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Comparing Three Popular Broadcast Microphones

Comparing Three Popular Broadcast Microphones

A microphone by any other brand may not sound as sweet.

- Billy Shakespeare

As Radio continues to sail the airwaves while reaching new audiences across today's streaming platforms, and podcasters jostle for the attention of content-hungry listeners, the need for a high-quality broadcast microphone has never been greater.

But with so many available options, how do you choose the mic that's right for you?

That's a good question with no easy answer, but taking a look at three popular broadcast microphones may help a bit.

Electro-Voice RE20

Designed to offer the same rich detail and crystal clarity as a top-notch condenser microphone, but boasting a much sturdier build, the ability to handle high sound pressure levels (SPL) without overloading and distorting, and a cure for the dreaded proximity effect, this legendary dynamic mic has held an honored place in countless radio and recording studios for over 50 years. Its cardioid polar pattern offers clear, focused sound capture, while its even response and subtle brightness helps get the most out of any type of voice. Especially impressive is its patented Variable-D technology that tames the wild proximity effect, allowing voice talent to get up close and personal without boomy lows or annoying plosives.

Because the RE20 is in such high demand, BSW makes a point of keeping it in stock at its centrally located warehouse for fast, FREE shipping. Check out the classic model here or the new, camera-friendly version sporting an elegant charcoal finish here.

Heil Sound PR 40

Newer on the scene than the RE20, the Heil Sound PR 40, brainchild of legendary audio wizard Bob Heil, is another impeccably-designed, rugged dynamic microphone that delivers a sound that rivals condenser microphones but without that annoying, distracting background noise and need for external enhancements. Featuring a cardioid polar pattern for focused sound capture and a double-layered screen to keep breath blasts at bay, the PR 40 offers a very wide frequency response and clear uncolored sound with virtually no distortion. Especially impressive is its industry-leading -40dB of rear rejection, making it ideal for noisy environments.

The PR 40 is available in several eye-catching finishes. BSW has the customer-favorite original model in stock for fast FREE shipping. You can find it here.

Shure SM7B

A few years back, I asked some of BSW's ultra-knowledgeable and broadcast-experienced GearHeads to name their favorite microphone. Every single one picked the SM7B. A dynamic microphone with a focused cardioid polar pattern, the SM7B offers a rich, warm sound with minimal proximity effect. Its flat frequency response brings out the nuances of any type of voice. One GearHead said it was the most "forgiving" mic he had ever used, making ideal for any type of voice and both male and female speakers. It features bass rolloff and mid-range emphasis controls for even more precise sonic shaping, and its internal "air suspension" shock isolation virtually eliminates handling noise.

The SM7B's popularity makes it fly off the shelf, but BSW has it in stock for FREE fast shipping. Check it out here. Because its output is a bit lower than the other mics we've discussed, some customers like to pair it with Cloud Microphones' CloudLifter Mic Activator to add up to +25 dB of clean, transparent gain. BSW has it in stock (sound familiar?) and you can find it here.

This was just a brief survey of three great microphones. You'll find more info and specs on their BSW product pages, or just give your friendly neighborhood GearHead a call!

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