Side by Side: Budget Mics for Remotes


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Remotes are radio's original social networking tool. Because the station is out in the public, there are lots of unforeseen situations, so the equipment needs to be durable. But because it's used in the field, budget-minded options are key. The first item in the remote audio chain: the microphone.

Look at a typical radio remote and you'll see a few regular mic choices: The Shure SM58 and Electro-Voice 635. These two mics (a cardioid and an omnidirectional respectively) typify the two pickup patterns. The omni is good for less experienced mic users or in cases where more than one person may use the mic (such as an interview). But the cardioid pattern helps eliminate some background noise, which can help in noisy situations.

A variation on the 635 is the RE50, which is essentially a 635 with a shock-mount housing. The E-V versions are also available with neodymium magnets for higher output. The Shure Beta 58A is another popular choice.

While the legacy performers are an easy go-to choice, we looked to see what else is available for a list price of about $150 or less. We stuck with dynamic mics for our comparison.

Model
Audio-Technica
ATM410
Audix
OM2
Heil Sound
PR20 UT
Rode
M1
Sennheiser
e 835
Freq. Resp.
90Hz - 16kHz
50Hz - 16kHz
50Hz - 18kHz
75Hz - 18kHz
40Hz - 16kHz
Sensitivity
-55dB
-55dB
-55dB
-56dB
-51dB
Output Impedance
300Ω
250Ω
600Ω
320Ω
350Ω
On/Off Switch
N
on OM2-S
N
on M1-S
on e 835S
Features
Neodymium magnets
Very low mass diaphragm
Neodymium magnets
Neodymium magnets
Neodymium magnets
Screen
Multi-stage grill
Steel wire mesh
Stainless mesh
Steel mesh
Refined steel
Pattern
Cardioid
Hypercardioid
Cardioid
Cardioid
Cardioid
Dimensions
6.69" x 2.11"
6.9" x 2.08"
7.24" x 1.65"
6.7" x 2"
7.1" x 1.9"
Weight
8.2 oz.
10.8 oz.
14 oz.
12.7 oz.
11.6 oz.
Accessories
mic clip, 5/8"-27 to 3/8"-16 adapter, pouch
mic clip, pouch
Foam windscreen, mic clip, pouch
mic clip, pouch
mic clip, pouch
Other Models
AT8004, AT8004L
OM3, OM5
PR20, PR22
M2
e 815S, 3825S, e 840S
List
$139
$133
$99
$153
$99
URL
audio-technica.com
audixusa.com
heilsound.com
rodemic.com
sennheiserusa.com



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