Rode NT1A or Audio Technica AT2035 or . . .

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AJOwens
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Rode NT1A or Audio Technica AT2035 or . . .

Post by AJOwens » Sat Apr 27, 2019 11:57 am

I'm thinking of buying one of these mics for my studio, mostly for vocals but maybe for acoustic guitar as well. They're both popular with reviewers. Does anyone here have strong opinions about them, or alternative recommendations in the same price range?
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Re: Rode NT1A or Audio Technica AT2035 or . . .

Post by vowlvom » Sat Apr 27, 2019 2:46 pm

My main vocal mic is an AT3035 which seems to be the same mic as the AT2035 but in a different colour. I've had it for a pretty long time (10 years?) and always been happy with it as a vocal mic, but was never impressed by the way it sounded for acoustic guitar. I use a cheap pair of small-diaphragm Behringer condensers for acoustic guitar and other acoustic stuff (handclaps and percussion, glockenspiel, reed organ) and much prefer the results. But yeah, for vocals it does a good job.
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Re: Rode NT1A or Audio Technica AT2035 or . . .

Post by Chumpy » Sat Apr 27, 2019 3:24 pm

I used an AT2035 from 2016-2018 and I was quite happy with it for my vocals. I'd say I got my money's worth. I much preferred it over my AKG C1000S small diaphragm condenser because it was more sensitive and picked up every nuance in my voice, which is great for singing, but not so great for voice over.
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Re: Rode NT1A or Audio Technica AT2035 or . . .

Post by fluffy » Sun Apr 28, 2019 9:08 pm

I don't have any opinion on those two microphones, but I'll add that my favorite workhorse mic is the MXL V63M (which is a large-diaphragm condenser), and lately I've started using an Electrovoice PL90 (dynamic mic in the style of an SM58 but a bit brighter-sounding) for vocals. I mostly use the V63M for micing acoustic instruments (it's especially good on cello and quite competent on guitar).

According to http://recordinghacks.com the V63M and AT2035 have similar response curves:
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For that matter, here's their comparison of the AT2035 and the NT1A:
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0376-1138.png (20.37 KiB) Viewed 214 times
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Re: Rode NT1A or Audio Technica AT2035 or . . .

Post by AJOwens » Mon Apr 29, 2019 3:56 am

Thanks for the response curves. They reflect what the reviews say -- a bump for both at around 12 kHz, and a slight boost at around 100 Hz for the Rode. Although the curves are close, some say the Rode is more prone to sibilance.

My choices are constrained because I'm using a Long & McQuade retirement gift certificate (bless my former co-workers). I have $300 CDN to work with. Unfortunately L&M doesn't seem to carry MLX mics.

For vocals I'm currently using an ATM41HE dynamic. It's a good mic, but I have no "non-stage" mics for the studio yet.
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Re: Rode NT1A or Audio Technica AT2035 or . . .

Post by fluffy » Mon Apr 29, 2019 8:29 am

Ah yeah MXL is a “house brand” as far as I can tell.

I’d probably go with the AT just because I’ve been really happy with their headphones and they have a good reputation. I’d also check YouTube for direct comparison videos — chances are someone’s done a vocal comparison video with those two mics in it, and it might even be competent about mic handling.
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Re: Rode NT1A or Audio Technica AT2035 or . . .

Post by AJOwens » Mon Apr 29, 2019 1:20 pm

I was able to give the Rode and the AT a side-by-side listen at the shop, using my preferred reference headphones (Sennheiser HD424). For my voice, the AT seemed clearer, so I went with that. The Rode was noticeably thicker in the bass, and it doesn't have a low-cut switch.

When I got it home I compared the AT2035 large(ish)-diaphragm condenser to my old ATM41HE dynamic. The new mic sounds more open. It's also much less sensitive to proximity, delivering about the same level and tone whether I'm three or six inches away.

Thanks for all the input. No doubt I'll be trying it out in the next SongFight I enter (not the current one, unfortunately, as I'm going away for a week).
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