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Reviews Categories | Microphones for ham radio | Shure SM7B Help

Reviews Summary for Shure SM7B
Shure SM7B Reviews: 11 Average rating: 5.0/5 MSRP: $619.50
Description: Studio Microphone, Cardioid Dynamic, Switchable Response Tailoring
Product is in production.
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HA7WX Rating: 5/5 Oct 20, 2014 05:04 Send this review to a friend
A legend and must have!  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have had this one top craftsmanship quality mike for more than 3 years on my Kenwood TS-870S and it is the only one studio mike i use and intend to use.
I don't want to repeat anything as everything has been said, however please read on.
Certainly it is priced high for an amateur as it "knows" more than that being used at most broadcast radio-station, you all know that.
A much cheaper mike would do the job here.
But, this one looks so great on its black arm and turns my amateur station into a serious station.
Let's confess it: this microphone looks so professional and the design is incredibly beautiful. Yes it's important.
But most important of all, it performs and you will get lots of compliments on your audio.
And for me, top quality modulation is mandatory.
It needs lots of gain and i use it with an M-AUDIO DMP3 preamp, it's cheap but good enough and gets the job done.
The response is flat ant although it works fine alone with its preamp, IMO it needs an EQ to make things right.
Despite its price (250 to 300 USD for a beautiful used one) i highly recommend it because of its audio and because of its design.
And, to me this is THE microphone of any serious broadcast radio-station, so why not at an amateur radio-station?
W3LQ Rating: 5/5 Oct 19, 2014 04:51 Send this review to a friend
Swell Microphone  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I am an avowed microphone junkie. Good dynamic microphones are rapidly taking over my SSB duty. Microphones that I have in this category are the EV RE 320 (see my review), and just recently acquired Shure SM7B.

This mike is swell. Its output is less than the RE320, but My Presonus preamp/ parametric equalizer fills all the gaps. My SSB duties are shared between my Kenwood TS_590 and Yaesu FTDX 1200. The Sm7B is rapidly becoming the sole mike that I use on the 590. While I appreciate the internal broadcast monitors in my radios, I have discovered a while ago that using another rig to monitor your output is a better way to go, I also use Audacity for recording duites.

With the 590, I use the Kenwood software with the built in equalizer. I have two profiles set up for this microphone--one ragchew and one DX.

While I have only had this mike for a very short period, I am extremely happy with the results. I get a lot of "great audio" comments when using this mike. When I am running my Ameritron amp, absolutely no RF feedback shows up.

This mike is not cheap, but you get what you pay for. I picked this baby up used for $249 on ebay. I was pleasantly surprised when I received the SM7, because it was listed as used, but it had the full warranty with it, and it sure looked like brand new to me. Set up was very easy, although I experienced one little snag. Getting the pop filter off was a chore, unit I checked out youtube for directions. The new filter went on without a hitch.

Would I buy this mike agai--absolutely!!! This mike might be a bit much for just amateur radio use, but I also use if for Podcasts and a little singing that I do with my piano.
W6LBV Rating: 5/5 Apr 14, 2014 20:30 Send this review to a friend
Shure-ly one of the finest!  Time owned: more than 12 months
Last year I purchased a Shure SM7B at an attractive price as part of a “combo sale” that included a quality professional “microphone strip” (audio processing deck), and an audio cable. I then did “side-by-side” direct-to-CD recording tests with the new SM7B and all the other microphones in my collection (see my other microphone reviews), and made separate “on-air” transmitting tests. The results were unsurprising.

The SM7B and a similar ElectroVoice broadcast dynamic mike were the “easy winners,” as they should have been. These two are probably the best voice transducers available in the industry in the under US$500 category, and they should handle almost any assignment (including ham radio transmitting) excellently. Comparing the two directly, I found the Shure to have slightly better speech articulation and overall a slightly smoother voice response, while the EV produced more of a sensation of “voice intimacy.” Other reviewers on this page have reported similar results with the SM7B.

For background, any microphone for general ham station use needs only to provide a roughly “flat” output curve from 300 to 3000 Hz, with perhaps a small peak near 2000 Hz for “presence.” This is not a difficult standard. Any small deficiencies within this audio passband that a particular mike might have are correctable through audio equalization, and most modern transceivers have internal speech equalizers.

The following set of recommendations for ham station microphones is based on the results of several rounds of testing involving all my microphones: low-cost general purpose dynamics, “ham station-only” dynamics, professional class dynamics, true condensers, electret condensers, ribbons, and headset mikes. The main conclusion is that most (but perhaps not all) general purpose, stand-mount, dynamic microphones selling new for at least US$20 provide very satisfactory routine Amateur transmitting performance. This statement applies to standard SSB ham communications, not to ESSB, ultra-broadband AM, experimental digital, or other specialty modes.

For example, I own a $20 Audio Technica dynamic mike that I wouldn’t hesitate even for a minute to use for routine ham work. Thus I’ve now decided that the maximum price I will spend for any new “ham use-only” microphone is US$75 (and I really don’t need more mikes, anyway!). Above that price a microphone has to be capable of performing additional non-ham duties well.

I own several of the SM7B class of expensive professional mikes, where 90% of the purchase price delivers the last 10% of the performance missing from lesser mikes. However these high quality mikes were not purchased to be used solely for Amateur transmitting, but also will be used for other, more demanding tasks as well.

In light of this, the question arises: is the product class of “Expensive - Super Nova Spectacular - Cosmic Blowout - Rock-n-Roll Boffo” Amateur radio market-only microphones really necessary or even appropriate for the average ham? My answer, based on testing, is “No.” Hams can do at least as well, for considerably less money, just by looking “outside the nine dots.” I also own two costly name brand “ham station-only” mikes, and in the side- by-side comparison tests neither can really “cut it” in an absolute sense. At the prices charged for them, these ham station-only microphones are horrible values. Thus I now know that I can certainly do quite well for my station without dipping into the over-priced, over-hyped ham microphone insanity!

Suggestions based on my testing: 1) Consider the SM7B (or other premium class mikes) if you want to make a “lifetime investment” in a superb microphone that will never become obsolete AND you also want to use it for non-ham purposes. 2) Or instead consider an inexpensive, stand-mount, general purpose dynamic mike to be used solely for routine ham station transmitting with no other “outside assignments.” 3) For improving your transmit audio using any microphone, consider a simple outboard microphone processing strip/equalizer deck if your transceiver itself does not have sufficient internal transmit audio equalization capabilities. Such a stand-alone deck also need not necessarily be a “ham station-only” product. “Audio” today is a huge industry and many other good choices are available, often at lower prices. 4) Avoid excessive processing of your microphone audio and don’t overdrive the transmitter’s modulator with your speech!

Disclaimers: “IMHO & YMMV!”
K4FLH Rating: 5/5 Jun 1, 2012 14:08 Send this review to a friend
1st Class Non better  Time owned: more than 12 months
I am retired, after over 30 years, from the music industry. I worked as an engineer and live soundman. I own over 60 mics myself,about every brand available,from AKG, Sennheiser, Neumann, EV, Pelouso, Blue, Heil, etc. Being the curious type I've tried them all on my rigs.
Since the ear is the final judge and not a spec sheet, I won't bore you with the engineering data or manufacturerer's propaganda. In my professional opinion, the SM7B is superior to ANY other dynamic mic under 500 bucks.
BTW the next best is the Sennheiser 421!
PU3DXX Rating: 5/5 Oct 11, 2011 16:20 Send this review to a friend
AM and SSB great audio  Time owned: more than 12 months
a great mike but need a preamplifier and a equalizer to do a job plus.
KG6YV Rating: 5/5 Aug 4, 2011 08:55 Send this review to a friend
Superb sound  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
My SM7B has been sharing duty now for 7 months with a Cascade Fat Head II on my FT-2000D. Both microphones elicit excellent audio reports using a transmit BW of 3600hz. The Ribbon is a little "softer" in its sound and can produce some nice acoustics with slight echo at 1-2 ft talking distance. The SM7B doesn't have that capability but it receives kudo's for its articulation, balance and smooth sound. I will keep them both, the SM7 is a big winner and not as fussy with regard to proximity effect as every other dynamic I have used.
W2LA Rating: 5/5 Apr 29, 2010 20:21 Send this review to a friend
Rich, Full Audio  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
There's nothing quite as cool as getting great unsolicited audio reports-and with this mic that's exactly what I get on a daily basis. The SM7B is VERY versatile-being used in broadcast radio stations worlwide along with recording studios-But it really seems to shine on the ham bands. Rich, full audio-even if you dont have a high-end transceiver like me, it brings out the best in your rig. HIGHLY RECOMENDED. Worth every penny!
KE4EX Rating: 5/5 Jul 6, 2008 11:17 Send this review to a friend
One Great Microphone  Time owned: more than 12 months
Would you like great sounding transmit audio?
How about unsolicited nice comments?
Trouble free microphone sound nice?
Never a R/F issue caused by the microphone.
Easy installation and trouble free….
She'll put any Heil mic in it's place, fast..
Run neck and neck with the RE27, Hummm.
Healty looking.
Then my friend consider the Shure SM7B

The end…
KE6PID Rating: 5/5 Jul 5, 2005 14:10 Send this review to a friend
Good Stuff  Time owned: more than 12 months
The Shure SM-7 is a dynamic studio microphone, a darn good one at that. We use them here at work in all of our studios, (a major market AM-FM combo) and when I specified mics for our company's new 27 studio network broadcast facility in Los Angeles, this is the mic I chose after evaluating several different studio mics.

The mic has great articulation, and a big full rounded low end without muddiness or boomyness, midrange is full and articulate, the high end is pleasing with no spittyness or tinnyness associated with other popular studio microphones. Its also "plosive proof" by the virtue that the capsule (the actual mic) is set back and a large foam pop filter. This mic is very popular among broadcasters, if you listen to broadcast radio, you have most likely heard one.

The mic is internally rubber mounted, it's tolerant of being inadvertently bumped or moved without too much handling noise being transmitted to the output. They perform quite well in a "morning zoo" environment. Another nice feature is a low cut and presence hump switch at the rear of the mic with a nice little changing graphic showing how the two switches are set. Another thing I really appreciate as a professional is parts availability, you can get anything for this mic to repair it, and believe-me-you, our jocks can trash things, and they do stand up better than many other studio mics.

But how is it in the shack? In a word, pretty darn good. It sounds smooth and well rounded with plenty of articulation and SSB punch. Its cardioid pattern is good at rejecting stray noise in the shack, but it is not noise concealing, after all it is a studio mic. Depending on your radio and how well the mic matches to it you may get outstanding signal reports using it. I do.

Application Notes: The SM-7 has a low impeadance balanced output, so it should match well to most radio inputs,BUT,and big one at that, it's output is unusually low compared to a communications grade mic. Your radio may not have enough gain to use this mic, especially earlier Icoms. A preamp may be a requirement, like a Presonus VXP, Also, most radios have an unbalanced high impedance input, with the notable exception of the new Ten-Tec Orion. You will need to make an adapt-a-cable that connects both pins 1 and 3 together at the XLR, and connects pin 2 to the input of your radio. Along the ay you'll want to add a PTT switch, I use a small cast box for this. At my station I use mine barefoot with the low end roll-off and the presence "hump" on.

Its extravagant at a ham station and pricy,(and as far as studio mics go, it's a cheapo) but if you are in to high quality transmitted sound and are willing to fiddle around a bit with the radio/mic interface, I completely recommend it.
K4JJL Rating: 5/5 May 23, 2003 01:10 Send this review to a friend
Beats a Heil any day  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
I was using a Heil Goldline for 3+ years until a friend talked me into using the Shure SM7B. Got a good deal. Currently use it with a W2IHY 8-band EQ and a Yaesu 920. I constantly tell people I only use a 2.4K filter in the 920.

It is low impedence (150 ohms) so you will need some amplification to get it to work with most radios.

Get one. You won't regret it.
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