T-Bone's SC1100 vs SC140

Last year I bought a T-Bone SC1100 large diaphragm mic. Yesterday a got myself a T-Bone SC140 small diaphragm mic.

This is the first raw sample of both mics, using an Art USB Dual Pre mic preamp connected by USB to a desktop computer running Debian GNU/Linux and Audacity 1.3.13.

SC1100 is set to cardioid pattern and connected to the left channel. SC140 is connected to the right channel. Low-cut filters are off on both mics.

The recording is of a classical guitar. Both mics were placed side by side, about 30cm away from the 12th fret of the guitar (the SC1100 slightly shifted to the hole side). See picture below.

The sample can be found here: http://www.gravato.eu/mictests/SC1100_vs_SC140_sample_01.flac

And the pic:

From this first test, the SC140 has a higher noise floor, particularly below 100 Hz, but it produces a nice “open” sound. It may be benefiting from being slightly further from the sound hole. I look forward to hearing more samples.

Yes, if you plot the freq spectrum there’s a lot more “noise” in the low freqs.

Also the gain on the preamp is slightly higher for the SC140 in order to get about the same sound level on both channels, so that might also increase the noise level.

On the next test I’ll switch the position of both mics.

New sample with mic positions inverted as in the picture below.

SC1100 on the left channel and SC140 on the right channel.

The sample: http://www.gravato.eu/mictests/SC1100_vs_SC140_sample_02.flac

And the pic:

I think that the SC1100 does sound better, but for the price the SC140 does a highly creditable job.
I’d be interested to hear how the SC140 behaves with very close mic positioning (say 10 cm). The exact sweet spot will become very critical when used this close and some bass rolloff requirement is to be expected, but I think the SC140 would benefit from the higher SPL. I find large microphones awkward to handle at close mic positions, but moving the little SC140 should not be too difficult to position precisely.

I agree.

Next test will probably be the SC140 closer and the SC1100 further away. Lets see how it works…

The SC140 has a two-position low-cut filter I haven’t tried yet. I shall play with that also.