The No.1 Website for Pro Audio
AKG C12 or AKG C12VR, which sounds better?
Old 24th November 2005
  #1
Gear Addict
 
JOHN's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
AKG C12 or AKG C12VR, which sounds better?

Hello Everyone
The AKG C12, or the AKG C12VR, which one sounds better?

Please let me know your thoughts.

Cheers
Old 24th November 2005
  #2
Moderator
 
James Lugo's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
One of them sounds great and it's not the VR....
Old 24th November 2005
  #3
1484
Guest
Have you gone to the AKG web site? They say this;http://www.akg.com/products/powersla...nguage,EN.html

The C 12 VR is an exact replica of the original C 12, from the cap-sule sound to the original 6072A vacuum tube. The only difference is that its self noise and some components were optimized to meet the current state of the art. No less than nine remotely selectable polar patterns, the legendary large-diaphragm capsule, and an original 6072A vacuum tube provide a sound that is simply beyond words.

I have no heard the original so I cannot comment on it.

You need to hear both and make up your own mind.
Old 24th November 2005 | Show parent
  #4
Lives for gear
 
djui5's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
The VR isn't worth plugging into anything. Just let it hang there and look all "blingy" with it's gold grill and green body. Maybe camouflage it so it will have more bling appeal? Whatever. Why didn't they just plate the whole f'n thing gold? Oh...then it would look like the Manley Reference Gold...


What are you using this mic for?
Old 24th November 2005 | Show parent
  #5
Gear Maniac
 
DaveH's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
New one ------- not for me.

I ordered, tested and sent back a new AKG C12VR.
Does not sound like the original to me.

THIS IS FROM SEPT 2005 EQ MAGAZINE.
(You should read this article).
http://www.eqmag.com/story.asp?secti...torycode=10574

Quote:
Originally Posted by EQ magazine
The AKG C12VR (retail $4,999/eBay $2,800) was hyped as the revival of the venerable C12, but the only thing these mics share in common is probably the shape and the 6072 tube. AKG abandoned the original CK12 capsule decades ago because of the difficulty and expense involved with manufacturing these gorgeous-sounding capsules. The modern CK12, which confusingly shares the same name as its predecessor, uses the same mechanical principle, but shares none of the sonic majesty that has given legendary status to mics employing the original, such as the Telefunken Ela M251.
Old 24th November 2005 | Show parent
  #6
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Revelation
The C 12 VR is an exact replica of the original C 12, from the cap-sule sound to the original 6072A vacuum tube.
Did you notice they used the words "... from the capsule sound" instead of "from the capsule" ?
Pretty smooth writing.

I had one on loan from a music store and ended up returning it (picked up a vintage U67 instead).
Old 24th November 2005 | Show parent
  #7
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
I believe the VR stands for Very Rotten edition.
Old 24th November 2005 | Show parent
  #8
Lives for gear
 
T_R_S's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 15 years
Vocals Recorded on a C12 VR
maybe you need a better pre...

http://www.touchwoodstudios.com/artists/LapofLuxury.mp3
Old 24th November 2005 | Show parent
  #9
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
[QUOTE=T_R_S]Vocals Recorded on a C12 VR
maybe you need a better pre...

You're right, but some of us have to settle on crappy 1081's, 1073s, and APIs so how can we ever really know?

Seriously though. I have one of each and the crime is that they advertise it as being a replica, when the two mics sound as different as a 251 and a 57. I'm sure you get fine results (I ave heard great recordings done with a 57 or 58), but it just doesn't hold a candle to the real C12. There are however mods that can be done to the VR to help it a little bit.

PS - I dunno if an mp3 is a good way to test quality of a microphone. Kind like demonstrating video camera quality with a "real media" clip. ;-)
Old 24th November 2005 | Show parent
  #10
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
[QUOTE=jonnyclueless]
Quote:
Originally Posted by T_R_S
Vocals Recorded on a C12 VR
maybe you need a better pre...

You're right, but some of us have to settle on crappy 1081's, 1073s, and APIs so how can we ever really know?

Seriously though. I have one of each and the crime is that they advertise it as being a replica, when the two mics sound as different as a 251 and a 57. I'm sure you get fine results (I ave heard great recordings done with a 57 or 58), but it just doesn't hold a candle to the real C12. There are however mods that can be done to the VR to help it a little bit.
A C12 VR is not a C12
A M149 is not an M49
A LM184 is not a KM84


The VR is not a bad mic, calling it very rotten edition is a bit exagerated.

It's not marketing that should be criticised, it's this insane hype over vintage we're in.

AKG should have named the C12 VR whatever other name starting by C, and we would all be raving about them as being the leading microphone company they were back in the days.

regards
Old 24th November 2005 | Show parent
  #11
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
[QUOTE=I Lurk]
Quote:
Originally Posted by jonnyclueless

A C12 VR is not a C12
A M149 is not an M49
A LM184 is not a KM84


The VR is not a bad mic, calling it very rotten edition is a bit exagerated.

It's not marketing that should be criticised, it's this insane hype over vintage we're in.

AKG should have named the C12 VR whatever other name starting by C, and we would all be raving about them as being the leading microphone company they were back in the days.

regards
Calling it Very Rotten is a joke. In fact it's Fletcher's joke. And the marketting SHOULD be critisized. If I sell a ford, I shouldn't be labelling it as a BMW. You seem to imply that most people only like the C12 because of its reputation, but you should know that most people here use their ears, hence the outcry about the deceptive labelling. It's one thing for remakes to not quit be up to snuff with the originals, it's another to market a completely different microphone all together as a remake of a vintage one. They ould have named it the C13 or any other name, but they chose one that had nothing to do with it simply to get more sales.

If everyone here was just falling for hype, then we would love the VR. But it's because peope use their ears that they aren't buying the hype.
Old 24th November 2005 | Show parent
  #12
Lives for gear
 
djui5's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sounds Great
Not true. No it doesn't sound like a vintage C12, but it is not a bad microphone at all, just not worth the money they ask for it. However it is very useful on many things.


I personally disagree. I don't like the sound of the mic itself. It has nothing to do with whether it sounds like a C12 or not, I just don't like the mic. I also don't like JH pre's, Manleys Vari-Mu (maybe I used it wrong, whatever), Purple Audio stuff, TML103's. There are just some things I personally don't like the sound of, and that mic is one of them.

If you or someone you love found a great use for it and enjoy the mic, that's great for you! I'm happy for you. For me personally, I won't use it. There's always a better option IMO.
Old 24th November 2005 | Show parent
  #13
Moderator
 
James Lugo's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
I don't know if the VR is built the same way or not but it sounds like ass.

A cool modern mic that has a similiar voicing to a C12 is the Charter Oak, bright and open yet still warm sounding. I sang through one two weeks ago and it really was cool. The Charter Oak is a much better mic than the C12VR. IMO...
Old 25th November 2005 | Show parent
  #14
Lives for gear
 
RCM - Ronan's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
It is such a different mic than a C12, I think its a joke to even call it in the same pedigree. It is not awful but Shure makes $500 mics that smoke it.
Old 25th November 2005
  #15
Lives for gear
 
Knox's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
When the VR (first) came out . . . 'supposedly' there were some that had legit c12 capsules. I had a friend that had a one . . . a nice sounding VR. I had a halfass one even though mine was one of the early ones. Mostly, they (VRs) were bricks not even close to being worth asking price.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JOHN
Hello Everyone
The AKG C12, or the AKG C12VR, which one sounds better?

Please let me know your thoughts.

Cheers
Old 25th November 2005 | Show parent
  #16
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
The older 'The Tube' to me sounds better than the C12VR. I have not heard either against an original C12 at the same time, so I can't really reference how they sound in comparison to that in an objective way. They aren't the same, though. But if you end up getting the newer version of the mic, I'd recommend getting the older one 'The Tube' over the newer C12VR version. I'd try it first though, to see if you like it.

'Teflon' Capsule types:
'The Tube' 2072Z0005
C414EB 2072Z0005
C414BULS 2072Z0005
C12VR 2072Z0011
C414BTL 2072Z0009
Old 25th November 2005 | Show parent
  #17
Lives for gear
 
Knox's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
geeez . . I screwed up. I was talking about 'the Tube' . . . though the VRs I have heard, were not happening either.


Quote:
Originally Posted by dale116dot7
The older 'The Tube' to me sounds better than the C12VR. I have not heard either against an original C12 at the same time, so I can't really reference how they sound in comparison to that in an objective way. They aren't the same, though. But if you end up getting the newer version of the mic, I'd recommend getting the older one 'The Tube' over the newer C12VR version. I'd try it first though, to see if you like it.

'Teflon' Capsule types:
'The Tube' 2072Z0005
C414EB 2072Z0005
C414BULS 2072Z0005
C12VR 2072Z0011
C414BTL 2072Z0009
Old 25th November 2005 | Show parent
  #18
Lives for gear
 
PhilE's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
The VR is great on electric guitar amps- nothing else as far as I can tell... seeing as lots of things are great on electric guitars mine went back! The originals are sweet on everything you'd expect.
Old 27th November 2008 | Show parent
  #19
Gear Maniac
 
Aarhus Lydstudie's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
I must say that my c12VR with a NOS tube (can't remember the exact type - will try to find out), sounds great(!) on a lot of voices (male and female). But I still haven't had the chance to AB it against a C12.

I don't get that "it sounds thin, harsh, etc." thing - mine sounds warm.
Old 27th November 2008 | Show parent
  #20
Lives for gear
 
waxx's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
someone i know owns a orignal C12 in good shape, and tested both next to each other, and the C12VR sounds a bit like the light version of the C12, but is in no way as good. In that same session he also tested the Peluso P12 (all on a Grace 801 pre) wich was better and closer to the C12. I don't have the audio, but i'll ask it if that guy still got them.

The VR is at all a good mic, but priced way to much. It has a bit the caracter of a C12, but less detail, less open and more sterile. 1K till 1500 would be a good price, not 4K like they ask here.

An orignal C12 is probally one of the best mics ever made, but is also way to expensive for my budget. So if i would search such a mic it would probally become a P12 (wich is very cheap for what it delivers). It's also what the guy bought after this test to use it next to the C12 and his other mics.
Old 27th November 2008 | Show parent
  #21
Lives for gear
 
Tony Shepperd's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
I went through and read all these posts.
Some of these posts are from people who are not even engineers!!! LOL Now That's Funny!!

The C12 VR is a good sounding mic. Period.
Does it sound like an original C12? No.
But it's still a good sounding mic.
Old 27th November 2008 | Show parent
  #22
Lives for gear
 
lord_bunny's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
I have sang through older U87's, U47's my P12 and the C12vr. I sound best through the VR despite what a lot of folks would suggest about it. It's probably too expensive considering all the other tube LDC's out there, but it does sound best for me so far. I used it with an Aphex 1100 pre, and that pre is decent.

People say the P12 sounds closer to an old C12 than the VR, but although the P12 is nice, detailed it's also quite a bit brighter and sibilance is more of an issue as well. I agree the VR is a little less detailed, or it just vibes a bit "grainy" but in a cool way for me. What I liked about it so much was that the high-end wasn't as boring as the U87 or as pronounced as the P12, it was smokey and it seemed to saturate on my power-range. It also seems to have a more pronounced proximity effect than the P12.

A pair of C12vr's on grand piano is also my favourite piano sound.
Old 27th November 2008 | Show parent
  #23
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
Wynton Marsalis is always recorded using the VR (studio albums anyway). He is notoriously anal about getting the sound of his horn right. Are the VR haters saying his sound is badly reproduced?
Old 27th November 2008 | Show parent
  #24
Gear Addict
 
StudioKing's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
The original C12 is a very special microphone indeed, it had the CK12 brass capsule and sounds like nothing else. These fetch a very high price nowadays and rightly so.

The tube, is a very nice microphone indeed, it can't really be compared with the original C12 but none the less it is a great mic. It does not have the brass capsule.

The C12VR is exactly the same as The Tube except for a slightly different frequency response as the capsule is tuned slightly differently.
I believe this frequency response is a slight rise in the top end that makes the mic sound slightly brighter then The Tube.

If you use The Tube and add a bit of top on your EQ it can sound exactly the same as the VR

To say that the VR is a Rotton Mic is a bit much. Sure it is no C12 original, but what is?

I have a pair of all three of the above microphones and find uses for all of them all the time.
Old 27th November 2008 | Show parent
  #25
Moderator
 
Reptil's Avatar
 
2 Reviews written
🎧 15 years
let's say I found an original (NOS) C12 capsule. and I want it to have a C12 built. Send it to Korby or someone else?? or can it be retrofitted in the C12vr? or would this be totally useless without the rest?
Old 27th November 2008 | Show parent
  #26
Gear Addict
 
BlueSprocket's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Having been inside a good few of these things, old and new, I'll make a comment.

The original C12, has a very simple amplifier based around the 6072 tube, and the magic is really in the CK12 capsule. The CK12, as you can read all over the place these days is a complicated capsule to assemble and get just right (by comparison to a KK style capsule). The VR is based around a newer Teflon 414 capsule.

The issue with the capsules that are put into 414s, "The Tubes", and the VRs, is that once they're assembled there is nothing that can be done about them. If they sound great (which happens on rare occasion) then you end up with a good sounding mic. For the capsules that dont meet the previous criteria, there is a threshold of pass/fail and you get a mic that passed. AKG isn't going to rip apart and rebuild every capsule that doesn't sound like one of the bad ass ones, they're a production company and they simply dont have time.

After some experimentation, a VR with VERY MINIMAL amplifier modification and installation of a quality CK12 remake can yield a really great sounding mic. This still doesn't sound exactly like an old C12 (though I've never heard two original C12s that sound exactly alike either), but it gets closer to what I would consider the C12 sound many seem to like. Put up against some beautiful original C12s we were pleasanlty reassured by the results. This mod isn't cheap though, and that combined with what AKG sells the VRs for is pretty steep I think. But if you get a great deal on a VR used, look into this mod.
Old 27th November 2008 | Show parent
  #27
Lives for gear
 
Demonslave's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Ok ok

Calm down vr haters I got a " the tube" which was told by an akg rep was " better"
Than the vr because it does not have a built in eq bump however, he sent me the vr
Manual which shows the "built in frequency" if you want to make "the tube" sound like the vr. It IS a dark mic but It is tube, so to me it curbs the rough edges when I sing hard, which I like better sometimes than the u87 "news broadcast" sound everyone seems to use too often, and with the jim Williams mod it can be airy and open. Perfect for male metal IMHO sounds great on clean passages too. I feel sorry for the studios that have paid 10k for a real c12 and had some dummy drop it , but realistically nothing can touch a real , c12

Last edited by Demonslave; 27th November 2008 at 05:16 PM.. Reason: Mispell
Old 27th November 2008 | Show parent
  #28
Gear Addict
 
StudioKing's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Reptil ➑️
let's say I found an original (NOS) C12 capsule. and I want it to have a C12 built. Send it to Korby or someone else?? or can it be retrofitted in the C12vr? or would this be totally useless without the rest?
I think it is unlikely that you will find a NOS CK12

However, I found one in a C414EB and had it re built and put in a THE TUBE Mic

I then had the power supply modded, new cable, some other internal mic mods and all this was meant to make it sound like a C12.

It sounds great, really great actually, very nice, certainly worth the effort.

BUT

Then I got my 1st original C12.

Up until then I thought that my THE TUBE sounded like and original C12 but I was very wrong. The C12 had a 3D sound to it like I had never heard from another mic.
Don't get me wrong the other one was a great mic, I still use it for stuff, but the only way to get a real C12 sound IMHO is to use a C12.
Old 27th November 2008 | Show parent
  #29
Here for the gear
 
Atomix's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Demonslave ➑️
.... I feel sorry for the studios that have paid 10k for a real c12 and had some dummy drop it....
If it was my studio, I'd feel sorry for the dummy
Old 27th November 2008 | Show parent
  #30
Lives for gear
 
Demonslave's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
How about

David Coverdale singing through an m147 people say that mic sucks too
So if you have ten k buy a c12 if not get a the tube get a jim willams mod
And get that ck12 capsule AFTER trying the mic out I think mine was one of the good
Ones... Maybe it's the serial # ...... Mine is #813
πŸ“ Reply

Similar Threads

Thread / Thread Starter Replies / Views Last Post
replies: 12 views: 9223
Avatar for Tubelover
Tubelover 26th November 2002
replies: 61 views: 6726
Avatar for joeyhavoc
joeyhavoc 5th June 2012
replies: 73 views: 23419
Avatar for monkeyxx
monkeyxx 24th May 2013
replies: 5904 views: 761963
Avatar for Jonathanvl
Jonathanvl 12th January 2021
Post Reply

Welcome to the Gearspace Pro Audio Community!

Registration benefits include:
  • The ability to reply to and create new discussions
  • Access to members-only giveaways & competitions
  • Interact with VIP industry experts in our guest Q&As
  • Access to members-only sub forum discussions
  • Access to members-only Chat Room
  • Get INSTANT ACCESS to the world's best private pro audio Classifieds for only USD $20/year
  • Promote your eBay auctions and Reverb.com listings for free
  • Remove this message!
You need an account to post a reply. Create a username and password below and an account will be created and your post entered.


 
 
Slide to join now Processing…

Forum Jump
Forum Jump