Shure SM7B Microphone with Switchable Response
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One of the best all-time dynamic vocal mics—used on Michael Jackson's Thriller album.
The flat, 50Hz-20kHz frequency response of the Shure SM7B Microphone with Switchable Response is designed especially for spoken word, but recording engineers have discovered that it's also an exceptional mic for adding body to thin vocals and handling loud rock/metal singers. It also has the ability to tame harsh or sibilant sounds from hi-hat, cymbals, and voice. The SM7B is highly shielded against electrical interference, and includes bass roll-off and mid-range emphasis (presence boost) controls with graphic display, and internal "air suspension" shock isolation. It ships with a standard windscreen and an A7WS detachable windscreen for close-talk applications.
Need some convincing that this might be the mic for you? This is the vocal mic, then known as simply the SM7, that Bruce Swedien used to record Michael Jackson's vocals on Thriller, the best-selling album of all time and it's a favorite of Anthony Kiedis of Red Hot Chili Peppers as well.
Application note: The SM7B is a low output mic, so plugging direct into an audio interface may not offer enough gain. In such a case you need a preamp with a decent amount of gain. Due to its smooth sound and thickening characteristics, a transparent-sounding preamp will be a preferred choice. (See our Preamp Buying Guide for a thorough discussion of transparent vs. color preamps.)
- Flat, wide-range frequency response for exceptionally clean and natural reproduction of both music and speech
- Bass roll-off and mid-range emphasis (presence boost) controls with graphic display of response setting
- Improved rejection of electromagnetic hum, optimized for shielding against broadband interference emitted by computer monitors
- Internal "air suspension" shock isolation virtually eliminates mechanical noise transmission
- Highly effective pop filter eliminates need for any add-on protection against explosive breath sounds, even for close-up vocals or narration
- Now shipping with the A7WS detachable windscreen, designed to reduce plosive sounds and gives a warmer tone for close-talk vocals
- Yoke mounting with captive stand nut for easy mounting and dismounting provides precise control of microphone position
- Classic cardioid polar pattern, uniform with frequency and symmetrical about axis, to provide maximum rejection and minimum coloration of off-axis sound
- Rugged construction and excellent cartridge protection for outstanding reliability
Once you hear what this mic can do for your vocal recordings, you'll wish you found it sooner. Don't delay, order today!
SM7B Microphone with Switchable Response Specifications:
- Type: Dynamic
- Frequency Response: 50Hz — 20kHz
- Polar Pattern: Cardioid (unidirectional)
- Impedance: 150 ohms (150 ohms actual), for connection to microphone inputs rated at 19 to 300 ohms.
- Polarity: Positive pressure on diaphragm produces positive voltage on pin 2 relative to pin 3.
- Output Level (at 1,000 Hz): Open Circuit Voltage*: -59.0 dB (1.12 mV)
- *0 dB = 1 volt per Pascal
- Electromagnetic Hum Sensitivity (Typical, Equivalent SPL/milliOersted):
- 60 Hz: 11 dB
- 500 Hz: 24 dB
- 1 kHz: 33 dB
- Switches: Bass roll off and mid-range emphasis: slotted response selector switches.
- Cartridge Shock Mount: Internal air-suspension shock and vibration isolator
- Connector: 3-pin professional audio (XLR)
- Swivel Assembly: Integrated, captive nut for ease of attachment to stand, fits 5/8 in.-27 thread
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Comments about Shure SM7B Microphone with Switchable Response:
For a very reachable price, I was able to buy this new SM7B mic and match part one of the signal Chain used to record many pro recordings from Michael Jackson's Thriller to Chickenfoot's III. You can see the mic briefly in the studio parts of some Chickenfoot videos from III including the video for "Three and a half letters". You can find that video online.
I've found it to be a quality mic. It requires a a little more drive than some other mics, so some low end preamps may not have enough push for it, but my RME interface has much more than needed to push it. My UA710 also pushes it with ease and unrequired gain.
Since it's a Shure Dynamic mic, it's about as tough as a mic can get. Shure got some things right decades ago that they've been wise to continue. The vocal quality is very clear. The tone of your voices varies greatly depending on your proximity to the mic. If you stand back, about 2 feet, you'll get a clear nice sound. If you stand closer, you'll get a warmer sound. Too close and you'll lose a little definition and accentuate the Ps. It becomes muffled if you're eating the mic. I haven't tried to EQ it out. I just stand back a little. I usually keep it slightly above my mouth to minimize direct plosives. I've been able to use it without a pop filter and I have never seen anyone use a pop filter on these. I will try that in the future, just to experiment. Always experiment with gear! It only takes one short take to hear what you're getting and how you need to adjust your mic distance. Your preamp settings also come in to play here, but getting the mic itself to sound its best is pretty simple.
When you read tracking interviews from engineers and producers and read about mics of stratospheric cost being used, it seems like we're never going to get anywhere NEAR the quality of the gear and sound that they achieve, but this mic is one great example of that just not being true. It's proven itself to be good enough for serious, highly respected audio pros with verifiable success and I could afford it! A no brainer.
It's clearly a good mic to have as an option, even among higher priced mics!
Comments about Shure SM7B Microphone with Switchable Response:
As a recording vocalist, I must say that the Shure SM7 microphone provides outstanding clarity, warmth and presence. I was very amazed at its transparent and lush, open sound characteristics. I would defiantly recommend this product to any recording musician.