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Old 16th July 2016
Lives for gear
jeremyglover's Avatar
🎧 10 years

Hey Sylvia, thanks for giving up your time to share your wisdom and passion for all things audio!

I have a question regarding small diaphragm condensers versus large diaphragm condensers.

When would you try one over the other and what would be your reason for this?

Old 2nd August 2016
Radiant Being
SylviaMassy's Avatar
🎧 5 years
Using Your Diaphragms

In the world of condenser mics, I generally choose the large diaphragms for bigger jobs, and the smaller diaphragms for more focused tasks.

Small diaphragm condensers work well in tight environments, and capture better detail in higher frequencies. I would choose small diaphragms for acoustic guitar, hi-hat, ride, percussion, and the upper horns on a Hammond organ's Leslie cabinet.

Large diaphragms usually work better for wider, full-frequency recording. I would choose large diaphragm mics for piano, vocals, overhead drum recording (cymbals), strings and orchestral recordings.

Certainly this is not an absolute rule. I've used the small diaphragm Mojave MA100 condensers for the decca tree recording of a baroque orchestra with great results. And I've often used a single Mojave MA200 large diaphragm condenser for all kinds of jobs on the same project, from drum overheads to vocals to percussion to acoustic guitar. Mainly because it sounds great on most everything and I didn't want to lose momentum by swapping out and re-balancing the mic between overdubs... Just GO GO GO while the musicians are HOT!!!

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