Shure SM7B Cardioid Dynamic Microphone Review
A true industry standard microphone and one of the most widely used in music, broadcast, and television recording, the Shure SM7B is an absolute essential across the entire world. It has been the flagship item for Shure’s line of dynamic microphones and has consistently remained a go-to vocal mic since it remodelled its 1976 predecessor the SM7 in 1999.
Built primarily for vocal recording applications, the SM7B is known for its profoundly flat and wide frequency response that features recessed bass roll-off and presence boost switches with graphic EQ display for these settings. This delivers warm and smooth audio in close-proximity studio and vocal applications.
From the recessed bass roll-off switch (or HPF) you can attenuate low frequencies below 400Hz by approximately -3dB starting from 200Hz. The presence boost will raise the high-mids by +3dB from 2k-4kHz.
A humbucking coil and an optimized shielding protects the microphone from external electromagnetic interference generated poor or improper cable connections, computer monitors, cellular signals, and other electrical devices. The combination of an internal air suspension shock mounting, external windscreens, and the adjustable bass roll-off provide a clean and consistent recording.
For close talk applications such as voiceovers or broadcast, the Shure SM7B comes with a A7WS windscreen that offers maximum protection from plosives created by the lips and breath. This windscreen along with the internal shock mount completely eliminate the need for any extra addons such as an external pop filter or clunky shock mount.
The Shure SM7B has a significantly low sensitivity (just 1.1 mV/Pa), lower than common passive ribbon microphones. This means that you will want to be using a quality preamp with at least +60dB of clean gain.
- Type Dynamic
- Frequency Response 50 to 20,000 Hz
- Polar Pattern Cardioid (unidirectional)
- Output Level Open Circuit Voltage*: -59.0 dB (1.12 mV) *0 dB = 1 volt per Pascal
- Flat, wide-range frequency response
- Bass rolloff and mid-range emphasis (presence boost) controls
- Improved rejection of electromagnetic hum, optimized for shielding against broadband interference
- Internal air suspension shock isolation virtually eliminates mechanical noise transmission
- Effective pop filter eliminates need for any add-on protection against explosive breath sounds
- Ships with A7WS detachable windscreen
- Yoke mounting with captive stand nut for easy mounting and dismounting
- Classic cardioid polar pattern
- Rugged construction
As with all Shure products, the SM7B is an extremely durable microphone. It is reasonably priced while sitting confidently in mic lockers among some of the most expensive microphones on the market. Pay attention to the microphones you see in all sorts of multimedia and you are sure to spot a SM7B somewhere. Try one out for yourself and understand why.