Are Dynamic Mics Suitable for Recording Vocals?

I have been using dynamic microphones to record covers and acapella passages for about a year but I think the quality of the recorded vocals is rather bad? For instance, the consonances are very inaudible. What is the difference between recording vocals using Dynamic mics and Condenser mics? Is there a significant difference in quality? Thanks!

2 Answers

  • 9 years ago
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    Ok, well for starters it's better to use "CONDENSER Mics" instead of "Dynamics" b/c for a couple of reasons. One to capture & control the room (or acoustic environment) sound this is why Condensers are used more in a STUDIO environment instead of Live Sound on Stage. Another reason is that Condenser Mics are Sensitive Mics that have "Phanthom Power" that is, 48 Volts or Battery powered to give the Mic "more juice". These Mics allow you to pick out a wide range of Freq's. If a singer has too much of a High Voice the engineer may want to use a AKG 414 to give him/her more of a warm sound to bring out more of his/her Mid-Range (reducing his/her High Freq's.). So, the engineer BOTH Choosing What Mics to Use & WHY is Important as well as doing the Rough Mix on the board. On the other hand, Dynamic Mics such as Shure 57 (used for Snare Drums) & Shure 58 used for Live Vocals (that is on Stage) ARE NOT Sensitive & can Take A LOT of Abuse or LOUD Sounds such as using a Shure 57 to Mic the Snare Drums.

    You also mentioned about Consonances that are very inaudible - sounds like you need what's called a "DeEsser". A "DeEsser" is a recording feature (or nowadays "Plug-In") that will control Sibilance. Sibilances are those "P's", "S's", & "C's" sounds that are exaggerated when singing a line. For example, if you sing using an "s" sound it may sound too long of an "s" kinda like a "Hisssssing" sound. So, what the "DeEsser" does is that it cuts out those extra "s's".

    Also, speaking of mics just a little "FYI" (I went to Audio Recording School), but I was taught that it's not what Mic you use (but it does help), but it's the way the singer sings into it which are called "Mic Techniques" AND "Mic Placement" (how Far or Close you put the Mic in front of you or in front of the instrument). One example of using Mic Tech is to "back off" from the Mic when you're singing LOUD AND when you do sing those "consonances" (of what you're referring to) "P's", "B's", etc. By keeping the Mic away from you when you pronounce these consonances will avoid that "popping sound" called "Proximity Effect" whereas you might want to Lean More Towards the Mic when singing Softly to bring out those Soft Dynamics (that is, Dynamics used in MUSICAL Terms "Loud/Soft" sounds).

    Therefore, I'm gonna leave you w/ these 3 things to consider:

    1) Choosing the Right Mic of what Freq's you want to bring out in your Mix.

    2) Mic Placement - How Close or Far Away you want it in front of you Or in front of the instru.

    3) Mic Techniques- "Proximity Effect"

    These are the 3 things that Engineers use when preparing to do the "Tracking" Session.

    Like I've said this is All of what I remember from going to Audio-Recording School a few yrs. ago. I'm sure there's more that I might be missing in answering your question tho' you may want to buy the book that I used when going to this Audio School. The book is "Modern Recording Techniques" 6th Edition by David Miles Huber & Robert E. Runstein. This book takes you from "Ear Training & Acoustics" All the Way up to "Mastering" (usually the Mic section is w/ the Amps & Speakers b/c they All work the same way). So, NO I Wouldn't Use "Dynamic Mics" for Recording - I would have to use "CONDENSER MICS" which have more Flexibility in choosing different Freq's.

    Anyway, I hope this helps!

    Source(s): "Modern Recording Techniques" 6th Edition by David Miles Huber & Robert E. Runstein
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  • 9 years ago

    Tracks is correct for mics

    just remember, that the sound that you hear, is no better than the weakest component.

    If you have a cheap mixer, software, or if the recorder is not up to par, the mic can only do so much.

    there is NOT one "magic wand" that automatically makes everything sound good.

    Recording studios don't spend all that money on the best gear, because they like spending money.

    they know what it takes to get the best sound.

    Good Luck, and ask away.


    to the troll giving me the thumbs down, I dare you to tell me what is wrong with my answer?

    or are you just going to continue to hide behind your little computer?

    I really don't care, just give a better answer.


    Source(s): I do like Shure SM57's for recording guitars, tho (dynamic mics)
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