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7 Best Mics for Recording Acoustic Guitar in 2021 (reviews)

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Recording your own music does not only focus on vocals, but also the instruments used, too.

An acoustic guitar can play a lot of music styles—it’s versatile like that.

I mean, what would the music industry do without these sweet-sounding musical masterpieces?

If you’re going to make your own tracks and recordings, might as well do it the best way possible, right?

The best way to capture the sweet sound of your acoustic guitar is to use one of the best microphones for recording.

It’ll be like discovering a whole new world once you hear the results of using a trusty guitar microphone.

 

7 Best Best Mics for Recording Acoustic Guitar (Reviews)

AKG P420 Large-Diaphragm Condenser Mic

AKG Pro Audio P420 Dual Capsule Microphone
4.7
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AKG is praised as one of the best audio brands on the market, no wonder the Perception P420 is on this list. Aside from its excellent sound quality, the P420 features and a dual-element design that accommodates cardioid, Omni, and figure-8 patterns.

This selection allows you to have the perfect setting for your recording. The 420 includes a shock mount and a metal case and is equipped with a -20dB pad switch and a bass-cut filter switch that allows easy removal of wind noise and other unwanted low frequencies.

As it offers a max SPL of 155dB, it’s a guarantee that the P420 will give you warm and natural sounding recordings, no matter what the type of music or singing style.

Pros
  • Precise and balanced audio tracking
  • Very affordable
  • Great versatility considering the 3 polar pattern choices
Cons
  • The sound could be better
  • Some users may find the sensitivity to be too high

 

Sennheiser E609 Super Cardioid Instrument Microphone

Sennheiser E609 Silver Super Microphone
4.8
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Magnify the sound of your acoustic guitar with the Sennheiser E609 Silver Super Cardioid Microphone. The e609’s super-cardioid design improves isolation from other signals, while its increased output and wider frequency response improve performance.

It features a rugged construction featuring a sound inlet basket made of refined steel. With its frequency response that goes from 40 to 180 kHz and a flat profile, it’s capable of handling extremely high sound pressure without distortion.

Featuring a hum-compensating coil, electrical interference are greatly lessened. The E609 also includes a Neodymium ferrous magnet with Boron that keeps the mic in place and in shape, despite its surroundings.

Pros
  • Flat face design places mic easily and securely
  • Excellent feedback rejection
  • Accurate and unflavored sound reproduction
Cons
  • Clip is too small or tight for the mic
  • Has a darker
  • More scooped sound to it

 

Shure SM57-X2U Microphone

Shure SM57-X2U Microphone
4.5
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More than just a dynamic mic, the Shure SM57-X2U can also digitally record your audio wherever you are.

This amazing duo consists of a widely known dynamic microphone, SM57, which produces clear amplification with tailored frequency response paired with a high-quality USB signal adapter, X2U, which has a built-in headphone monitoring with zero latency and easy controls.

The SM57 has the ability to isolate the source and cancel the background noise thanks to its cardioid polar pattern. Experience convenience through a plug and play system with the X2U which basically lets you do the computer work easily. With this system, you can do playbacks, digital recording, and easy monitoring all in on the bundle.

Pros
  • Tried and tested the microphone
  • Isolation makes it great for radio and podcast use
  • Very functional X2U features
Cons
  • Has low gains
  • Mic has no power switch

 

MXL 770X Multi-Pattern Condenser Microphone

MXL 770X Multi-Pattern Condenser Microphone
4.5
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With complete clarity and well balanced highs with warm lows, the MXL 770X Multi-Pattern Condenser Microphone will carry the sound of your acoustic guitar very well.

Featuring three switchable polar patterns cardioid, figure-of-eight, and omnidirectional, the 770X shows flexibility and versatility. This design lets you have an optimum experience when it comes to recording vocals, instruments, or both.

The 770X condenser microphone boasts a 1.25-inch gold-sputtered diaphragm. This bundle is complete with everything you need to start recording, containing the shock mount with pop filter, XLR cable, and cleaning cloth all in one package.

Pros
  • Durable
  • Impressive sound quality for the low price
  • Great value for its price
Cons
  • Low-quality shack mount
  • Picks up some background noise

 

MXL 990/991 Recording Condenser Microphone

MXL 990/991 Recording Microphone
4.6
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As the saying goes, “Two heads are better than one”. And the MXL 990/991 proves this saying is indeed true with two studio condenser microphones in one kit.

You’ll have the best of both worlds as the 990 produces sweet highs and solid bass which is perfect for vocals, while the 991 is skilfully made to record instruments like your acoustic guitar.

Both mics feature gold-sputtered diaphragms and a fixed cardioid pickup patterns, making it the perfect gear to use for digital and analog recordings.

The 990 is created to amplify vocal sonic details accurately since it’s very sensitive. The 991, on the other hand, works perfectly with instruments producing a warm sound with better bass response.

Pros
  • Nice construction
  • Sturdy case
  • Good at eliminating background noise
Cons
  • Lacks a little in the low end
  • Low-quality construction

 

Audio-Technica AT4040 Cardioid Condenser Microphone

Audio-Technica AT4040 Microphone
4.8
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Designed to provide a flawlessly natural tone and sound, the Audio-Technica AT4040 Cardioid Condenser Microphone will give justice to your acoustic guitar’s sonic characteristics.

The AT4040 is a large-diaphragm, condenser mic with a cardioid pick-up pattern and a smooth, uncolored sound. Works well even in recording vocals and not just instruments, the AT4040 handles any situation like a champ.

With an incredibly low noise, wide dynamic range, and high SPLE capability, this mic is pretty versatile. The AT4040 is so flexible that it sounds equally great with a wide range of instruments, from guitar to drums and vocals.

It is without a transformer circuit, so expect that you’ll get less low-frequency distortion and high-speed transients.

Pros
  • Works great for every possible scenario
  • Can hold a nice amount of sound pressure
  • Fast transient response and almost exact replica of the original audio
Cons
  • Quality could be better
  • Noticeable plosives without pop screen

 

Rode NT5 Compact Cardioid Condenser Microphone

Rode NT5 Compact Cardioid Condenser Microphone
4.5
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Made to record any instrument amazingly, the Rode NT5 is a small-diaphragm cardioid condenser microphone with tight pickup pattern making it ideal for any indoor recording or film-making. It has a frequency range of 20Hz to 20kHz. The NT5 might be small, but you’ll be surely surprised with what it can do.

With the luxurious and elegant physical features, the NT5 condenser microphone showcases a nickel-plated body with a satin finish making it durable and rugged. It features gold sputtering which makes it highly resistant to corrosion so that it retains its electric conductivity for long periods.

The NT5 is known to produce a smooth overall response and highly detailed sound.

Pros
  • Works well with other instruments
  • Very detailed sound
  • Great deal for its price
Cons
  • Sound may be a little too bright when used on other sound sources
  • Low quality case

 

Factors to Consider When Buying an Acoustic Guitar Microphone for Recording

When you’re recording an acoustic guitar’s warm and rich tones, you’ll be focused on getting all the details in your recordings.

Condenser microphones are known to capture best results, but dynamic mics also do a decent job.

What else do you need to know? Below are some of the factors you should consider.

Diaphragm Size

Condenser and dynamic microphones come in different sizes. Large or small, it just really depends on how you want to use them.

Small diaphragm mics are known to deliver great results with up-close recordings as it picks up the slightest detail in your audio.

According to Neumann, this type of diaphragm captures the guitar’s natural sound without any added flavors.

Small diaphragm microphones are most commonly used for pop and classical music, and has excellent low end response which is perfect for bass instruments.

Best Acoustic Guitar Microphone

 

On the other hand, large diaphragm mics are best used with a short distance away from your instrument.

Mostly used for vocals, they shape the sound in a pleasing way.

Their aim is to make the sound source appear bigger, more engaging, more beautiful and adorable.

Polar Patterns

There are three different types of a microphone polar pattern—cardioid, omnidirectional, and figure-8.

You’re going to see more of cardioid when you’re looking for the best acoustic guitar microphones for recording.

But let’s talk about all three.

Cardioid is the most common, among the three, and it’s because it does a great job in catching single sound sources.

Mics with a cardioid polar pattern “hear” best what happens in front of them while rejecting sound from the sides and rear.

It has the ability to reject sound from the rear making it useful where it’s not desirable to capture a large amount of room ambience.

Omnidirectional microphones pick up sound equally from all directions, resulting in an incredibly natural and realistic audio recording. This type is great for capturing room sound along with whatever you’re recording.

Figure-8 or bidirectional microphones pick up an equal level of sound from the front and the rear, but sound from the side is blocked out.

When you view its polar pattern, it’s shaped like an “8”, hence the name.

According to Rode, these microphones will result in a highly realistic sound duplication, as you’re capturing more of the natural ambiance of the recording space, alongside the sound source.

 

Editor’s Choice

AKG Pro Audio P420 Dual Capsule Microphone
4.7
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In this list, the AKG Pro Audio P420 captures the sound of an acoustic guitar very well.

Its versatility and multi-pattern design make it very functional and can be applied to any application.

With its high quality and un-corrupted sound, the P420 does justice to your acoustic guitar’s warm tone and crisp sound.

Guitar Junky
Hi there, I’m Charles, chief editor here at The Guitar Junky. I'm a professional guitarist, and have over 10 years experience in playing guitar, piano, and other music instruments. When not working, I love playing with my two lovely kids, Caryss and Philip. Read more about our team of music experts here.

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