Best condenser microphone for under $300

TalismanRich

Well-known member
Funny you mention the MK4, When I got the 47jr, it was a tossup between the AKG P420, Senn MK4, the Miktek MK300 and the 47Jr. I spent fair amount of time listening to samples, on both Audio Test Kitchen and Youtube where ever I could, to the point that it became analysis paralysis. They were all within $50 of each other, nothing that was going to make or break the bank.

In the end, I snagged the Warm, and it sounds good. I can't say if one of the others would have been better, but probably just different. I posted vocal samples a while back on the NT1, 47jr and Studio Projects B3. I don't think there was a consensus from that.

Ultimately, you have to try them yourself. I don't think any are truly bad mics. Its like picking guitar strings... bronze, phosphor bronze, nano coated, poly coated. You can make music with all of them. One just may inspire you a bit more.
 

Eric V

Inquiring mind wants to know
I decided to go with the Miktek MK300, I'm very excited. It should be here in a week or so. Does it need phantom power? It's ok if it does, because my interface is capable of providing phantom power. Just curious.

Thanks for all your input everyone !
 

TalismanRich

Well-known member
Yes, the Miktek is a condenser mic that requires 48v phantom power. Dynamics and passive ribbons don't need phantom power. Condenser and active ribbons need power, although some electret condensers can get by with a 1.5 v battery. You might want to read the sticky thread under microphones, https://homerecording.com/bbs/threads/how-does-diaphragm-size-polar-pattern-relate-to-mic-applications.27030

Harvey Gerst was very generous to give a big rundown on various aspects on mic design. It should be required reading for anyone who wants to get into recording. It explains cardioid vs omni, ribbon vs dynamic vs condenser. Really good stuff.
 

Eric V

Inquiring mind wants to know
Yes, the Miktek is a condenser mic that requires 48v phantom power. Dynamics and passive ribbons don't need phantom power. Condenser and active ribbons need power, although some electret condensers can get by with a 1.5 v battery. You might want to read the sticky thread under microphones, https://homerecording.com/bbs/threads/how-does-diaphragm-size-polar-pattern-relate-to-mic-applications.27030

Harvey Gerst was very generous to give a big rundown on various aspects on mic design. It should be required reading for anyone who wants to get into recording. It explains cardioid vs omni, ribbon vs dynamic vs condenser. Really good stuff.
Thanks TalismanRich. I will read up on the link, thanks for posting it.
 

TalismanRich

Well-known member
In the end, I couldn't resist. The Miktek MK300 was still on sale for $200, and I got a dividend check that almost covered the whole cost, so I placed the order. It arrived yesterday. (Wed night order, Saturday morning delivery. Nice going Sweetwater!)

I let it warm up before I unpacked. This is probably the heaviest mic that I've ever had! It's really "substantial" feeling.

First tests will be either tomorrow or Monday/Tuesday. Maybe some comparison acoustic guitar tracks vs the 47jr, NT1 and the V67G. We'll see what I can work out. I'm curious to hear this, especially vs the 47jr, since it has the transformer vs the jr's FET circuit.
 
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Eric V

Inquiring mind wants to know
In the end, I couldn't resist. The Miktek MK300 was still on sale for $200, and I got a dividend check that almost covered the whole cost, so I placed the order. It arrived yesterday. (Wed night order, Saturday morning delivery. Nice going Sweetwater!)

I let it warm up before I unpacked. This is probably the heaviest mic that I've ever had! It's really "substantial" feeling.

First tests will be either tomorrow or Monday/Tuesday. Maybe some comparison acoustic guitar tracks vs the 47jr, NT1 and the V67G. We'll see what I and work out. I'm curious to hear this, especially vs the 47jr, since it has the transformer vs the jr's FET circuit.
Congrats on the new mike! I will be trying mine out on Monday when I go to my friend's house. I'm really excited to try it out.
 

Eric V

Inquiring mind wants to know
Well I tried out the new Miktek MK300. I have never tried an LDC before so there's definitely a learning curve because of how sensitive it is. Vocals and guitar came out pretty good so I am pleased. I just need more experience with mike placement.
 

TalismanRich

Well-known member
Yeah, it's more sensitive than a dynamic, but that's why you have gain controls. I set mine up at the approximate distance, start playing, and watch the peak light. If it flickers, I turn it down. Bang as hard as you will ever play or sing, and if you are in the green, you're good to go. Placement will vary with what you are recording, It's just something you have to play with. I usually go somewhere near the neck/body joint, I know one fellow on the internet who likes to put it on the lower small part of the body. Try aiming at the hole and away from the hole to set the appropriate tone.

I've been impressed with the MK300, only checking it on my voice and a tambourine. I'll be trying guitar later.
 

keith.rogers

Well-known member
The MK300 is very good on acoustic guitar. I used it a lot on both vocals and guitar for a while, but when I started keeping stuff set up, having a couple boom stands with LDCs on them just was too much to keep working/walking around and not knocking crap over. So, these days I keep a pair of SDCs on short stands for the guitar or mando when I'm just throwing something together. It does and will get used when I have someone over that can really play, though :).

Here's a YouTube video from "BC" where I put the Miktek on a friend's picking on his (cedar/redwood-topped) Taylor. (Skip to 2:05 for just a music verse.)

p.s. I don't keep notes, but it looks like the mic's about a foot out, maybe more, and aimed a bit more to the bridge than neck joint, which is where I generally place my mic. (My bud is not a bluegrasser and has a fairly light touch, so distance and more capture of the body is not a problem. He sounds good no matter what mic I use, TBH...)
 
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Eric V

Inquiring mind wants to know
The MK300 is very good on acoustic guitar. I used it a lot on both vocals and guitar for a while, but when I started keeping stuff set up, having a couple boom stands with LDCs on them just was too much to keep working/walking around and not knocking crap over. So, these days I keep a pair of SDCs on short stands for the guitar or mando when I'm just throwing something together. It does and will get used when I have someone over that can really play, though :).

Here's a YouTube video from "BC" where I put the Miktek on a friend's picking on his (cedar/redwood-topped) Taylor. (Skip to 2:05 for just a music verse.)

p.s. I don't keep notes, but it looks like the mic's about a foot out, maybe more, and aimed a bit more to the bridge than neck joint, which is where I generally place my mic. (My bud is not a bluegrasser and has a fairly light touch, so distance and more capture of the body is not a problem. He sounds good no matter what mic I use, TBH...)
Nice version of 16 Tons. Well done ! The mic was very clear. Loved it.
 
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