Shure SM81
Shure SM81

SM81, Small diaphragm condenser microphone from Shure belonging to the SM81 model.

public price: ¥325 VAT incl.
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content in English
James... 08/06/2011

Shure SM81 : James... のユーザーレビュー (content in English)

"Sounds good on everything!"

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I like to call this the SM57 of condensers because of its versatility. It's meant to be primarily an instrument mic, but unlike a lot of condensers, you can use them on literally everything and it somehow sounds good. Usually you will find these in studios but they are definitely usable in a live situation too. If you know what you're doing, it's abilities are far reaching. I also like that it has the filter switch on the side. In certain live situations it comes in handy.


I originally bought a pair of SM81's to use for my drummer's overheads. I was really really pleased with them in this setting. I quickly learned that while this mic sounds very transparent, it also has some kind of boost in the mid range that makes drums sound more "shimmery." Our drummer uses in ears and he agreed with me that the mix from the 81's sounds almost better than hearing his actual kit!

After my initial success, I started using them for other things. One day I was tracking acoustic guitar in the studio and my large condensers didn't sound quite right in the mix. I set up my 81's together just to see what would happen. They gave my guitar the extra presence it needed to get heard on my track. Since then I've frequently returned to that setup a few times. I found later that the 81's sounded great on piano and pretty much any stringed instrument. The 81 really captures the character of anything it records, almost to a fault in some cases. It's very accurate and the extra presence it adds will definitely make sure mistakes are heard well. So be careful. Overall though I can't recommend these enough. They are tricky to learn how to use and you may not like them on everything, but I think every studio or venue could use a couple.