#1February 10th, 2009 · 01:21 PM
159 threads / 32 songs
1,956 posts
United States of America
Live Mic And Recording Mic Too
We have several threads on here about recording mics and which ones work well.. Well I was over at Teedro's doing some live recording stuff for a demo, and he brought out these condenser mics made for live and recording both.... They are absolutely beautiful sounding... I have always liked my sm58 for live but I after singing thru these mics.  I am now gonna upgrade to the Sure beta 87A condenser mic.  This is one smooth mic fits my vocals perfectly for live, plus it gives a great recording sound too. 

 If your on a tight budget and need a GREAT mic that needs to be used in both live, and recording . You can't go wrong with the Shure Beta 87A. I'll  swear by them now that I have used them, and instead of buying just another large format, I'm gonna go get one of these microphones instead, because it serves a dual purpose for me.

If you get a chance check out the sure 87A mic (it does require phantom power)
#2February 11th, 2009 · 01:55 AM
28 threads / 20 songs
255 posts
I actually own and have owned now for about 2.5 years a pair of wireless shure 87A's.

It's quite a coincidence that you have taken such a great liking in this particular microphone and sm58's as myself and my band have been using these for like i said about 2 to 3 years almost constantly as we only have about 5 or 6 mics to choose from.

Anyway, about the 87A's, Honestly and somewhat surprisingly... i have almost never been happy with the sound of those mics. We paid about a grand for them (about 600USD) and I'm not saying that I'm disappointed with the wireless system, the shape of the mic, the build quality of the mic.... no they are all fantastic... just the sound, which funnily enough is the thing you seem to like most about them.

I know that 'Pink' uses the same wireless 87A's as I have for her live vocals.... (obviously she  likes it) but really to me the sound is quite disappointing compared to the SM58 and especially compared to Sennheiser E925, that is the microphone nowadays we use the most for vocals, IMO better sound than SM58 and just as rugged.

The 87A is a condenser as you mentioned... which i know does most of the time make it more sensitive and more fragile than dynamic mics. I will not talk about the actual characteristic SOUND of the microphone (apart from mentioning that it is based about the SM58 sound) as this is really a matter of personal preference ie. different voices sound better on different mics. The microphone though is incredibly sensitive to pop's and 'esses'... i know that condensers are more sensitive to this stuff than dynamics but I mean really... it is just too much, it is also very sensitive to handling noises which sounds very unprofessional sounding when you play live.

We only played a couple of gigs with the 87A's before changing to the Sennheiser and now we still use the E925 for lead and SM58 for backing vocals.

In terms of recording... we have used the 87A mics in almost every single recording we have done in the past 2 years including every song on our latest album which we uploaded on here.
Check it out if you would like to see the sound of the mic and the 'pop' sensitivity on tracks 04, 06 and 07 we used the 87A for vocals. For 02, 03, 05 we used the Sennheiser e925 for vocals. I will note that we used exactly the same preamp's, same room, effects units, recording medium for all the songs, even recorded all on the same day... we just used those two mics for vocals... i think it's a really good head to head comparison.

I would also like to add that we did use the 87A for the overheads for the drums for all 7 songs (which the mics are probably not recommended for... especially since they are wireless) because IMO the 87A's best characteristic is it's strong high frequency response.

PS: I still can't believe that the mic I was most disappointed with is the mic that toastedgoat was most impressed by... I'm not saying don't listen to toastedgoat, he DEFINITELY has heard and tried and owned more microphones in his life than I have so therefore more experience but it just goes to show how subjective microphone selection is.
#3February 11th, 2009 · 05:18 AM
159 threads / 32 songs
1,956 posts
United States of America
I did edit the post to  the sure BETA 87A.. not sure if that is what your using.. also all wireless' add top end or rather,  cables reduce top end.. The mic's we used had a nice top end to em, but we left the eq'n  flat, added a small amount of compression. and let it rip. no pop filters.... One thing.. you do not sing right into these mics like on a sm 58..  angle the mic some and put your air just over the top.. or use a screen if your real bad with pop's.

 I was impressed with the clarity and pristine sound of the mic.  Thru a wireless .. you would probably have to roll some highs out.. my guitar Sennheiser  wireless give me more high end  than when I use cables, nature of the beast with wireless.

  mics worked great , just takes a little different technique , when we get done recording .. I will post one of the songs up here.

Chill was yours the 87A or the Beta 87A... well also the wireless thing too , as these mics have a very pristine crisp top end on em.
#4February 11th, 2009 · 01:26 PM
11 posts
United States of America
Beta 87A
The Shure wireless 87 is a completely different animal from the hard-wired mic. I have adapted Beta 87 capsules to Sennheiser 5000 & 1021 series transmitters for corporate event shows. The Shure wireless operating system does not have as much of an appealing sound as a Sennheiser wireless system The fidelity is much better with Sennheiser, in my opinion.

I think what Greg might be trying to convey is that, the wired Beta 87A would make a good general application microphone for anyone on a tighter budget. It does good on a recording, and functions good for live performance. I normally use the wired 87A for backing vocal groups. Seems to have a good consistency. Also for my voice, the 87A does well. But for wireless, I use Sennheiser with dynamic capsules.

Again, every person has their own likes & dis-likes for every piece of equipment. Try as many mics as possible to find the one that suites you best.
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