Item: Shure Beta 58 A Dynamic Microphone
Price: £109 (UK), $159 (US)
Quick Singer Assessment:
The Shure Beta 58 A is a step up from the SM 58, with increased frequency response and a hotter output. But with it’s super-cardioid pattern, sound rejection from the rear is not as good.
At a Glance
The Shure Beta 58 A is a super-cardioid dynamic microphone that is designed for high-quality live vocal performances. Intended as an upgrade to Shure’s extremely popular SM 58 microphone, the Beta 58 aims to bring a new level of quality to live vocal performances.
Like the SM 58, the Beta 58 A has a rugged chassis that should stand the test of time and can be either hand-held on stage or used with a mic stand. One notable upgrade is the move from a cardioid to a super-cardioid capsule. This gives the Beta 58 A an increased frequency response with a more pronounced high end, which helps vocals to cut through the mix without the need for additional EQ. A further improvement is the use of a stronger magnet which gives the mic a “hotter” output. This means that less gain is required from your preamp to get it to operating levels.
It is no wonder that many professionals are moving from their SM to their Beta 58s as there is really very little to fault with the mic. However, because of the super-cardioid pattern, it is worth noting that sound rejection from the rear is not as good as with the SM58 (or similar cardioid mics), so stage monitors are best placed between 30 and 60 degrees off-axis.
Audio-Savvy Reviewer Says…
Shure’s Beta 58 A is an excellent stage microphone with a frequency response that is tailored to suit vocals. It has incredibly low handling noise which will suit singers who prefer to hold their microphone on stage as opposed to placing it in a stand. It is also more than capable of producing reasonable results in your home studio for demos or YouTube videos if your budget only stretches to owning one vocal mic. The stage vocal microphone market is very crowded and the Beta 58 A faces strong competition from the likes of the Sennheiser E845, TC-Helicon’s MP-75 and the AKG D5. – Chris Kennedy
Manufacturer’s Website: http://www.shure.com
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Chris Kennedy is a songwriter, producer multi-instrumentalist and freelance journalist from the UK. He has performed extensively over Europe and written and produced over a dozen albums. Chris also has a passion for music technology and was the principal product reviewer and tech expert of the original Voice Council magazine.