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Audio-Technica Pro70
Overall Rating
Submitted: March 13th, 2010
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Sound Quality
General Comments
The Audio Technica PRO 70 Condenser mic is positioned inside my archtop jazz guitar and the signal is mixed with the pickup signal. Its a dual source system (pickup + mic). The mics power pack is about the size of a Blackberry phone and is clipped onto my strap. It requires its own cable (theres two cables hanging from my guitar.) I dont have any feedback problems because my amp is positioned to my left about 10 feet away. I dont need a floor monitor. Im going for a clean sound My particular setup requires some tricky EQ settings and notch filtering (to cut out some of the boxiness), but its worth it because of the great sound that results. I found that I get the best results with the EQ tone of the mic intentionally dialed in rather bright and trebly, while the guitar pickup it set for mid-range and bass. Together, the mic and pickup sound amazing! Individual notes are crisp and chords no longer sound electronic or muddy.  The Pro 70 brings out a unique clarity that now gives my guitar a wonderful clear, clean, bright voice even when the strings are old and dull! This mic captures the natural acoustic qualities of my guitar unlike any magnetic pickup Ive ever tried. As I mentioned before, I have the EQ for the mic set to let the highs through, while the pickup goes through an effects processor where most of the highs are cut down. The two signals are blended together through a small mixer. If you only play in your living room, you can position the mic outside the guitar, and it sounds great by itself. On stage, however, feedback can be a major issue, therefore, many guitarists will mount the mic inside, including John Jorgenson (see John Jorgensons Discussion Forum, 2007.) This is where you really need some kind of EQ filtering. I actually have two EQs daisy-chained together. Also, you may experience some unwanted finger squeak. Ive learned to improve my fingering technique with more purposeful movements to minimize unwanted fingersqueek noise. The Pro 70 doesnt need phantom power, but it does require some kind of preamp like a small mixer, for example. My Digitech JamMan works perfectly for this, as it has an XLR input and a jack output. I suggest keeping most of your pedals and preamps all mounted on a single board and ready-cabled up. Most of my stuff is already cabled together in a couple of old computer laptop bags, so that set-up time is minimized. You will ned to spend some time at home with the Pro 70 before performing. If you're looking for a guitar mic you should consider things like: phantom power, XLR impedance matching, pre-amplification, bulkiness and set-up time. Read all the reviews on a product before you buy.
Reviewer's Background
I've working with musical equipment (guitars) for over 30 years, though my experince with microphones is much less than that. This review leans toward playing live, instead of recording.
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