Review: Lauten Audio LA-220 Microphone

Can this budget studio microphone stand up to the competition?

A Microphone Icon to Represent the Mics and Microphones reviewed at SingdaptiveItem: Lauten Audio LA-220 Studio Microphone

A Pice Tag Icon to Represent the price of Mics Microphones reviewed at SingdaptivePrice: £240 (UK), $299 (US)

A Magnifying Glass Icon to represent Quick Singer Assessment Mic and Microphone Review at Sindaptive Quick Singer Assessment:

The LA-220 is capable of a warm, vintage tones that can help with the high-frequency harshness of some voices. However, it faces stiff competition from other microphones around the same price-rage.

At a Glance

Lauten Audio’s LA-220 is a large diaphragm studio microphone that is targeted at singers working in home studios. It is a FET condenser microphone and requires phantom power from a separate preamplifier or recording interface. It comes packaged with a shock-mount, stand thread adaptor and a dust cover. It has a fixed cardioid polar pattern that provides decent rejection from the rear, and is capable of handling sounds up to 130dB (which is more than most users will likely ever need).

High Notes

The microphone feels well built; especially for one in the budget section of the market. On the body there are two switches: a 120Hz low-cut filter and a 12kHz high-cut filter. The high-cut is a more unusual feature and, although you may not want to use it on all sounds, it really does help to tame some of the harshness that can be evident on some condenser microphones. It also gives the microphone a more vintage tone that can be great if you are singing in styles such as jazz or traditional folk.

Off Pitch

The microphone’s proximity effect can be a little too bass heavy – especially if you get really close to the microphone. The 120Hz low-cut can help eliminate this, however male singers may find that it cuts out some of the lower register in their voice (the lowest note for a typical bass singer is around 80Hz).

Audio-Savvy Reviewer Says

The budget studio market is a crowded one and the LA-220 faces strong competition. In comparison to one if its main competitors the Audio Technica AT2020 I found that the LA-220 can sound a little bass-heavy and bloated; the treble is less crisp. On the other hand, as all voices are different, this may suit your voice if you need a mic to add some low frequencies or tame high-frequency harshness. I can imagine podcasters particularly liking the low-frequency bump to help give them a classic radio presenter style tone. Overall, the LA-220 is capable of good sounding vocals on the right voice and is certainly worth auditioning.  – Chris Kennedy

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