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AKG C-12, Blackspade UM25 Comparison
Old 3rd May 2012
  #1
Registered User
 
🎧 15 years
AKG C-12, Blackspade UM25 Comparison

Here are four sets of .wav files comparing our vintage AKG C-12 and the basic Blackspade UM25, which uses a CK12-style capsule. The mic and capsule were designed by Oliver Archutt of TAB Funkenwerk. The tracks were recorded simultaneously through matching Neve 3118 discrete mic preamps, to Digi 192 i/o converters, with no compression, EQ, pitch correction or FX. The capsules were side-by-side as physically close together as possible, protected by a pop filter. The singers were roughly 6” off the mics. Then the C-12 was replaced by a Neumann KM-84 for the fiddle comparison.
Attached Files

C12_Male Rock Vocal.wav (2.49 MB, 2604 views)

UM25_Male Rock Vocal.wav (2.49 MB, 2396 views)

C12_Female Pop Vocal.wav (3.03 MB, 2203 views)

UM25_Female Pop Vocal.wav (3.03 MB, 2268 views)

C12_Male Country Vocal.wav (2.13 MB, 2010 views)

UM25_Male Country Vocal.wav (2.13 MB, 2054 views)

KM84 Fiddle.wav (2.85 MB, 1833 views)

UM25 Fiddle.wav (2.85 MB, 1853 views)

Old 3rd May 2012
  #2
Jai guru deva om
 
warhead's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
That is a very nice comparison, thanks for that. Whatever distances etc you chose to use both mics at once worked really nicely for a true side by side too.

War
Old 4th May 2012
  #3
Registered User
Many thanks for the test and your effort !!

The SM 57 wins.... no, it's a joke.

I think the C 12 wins.
But densely followed from Blackspade. (a little bit thinner, and less low mids)
And that for the price of 2k.
Well done....

R.
Old 4th May 2012 | Show parent
  #4
Registered User
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rolf Ebitsch ➑️
Many thanks for the test and your effort !!

The SM 57 wins.... no, it's a joke.

I think the C 12 wins.
But densely followed from Blackspade. (a little bit thinner, and less low mids)
And that for the price of 2k.
Well done....

R.
Thanks, Rolf. I wonder if the age of the capsule and electronics in the C-12 would account for the slightly darker sound. Also, it's good to note that this test doesn't compare apples to apples, since the UM25 has much more in common with the Ela M251, than the C-12. I guess it's more like Jonathan apples to Delicious apples.
Old 6th May 2012 | Show parent
  #5
Registered User
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by TTatman ➑️
Thanks, Rolf. I wonder if the age of the capsule and electronics in the C-12 would account for the slightly darker sound. Also, it's good to note that this test doesn't compare apples to apples, since the UM25 has much more in common with the Ela M251, than the C-12. I guess it's more like Jonathan apples to Delicious apples.
Possibly a little of both. Thanks Tom for checking out the UM25 and taking the time to make and post these files!

Joe Hauck
AMI, Inc.
Old 7th May 2012
  #6
Lives for gear
 
Ward Pike's Avatar
 
15 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
The UM25 is noticeably more mid-forward and brighter than the C12, although the C12 does have more air in the highest frequencies.

The comparison drawn to the ElaM251 is very accurate. It is closer to a 251 than a C12. You can hear that they're all in the same family of microphones based on the capsules but I am with a previous poster who suggested the UM25 was closer to a 251.

I actually prefer this UM25 on male rock vocal to the C12, but the C12 wins on the female vocal and the country vocal. JMHO and YMMV.
Old 7th May 2012
  #7
Lives for gear
 
Michael T's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
C12 makes the other mics sound like playthangs...
Old 7th May 2012
  #8
Registered User
 
1 Review written
🎧 10 years
Hay--- yeah.
Old 17th May 2012
  #9
Registered User
 
🎧 10 years
Great clips! The UM25 does sound much more akin to a 251 than a C12, as is its intention. Mid seems a bit more forward and rougher in this example, not sure if it was just recorded hot on the pres, or if that's something that gets tamed more in the UM25C.

Would love to hear more clips on female vocals, and also up against a 251.

Thanks for sharing TTatman!
Old 17th May 2012 | Show parent
  #10
Registered User
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by jook ➑️
Great clips! The UM25 does sound much more akin to a 251 than a C12, as is its intention. Mid seems a bit more forward and rougher in this example, not sure if it was just recorded hot on the pres, or if that's something that gets tamed more in the UM25C.

Would love to hear more clips on female vocals, and also up against a 251.

Thanks for sharing TTatman!
You're welcome, jook. The Neves weren't pushed very hard. I don't own a 251 so I can't do that comparison, but at the request of another Gearslut, I intend to do a simultaneous 4 mic test within the next couple of weeks: UM57 / U47 / U67 / CM7. Should be interesting.
Old 17th May 2012
  #11
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Denny C's Avatar
 
3 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
Nice posts. Thank you.
Old 17th May 2012
  #12
Lives for gear
 
RKrizman's Avatar
 
🎧 20 years
Good comparison. The C12 has a lower more buttery or thicker quality, whatever that means, to my ears, but the Blackspade seems to have a little more clarity. I prefer the C12, but as was noted, that may be apples versus kumquats. I'd loved to have heard the Flea 12 in there as well.

As was noted, nice recording job. Neither mic would be my first choice for the male rock singer.

-R
Old 17th May 2012 | Show parent
  #13
Lives for gear
 
Ward Pike's Avatar
 
15 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by TTatman ➑️
SNIP
but at the request of another Gearslut, I intend to do a simultaneous 4 mic test within the next couple of weeks: UM57 / U47 / U67 / CM7. Should be interesting.
I'm looking forward to this one. I've never had a 47, 57 & 67 at the same time to compare.
Old 18th May 2012 | Show parent
  #14
Registered User
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by RKrizman ➑️

As was noted, nice recording job. Neither mic would be my first choice for the male rock singer.

-R
Agreed. When I recorded the actual lead vocals for his album, our U47 won out over the C12 and a U67.
Old 23rd May 2012
  #15
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Nice test. Thanks for posting the results! I find the Blackspade to be a little brighter, and the C12 to have thicker lows. Actually I thought the C12 was a little too thick on the male country sample, but it's tough to say without a mix.

I'm curious how this would change with the Tim Campbell capsule in the Blackspade, and how much of it has to do with the 251 circuit versus C12. I've heard conflicting things as to whether 251s or C12s are brighter, generally.

Also much preferred the Blackspade on the fiddle, although I'm curious which one sounded more like the fiddle did "in the room."
Old 23rd May 2012 | Show parent
  #16
Registered User
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Melodeath ➑️
Nice test. Thanks for posting the results! I find the Blackspade to be a little brighter, and the C12 to have thicker lows. Actually I thought the C12 was a little too thick on the male country sample, but it's tough to say without a mix.

I'm curious how this would change with the Tim Campbell capsule in the Blackspade, and how much of it has to do with the 251 circuit versus C12. I've heard conflicting things as to whether 251s or C12s are brighter, generally.

Also much preferred the Blackspade on the fiddle, although I'm curious which one sounded more like the fiddle did "in the room."
I came, I saw, I concurred. Actually, I often use the C12 on this singer. Compression tightens up the low end, and a touch of EQ around 4.5K and 12K brings the picture nicely into focus.

In the past I've had good luck with the KM-84 on fiddle, but this musician has a brighter sound than most, so the extra "body" that the UM-25 provided helped.

BTW, I'll be making that C12/UM25C comparison soon.
Old 23rd May 2012 | Show parent
  #17
Registered User
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by TTatman ➑️
BTW, I'll be making that C12/UM25C comparison soon.
Agh, can't wait! Any teasers?
Old 23rd May 2012 | Show parent
  #18
Registered User
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by DizzyMachine ➑️
Agh, can't wait! Any teasers?
First I'm going to do the CM7/U47/UM57/U67 test mentioned earlier. I'll also try to do the C12/UM25C comparison at that time. I'll be using the UM25C for the first time on Thursday for BGVs with the male Rock Singer from the C12/UM25 post.
Old 23rd May 2012
  #19
Registered User
 
🎧 10 years
damn that was a really tight shootout… hard to choose a favorite. If anything the C12 sounded a bit smoother.
Old 23rd May 2012
  #20
Registered User
 
🎧 10 years
The C12 sounded fuller and smoother in all of the files, no question. A better comparison would be with a 251 instead of a c12 though.
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