When it comes to recording a guitar amp, there are a lot of different factors to consider. One of the most important is what type of microphone you use.
There are a lot of different mics for recording amps out there, so it can be tough to know which one is best for your needs. And not every mic works well with guitar amps.
That’s why I’ve put together this list of the best microphones for guitar amps, to help make your decision a little easier.
What’s The Best Mic For Guitar Amps?
If you are searching for the best guitar amp mic but don’t know which one you should buy, this list will help you. All mics listed here are great for recording guitar or bass amps.
1. Shure SM57
Shure SM57 is one of the most popular microphones out there, and for good reason. It’s rugged and versatile, and can handle pretty much any situation you throw at it. This is a great overall mic that works with amps, instruments, and vocals. It’s classic, affordable, and used on countless records throughout the years.
SM57 is a dynamic cardioid microphone with 150 ohms and a frequency response between 40Hz and 15kHz. Very popular mic among guitar and bass players because it perfectly captures the amp sound and has a very dry sound. Excellent for heavy guitars but also works great with acoustic instruments or vocals.
2. Neumann U47
Neumann U47 is another popular option among guitarists. It’s known for its warm sound, which makes it great for recording electric guitars. It’s also got a wide dynamic range, meaning it can handle both soft and loud sounds without issue. One of the best mics for guitar amps with amazing sound. It’s an expensive microphone but worth every penny.
Thanks to FET technology this microphone can handle distortion very well and captures every detail of the sound. Great for guitar and bass amps but also perfect for acoustic instruments and vocals. Has a 140Hz low cut filter, spans from 40Hz to 16kHz, and because it’s a condenser microphone requires phantom power.
3. AKG C414
AKG C414 is the best mic for guitar amps when coupled with other mics such as Shure SM57. because it’s a condenser and a large diaphragm that works perfectly with dynamic mics. I love the sound these two mics produce when paired. This mic costs more than $1000 however has great quality and will be a great addition to any recording studio.
C414 not only works great with amps but for vocals and instruments too and is great for live shows too. One of the best and somewhat unique features is a multi-polar pattern where you can switch between cardioid, wide cardioid, Omni, and other polar patterns. Also, has a low-cut filter which is always a great option to have.
4. Sennheiser E609
Sennheiser E609 is a dynamic microphone that is designed for guitar amps. Works amazingly with any type of guitar or bass amplifier and is used by many producers and recording engineers. This microphone also has a hum-compensating coil that helps reduce interference from other electrical devices. Also, it’s a very cheap microphone and every recording studio should own a least one.
E609 is a super-cardioid dynamic mic that can record amp sound perfectly and pairs with other mics too. Frequency response spans from 40Hz to 18kHz and the output impedance is 350 ohms. It can record acoustic guitar too but I mainly use it for guitar amplifiers because it is a very balanced mic that produces punchy lows, juicy mids, and smooth high frequencies.
5. Lewitt MTP 440 DM
Lewitt makes excellent microphones for different purposes and MTP 440 DM is one example. It’s an instrument microphone that produces a very clean sound. It’s a great microphone for amps but can be used with drums and vocals too. Imagine it’s a modern iteration of SM57.
This microphone has a flat frequency response and low self-noise, which makes it perfect for miking up amplifiers. Produces punchy tones which makes it the perfect mic for snare drum too. Price, features, and sound quality make it one of the best mics for recording studios and artists. I have recorded vocals, amps, and instruments and it works perfectly in every case.
6. Audio Technica AE 3000
Audio Technica AE 3000 is one of my favorite condenser microphones to use with amplifiers. It’s affordable, captures the sound perfectly, and you can pair it with other mics to get rich guitar tones. Also, I love to use it as a room mic if I want to have depth in my guitar tones. And it’s my favorite microphone for clean guitar tones.
It has a custom-engineered capsule and circuitry that gives it superior clarity and transient response. This microphone also has a -10dB pad, which minimizes handling noise. Frequency response spans from 20Hz to 20kHz has self-noise of 11dB, and low cut filter at 80Hz. Very affordable and versatile microphone to record guitar amps.
There are a lot of great microphones on the market designed for different purposes. When it comes to capturing great guitar tones, though, not all microphones are created equal. Here are the best mics for guitar amps that also work for other applications such as vocals, drums, and acoustic guitars.