Gear Reviews

Last month, the topic of condenser mics was discussed. To complement that discussion, this month’s review will focus on dynamic mics. While condenser mics serve as an ideal transducer (any device that converts acoustic energy into electrical energy) in most recording applications, the dynamic mic finds its usefulness on stage. A dynamic mic consists of a flexible diaphragm attached to a coil of fine wire and a magnet. As sound waves vibrate against the diaphragm, the diaphragm vibrates in the magnetic field generated from the magnet and a small electric current goes down the wire. Due to the heaviness of the magnet ( which is attached to the diaphragm), dynamic mics are less sensitive than condensers, and thus make them great for stage application (i.e they are less prone to feedback, damage, etc).

There are many manufactures today producing a variety of dynamic microphones. Each has its own unique sound characteristics and functional features. The mic being reviewed has a unique sound and some very unique, but useful features.

The Samson Q2 dynamic microphone comes from the Q-mic family. Q-mics feature an “Ndyme” capsule, thus giving it clarity and strong output. Samson Technologies classifies this mic as a vocal/instrument mic, which actually is quite accurate. The frequency response is 50 Hz to 15kHz, thus making it a wide enough range to capture both vocals and guitar or bass amplifiers as well as toms and snares. The Unique features of the Samson Q2 are a high pass filter switch and an attenuator switch. Few dynamic mics have this feature and are inexpensive. When engaged, the high pass filter switch rolls the bass of the mic giving other instruments with “bassier “ fundamental tones a chance to stand out in the mix. As well, the attenuator switch will cut the gain of the mic by 10dB, the helping to prevent mic-pre overload from too hot of a signal (some mixers such as Behringer, Mackie, and Yamaha don’t include switchable attenuators, so this is very useful).

The Samson Q2 sounds great. Vocals are quite clear and articulate. As well many low thumps and growls from a 100 watt Marshall are easily reproduced by the mic. And retailing for just $149.99 (seen as low as $69.95), the Samson Q2 makes an excellent choice. Stop at your local Samson dealer and check it out.

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