How Should a Mic Sound Live?
My biggest pet peeves when playing live are feedback and sounding too bright. I’ve tried a few different Mics, but my favorite is still the trustworthy Audix OM-2 because I love the clean and powerful sound it gives me on stage while not changing the voice. I stress “clean” that’s the best way to describe its sound. Also, it may sound kind of ridiculous, but I like the way the mic physically looks while I’m on stage. I hate singing with an ugly looking mic on a mic stand.
Best Live Vocal Mic: Audix OM-2
The Audix OM-2 is a popular mic because of its excellent mid range abilities. It is also a fairly durable mic and possesses everything needed to give great live performances.
It does not have hardly any feedback during live performances, which has always been a huge pain in many of my live performances with other mics. In addition, this mic can be used for recording in addition to live performances. The Shure SM 58 is more well known, but it doesn’t have the great sound of this mic when used live.
The Audix OM-2 really stays to your natural tone and doesn’t change it as much as some mics. You can see man other singers reviews and notice the praise for this mic all around. Let me know what you think if you decide to try it out. I’m sure you won’t be disappointed.
Second Place: Shure SM 58
The Shure SM 58 is probably the most popular mic in the world for good reason. The frequency rise special to the Shure SM 58 is what makes it different than any other mic. In addition, it’s affordable compared to most other VERY EXPENSIVE mics.
Many live singers like me want to hold the mic very close to their lips when singing. I developed this when playing guitar and singing very close to the mic. This mic sounds GREAT when putting your mouth very close and that’s another reason people love it.
The SM 58 is great for monitoring your voice on stage too. This is a big headache for a lot of singers because often they feel they are not singing loud enough. In reality, they just don’t have good vocal monitors set up. Well, the SM 58 is trustworthy in the live department when it comes to monitoring.
Durability of Mic?
You can throw this mic down on stage and it keeps coming back. I have more than a few musician friends who have had this mic for a long time. It seems like they just don’t die. So yeah, if you’re any kind of musician doing gigs around town or going on the road and you routinely move gear into or out of your car, get durable stuff including mics.
I rank it below the E935 because it doesn’t sound quite as clean, but it’s still a great mic.
Third Place: Sennheiser E935
The Sennheiser E935 Cardioid vocal microphone provides a lot of power in an inexpensive package. The E935 is a multi-use microphone, at home on both the stage and in the studio. Slim and lightweight, it provides clear, crisp sound and minimal feedback. It even picks up the rich low notes that too many microphones muddy up.
Clarity isn’t the only thing the Sennheiser E935 has going for it. The mic is made from sturdy, all-metal construction. It features a shock-mounted capsule, which prevents handling noise, as well as insulation from other onstage signals. The hum compensating coil reduces electrical interference for other instruments onstage, allowing the mic to produce consistent sound no matter what.
The E935 mic is a performance mic first and a recording mic second. It really shines on a loud stage, but some feedback from the amps does occur in smaller venues. The mic handles the rigors of the road well. The sturdy case takes all the bumps on stage without external or internal damage, but it’s not as sturdy as the Shure SM 58.
While the Sennheiser E935 isn’t the top of the Sennheiser line of microphones, it provides all the quality and most of the sound of the more expensive mics. The E935 is a professional mic that provides good sound and great performance.
Fourth Place: Neumann KMS105
The Neumann KMS105 microphone is a nice choice for any amateur or professional vocalist. It looks good and it sounds great. The four-layer acoustic filter gives less feedback than most microphones, which makes it ideal for live vocals. The Neumann KMS105 eliminates the need to have to force your vocals, which also makes it great for recording. The electric and mechanical filters assure super-low noise levels.
The Neumann KMS105 handles a most vocal ranges, but unlike the Shure SM-58, it may require some tweaking to achieve full clarity on higher vocal ranges. This mic is awesome if you have the right voice for it and have some vocal training under your belt, as it requires clarity and articulation to really reach its full potential.
Fifth Place: Audix OM6
This microphone is an outstanding choice for anyone looking for a microphone with amazing clarity that is interference-free. The Audix OM6 has no distortion, making it an excellent choice for live singing. It’s extremely durable, which is also important when you are live on stage. The OM6 also works very well when recording, making it an excellent choice if you need a multi-purpose mic.
I also really like the look of this microphone. It isn’t so big that it takes center stage, but it isn’t tiny either. It is easy to handle and is lightweight. Since the mic does sometimes require a gate to neutralize the low frequency resonance, I do think that the Shure SM-58 handles better with instrument applications–especially with percussions. For the price this is a really good microphone that will not disappoint most people. It sounds great and it’s hassle-free.
Disclosure Policy: This is a professional review page, which I use to recommend products I trust. I get commissions as an affiliate for some products I recommend on my site, such as the products on this page. My professional reputation is affected by the programs I recommend to you so you can trust these are my honest opinions on these microphones. It’s ethical and lawful that I disclose my affiliate relationship with some products.