View Full Version : Speaking of mics....

J. Mark Lane
Jan-05-2004, 2:21pm
Someone is discussing the Shure SM57's in another thread. I've had one of those for several years and had been micing acoustic instrument through it (for recording for home and educational use, I'm not a pro).

This weekend I picked up a couple of Oktava MC012's on sale cheap. Set them up as a pair, and ran them through a little Carvin SM162 mixer and into my digital recorder. Wow. The difference between these and the Shure dynamic mics is remarkable. The mando almost sounds better recorded than it does "in real life." They are sweet, quiet, clear, deep... I'm just amazed.

FWIW, as far as I can tell, these work best 12-18 inches from the instrument. Anyone have any thoughts on that?


Jan-05-2004, 2:29pm
Where pray tell did you get them cheap??

Jan-05-2004, 2:37pm
Also, has anyone tried the MK319 or any of the other larger diaphragm mics for recording a mandolin? Is it preferable to have the smaller capsule mics?

J. Mark Lane
Jan-05-2004, 2:55pm

Guitar Center had a sale going on, $99 per mic, but two for the price of one. I call that cheap....


Jan-05-2004, 4:11pm
Hi, I own 2 of the Oktavas 219's and have used them for recording and a 2 mic set up for playing out (3vocals,and 3 instruments). I sometimes run one or both through a Blue tube preamp, and that has warmed it up too! (the 219's need 48 phantom power) I have been real happy with them!!!

Jan-05-2004, 4:23pm
Do the 012's require phantom power?

Ken Sager
Jan-05-2004, 4:45pm
Do the 012's require phantom power?
Yes, they do require phantom power.

I have a pair and have enjoyed using them. They're a little dark, and add a bit of bass to other instruments, but they sound great on the mando.


Jan-05-2004, 8:13pm
I also own a couple of 012's and love them. We have a lot of different great mics in the band and I still go to the 012 for my mando. Found out this weekend about a maker that might even blow the Oktava's out. Studio Projects, they have all kinds of mics and pre's and are way cheap and by the reviews just blowing everybody away! I mean a 1" dia. mic for less than $200 that compete's with $3k U87?!?!

Jan-09-2004, 11:20pm
I wouldn't have believed "better than live" previously, but lately I have had the good fortune to do some recording on some high end equipment with great mics and believe me the mics matter. The difference between a "good" mic and a "great one" is amazing. Those Octavas sound like a great deal for the $.

Jan-10-2004, 2:34am
I have an Oktava 012 and a 219. The small diaphragm 012 is more accurate, but if you want to take a bit of brightness off a rather bright mandolin, the 219 is really good for that. Two 012's for $100 is a good deal by the way.

Jan-31-2004, 12:24am
if you buy a oktava mc-012 for a little more money,,get it from "the sound room" they are tested and high-graded..consistent quality

Mike Crocker
Jan-31-2004, 8:01am
I've never understood the industry's obsession with Shure sm57 and sm58 mics. I've always preferred the sound of other mics like AKG, Sennheiser, and the like. Lately I've been recording everything with a pair of Marshall condenser s (one large diaphram, one shotgun) and a Sennheiser. My chief complaint is that the 57 mic requires you to sit practically on top of the thing for it to hear you and there's little "air" in the sound. The only place I like the 57 is in front of my electric guitar or bass amp.

The large diaphram mic is ideal for mandolin in my opinion, giving it lots of "air" (complex harmonic almost 3 dimensional sound). Sometimes I like a second mic (usually the shotgun mic) over my shoulder to capture some of that sound I think I hear myself.

Spend extra on mics and you won't regret it.

Peace, Mooh.

Jan-31-2004, 8:28am
I tried the MK012's but didn't really like them. Also since I'm using a small all-in-one digital home recorder it seemed like too much trouble to have to hook in a preamp and all of that.....I'm trying to keep it as simple as possible.

So anyway, I bought the pair of Oktavas at Guitar Center for $99, and when I decided to sell them I set up an ebay auction with $99 as the opening bid. They ended up selling for $180! I bought an AKG C1000S for $109 on ebay. I find it much more to my liking for both mandolin and guitar--smoother, for sure, and less proximity effect than the Oktavas or my old SM57. It's a plus that you can throw a 9v battery in it and avoid the phantom power thing.

Charlie Derrington
Jan-31-2004, 9:50am
I really like my Octava. I use it as much as my KM84. (plus I sometimes need the hypercardoid capsule)


Jan-31-2004, 11:16am
Does anyone here have any experience with the MXL 992 large diaphram condenser mic? It had the best rating at the Musician's Friend website for a mic at or around $200.
Seems to be a relative newcomer to the mic world, as I am. Thanks

Feb-01-2004, 11:41pm
I just picked up an MXL990, which doesn't have all the features of the 992 but is still the same basic mic, i believe. I am totally amazed at how good this mic sounds and how true it is to my acoustics. It captures all the tonal qualities of my Rigel and my old Martin 0-18. Also very nice on vocals. I've been using an older EV condenser and the MXL makes it sound like a $10 Radio Shack mic.

Feb-02-2004, 2:00am
Thanks for the feedback Zed...very nice pickin too!!!

Feb-03-2004, 12:40am
would the mc012's require phantom power even when running through a pa?



Feb-03-2004, 3:37am
my educated guess would be, no, if the PA has phantom power. If not I'd have to say you'll still need it or any pre=amp would work. Someone please correct me if Im wrong.

Feb-03-2004, 8:02am
Mandolooter is correct, so make sure your mixing board has phantom power capability, or you will have to invest in an external power source, in addition to the mikes. Condenser mikes all require
power, although as was mentioned earlier in the thread, some require only a battery, which fits in the mike. However, the Octava requires a 48 volt power source. I have two of the 012s, but a local recording studio borrowed them shortly after I got them, so I end up rarely getting to use them. They do sound great, though.

In regard to the SM57s that were mentioned earlier; I was told by a professional sound company that "we could drive nails with them and not hurt them." They admitted that there were other types of mikes that sounded better, but they chose the dependability and durability of the Shures as they could always count on their functioning, day in and day out.

Mike Crocker
Feb-03-2004, 12:44pm
I agree with the durability of SM57s, but my reasoning is that if I can prevent expensive instruments which cost many times the price of a mic from getting damaged or otherwise compromised, I can do the same for the mics. Therefore I carry mics of quality matching my instruments.

Mind you, I don't play gigs behind a screen of chicken wire anymore...LOL.

Peace, Mooh.

Feb-08-2004, 11:14pm
I need help on two questions related to 012's: 1) I bought one, but didn't realize I needed two (I haven't used it yet)... do I really need two if running through a PA? 2) How do I get this 48 volt power source? Does a normal preamp work? Or does it have a place for an onboard battery?

Thanks to all for your help.

Feb-09-2004, 12:39am
You don't need two. One should suffice for live. The phantom power comes to the mic via the XLR cable. If you mixer has phantom power, just plug your mic in and turn the phantom power on. You should be in business. The mic cord acts as both as a power cable and a sound cable--2 in one. Pretty cool, huh?

J. Mark Lane
Feb-09-2004, 11:36am
Given that GC has been selling them at $99 each and "two for the price of one" (!!#*%@~), I can't imagine buying only one.... In fact, I think I'm gonna go buy two more this afternoon.


Feb-09-2004, 8:57pm
Thanks for the feedback Zed...very nice pickin too!!!
Thank ya kindly. That was recorded before i got the MXL but I plan on redoing the whole thing eventually, and it will be with the MXL.

Feb-09-2004, 11:17pm
thomasw, if the mic requires phantom power then it requires phantom power regardless of the source. If the PA (mixing console) gives the mic phantom power, the mic still needed phantom power. It probably is 48V phantom.