I am in the process of starting up a small project studio, and in preperation for an upcoming acoustic singer/songwriter session, I purchased this mic for vocals. Until now, I have been relying on an EV Raven dynamic for that purpose, mainly because that mic is well suited to pushing a voice out in front of loud, raging rock/metal mixes. It's not so great, though, for quiet, intimate tracks. That's is something that you really need a decent LDC for, and the TB1 proved to be a great candidate. Straight out of the box, I could tell that this was a step up from the budget condensers I have used in the past. It came packed in a sturdy, impressive looking aluminum case, and everything fit very snugly into the high-density foam lining. No worries about anything tumbling around in there. The included power supply seems well made...solid connections and switches. Connecting everything was a snap. My only beef while setting up was the shock mount. It's made of molded plastic, and the mic simply slides into a channel and is meant to be held in place once you twist it. Unfortunately, there is no way to tighten the grip. It's not that I worry about the mic falling out of the mount (though that appears a good possibility if hung upside down like most tube mics are), but the mic is very loose in the mount, and has a tendency to twist and flop around easily.Anyway, on to the mic itself. After I gave it some time to warm up, I began singing a capella, and was instantly amazed. The sound is crisp, transparent, and warm. Sillibants are pleasantly rounded, and the overall balance is exceptional. The lows really show their power with this mic. The top end is ever so slightly hyped, though not unnaturally so. The entire frequency spectrum is represented smoothly, unlike the Raven I mentioned earlier, which has limited top end response and a slightly "honky" middle. Running into a M-Audio Octane pre set at moderate gain with the low cut engaged, I could hear an incredible amount of detail, not just in my voice, but what was around my voice (my voice has never sounded better, by the way...which is saying something since it is is far from great). The character of the room is represented with clarity and distinction...I could hear cars driving by, and once, I could even tell what they were listening to on the radio. I soon realized that with this mic, I had bought myself the problem of having to be more thorough in sound-treating my recording rooms.As for the construction of the mic, it is heavy, and feels solidly built. I don't intend to drop it, but if it should ever happen, it certainly gives the impression that it could handle it. And one more thing it has in its corner...it looks really cool hanging on a stand, which is always a plus.I have not had the opportunity to test this mic on acoustic guitar, but I have a strong feeling that given its very smooth response, it would excel at this task, as well as many others.If you are looking for a great sounding, well made vocal/general use LDC at a reasonable price, I strongly recommend the TB1.
Stepping Stone Sound