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Best mics under €150 judging from the male soul sample at Thomann

published Feb 17, 2019 11:25   by admin ( last modified Feb 19, 2019 09:16 )

These five microphones I selected from going through most of the sub €150 large diaphragm mics on their site listening on the male soul dry sample through my my laptop speakers, and then ranked the below five between themselves by using a Sony MDR-XB950 (a so-so) headset listening to the same sample. A couple of mics on their site did not have the soul sample and were ignored. No mics between €119 and €150 made the list, as can be seen below:

Rank Name Price Interface Comment
1 Samson G-Track Black €105 USB 16-bit Gorgeous sound, even truer than the C03U, but with a bit of personality (this has a different soul sample than the others)
2 Samson C03U €89 USB 16-bit Great sound, but with a weird distortion, which might be from my headphones still sounds very honest. Shines on the processed version, is best there.
3 Audio-Technica AT2020 €89 XLR/48V Slightly tinny but still great
4 Superlux E205 €38 XLR/12-48V sounds fantastic over laptop speakers but loses its luster in the MDR-XB950 headphones but shines again in the Sony MDRCD480 phones. As somebody said in the reviews, this mic sounds a lot better that ithas the right to.
5 the t.bone SC 1100 €119 XLR/48V weird wandering sound in headphones

Audio-Technica AT2020 USBi and AT2020 USB+ sounded worse than the XLR Audio-Technica AT2020 listed above.

Superlux E205USB sounded worse than the XLR Superlux E205 listed above.

The Rode NT-1 is good but felt too dull, but might come to life with post-processing.

The 24-bit Samson G-Track Pro did not have the sound samples.

Disclaimer: Don't rely too much on random blog posts :)

Update 2019-02-19

I have now listened through a better set of headphones (Sony MDRCD480), and I still believe the above mics are the best in their selection, but I am less sure about the order between them. I also listened to the female soul voice and the AT-2020 does the best job there.

Some between €150 and €200 that sound fine

Audio-Technica AT 2035 €154

the t.bone SCT 800 – Thomann UK €175 sounds nice