Welcome to my audio-blog!
Here I'll post shootouts, some personal audio-research and more. Studio-related stuff mostly.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Mics: Sm58 vs. Sm7b

A new little mic-shootout.

- Shure Sm58
- Shure Sm7b

This is two dynamic mics, that's sort of industry-standards.
The SM58 is an industry-standard for live vocals. The Sm7b is an industry standard for dynamic vocal mic for studio-recordings. So, what's the difference between the two?

Well, it's some obvious differences. The Sm58 is designed for being held in the hand. While the SM7b is for mounting on a stand only, and is really to big to be used for a vocalist on stage. Not so obvious, but important: Gain. The Sm58 need quite some gain for a low-level vocalist. But the Sm7b need 10db more! That means that many prosumer preamps will not have enough clean gain for it. So, be warned. So, what's the difference in sound? Let's find out..

Vocal: Sm58 Sm7b 
B: Sm7b Sm58 (75hz highpass)
C: Sm7b Sm58 (75hz HP, sm7b presence switch engaged)
You can find all files, wav.zip 44khz/16bit and mp3 256kbs vbr: Here
Additional folder for preamp UA 610 solo (not identical takes)

Vocal > Mic > Mackie Onyx 800r (pre and AD)
C1jjMod > UA 610 > Rme Hdsp 9632

Recorded at aprox. 12 dbFS peak (+-2db).
Normalized to common RMS-value, Rms-window 0,3s
UA 610 solo:
L9: Level is set to 9, clear setting
G9: Gain is set to 9, tubiest setting

The sm58 is definitively a very good mic, good value, usable on stage and in studio. I find the sm7b to have a little more bass, being a little smoother/classier.
I seem to hear some noise on both mics though, a little unsure what's that about.

Gearslutz thread >>