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Thread: SM7 vs SM7A vs SM7B

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    Phosphene's Avatar
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    SM7 vs SM7A vs SM7B

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    Why do people pay $100+ more for the original SM7 than the SM7B. I know the technical differences between the models, and Harvey even said that he could not tell the difference between the SM7 and SM7B in sound. So is this a collectibility/elietist thing? Is it because the original was made in the USA?
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    I know one of you has been on ebay recently....
    Strange noises, Bag not filling as often, Damaged cord, Indicator lights acting up......Phosphene's Songs from the Skull of Pavlov

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    Richard Monroe is offline Been Here, Posted That
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    Beats me. I can't hear the difference either. The big question is- Do you like yours hanging down from above, or with the armiture reversed, on a straight mic stand? My best contribution to debates on SM7 A/D/whatever, is that it is an overlooked badass stage mic, because it's not hand-holdable, really, without modifications or accessories... Now there's a concept- I could put a short quick release attachment on it... Usually it doesn't matter, cause I'm playing (in my own limited way) guitar. Trust me on this- plug it into a good PA!!- Richie

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    mentalattica is offline Just a Home Recorder
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    I could be totally wrong here but doesn't the original need less gain than the B? Again I'm probably wrong but that still doesn't justify spending the extra $.

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    Richard Monroe is offline Been Here, Posted That
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    I guess some of the jury is still out, as there are those that claim there is an audible difference. Shure claims the only substantive difference is the change in the armiture. I am not enough of a techno-geek to clam there is *no* difference. My experience suggests they are basically the same, and both of them need a lot of clean gain, as much as +60db for some recording applications. It is a *great* voiceover mic. On stage, it's one feedback resistant sumbitch, and very forgiving in terms of its proximity field. Don't leave home without it!-Richie

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    Quote Originally Posted by Richard Monroe
    Trust me on this- plug it into a good PA!!- Richie
    I figured the SM7 would be problematic as a live mic due to the large amount of gain it requires. Wouldn't all the extra gain contribute to additional feedback?

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    Quote Originally Posted by nuemes
    I figured the SM7 would be problematic as a live mic due to the large amount of gain it requires. Wouldn't all the extra gain contribute to additional feedback?

    I'm not a live sound guy, but it seems to me the more gain a mic needs, the less problems it has with feedback.......
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    Kevin Deschwazi is offline Brittunculus
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    The word 'vintage' immediately ups the price of any recording gear regardless of it's performance.
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    bigtoe is offline Force of Nature
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    i have an 'a' that i thought was a 'b'...it sounded better once I knew it was an 'a'

    i've used both and they are both the same. i think the b has a different humbucking circuit or something? i borrowed a newer one for a job and used them interchangeably.

    agreed on the vintage $ thing. i hate to talk like an old timer but old gear used to be cool cuz it was better than new gear...this was back when new gear sort of sucked in the 80's and early 90s... nowadays? yikes what a crazy amount of cool gear.
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    Richard Monroe is offline Been Here, Posted That
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    Originally Posted by nuemes
    "I figured the SM7 would be problematic as a live mic due to the large amount of gain it requires. Wouldn't all the extra gain contribute to additional feedback?"

    Just the opposite. The mic was designed to isolate voices from background noise for broadcast applications. So it's not that sensitive, which doesn't mean it lacks detail or texture. Total gain causes feedback, heavily affected by the room, component positioning, and relative phase of the speakers and mics. It doesn't matter that much whether the gain comes from the mic, the pre, or the power amp, or the instrument itself. The cool part about the SM7 (and RE20) is that the proximity effect is gradual and subtle, without a clearly defined proximity field. That makes it forgiving. Using the midrange boost switch on the mic (I do, it suits my voice) increases feedback *a little*. I regret to say I haven't had a KMS105 or similar to use, but SM7B is flat out the best live vocal mic I've ever used.-Richie

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