Essential Gear Needed to Make Beats

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Basic Overview of Microphones

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Recommended Condenser Microphones

Recommended Dynamic Microphones

Microphones are one of those you’ll only know if you try it kind of purchases.

One microphone that works well for one artist or instrument, may not work as well for another.

With that said, I’ll break down a few basics for you to be aware of.

Types of Popular Microphones

  • Condenser Microphones – Allows you to capture articulate detail in the highs, but quite sensitive to surroundings. (Requires phantom power, which most audio interfaces provide.)
  • Dynamic Microphones – Not as sensitive to your surroundings (computer fans, room echo, etc.), and a bit flatter sounding. I personally love the Shure SM7B for recording my voice in both music and tutorials/courses. (Does not require phantom power, but you’ll need to crank the gain on your audio interface most times.)
  • Ribbon Microphones – Not as popular, but known for that warm sound. I’ve never personally used one, but just sharing for you to be aware.

Different Pick Up/Polar Patterns

Microphones can record the audio they receive differently.

For example, if you speak directly into a microphone, the audio will be nice and clear. But speak to the side or back of it, and it will block the majority of the audio (the front will pick up the echo from the room sound.)

There are also microphones which allow you to record from the front and back – perfect for duets – but also advanced micing techniques.

And then there’s also pick up patterns that allow you to hyper-focus on a certain area, again preventing unwanted noise/audio in the recording.

Popular pick-up patterns are:

  • Cardioid Pick-up Pattern
  • Figure 8 Pick-Up Pattern

You can read this article I have on recording vocals for some images of the pick-up patterns.
Tools to Record Vocals

My Recommendations

Again, microphones are one of those products which work great for one person, but maybe not for the other.

I’ve come to love the Shure SM7B because of the sound of my voice, it’s not super sensitive to my environment, and really gives me that professional sound.

It’s pricey, but I’ve truly enjoyed the purchase. (My other microphones are literally just sitting in my microphone closet!)