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Best Condenser Mic Comparable to AT3031


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  • Best Condenser Mic Comparable to AT3031

    OK, to prefix - I'm a bassist, not a sound-guy.


    That being said, I run sound (begin pointing/laughing here) at my church for our choirs, basically because I'm the only one that knows what a mixer and rack system do.  The only thing I really have going for me are my ears because, after listening to decades of gospel & motown music, I can mix the sopranos/altos/tenors/basses pretty well.


    Here's the thing - with the increase of the size of the choir (and introduction of children's choir and other applications) I'm trying to increase the number of condenser mics that we use (currently four AT3031s) but I don't believe this model is being manufactured any more.  I'd like to beef up the spread with four to six more of a comparable condenser mic, but don't know what would be a good model that comes close to matching specs with the AT.


    Any ideas?  Different manufacturer?  Convert to Druid?  Begin boiling water as a sacrifice to the FSM?

    Originally Posted by MattACaster : *Runs 2 blocks down the street to Guitar Center, grabs detuned Schecter off the wall, plugs into Line6 Spider and proceeds to bring teh brootalz*

  • #2

    The AT4041 would be the better replacement.  It's a step up.

    Bill Cronheim
    Entertainment Systems Corporation
    Back stage since 1965
    Equipment specialist since 1973


    • #3

      I own two AT4041's nice mics.  However maybe you should explain what you're trying to do specifically. Just adding more mics won't necessarily increase volume if coverage isn't your issue.  For instance each doubling of your mics can result in a loss of potential gain before feedback of 3 dB. But coverage and proximity play a crucial part in what does and doesn't occur.

      BTW I'm no PA guru, but I have miced my fair share of choirs. Sometimes less is more - that's sometimes. And sometimes placement of mics and/or placement of performers can make a difference. And often, even matching your expectations with your true needs (and your wallet) can help.


      • flemtone
        flemtone commented
        Editing a comment

        Coverage is absolutely the issue.   Currently there are four 3031's in use - one each for soprano, alto, tenor & baritone.  There are currently more sopranos and altos than can cluster around their single condensors (also, being split between front and back rows in the loft).  I've been temporarily bolstering the back rows with a single SM58 for each group, but the presence just doesn't cut it.  Alwo, when the children's choir sings (in a different part of the church), I'd like a pair of condensors for them so they can be picked up as a group at a more manageable distance instead of my current use of a couple of close 58s (for which the little monsters performers invariably push, shove and argue compete for proximity).   I'd like to get a pair of condensors for them as well, so I can set up their mics with a bit more distance from the chilluns and, hopefully, a bit more control over the sound.


        Either that or a cattle prod.  I can go either way with that.


        Thanks for your suggestions so far.  The price of the 4041's is probably out of our range, if I'm trying to go for four new units.   Is the 2021 at all comparable?  There seem to be a glut of them on Ebay and saving some sheckels on this may mean a bit more for the food pantry. 

    • #4

      Use some headphones.  The Beatles did and got great results.  :manlol:


      • #5

        Great info, folks.  Thanks a bunch.


        Nope, feedback hasn't been a problem at all, more just the spread of the choir and trying to get the best live sound for the buck.  I'm thinking the 2020s may work well for the beasts children, as I can put the kids on one side of the altar rail and keep the mics on the other side thus avoiding jelly and projectile vomiting their having quick and easy access to the mics themselves.


        I may be able to alter the location of the 3031s to get a better spread for the altos and sopranos (there are a ton of these, but not many with really good pitch well-controlled voices).  It seems that, invariably, the ones with more pitch limitations position themselves dead-center on the mics.  I've talked to the choirmaster but things just haven't really changed.  I figured that, with more options to strengthen a good group of voices and bring down the more, um, creative ones, I could improve the overall sound of the choir and maybe get more butts in the pews, if you know what I mean.  Trying to do this voluntarily (and on a shoestring budget) is just one of the ways I have fun in my life.  I'm also considering having surgery without anesthesia.  Just a party-guy.


        Anyway, it's looking so far like the 2020s for the munchkins and possibly a pair of 2021s for the full choir.  I figure I may use the 2021s for the weaker elements of the group (as they may be rolled off a bit most of the time) and reset the 3031s for the stronger elements.  The board has 32 channels with phantom power available for each, so this may be the setup I attempt. 


        If anyone thinks I'm way off base here, I'm begging ya - PLEASE let me know.  I'm doing the best I can with what little I've got. 


        *considers vow of silence*

        Originally Posted by MattACaster : *Runs 2 blocks down the street to Guitar Center, grabs detuned Schecter off the wall, plugs into Line6 Spider and proceeds to bring teh brootalz*


        • NPauly
          NPauly commented
          Editing a comment
          If you're not going to use the 3031s anymore I would be interested in buying a pair off of you. A friend has the same mics and I was hoping to get a pair for myself, but I'm having a hard time finding a used pair.