Kicking and Clicking with Audix Microphones

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Kicking and Clicking with Audix Microphones

Words by Andy Lloyd Russell

Audix microphones have well and truly earned their way onto stages and into studio spaces big and small.

Audix are an American microphone manufacturer who offer a broad range of individual instrument, studio and handheld microphones in both dynamic and condenser design as well as a wealth of carefully thought-out mic packages. The Audix range is both plentiful and scrupulous in its detail.

Being responsible for such modern classics as the D6 instrument mic and OM5 handheld and leading mic packs such as the DP7, it should come as no surprise that Audix are a go-to mic choice for producers and engineers both live and studio alike. The brand’s range blurs the lines between the live and studio domains seamlessly, and even more so with the release of some more studio focused products in recent times. But what’s perhaps most understated about Audix is the brand’s ability to cater so well to all levels of user, from the seasoned pro to engineer/producer novice.

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Audix is one of the few companies that still works off of the ethos of not just designing, but also manufacturing and assembling their equipment in-house, rather than outsourcing overseas. Not just exclusive to their top tier microphones like the A231 large diaphragm condenser or Studio Elite 8 mic pack, even their entry level OM2 handheld and mic packs such as the FP5 are designed, tested and assembled in their facility in Wilsonville, Oregon. What makes this even more significant is that this doesn’t immediately hike up the relative price points of their products, which in this current financial climate is a bit of a big deal. 

Both live and studio environments are tough on gear, it’s just the nature of the beast. Whether it be a commercial or home studio space, an arena-sized or small local live music venue, microphones are inevitably going to cop a proverbial beating. It’s with this in mind that one of the most invaluable attributes (although not one of the most glamorous) a microphone can have is reliability. No matter what the scale of a production, there is nothing more frustrating than a microphone carking it, bringing a session or live event to a grinding halt. Ruggedness and dependability is something that Audix have prioritised in their range and designs across the board, for both the studio and live environment. I’d confidently throw the Audix D6 under the bus in any live or studio environment, knowing full well it’ll only throw back at me its iconic robust low-end and well defined upper-mids every day or the week. It’s bulletproof and an absolute go-to for damn good reason. The same can be said for Audix’s range of handheld mics as well as studio workhorses. From the entry level OM2 handheld to the newer A231 large diaphragm condenser, in true Audix fashion, these mics exude ruggedness and reliability like few others can. 

One of the biggest challenges for the up and coming engineer or producer is knowing what to fill their mic locker with. Whilst temping as it is to jump on the bandwagon of famed named models found in commercial studios and labelled as a holy grail mic, being screwed across the various forums by self proclaimed experts, the reality of budget and real world studio and live scenarios will more often trump having that one microphone in your locker. The importance of being able to cater for a broad palette of instruments and singers can’t be understated, and having the right amount of options on hand, or a couple that are really solid all rounders, is key to a successful session no matter how big or small. 

Audix D6

Audix have tackled these types of quandaries head on, with a meticulously, well thought-out range of dynamics, condensers and mic packs. Few stones left unturned, the large majority of recording or live scenarios being comfortably covered by at least one of their mic packs, particularly when taking on the challenge of a live drum kit. This in turn takes thinking out of the equation, leaving room for the important stuff: the recording. From their Fusion line of mic packs, like the aforementioned FP5 suit a more conservative budget, right up to their DP Elite 8 or Studio Elite 8 packages (which both tout the coveted Audix D6), there really is something for everyone. Where otherwise one might find themselves lost, swimming in a pool of choices, a mic package and perhaps one other mic like a large diaphragm condenser or trusty handheld (depending on the scenario at hand) will keep the majority out of trouble. 

The scenarios we find ourselves in as engineers these days continually blur the lines between the studio and live environments, with the increase of live and remote recording sessions and less-than-ideal environments being more and more commonplace in what it means to make music. Having a range of microphones at one’s disposal that can effortlessly jump between these varying environments has never been more paramount.

Being less likely to take out the vintage condenser or ribbon to a remote or live environment, a handheld of more modern, steadfast mics seems logical, particularly when achieving the desired results and keeping a session rolling. It’s brands like Audix that seem to really have a handle on the needs of the modern engineer and producer, continually pushing forward and evolving their line, very much in alignment with the pro audio world of today. 

For local enquiries, visit Link Audio.