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Advice in getting a good Headphone + Condenser Mic

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
I'm not really that great when it comes to audio equipment, so I thought I'd ask on the forums. Currently I have an Audiotechnica ATH-ADG1, amazing headphones with a great microphone as well but it's a bit old now and i'd like to upgrade and actually get a standalone headphone/mic combo going. I'm a huge fan of audio technica so id would be awesome if you can recommend some great audiotechnica headphones and microphones, also any additional addons I'd need to get the best use out of these products, like a sound card, compressor and all that stuff. For now my budget will be $600 AUD for headphones and a microphone. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
post #2 of 8
I have an AT2020. I actually got one due to how good several YouTubers I follow sounded. It works very well. However, mine is the XLR model going through an Art Tube amp and my ZxR for it's noise canceling features.

If you get the USB version, be aware that it will pick up everything. And by everything I mean to dog scratching on your neighbors door. This is both good and bad, but you need to take into consideration what that sounds like on the other side. Constant buzzing from a window AC unit or a mic blast from hitting the desk is not fun to people on the other side. Get a shock mount to avoid thumping, and try to reduce ambient sound. That's why I do it my way, which isn't even remotely practical.

AT2020 test, just for you, showing exactly why I have my ZxR involved
. I don't think you actually need a ZxR for it, a Z or perhaps the external one Creative makes shouls be fine I guess, as long as it has Crystal Voice's Noise Reduction feature. Keep in mind that the XLR version NEEDS a 48v Phantom Power. And XLR cables. And a stand... What all you get is up to you. I can list what I have, but I don't know if it will come in budget for you.

Headphones I can't help you. I use(d) Sennheiser 558s and 598s. I can recommend them, but you want AT. Someone else will need to help you there.
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post #3 of 8
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by KyadCK View Post

I have an AT2020. I actually got one due to how good several YouTubers I follow sounded. It works very well. However, mine is the XLR model going through an Art Tube amp and my ZxR for it's noise canceling features.

If you get the USB version, be aware that it will pick up everything. And by everything I mean to dog scratching on your neighbors door. This is both good and bad, but you need to take into consideration what that sounds like on the other side. Constant buzzing from a window AC unit or a mic blast from hitting the desk is not fun to people on the other side. Get a shock mount to avoid thumping, and try to reduce ambient sound. That's why I do it my way, which isn't even remotely practical.

AT2020 test, just for you, showing exactly why I have my ZxR involved
. I don't think you actually need a ZxR for it, a Z or perhaps the external one Creative makes shouls be fine I guess, as long as it has Crystal Voice's Noise Reduction feature. Keep in mind that the XLR version NEEDS a 48v Phantom Power. And XLR cables. And a stand... What all you get is up to you. I can list what I have, but I don't know if it will come in budget for you.

Headphones I can't help you. I use(d) Sennheiser 558s and 598s. I can recommend them, but you want AT. Someone else will need to help you there.

My plan was to go with the XLR version since I can do a lot more with them as opposed to a usb version. I've actually read many good things about the AT2020, I was actually keen on picking one of them up to be honest. I don't mind you listing what you have, because I can always go over budget if it means having a really good setup.
post #4 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by obsidia View Post

My plan was to go with the XLR version since I can do a lot more with them as opposed to a usb version. I've actually read many good things about the AT2020, I was actually keen on picking one of them up to be honest. I don't mind you listing what you have, because I can always go over budget if it means having a really good setup.

AT2020 > XLR MF cable > Art TubeMP > XLR F to TRS M cable > ZxR.

I also have a spider mount, arm, and foam for the mic itself

Don't mind the cable brands, they're just examples. I also don't know that I would go so far as to call my setup "really good". It just bothers me when mics pick up every little thing, and teammates talking ends up with white-noise that kills my ability to hear enemies in game, so I strive to avoid that where I can.

There are probably areas where what I've done can be done cheaper. There are certainly areas where it can be done better.
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post #5 of 8
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by KyadCK View Post

AT2020 > XLR MF cable > Art TubeMP > XLR F to TRS M cable > ZxR.

I also have a spider mount, arm, and foam for the mic itself

Don't mind the cable brands, they're just examples. I also don't know that I would go so far as to call my setup "really good". It just bothers me when mics pick up every little thing, and teammates talking ends up with white-noise that kills my ability to hear enemies in game, so I strive to avoid that where I can.

There are probably areas where what I've done can be done cheaper. There are certainly areas where it can be done better.

Ahh yes, I was actually just looking at the neewer arm which apparently comes with a shock mount as well. Would you know any good mixers, because I'd like to get that radio like sound. I was looking into the Behringer Xenyx 802. This is an australian store so the price may seem high, but for me it's rather cheap.
post #6 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by obsidia View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by KyadCK View Post

AT2020 > XLR MF cable > Art TubeMP > XLR F to TRS M cable > ZxR.

I also have a spider mount, arm, and foam for the mic itself

Don't mind the cable brands, they're just examples. I also don't know that I would go so far as to call my setup "really good". It just bothers me when mics pick up every little thing, and teammates talking ends up with white-noise that kills my ability to hear enemies in game, so I strive to avoid that where I can.

There are probably areas where what I've done can be done cheaper. There are certainly areas where it can be done better.

Ahh yes, I was actually just looking at the neewer arm which apparently comes with a shock mount as well. Would you know any good mixers, because I'd like to get that radio like sound. I was looking into the Behringer Xenyx 802. This is an australian store so the price may seem high, but for me it's rather cheap.

Unfortunately no. For mixers or AT headphones I have no experience.
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post #7 of 8
Hey guys, my first post but I am also an AT fan so I thought I'd chime in with my setup.

I use a R70x + a ModMic. For what I do (gaming, not professional recording) it is pretty much perfect. I recommend the omni directional model of the ModMic, as it picks up less background EMI and has fantastic sound.

That's 540 AUD before shipping at full retail for both, though you could probably find the R70s a bit cheaper? I didn't really look. You can probably find a decent DAC to add in and land close to 600 AUD. I've been looking at the Fiio E10K Olympus 2, but never purchased it... so I can't speak from experience sadly, but it'd come pretty close to your budget.

If you don't like open back headphones btw, I'd move to the M50x and add the ModMic or, if you prefer desk mics and want true recording quality, a Yeti mic since you'll have quite a bit more cash from the lower priced headphones.

I guess my rambling post's conclusion is you didn't really specify what you needed the audio setup for (recording, gaming, mixing, etc) so it's a bit hard to say what you need.
post #8 of 8
Just wanted to chime in on a couple things. I wouldn't really recommend spending money on an expensive shock mount unless you are constantly banging your legs into your desk, although they do look nice. There shouldn't really be any major vibrations that needs to be dampened at your computer desk.

The other thing is that you should really consider a dynamic mic, as they are really much better for the purpose of voice chat/streaming/podcasting. As said above, a condenser will pick up absolutely everything and can be difficult to deal with when using it for gaming purposes. I tried to use a Rode condenser for a while and it was pretty awful. You could hear doors closing elsewhere in the house, dogs barking outside, etc. Sparkles is a major CSGO youtuber and uses a shure SM57 with good results. You'll see most podcasters using large diaphragm dynamic mics like the Shure SM7b, Electrovoice RE20 or RE27, or Heil PR40.

For an interface I'd recommend the Focusrite 2i2 v2. Monoprice has pretty good XLR cables, or check out Redco cable for cheap custom cables.

To add a compressor you can either buy a hardware channel strip (combines preamp, comp, EQ, etc all in one unit), buy a separate preamp and compressor, or add a compressor in software. For the software approach, you would run the input from your interface into a DAW such as ableton, reaper, etc, use a compressor and maybe noise reduction plugins, and output that to virtual audio cable. This is the cheapest, and possibly even free, option but comes with the most potential for problems and can introduce more latency than using hardware.
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