Brothers & Sisters of Gear,
Let's start it right here and let the moderators move it.
Harps, mics, cables, tone effects, amps and PA's,
I have wanted to go amplified for quite some time. I figured to get a mic and cable and plug into something small but hope for bigger. Lots of "nice" amp gear. (Nice rhymes with price!)
So I looked for mics. Shure, Hohner, Shaker, i-mics, eBay, music vendors references from Angelfire, Pat Missin, sound bites from everybody that's a pro, semi-pro and rank beginner. Bottle-O-Blues, bullet-type, dynamic, cardioid and so forth. When I almost made up my mind the prices surged. I started working a LOT of overtime...
Ever seen what mics can go for these days? Half a weeks pay...and UP!
So I went to Craig's List. Darned if I didn't find a pair of mics for a reasonable price. Negotiated a little and now I have a Shure bullet with attached cable and a Shaker that needed an impedance jack and cable for almost the price of the mic. But now I have a mic, or two.
Went to a friends house, (Twobulls), and we tried the mics. The green bullet is mellow, gives the "Chicago sound" and has little background static. The Shaker is highly sensitive and picks up lots of small vibrations. But I have two mics...And I need a bigger harp/gear case. [ ; - >
You can chase info on mics and prices. You'll find out that, like other gear, you "learn the mic" just like you'll learn amp settings, impedance, room size and how much power you'll be comfortable with and what you can afford.
There's a lot to be said for the learning curve and price of mics. We all seem to start at one end of the scale and look to move to the other end of that scale. Sage advice says that you need to have a good acoustic ability before you jump onto the amp bandwagon. Not bad advice. Keep your costs under control. Get with somebody whom knows, has and plays mic'd. Do some playing at your local music store with in-house equipment. Ask about the needs of playing amped. Learn about impedance. But, bottom line, is that if you are going to mic be proficient before you spend a lot of money. One author says 'good in, good out; junk in, junk out'. Not a bad deal.
Find a mic "fit" for you, i.e. some of us have hands big enough to palm a basketball; others can only handle a golf ball. How you "cup" when handling your mic and the quality of your ability to seal around the mic will help or hurt your confidence. Mini-mics may be your answer. Others like to go BIG and use a mic on a stand, like the Shure Super 55. You have to get some experience with what's out here before you spend a lot and then give up harp altogether because you can't get the sound you expected.
Play "with" it versus work "at" it. You'll be a lot happier. And your expenses will thank you for the effort.
Be Blues...And Jazz,
Suave Blues Man