Are you looking to improve your sound without spending more than your budget allows? Consider investing in a best preamp for shure Sm7b to majorly transform the quality and professionalism of your projects. Preamplifiers make a significant difference because they add a more dynamic, well-rounded, and vigorously present sound to your creation.
Best Preamp For Shure sm7b on the market
Plug your microphones and electric instruments into a preamplifier for a magnetic, and energizing wave of musical vibrations. Below, you’ll find a compilation of best preamp for Sm7b that not only fit your budget but suit your recording style as well.
|dbx 286s Microphone Preamp & Channel Strip Processor|| |
|Cloud Microphones A-A-B Box (Cloudlifter CL-1)|| |
Best for pristine
|Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 (3rd Gen) USB Audio Interface || |
Convenient for projects
|Art Tube MPSTV3 Variable Valve Voicing Tube Mic Preamp With Limiter|| |
Compact and Professional
|dbx 580 Compact, Professional Mic Preamp || |
1. DBX 286s Microphone Preamp – Best Mic Preamp For Shure sm7b
The dbx 286s offers a crisp, studio-quality microphone that is coupled with four independent processors. This preamp delivers a fresh, crystal sound that is paired with a wide-range input that provides controlled, adjustable phantom power. If you’re someone who prefers to work on pieces and projects that pack powerful, strong tones, the dbx compressor will assist you in recording smooth, even sound that will undoubtedly showcase your creation. Any distortion is eliminated with the de-esser, so you can fine-tune your sound with sophisticated oversight.
Not only is the dbx 286s excellent at adapting to sounds, but it can also regulate unbalanced signals as well as use its visual metering to assist you in creating masterpieces. You’ll receive a clean signal along with efficient mic processing with the dbx 286s. This piece of equipment is ideal for eliminating wind sounds as well as lower frequency humming. The Expander can reduce noisy amps and short circuits.
A few pros to consider with the dbx mic are: input is compatible with amateur, home-studio, and professional microphones. If you don’t consistently use a microphone for your projects, the dbx’s compressor will create a reliable volume. The noise gate is exceptional and will do an efficient job of capturing only what you wish to hear. Additional noise-treatment is expensive, the dbx is designed to accommodate your project without the extra materials.
A subtle con with the dbx mic is that it does not have an on/off switch, so you’ll have to plug and unplug this device frequently. Overall, this is a solid preamp device for users of any knowledge level! However, if you are a beginner, this preamp is one that you should consider getting started with for a professional sound right off the bat. You’ll have production-ready audio within your first take.
2. Cloud Microphones (Cloudlifter CL-1) – Best Budget Mic Preamp
Are you all about the gain, but also all about quality mics that are within budget? Then you should consider the Cloudlifter. This microphone boasts passive mic signals that support +25db of fresh gain, all while preparing for transparent action. This device can turn its phantom power into the necessary amount of gain required for passive microphones. The power-packed into the Cloudlifter can make any budget preamp combo sound clearcut and professional.
Shure SM7B with Cloudlifter
Cloudlifter has a gain of +25db and at first glance this is not enough, but let’s look at it in more detail. The preamp is needed to improve the quality of the signal transmitted over the XLR cable. Cloudlifter perfectly removes the noise that appears at high volume in the SM7B. Ideally, use Shure SM7B + Cloudlifter (preamp) + amp, but due to preamp, we can turn the volume almost to the maximum and get a clear signal. We recommend using Cloudlifter for more than just one microphone, so you can choose the two channels option for vocals and instruments.
Cloudlifter is a medium-power preamp. If you purchased Shure SM7B and are tired of noise, then feel free to take it and the problem will be solved
The Cloudlifter is capable of delivering crisp tones for a variety of activities including live sounds, home-studio projects, and broadcasting. The active output aids in canceling out extra noises that might come from running long, extended cable lines.
Best Cheap Mic Preamp
If you use any kind of dynamic mic, the Cloudlifter will be an excellent partner as it creates a lively and bright duo. Paired with essentially any mic equipment, the Cloudlifter is a showstopper. Turn up this phantom powerhouse and prepare to be blown away by the exuberant sounds. The Cloudlifter will assist in unlocking the full potential of any other pieces of equipment that it is compatible with. The Cloudlifter’s job is to enhance your performance, and it won’t disappoint.
Do you need a cloudlifter for shure sm7b
Cloudlifter CL-1 single-channel preamp works perfectly when you connect a microphone or guitar. The main function is noise reduction. Usually, the noise is caused by the length of the cable, or the instrument itself. We liked that Cloudfilter decorated the sound in all situations, and we were happy to use it as a component in the chain, even where it was not required. When using Shure SM7B, we get partial signal amplification, and this can make the sound even louder, because the resulting noise will be extinguished.
If you are looking for a medium – power preamp and a high-quality signal without noise at the output, CloudFilter is an excellent choice. A more professional solution for the Studio is to buy a separate Preamp with a sufficient gain of +60 db, and not affecting the signal. We recommend using Cloudfilter for recording in a low-cost home Studio, performances and rehearsals, as any instrument with It sounds much cleaner, and the Guitar or vocals become more pleasant to listen to.
this device is compatible with several different microphones, including all passive ribbons, tubes, and batteries. The Cloudlifter is ideal for anyone who is still an entry-level mixer but is looking to make subtle, yet drastic upgrades to any ongoing projects. With a sturdy, aluminum exterior, the Cloudlifter was built to last. While it is capable of creating crisp sounds,
A keen ear will recognize the cut frequencies, occasional static interruptions, and slight hissing.
3. Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 (3rd Gen) – Best Mic Preamp For Home Studio
The Scarlett 2i2 is ideal for pristine, enhanced sounds that are affluent and buoyant. With this piece of equipment, you can bring your audio vision to reality with ease. The mic preamps in the 3rd gen are some of the best yet. With sublime fixed-line inputs, sonically refreshing recordings are guaranteed. The Scarlett 3rd Gen boasts six interfaces along with two studio bundles. The Scarlett 2i2 comes with double mic lines that allow for tandem recording. Playback is offered in two separate channels, you can re-run your sound with independent control.
The Gain Halo monitoring makes it extremely simple to choose and set input levels as well. No extra wire connections necessary, Scarlett 2i2 can connect to your PC or Mac computer via USB cable. Scarlett is an excellent choice for anyone who is looking to try out new software. A 3-month subscription to Splice Sounds comes along with this package. Scarlett is also complete with Ableton Live Lite and Pro Tools First Focus creative stations.
When you are looking for an amp for Shure SM7B, you will probably want to choose one that does not take up too much space in your studio.Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 USB – Portable Device With Pro Features This is an excellent amp for mic that is portable and a very affordable price. DBX amps is Professional Audio System A popular option, this amp is also reasonably priced. It comes with many of the features that you will find on professional audio equipment, such as dedicated effects processors, dual balanced XLR outputs, 2 headphone jacks, MIDI IN/OUT, two line outputs, etc. If you want high quality sound at an affordable price, then this amp will do just fine.
The Scarlett 2i2’s interfaces: 18i20, 18i8, 4i4, 2i2, and Solo as well as the 2i2 and Solo studio features. If you’re looking to capture the full essence of recorded sounds, from vocals to the background guitar riffs, the Scarlett 3rd Gen will compliment every tone and key. The synths, effects, and variety of nuances will come together beautifully with the 2i2’s range. The design of this equipment is sturdy and is especially useful for any musicians, engineers, and singers whose aesthetics are constantly changing. This is a versatile and reliable machine.
With everything technical, the 2i2 will occasionally struggle with delivering quality sound, and will instead produce distorted feedback. Along with that, the 2i2 is guilty of dropping connections which can be problematic when using headphones. This may cause muffled sounds instead of clear ones!
4. ART TubeMPSTV3 Tube Mic Preamp With Limiter – Best Tube Mic Preamp For Vocals
The Tube’s appealing Variable Valve Voicing technology optimizes recording processes with its fine-tuned capabilities. You can choose between a plethora of settings that are excellent for bass, electric and acoustic guitars, drums, keyboards and, of course, vocals. Whatever sounds you plan to incorporate within your project, the V3 has settings and presets for every note. This piece of equipment allows you to tweak your presets until you find the volume you prefer.
The V3 is complete with an Output Protection Limiter which provides you with the opportunity to have precise and accurate control and peak signals. Art TubeMPSTV3 is most commonly used with microphone connections but still can act as a direct box. You can experiment with the V3’s ability to amplify sound. The V3 can sustain low-noise. The shining stars are found within its outstanding Phase Reverse and Phantom Power.
This device is convenient for projects both big and small. From podcasting to voice-overs, the audio work that the V3 provides for any user is studio and professional quality. The compact size is ideal for anyone who prefers to pack light! The V3 can add warmth to any sounds it receives, particularly deep, rich tones. If you ever need to change the tube, the device is easily opened.
The downside to this device is that it can create hum and substantial audio noise. While it is still reliable for smaller projects, there is the risk of popping and crackling.
5. DBX 580 Compact, Professional Mic Preamp – Best Mic Preamp Under 500
This preamp has a supersonic ability to capture the full essence and character of the microphone or instrument that it is recording, making it the perfect partner. The 500 series module sports control for both High and Low Detail. This will allow you to choose either an elusive or maximal sound shape. The dbx is equipped with a 20db pad that works well with the low-cut filter and phantom power.
This pairing gives you the freedom and flexibility you need to fine-tune your recording. The dbx is one of the most trusted pieces of equipment because of its reliable gear performance and consistency. Results with the dbx are nothing short of excellent and versatile. If you’re looking to put a dramatic emphasis on your deeper bass frequencies, the dbx will not disappoint.
+48V Phantom power and 60db of gain coupled with a front panel instrument input, the combination of these tools allows this device to add definition to your mic sounds. The dbx won’t contrast or interfere with other paired preamps.
The price tag. While this preamp is capable of producing delicious, sound-rich tones, any artist looking for this quality level must be willing to pay top dollar.
Preamp For SHURE SM7B. – A Buyer’s Guide
SHURE SM7B doesn’t work without an amplifier?
SM7B is a Studio microphone that provides a warm and balanced sound. It has a wide frequency response for pure music and speech. If we use a microphone for a conversation, such as podcasts, almost any amplification will do. The noise level will not be very high. But if we want to use Shure SM7B for a music Studio we will run into a problem. This microphone needs at least 60db of gain. Even more is needed in practice. Not every amplifier and, in rare cases, a mixer can do this. And even if your amplifier can amplify this way, we can’t guarantee that you won’t get additional noise. Because for a simple amplifier, this is an extreme mode of operation.
We found that connecting our microphone to a simple mixer or the microphone input of a computer is pointless… I tried connecting this microphone to the ART Tube MP V3 and got a great warm sound. We also used different processors and they also coped with their task. We recommend you to use a DBX 286. Shure Sm7B is a professional dynamic microphone for working in the Studio from Shure. When you buy this microphone, you get: Great design. Switch the cutoff frequencies (the Decrease in low frequencies and increased midrange). Anti-vibration protective damper. Windscreen with filter. High quality microphone Assembly. Wide frequency range.
Do you need a tube preamp for the SM7B?
For many musicians, the presence of tube in amplifiers is the key to quality, and incredibly cool sound. We suggest that you listen for yourself and compare whether this is true? Most likely, your conclusions will coincide with our opinion. Tube preamp really gives the” warmth ” of recording on Shure SM7B, but comparing recordings of budget tube preamp and a good transistor amplifier, we prefer the second option. In addition, the presence of a lamp gives (sometimes) extra “liveliness” to your voice, where it is not required. Conclusion: If you are going to use tube preamp for SM7B, choose not lower than the average price segment and monitor the condition of the tube, ART TubeMPSTV3 for example. In all other cases we recommend choosing a transistor type amp.
Choosing a Studio preamp for Shure sm7b
To record all music groups with vocals using SM7B, you need an audio interface with a sufficient number of channels, but not all channels have the necessary preamps built in. To save money and space in such cases, purchase audiointerface + preamp in one device. For everyday recording, Focusrite 2i2 is great. If you need a MIDI channel, consider the 4i4 model, with MIDI IN and MIDI OUT on the back panel. When recording to the audio interface, pay attention to the color indicator while singing. It must be maximally uvalisit, until the moment when the yellow or red color appears, in this case, make the sound quieter. Focusrite 4i4 provides good sound and the SM7B signal is amplified to the required level
What Is A Preamp?
A preamplifier, also known as a preamp, is a piece of electronic equipment that converts weaker signals into stronger ones via an output. The preamp is in place to amplify any low-level signals that are otherwise operating out of sync with your recording equipment. The preamplifier also aids in stifling extra noise and distortion. If you record using a microphone, you will need to consider using a preamplifier, especially if you’re working on creating high-end, professional-level projects. Sounds are vibrations, and as they move throughout the room and into your recording devices, their waves can cause a bit of shakiness, you can level all of those noises out with a preamp.
Why Do I Need A Preamp?
You need a preamp to enhance, emphasize and clarify the sound quality of your work. Some devices are constructed with built-in preamp capabilities, but for gadgets that aren’t, there are standalone preamps, similar to the ones listed and reviewed above. Ideally, you will use a preamp for every sound source that you’re working with. Delivering pristine sound quality should be at the top of any artist’s list of things to accomplish, and preamps will contribute to making that possible. If gain means anything to you, then connecting a preamp to your mic is yet another reason to invest in one.
Most internal preamps are low-noise, but with an external preamp, this is essentially guaranteed. If you ever record with lower output mics or quieter sounds, pairing your project with a preamp will still allow you to capture every sound, just with greater detail and reinforced gentle gusto. Your style and essence will be fully apparent and audible because of the preamp’s ability to clean up and polish any audio interface.
Overall, you can expect a defined, quality sound when using a preamplifier. The added sophistication will contribute to the aura of your masterpiece and boast the true flair of what you have created by exaggerating the sounds and giving each instrument, chord and note a chance to debut.
Why Are There So Many Different Types Of Preamps And What Does Each One Do?
As with all things that come in different varieties, there are many kinds for many purposes, and the same is true for preamps. Some are designed to give your project a splash of color, while others have been created to offer transparent signals. Either way, you’ll find the right preamp for all of your recording desires.
Color preamps – For example, if you’re interested in further enriching your sound, consider a preamp that adds color. If you have been working on a project that is lacking in density, a color preamp can add intimacy to your sound, livening it up and creating sheer personality. You can create a colorful sound with a tube preamp.
Transparent preamps – Transparent preamps are excellent for creating a pure, crisp sound. The goal with this type of preamp is to create a sound that is as crystal clear as possible, without altering the artists or musicians in any way. Think about jazz or classical performance where the main focus is the soulful and mesmerizing acoustic sounds coming from the instruments.
Digital preamps – Digital preamps convert analog signals to digital ones. With some digital processors, you can use a convenient sound card installation for your computer.
Instrumental preamps – Every preamp mentioned in this short read are all ideal for microphone connections, but what about instruments?! Instrumental preamps are entirely different than most preamps that are used today; they are specifically designed to optimize the authentic sounds of a variety of different musical instruments.
What Are Channel Strips?
Channel strips are preamps that have extra processing circuits. They are equipped with compressors, equalizers and of course, preamps. Not all channel strips include these different trinkets, some come in pairings of just two of these features. They can be found in many different combinations and have extra things like an enhancer or de-esser. Channel strips are convenient, they allow easy access to one console for all power sourced needs.
Shure SM7B and Preamps
The Shure SM7B is a dynamic (aka moving coil) cardioid studio microphone that generates a smooth, wide-range frequency response that’s perfect for instrumental and vocal recordings. As a dynamic microphone, it has lower output levels than most condenser microphones. As such. it needs at least 60 decibels of gain to reach an acceptable output level.
You need a high-gain preamp to enhance and clarify the audio signals coming out of your SM7B. The only alternative is to use an in-line mic activator, such as the Cloudlifter. With that said, the Cloudsplitter is typically used in conjunction with a high-gain preamp.
With a preamp plugged in, your output will be louder and have a lower noise to sound ratio. Keep in mind that the Shure has an incredible low sensitivity (approximately -59.0 dBV/p). Therefore, you need a lot of gain to create clear, audible recordings. Being that it is a dynamic microphone, it does not require phantom power. However, a preamp is required to bring the mic signal up to line level (0 decibels)
Listen to the SM7B with and without a preamp and mic activator to see the difference. While the Shure has plenty of potential, it’s nothing without an inline activator or high-gain preamp.
What’s The Difference Between Tube and Solid-State Preamps?
While most preamps are ranked based on their sound-enhancing properties, some preamps get their reputation from their design. Circuit design preamps are identified by either a tube or a solid-state. If you’re in the market for a new preamp, consider learning more about these descriptions to understand what you should be looking for!
Tube preamps sometimes referred to as vacuum tubes are designed to build gain. This piece of equipment can create sounds that enhance the deep basses, exemplify the highs and compliment the midranges. Tube preamps will give your project a comfortably warm vibe that is full and inviting. If your signal levels increase while using a tube preamp, mild distortion is likely to ensue, which is what creates that full, warm sound.
In most cases, distortion is unsettling, but since the tube preamp creates distortion gradually, the sound ends up being rather attractive. This progression is called even-order harmonics and they’re similar to power chords played on guitars. Tube preamps also can produce colorfully compressed characters because of their circuit design. Natural compressions are appealing to the eardrums.
While tube preamps can create musical distortions, they are also ideal for smoothing out that level of turbulence. Depending on your ideal sonic goals, this may be ideal for soft vocals, but not fitting for percussion instruments.
Solid-state preamps are the result of advancing technology as they are equipped with transistors. A transistor’s job is to create a more efficient gain. They operate consistently and in tandem with moving, increasing gains while simultaneously cutting out distortion. Even as gains reach their peak, the transistors can keep up effortlessly. They’re designed this way. Solid-state preamps can produce a wide range of tones across all genres. Their identifying trait is the flawless distortion canceling ability.
What Else Can Preamps Do?
The majority of preamps are equipped with several channels, which gives you the power to use several inputs at the same time. A lot of these are priced reasonably as well. The more serious you become about your project, the more power you’ll require. You’ll be able to find a preamp that’s just right for you and your workload.
As your studio becomes more sophisticated, you might begin looking for preamps that host features like EQ controls, more gain, compression, USB, and much more. You might even consider delving into the DAW capable digital preamps.
How Do I Choose The Right Preamp?
It’s important to start with a basic understanding of what any preamp is capable of doing. After skimming through this buyer’s guide, you should have a fair idea of what might work for you based on how well each description matches your vision and your ears.
You should choose your preamp based on your creative project needs. While you might be considering a handful of different projects, you should think about what type of overall sound you are trying to produce. Do you want warm tones that add and create full-bodied vocals, or would you prefer a more inviting, colorful sound?
Are you looking to enhance the richness of acoustic instruments? If any of these details stand out to you, you can find the perfect preamp match for you by refreshing your memory with the paragraphs above. Allow the sound you desire to guide you towards the art you wish to create.
If budget is a factor, take a peek at the preamplifier chart at the beginning of this article. Use it as a guide to take a look at quick features and price points that suit your preamp needs!
Whether you’re buying your first preamp or you’re a trained professional, selecting a piece of equipment that works for you and your project is important. A preamp can either make or break your entire piece. With a little bit of consideration and creativity, finding the right preamp can be a fun process. You should be comfortable with knowing that there’s always a chance for a bit of experimentation and adjustment.
Do a bit of research so that you are fully educated about what each preamp is capable of delivering. Once you are satisfied with what you have selected, all that’s left to do is create.
The Best Audio Interface for Shure SM7B
The Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 is an affordable and dynamic preamp that pairs exceptionally well with the Shure SM7B Vocal Microphone. This combo makes it easy for users to create professional-grade audio content in any home studio.
The microphone inputs on the 2i2 have a gain range of 56 decibels. That’s just below the SM7B’s 60-decibel gain requirement. The 2i2 also boasts a frequency response that ranges from 20 to 20,000 hertz, which is comparable to the SM7B’s frequency response of 50 to 20,000 hertz. What does all this mean? It’s capable of boosting the volume and clarity of the SM7B’s signal while introducing as little background noise as possible.
You get some noise when you run the Scarlett at full gain. If you’re miking up to record moderately loud vocals, this shouldn’t be much of a problem. If you want to dial up your gain without producing distortion or clipping, you need to run your mic through a mic activator, such as the CloudLifter CL-1. This will boost the headroom already offered by the Scarlett.
The Scarlett’s proprietary air mode does an excellent job of boosting the Shure SM7B’s high frequencies. Meanwhile, the interface’s headphone inputs make it easier for you to monitor your audio captures in real-time. There’s a also 48-volt phantom power switch on the preamp. There’s no reason to use this with the Shure. However, it does allow you to use a condenser mic. It’s also worth noting that the 2i2 also comes with a comprehensive catalog of recording software and plug-ins, including Avid Pro Tools, Ableton Live Lite, Plug-In Collective, and much more.
Generally speaking, the Scarlett 2i2 is an affordable and dynamic audio interface that meets the Shure SM7B’s need for gain. The audio output isn’t perfect and could certainly benefit from an in-line activator. However, it’s a perfectly viable option for anyone looking to get Shure up and running with minimal distortion, clipping, and noise.
Check out this video to see just how easy it is to pair the Scarlett and Shure.
DBX 286s vs Cloudlifter
Are you struggling to choose between the DBX 286s and Cloudlifter? Here’s what you need to know:
Cloudlifter CL-1 review
The Cloudlifteris a mic activator that is designed to boost the clarity and strength of a microphone signal even before it reaches a preamp. The Cloudlifter delivers up to 25 decibels of gain in two separate stages. That gain comes from converted phantom power.
The Cloudlifter dramatically improves the sound of low-output dynamic mics like the Shure. It boosts the mic’s gain without increasing its signal to noise ratio. It has just one input and one output. As a result, it’s a discreet addition to any audio wiring setup.
There are currently three different Cloudlifters on the market, including the single-channel CL-1l, dual-channel CL-2, and single-channel CL-Z.
Do you need the Cloudlifter to improve your Shure SM7B? YouTuber Lo Knows put the pairing to the test. He found that the Cloudlifter successfully prevented preamp overloading while limiting the noise to signal ratio of his recordings. The only way to eliminate background noise without the Cloudlifter is to significantly reduce the volume of your recordings. Of course, this is a suitable solution for an actual recording setup.
DBX 286s review
The DBX 286s is a channel strip processor (it’s a mixing console) that delivers studio-quality audio with the help of a preamplifier and four processors. First off, the 286s has a microphone preamp gain that maxes out 60 decibels. Onboard LED indicators serve as actionable recording guides.
Unlike the Cloudlifter, the DBX 286s boasts several built-in settings. A high-pass filter allows you to automatically remove low-frequency background noise. Meanwhile, the onboard DBX OverEasy compressor enables you to smooth out your vocal tracks. There’s also an onboard de-esser, a high-fidelity detail control, and a low-fidelity detail control.
Both the Cloudlifter and the DBX 286s do phenomenal jobs of reducing the amount of noise and increasing the overall quality of Shure SM7B outputs. However, the two are hardly comparable. The 286s serves as a channel stop, a preamp, and an effect processor. Meanwhile, the Cloudsplitter is nothing more than a mic activator with 25 decibels of gain. We recommend the DBX 286s for anyone who’s looking to get the most bang for their buck.
FAQ – Shure SM7B Requirements
Why do I need a preamp for my SHURE SM7B microphone? How will it sound without amplification ?
- It is necessary so that there is no high level of noise during the recording of vocals
Should I consider a different microphone for this reason?
- No. Professional vocalists choose SM7B + preamp for high-quality Studio recording.
Many people use the CL-1 Cloudlifter in conjunction with a good sound card (Focusrite), is this really enough gain ?
- We’ll be honest. The CL-1 gain will not be enough to produce a clear and transparent signal. It is important to understand that a transformer is required for amplification in an electrical circuit. CL-1 doesn’t have it, so the gain in Cloudfilter is marketing
Is there a sound card that will be enough to amplify the microphone signal and eliminate the need for a separate preamp?
- In our blog, we tested Focusrite 2i2 3G. If you only use the sound card, you may hear extraneous noise or a signal that is too quiet. But that doesn’t make Focusrite a bad map. It has high-quality converters for the price. Do not be fooled by the gain in sound cards if they do not have a transformer.