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Inexpensive Microphone for Home Recording
What do you use?
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MoonShadows
Stroudsburg, PA
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February 13, 2019 - 11:27 am
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I am looking to buy an inexpensive microphone for home recording via my computer...basically, so I can listen to myself after practicing something. I'm not looking for anything that is studio quality, but I don't want it to sound like two tomato cans connected by a string. Most of the entries here in the forum that I read are dated, and I know there is new technology almost by the month. I've been looking on Amazon, but I'm not sure. So, if you have an inexpensive microphone that you use on your computer or laptop and are pleased with the playback sound, I'd appreciate guidance. Thanks.

Jim

Fiddling for Older Folks - Adventures in Learning to Play the Fiddle as an Adult

The Friends of the Sons of Liberty - Three Inspiring Young Men playing Early American Fiddle Music 

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BillyG
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February 13, 2019 - 12:01 pm
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A "real cheap" possibility is the "Cherub" clip-on mic.

Basically, it has a little spring-loaded-arm that slides under the f-hole and the top-mounted pickup-part is the transducer....  The output is quite low, bit it does work plugged directly into a "line-in" compliant input jack socket on your laptop, etc

It is NOT "great" and would most definitely work a LOT better if you happen to already have a mini-studio setup - like a matching pre-amp or whatever

Be advised - as I say  - it's "OK" - but making good contact is essential - OK for messing around with - would never trust it during say a performance if you get a bit "aggressive" on the instrument and it will possibly move slightly...

But it IS a cheap and easy mechanism just to "get a recording" to analyse

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Cheru.....B001GCBVJA 

I seriously recommend not copying my mistakes. D'oh - guntohead.JPG

Please make your own, different mistakes, and help us all learn :-)

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Gordon Shumway
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February 13, 2019 - 12:12 pm
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Unfortunately, you have to be precise about what is inexpensive and what isn't. I've seen $1,000 AKG mics described as being for amateurs.

Andrew

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MoonShadows
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February 13, 2019 - 12:21 pm
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Thanks @BillyG I'll take a look at that.

@GordonShumway It would be used for me to listen to something I am practicing, so I am talking cheap.

Jim

Fiddling for Older Folks - Adventures in Learning to Play the Fiddle as an Adult

The Friends of the Sons of Liberty - Three Inspiring Young Men playing Early American Fiddle Music 

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Irv
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February 13, 2019 - 2:59 pm
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Hi MoonShadows and others.  An alternative to purchasing a microphone is to obtain a cheap ($40) second hand Cecilio solid body violin.  Great for “silent” practice, built in pickup for sound system, and has a port to allow a metronome input, which is handy.  I guess you could also input a drone frequency for guidance on intonation (never did that).

Research is what I’m doing when I don’t know what I’m doing.  —Werner von Braun

Without deviation from the norm, progress is not possible.         —Frank Zappa

Experience is a difficult teacher, it gives the test first and the lesson after.

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Bob
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February 13, 2019 - 5:48 pm
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I went through this last year and ended up with a Blue Snowball at around $50. Here's an Amazon link selling one 

https://www.amazon.com/Blue-Sn.....#038;psc=1

It seems to work okay for my recordings. I don't know about the microphone, but I know I'M not "studio quality" 🙂

It connects via USB to my laptop for recording with NCH video recording software or with Audacity audio recording software.

Bob in Lone Oak, Texas

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damfino
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February 13, 2019 - 5:59 pm
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I'll second the Blue Snowball. Works well for me and what I use it for. 

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GregW
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February 13, 2019 - 6:09 pm
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The Blue Snowball is a great mic from everything Ive heard and recordings that people put up and note that that is the mic they are using.  I Like the price of it.

If 150.00 isnt too much Ive used a zoom H2N.  I will take it to classes and can also plug a headphone into it and either listen back to a recording (from its sdcard) or listen live as im playing with it positioned out in front.  It does alot for the price.  Ive used the line out on it and plugged it into a presonus usb interface but it doesnt seem to work as well like that.  I have not plugged it straight into a computer USB or installed drivers so cant speak about how that would go.  The thing that sold me on it is its portable and can pick up playing in a big room well.  Uses a single AA battery.  Records in stereo.  BUT is a little overkill maybe for what youre asking about.

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GregW
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February 13, 2019 - 6:16 pm
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Sorry 2 AA's... Havent had to change them but twice I think.  Got it back in the fall because my phone wasnt recording well enough for me to hear when I played stuff back.

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MoonShadows
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February 13, 2019 - 11:03 pm
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I actually do have the Blue Snowball on my short list along with two others.

1. Blue Snowflake Compact

https://www.amazon.com/Blue-18.....wflake+mic

Blue_SNOWFLAKE_Snowflake_Compact_USB_Microphone_1233157023000_525051-1.jpgImage Enlarger

2. ZINGYOU Condenser Microphone Bundle
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01M....._lig_dp_it

s-l640-1.jpgImage Enlarger

Jim

Fiddling for Older Folks - Adventures in Learning to Play the Fiddle as an Adult

The Friends of the Sons of Liberty - Three Inspiring Young Men playing Early American Fiddle Music 

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FortyNothing
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March 6, 2019 - 4:04 am
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I use a Blue Snowball mic that sits on my desk. I think it was around $50. I usually use it for recording vocal commentary on twitch or youtube, but it works pretty well for violin too. 

You can check out a recording sample here  just excuse my poor playing (I've only been playing a month)

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MoonShadows
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March 6, 2019 - 5:52 am
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Thanks @FortyNothing The sound comes through real clear with that mic. What video camera are you using?

Right now, I am just using the Voice Recorder App on my cell phone, and I don't have a camera. I like the Snowball, but I don't know what kind of camera to get for my computer, so I want to hold off getting the mic in case I find a suitable combo mic/camera. I know so little when it comes to these things.

Here's a sample of what it sounds like recording with my cell phone...the first 3 tunes I learned.

Jim

Fiddling for Older Folks - Adventures in Learning to Play the Fiddle as an Adult

The Friends of the Sons of Liberty - Three Inspiring Young Men playing Early American Fiddle Music 

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GregW
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March 6, 2019 - 8:53 am
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Check out the zoom Q2n.  You can use as a web cam as well.  Looks cool..

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MoonShadows
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Thanks @GregW The Q2n looks neat. That would probably be a better choice than a PC webcam because it is not limited to being connected to the PC when recording. I watched the video from ZoomSoundLab.

Jim

Fiddling for Older Folks - Adventures in Learning to Play the Fiddle as an Adult

The Friends of the Sons of Liberty - Three Inspiring Young Men playing Early American Fiddle Music 

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MoonShadows
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March 6, 2019 - 5:16 pm
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I just purchased the Q2N. It regularly sells for $159 or higher. I found a site selling it for $139 with a 20% discount. After the discount and tax, I paid $121.89.

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Jim

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FortyNothing
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March 6, 2019 - 5:26 pm
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MoonShadows said
Thanks @FortyNothing The sound comes through real clear with that mic. What video camera are you using?

Right now, I am just using the Voice Recorder App on my cell phone, and I don't have a camera. I like the Snowball, but I don't know what kind of camera to get for my computer, so I want to hold off getting the mic in case I find a suitable combo mic/camera. I know so little when it comes to these things.

Here's a sample of what it sounds like recording with my cell phone...the first 3 tunes I learned.

  

I'm using a cheap Logitech webcam that isn't very good. The video went dark because a cloud covered up the sun halfway through the video lol. I would suggest a Logitech C920 for a better camera.

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MoonShadows
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March 6, 2019 - 5:28 pm
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We must have been posting around the same time. See my post before yours. I just purchased the Q2N. It regularly sells for $159 or higher. I found a site selling it for $139 with a 20% discount. After the discount and tax, I paid $121.89.

Jim

Fiddling for Older Folks - Adventures in Learning to Play the Fiddle as an Adult

The Friends of the Sons of Liberty - Three Inspiring Young Men playing Early American Fiddle Music 

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Mark
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March 6, 2019 - 7:58 pm
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Moonshadows,

Sounding good,

 

Mark

Master the Frog and you have mastered the bow.

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Gordon Shumway
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MoonShadows said
I just purchased the Q2N. It regularly sells for $159 or higher. I found a site selling it for $139 with a 20% discount. After the discount and tax, I paid $121.89.  

That's how much my most expensive mic cost - a Shure PG81. That's why I suggested you should define "inexpensive".

Andrew

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mookje
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March 7, 2019 - 6:40 am
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Good job on your first tunes @MoonShadows, and thanks for sharing 👍

I have a apogee mic for recording but this is not inexpensive. I needed a good one for my Zenko drum, a real difficult instrument to record.

 Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass. It’s about dancing in the rain!!

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