Is the K47 capsule too dark?

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James-F

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Hi.

I'm currently reviewing what interesting capsules I can replace in various flat (NT1, Schoeps) and compensated (MXL V67G, 2001) type of circuits to have a wider range of sounds at the source.
In every comparison of the K47 in a flat circuit like the NT1-A I can find on the web it sounds too dark to me like it was recorded on an old compromised tape.
On the other hand, I already have a NT1-A with a K87 capsule and I think it sounds great, I don't hear it as being overly bright, actually it sounds very balanced to me.

Anyone has the same experience and thinks the K47 capsule is too dark in flat response circuits?
What about the CK12?
 

Drosselmeier

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Hello, I can’t speak for different manufacturers of C12, but I can definitely say about ADK c12, I used the Neumann u87 scheme, with this scheme c12 becomes too dark and without a filter it is almost 1:1 in brightness like k87 with high pass filter
 

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kingkorg

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You could say it is a dark capsule, especially compared to other usual suspects like ct12, k67. Almost always i use m7 or k47 i end up using hf boost. I leave it flat(ish) if i record something like piano/vocal combo, jazzy and vibey vocals, drum room...
Contrary what people think k47 can get quite sibilant too. If i do anything modern i use other mics. If it's a good k67 capsule i use it often in flat circuit to get breathy vocals, think Mariah Carrey. C800g is a k67 in flat circuit.

True CK12 can be all over the place as it can be tuned. The reason why elam and c12 can sound vastly different from piece to piece.

It is good that you actually use your ears, these days i would say people go blindly for u47 type of mic, not being aware of it's limitations. It's not a mic for everything and everyone.
 
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James-F

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Here is how my NT1A+K67 measures from 30cm away of a calibrated monitor to 60-20kHz ±1db.
I see a gradual rise to +6db at 12k-15kHz.
I can also see that a 34mm capsule entertains a lot more self 'modes' compared to a small 1/4" measurement omni electret capsule.

I like that 6db boost at 12kHz actually, I think it is just right for vocals and speech.
 

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James-F

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I have purchased a few capsules from Aliexpress to test.
Some RK-47 and RK-12 branded "77JC", I hope they are okay, not looking for anything above 30$ per capsule for a 70-100$ mics from the same place. :D
 

Drosselmeier

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Here is how my NT1A+K67 measures from 30cm away of a calibrated monitor to 60-20kHz ±1db.
I see a gradual rise to +6db at 12k-15kHz.
I can also see that a 34mm capsule entertains a lot more self 'modes' compared to a small 1/4" measurement omni electret capsule.

I like that 6db boost at 12kHz actually, I think it is just right for vocals and speech.
Сapsules k67 and k87 have a higher resonance frequency than k47, because of this there is a rise of 6db from 6kHz, this is why there is a filter in neumann u87

About 77JC this is a novelty on aliexpress, I have not yet decided to try them, the graphics are smooth and beautiful, but no one really knows what the frequency response in capsules
 

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James-F

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Сapsules k67 and k87 have a higher resonance frequency than k47, because of this there is a rise of 6db from 6kHz, this is why there is a filter in neumann u87
Yes, I have simulated complete microphone circuits with the U87 feedback loop, as you can see here:

I'm not absolutely convinced that this attenuation is necessary even for K67 capsules unless ones going for an accurate U87 sound.
In any case, I have several microphone topologies now so I can try swapping capsules and choose what I like, once everything arrives from Ali.
 

kingkorg

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Here is how my NT1A+K67 measures from 30cm away of a calibrated monitor to 60-20kHz ±1db.
I see a gradual rise to +6db at 12k-15kHz.
I can also see that a 34mm capsule entertains a lot more self 'modes' compared to a small 1/4" measurement omni electret capsule.

I like that 6db boost at 12kHz actually, I think it is just right for vocals and speech.
These nodes can not be from the capsule itself. Probably distance alignment issue, make sure they are perfectly aligned (k67 and omni mic). Also one is omni, the other cardioid. I use flat measurement cardioid for this instead of omni.
 

James-F

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I can repeat the tests with high accuracy (repeatability) so it is not positioning, more likely the omni vs cardioid difference.
I have a few SDC mics, though they are not reference quality.
Still, the current test is adequate to demonstrates a rough general frequency response, not looking for lab accuracy measurements just yet.
 

Drosselmeier

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I can repeat the tests with high accuracy (repeatability) so it is not positioning, more likely the omni vs cardioid difference.
I have a few SDC mics, though they are not reference quality.
Still, the current test is adequate to demonstrates a rough general frequency response, not looking for lab accuracy measurements just yet.
In my opinion, your graph is enough to see the similarity with other capsules k67/87
 

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soliloqueen

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It really depends on the supplier. I've heard a lot of k47 capsules in the aftermarket that are crazy dark, seemingly because the people who manufacture them are under the impression that's how they are supposed to sound. I feel like the classic k47 sound has a pretty bold rise to 4khz which makes them sound anything but dark. It almost seems like there's two different sound signatures out there.
 

lampas

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About 77JC this is a novelty on aliexpress, I have not yet decided to try them, the graphics are smooth and beautiful, but no one really knows what the frequency response in capsules

I like their attention on packaging. Frequency response for this would be flat dead ...
 

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wlinart

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I also bought some k47 style capsules from 77jc, and the plastic housing was also a bit broken. But atkeast the capsule wasn’t damaged.
 

James-F

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Almost always i use m7 or k47 i end up using hf boost.
Going back on topic for a second.
I'll say the obvious; when boosting high frequencies we always boost noise with it.
The whole debate of "K67 is too bright for this circuit" is utterly meaningless if you have any EQ control like you do in your DAW, in fact it is always better to cut frequencies than boost for the reason above.
If one has a problem with monitoring the direct signal of the unprocessed "bright 32mm K67" microphone, my suggestion is to change headphones instead of capsules. :)
 

tomas.borgstrom

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It really depends on the supplier. I've heard a lot of k47 capsules in the aftermarket that are crazy dark, seemingly because the people who manufacture them are under the impression that's how they are supposed to sound. I feel like the classic k47 sound has a pretty bold rise to 4khz which makes them sound anything but dark. It almost seems like there's two different sound signatures out there.
This is my impression as well. Neumann K47's are not dark. I think it's very important to specify what copy you've heard or if it's an original Neumann Berlin or Sennheiser. I have read many misleading posts regarding K47. I've heard chinese copy K47 from aliexpress that sound really dark and bad. They might look nice but are not products for professional use. If you want a great K47 for a very good price I recommend Maiku.
 

kingkorg

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In every comparison of the K47 in a flat circuit like the NT1-A I can find on the web it sounds too dark to me like it was recorded on an old compromised tape.


@tomas.borgstrom , i really don't see the point of your post besides pushing for Maiku which is another rebranded Chinese capsule. The original post was about k47 in general, and it is true they sound darker than ck12 or k67. If you think otherwise there must be something wrong with k47 you are using. There are many different models of k47 on Aliexpress, and neither of those i have tried exhibit properties you are describing. I am pretty sure i have tried and measured all of them. What does it mean they are not products for professional use? Those Aliexpress capsules are found in many boutique 2000$ +++ mics used professionally. Do you have examples, measuremens, samples?

This is CMV563 microphone response with M7 capsule. Not sure if it qualifies as a profesional microphone.
 

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soliloqueen

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@tomas.borgstrom , i really don't see the point of your post besides pushing for Maiku which is another rebranded Chinese capsule. The original post was about k47 in general, and it is true they sound darker than ck12 or k67. If you think otherwise there must be something wrong with k47 you are using. There are many different models of k47 on Aliexpress, and neither of those i have tried exhibit properties you are describing. I am pretty sure i have tried and measured all of them. What does it mean they are not products for professional use? Those Aliexpress capsules are found in many boutique 2000$ +++ mics used professionally. Do you have examples, measuremens, samples?

This is CMV563 microphone response with M7 capsule. Not sure if it qualifies as a profesional microphone.
Yeah, I was talking specifically about one that I found in the diy space before I started on my project, not mass produced capsules

I guess it depends on what you consider darkness. I'm really really sensitive to the 4-5khz region (my friends make fun of me for de-essing too hard) and because of that I would consider some k47s bright. Not as in lots of presence but in the sense of them accentuating the brighter parts of speech.

If anything third-party capsules tend to underdampen the diaphragm leading to greater treble boost. I think he took my post to mean the reverse of what I meant, although I think I wasn't clear and I over-generalized.
 
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