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Oktavamod MK-012: really as good as a KM84?
Old 27th September 2012 | Show parent
  #61
Old 27th September 2012
  #62
Gear Nut
 
Mikeportnoyz's Avatar
 
3 Reviews written
🎧 5 years
Thank you, the drums sound awesome!
That's exactly what i wanted to hear, now i understand why they like it as OH.
It picks up a lot of toms and not so much cymbals, so i suppose in the mix it's ready as it is. Also nothing sounds too bright, the coloration is very pleasing.
Old 27th September 2012 | Show parent
  #63
Lives for gear
 
1 Review written
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikeportnoyz ➑️
I'll resurrect an older topic to not make a new one... so... it seems nobody in the whole world has a bad opinion on mk012.
Well, sorry to be a spoiler but I personally think a good specimen KM84 absolutely SLAUGHTERS the Jolly modded 012 Octava. And that is honestly not what I wanted to happen !

I had used a friends km84 pair for years, mostly on grand piano and also as OHs for drums. But when he had to take them back I was able to borrow another friend's Jolly modded 012s, and that was an eye/ear opening experience for sure !

We did a drum session in my best room with the 012s that has always sounded absolutely STELLAR with KM84s. We used a Fearn VT2 as the pre, and the style was rock. All I can say is that the 012s sound shrill, 2d, and anemic compared to the KM84s; they are not even close for this application, and it was really kinda frustrating because the performance was great and we wasted an entire session because of believing the hype on the net about these mics !

Since that time I dug deep into my pockets and forked over $2500 for a mint condition matched pair of KM84s. They are the BOMB for drum overheads and also grand piano, whereas the 012s sound more like sm57s by comparison -- not even close to being in the same league IMAO !!!!

Old 27th September 2012 | Show parent
  #64
Gear Nut
 
Mikeportnoyz's Avatar
 
3 Reviews written
🎧 5 years
Yes, but saying that a microphone is in a lower league than a legendary-class one is not really insulting it XD
Btw, i still don't understand: i see someone recording vocals with SDC stereo pairs... what is the purpose of recording vocals in stereo? Aren't they a pretty much mono source? Is it an industry standard/variation of the standard?
Old 27th September 2012 | Show parent
  #65
Lives for gear
 
1 Review written
🎧 15 years
Bottom line is you get what you pay for, and also that the record biz is a rich man's game -- always wuz, and always will be.

I have found this to be true on every front concerning gear, though it was much to my disliking.

$160k later and I feel I have just finally entered the ring, and my productions are showing it. When you start getting unsolicited comments like "wow, that's amazing ! who is that ?" consistently from average joe listeners (even though NOTHING has changed about the music/performances), then you know with 100% certainty that the gear has an unmistakable effect on the end result and the listener's perception of that.

And of course now someone will pop in with the customary GS retort and say it's the indian, not the arrow and ya know, Andy Wallace could get the same results with nothing but an Mbox, some 57s and some stock digi plugins.

Old 27th September 2012 | Show parent
  #66
Gear Nut
 
Mikeportnoyz's Avatar
 
3 Reviews written
🎧 5 years
Yes, i recorded my only record with no experience, and a TOTAL budget, pc included, of 800 euro. Of equipment i mean, not paying a studio, i did it myself...
And it sounds as it costed, but i think many many people i know would have made it much worse. Even the instruments weren't correctly set, and guitarist still didn't have a noise gate (we're talking about max gain/distortion metal guitar, always feedbacking)

And now, after months of research i'm listening to more and more clips of microphone, and every damn time a 600+$ microphone comes up, i hear there is something more to the equation. Something i could only describe as... magic, maybe? Lower class microphones all tend to lack that, but i had the sensation of feeling a bit of it in the oktavas, that's why i got so interested. And now i want to see with my eyes if it's true
Old 28th September 2012 | Show parent
  #67
Gear Guru
 
monkeyxx's Avatar
 
18 Reviews written
🎧 15 years
if you can afford the best, then get the best. but if you can't, it's not really anything to worry about so get the best in your price range and make music (which is priceless). Oktavas are great for the money, great in that price range compared to others. I'd also suggest Shure KSM137 as a possible step up in quality for not a whole lot more, especially used. Neumann's are world class, and cost like it.
Old 28th September 2012 | Show parent
  #68
Gear Guru
 
drBill's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by sage691 ➑️
All I can say is that the 012s sound shrill, 2d, and anemic compared to the KM84s; they are not even close for this application, and it was really kinda frustrating because the performance was great and we wasted an entire session because of believing the hype on the net about these mics !
That's pretty bizzare. I can't imagine calling a joly 012 "shrill and 2d" compared to a KM84. Have you had them serviced lately? I have used I think 4 different Joly 012's and they have a tad more open top, and a bigger bottom, but are firmly in the 84 camp. The 84 sounds ever so slightly more "creamier" and the 012 "woodier" for lack of better terms, but they are dead on close. I even did that A/B cut on Ac Gt between the two mics, and no one could successfully tell where the intercuts were.
Old 28th September 2012 | Show parent
  #69
Gear Guru
 
monkeyxx's Avatar
 
18 Reviews written
🎧 15 years
Microphone Database | Audio Recording News | RecordingHacks also has a ton of MK 012 on overheads clips in their many SDC and overhead shootout articles, compared to many, many other microphones.
Old 28th September 2012 | Show parent
  #70
Lives for gear
 
3 Reviews written
🎧 15 years
FWIW, from the clips I've listened to there is a clear difference between all of the Joly modded mics and the high $$$ mics they're compared to. The actual Neumann's always show a more detailed capture and "magic" than the emulators.

Don't get me wrong, I'm an Oktava fan and love my Joly modded 012, but a KM84 it is not. It falls short, as do all the mics modded and compared to a high end target-mic.

The latest contender, for instance, which is this vintage voiced mje-v250 is a fantastic mic - yes - and it sounds wonderful. But the clips that compare it with a genuine U87 show how it falls short of achieving the detail of capture the U87 has.

Close, yes. Will "close" work for a lot of people? No doubt. But "close" is as close as it gets - so to speak.
Old 28th September 2012 | Show parent
  #71
Here for the gear
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by 777Artin ➑️
Internet Hyped.

Can a Chevrolet run as smouth as a Mercedes Benz?

Yes for sure.........for the first years or so. After 4 years rust gets in the american made. Give it another couple of years and the Chevrolet is worth nothing even though you modded and repaired the thing.

Buy a new MB and take good care of it.......it will lasts over 20 years.

If you're starting up and on a budget then the MK012's might be alright.

In the long run, buy the Neumann.

777artin
German cars score very low marks for reliability every year in Consumer Reports. Somewhere between Dodge and Fiat.
Old 23rd April 2013 | Show parent
  #72
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 10 years
The Oktava sounds great both modified and unmodified. Where did you place the mic to get the great tone for those clips?? 12th fret?? About how far away was it from the guitar? Thanks for posting. I've been considering the modified oktava mk012's or sm81 for my acoustic guitar recordings. I have Rode NT55's and they sound a little harsh in the high end to me.
Old 22nd June 2018
  #73
Gear Head
 
🎧 5 years
Where can I find some comparison recordings of stock and joly mod oktava? I want understand which are the improvements upon the stock mics.
Thanks
Old 4th January 2019 | Show parent
  #74
Gear Head
 
James Meder's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Oktava audio samples

More input on this great debate!

Here's a review I did recently, comparing the Oktava MK-012 (one of my personal favs) to a Shure SM81 and Earthworks OM1. I realize that these mics are inherently different designs in regards to polar patterns...but it might shed some light on how it compares to other SDC mics of a similar price point. There are comparison audio samples for a mono drum overhead and acoustic guitar. No KM84 here but I have used those in the past and really enjoy them - likely a more lively and open top end when compared to any of these mics (closest to the earthworks). I hope it's helpful!

Old 9th September 2020
  #75
I don't even think they need to be modded to be "as good as a KM84". They're a high quality mic that can compete with things 4x the price. I can afford an MKH50 but chose to buy more MK-012s over it because I think they sound better, and eventually I'll get even more, and at some point a Schoeps MK41 (maybe with a used CMC5 pre). They're not quite as good as a Schoeps MK41 of course, but certainly very usable.

No modern MK-012 actually has to be modded. It's the older ones with the leaky Soviet capacitors that had to be modded. It might also help ones from the ASM era that were a QC sh*t show (this is more the fault of McKay than Oktava because the former wanted lots of units produced at reduced costs while also being the exclusive international distributor who through a really unfair contract had the rights to the Oktava name outside of Russia).

And yes, I did talk to Scott Dorsey about this. It was him who told me the mods were to fix the ones from around 1995 that had the leaky Soviet capacitors and that those aren't necessary anymore. I'd put more faith in his words than other modders since he came up with the original commonly performed mods and doesn't sell mod kits or do mod services anymore so he doesn't be benefit by pretending stock Oktavas are undesirable. Mod a modern one and you might get a slightly different sound, but it might not be better. I prefer them stock as long as they're up to spec.

One MK-012 modder, won't say who specifically, even told me that Russian and Chinese MK-012 capsules can't be used on the body of the other because the threading isn't compatible, and that's objectively wrong. Should anyone ever end up buying a Chinese one and can't return it (or even if you do get a refund anyway through PayPal where you aren't required to return the goods) buying new capsules (which are only about $100 each) and putting them on the Chinese body is a good use for it. There's not a big difference between my authentic modern MK-012 pres and the Chinese ones when using Russian capsules that couldn't also be explained by a slight difference in them that would also be within tolerance.

Last edited by Dohreetoh; 13th September 2020 at 07:49 AM..
Old 22nd December 2020
  #76
Gear Maniac
Would you guys still take the Oktava over a Sm81or a KM 184 these days?
Old 22nd December 2020 | Show parent
  #77
Gear Guru
 
monkeyxx's Avatar
 
18 Reviews written
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by bob2018 ➑️
Would you guys still take the Oktava over a Sm81or a KM 184 these days?
I am a KM184 head so that would be my choice. Oktava is a good choice, much less costly. Scott Dorsey just verified in another thread that they are "pre-modded" from the factory in recent years, with the mods he published in Tape Op 20 years ago. Although I still recommend changing the capsule coupling capacitor to a polystyrene, personally.

I don't have an SM81 so I can't say, but I do enjoy electret condenser microphones quite a lot these days. If I could find a cheap one I would buy it. They sound great in the online demonstrations, probably better than the KSM for acoustic guitar.

For drums it would be a different story for me, straight to the KSM137 or KSM141. I am a broken record on this topic. I never did try the KM184 on drums because I only had one.

People talk about Soyuz SDC. I hated the Warm WA84 (sorry, but I did.) I like the SE Electronics pencil mics that I tried. They have an absurdly large number of models out there, same as AT. I use an SE1A on acoustic guitar. A little brighter than the Oktava. It's a broad topic, and I'll stop here.
Old 30th December 2020 | Show parent
  #78
Quote:
Originally Posted by bob2018 ➑️
Would you guys still take the Oktava over a Sm81or a KM 184 these days?
I'd personally pick a couple MK-012s over a KM184. But I also like the vintage sound of the MK-012s.
Old 8th December 2021
  #79
Lives for gear
 
didier.brest's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Comparing MK-012 and KM 184 on grand piano. The MK-012 pair is above the KM 184 one, 8 mm gap between the edges of the capsules, 17 cm 0Β° AB, 1,54 m above the floor beside the piano tail. Post processing: balancing the levels of both files.
Attached Files

MK-012.mp3 (3.02 MB, 119 views)

KM 184.mp3 (3.02 MB, 99 views)


Last edited by didier.brest; 8th December 2021 at 10:36 PM..
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