. Carpet floor though. Generally a nice room.
My own experience I have been recording on and off ( mostly off tbh ) for about 20 years and have actually recorded and released an album before ( and gotten satisfactory results ) but for that album I borrowed a friend's 2 grand tube mic and I haven't really taken taken that much interest in getting a 'great' sound, eg I don't even remember what my friend's mic was and obviously if i'm asking this question I don't know where the lines are drawn wrt mics. I built my own studio about 4 years ago ( hasn't been used much since actually ) but I would say that the area I fell down in was the vocal mic. I dont know why I spent 1500 on pre amps and 80 on my main large diaphragm mic but seemingly I did!