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#1 2014-05-30 06:43:40

rcallicotte
Member
Registered: 2014-05-30

Microphones

I'm curious what sort of microphones anyone is using or does anyone have a recommendation?

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#2 2014-05-30 09:49:52

Evan
developer
From: Seattle, WA
Registered: 2014-05-23
Website

Re: Microphones

After extensive testing, I've found that just about any kind of microphone can work -- even low-quality laptop microphones -- as long as any noise cancellation features are turned off.  Noise cancellation has a bad habit of making very quiet tones appear in what should be a flat spectrum, so I've been adding countermeasures to imitone that attempt to "undo" its effects.

The other really useful factor is isolation -- the more of your voice imitone can hear, and the less of everything else, the better it can understand you.  To achieve this, work in a quiet space and keep the microphone close to your mouth (headsets work great) or use a throat microphone.  Throat mics isolate well enough that noise and feedback cease to be problematic and you can use imitone in a live-performance environment.  The ones I use cost about $15, and seem to work very well indeed -- but I'm not ready to make an official endorsement just yet.  The low, muffled audio quality makes them pretty useless for other kinds of recording.

Two things to watch out for:  don't breathe or blow on an unshielded microphone, and don't sing so loud the volume bar maxes out!  Both of these will degrade imitone's accuracy and cause drop-outs.

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#3 2014-05-30 14:25:59

rcallicotte
Member
Registered: 2014-05-30

Re: Microphones

Thanks Evan. I know you've said these things before, so I appreciate hearing a repeat and it's in writing so I can come back to read it again!

I see a lot of good microphones on Amazon, but most are noise cancelling. Perhaps getting one of those alongside of turning it off will be worth my efforts. If anyone has tried something you are crazy about, please let us know.

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#4 2014-06-05 06:56:23

Richard
Member
Registered: 2014-06-05

Re: Microphones

Just wanted to pop in to say thank you for the link. I was wanting a throat mic for gaming chat (surround sound beats headphones).

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#5 2014-10-09 12:16:02

Loofadawg
Member
Registered: 2014-10-09

Re: Microphones

The link to "newegg" is no longer valid.  Care to repost a new one?

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#6 2014-10-22 14:54:50

Evan
developer
From: Seattle, WA
Registered: 2014-05-23
Website

Re: Microphones

I've started to lose my taste for that model, after seeing several of them break during public demonstrations.  They just aren't very durable...  But if you aren't doing anything too rough they should last you a while.  The brand is "AGPTEK" -- USB throat microphone.  http://www.amazon.com/AGPtek-Profession … roduct_top

At this point I'm comfortable recommending nearly any conventional mic, with a skew toward "cardioid dynamic microphones" if you plan to use imitone in a noisy environment.  Noise cancellation is less of a problem than previously, though poorer implementations have a nasty habit of silencing long notes so I still recommend shutting it off.

I've heard good things about the Rock Band USB microphone -- a low-end but respectable cardioid mic:  http://www.amazon.com/Rock-Band-Microph … k+band+mic  (Haven't tried one myself, though)

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#7 2014-11-09 08:45:17

Loj
Member
Registered: 2014-11-09

Re: Microphones

Well todays my birthday and the first thing I want to do is use imitone now that I've bought it :D so I'd like to ask you evan which of these microphones would be good for use with imitone I will be buying today, http://www.amazon.com/Blue-Microphones- … microphone I've found this one to have the most reviews and doesn't require much to get working and this is one my friend recommended me http://www.amazon.com/Shure-SM57-LC-Car … shure+sm57 also correct me if I'm wrong but will I need a preamp mic to use these? It's my first experience at all with mics so I need some suggestions, thanks!

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#8 2014-11-11 17:35:20

Evan
developer
From: Seattle, WA
Registered: 2014-05-23
Website

Re: Microphones

Happy birthday, Loj!  (Though I think I'm a day late...)

I've heard great things about Blue microphones and that one looks like a winner for recording purposes.  It also supports USB.  The SM57 will require a separate preamp / USB interface, which will run you at least another $20 -- I suggest the Blue Icicle if your needs are minimal and durability isn't a major factor.  I've used SM58s for all my demonstrations because they work well in loud environments if you set up the thresholds right -- but otherwise I just use my built-in laptop mics.

I should note that you don't typically need a super-high-quality microphone to get a good imitone experience.  What's way more important is that the microphone's noise cancelling features (if any) are shut off, and that the space you record in is quiet enough that no background sounds peak over imitone's volume threshold.  High-quality microphones usually don't have any noise cancelling in the first place, but the same is true of many cheap models.

I think my official "budget" recommendation might be the Rock Band USB mic.

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#9 2016-09-17 08:51:56

sautermusic
Member
Registered: 2016-09-17

Re: Microphones

Hey Evan. I've been following along since the Kickstarter beginning and am so thrilled that you are still working to make this a reality. I went into Guitar Center about 5 years ago asking for something that could turn my voice into an instrument and they laughed at me. My pitch is pretty solid so for live acoustic performances, it would be amazing if I could "solo" a sax or electric guitar...or anything! I'd like to start testing imitone in a live setting and don't have an issue bringing my macbook. Would you recommend a throat mic for this? Still trying to figure out how I would turn on and off the mic when I need it - I'm guessing there is a pedal out there I can use or if the mic had an on/off switch that would be huge. I'm anticipating some trial and error - just want to make sure I have the right gear. Any tips/suggestions?

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#10 2016-09-18 13:00:39

Evan
developer
From: Seattle, WA
Registered: 2014-05-23
Website

Re: Microphones

Hey, Sauter ---

For throat mics, I would start by using whatever you have around in a quiet room --- bigger / shielded mics are often better, but I usually test with .  Because most throat microphones are made for radio, it's difficult to get them for PC.  Last I checked, options are cheap/sketchy (<$20) USB devices which work well but break easily, and some very expensive ones (hundreds of dollars) which I haven't tried yet.  I've dismissed bluetooth options on the basis of poor latency, though I don't really know what the state of the art there is like.

Your best bet might be to look into adapting a well-reviewed radio throat mic to a usable connector...  Or using one with an actual radio.  These matters are outside my expertise, though.  In the long run it would be neat for imitone to be available as a hardware unit... but nothing of that sort is planned at this time.


Probably the best on/off mechanism would be toggling the instrument in your DAW with a keyswitch.  I plan on adding keyswitches to imitone in the future as well, and I could also sneak in a hotkey for the "mute" function in the next update.  (A third-party tool would be needed to trigger that keypress from a pedal.)

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