[Instrument Review] ATM510 Microphone

Here’s a review for music gear! Audio Technica’s ATM510 cardioid dynamic microphone.

Disclaimer: As I am not a sound technician or engineer, I won’t be able to fully encompass the full specifications or capability of this mic, so all I can really do is give a simple review especially for musicians that are just starting out and / or those that want to find quality microphones for recording or performances.

Whether you’re a n0ob or an expert in music, you’ll come to find that there are different types of musical gear. This can become confusing at first, so I’ll make sure to explain what these terms mean, but for those already well-versed in this field, you can skip to the paragraph after the line break!

The microphone in question is a cardioid dynamic handheld microphone. Simply put, this type of microphone picks up sound from only a specific area of the mic, which is the front. It’s also the most common type of mic used during events; hosts, vocalists, and speakers in seminars use these kinds of mics (but they’re usually the Shure brand).

Cardiod Microphone
Photo from Shure Blog

Condenser mics pick up a wider range of sound as opposed to the dynamic mic, so you don’t usually hold it or put your mouth close to the grill/windscreen/top of the microphone. It’s very ideal for home recording whether on camera or just audio recording because the sound is very smooth and almost studio-quality like. You can’t really use these for concerts or live performances outside because a big possibility is the condenser mic will cause feedback (aka that horrible sound when you put the mic too close to the speakers/amp) no matter where you point your mic to, and also because you’ll be able to hear more than just the sound of your voice (which is normally undesired in these situations).

My dad recently bought this mic from the JB Music store in SM Megamall and was contemplating whether to buy Audio Technica’s condenser mic instead. He asked me for my opinion (since I’m definitely going to be using it more) and I already have a condenser mic at home, so I chose the dynamic one.

We compared this mic to a lower end AT mic (I forgot which one though) and found this sounded better and clearer than the latter. The ATM510 has an internal shock mount so you don’t hear much noise while handling the mic, but the catch is when we tested both mics at the same volume, the ATM510 was softer since it reduces handling noise. But of course all this can be given an easy fix if you know how to work a mixer/soundboard or adjust the right knobs on your amp.

In the near future, I’ll be recording new originals and covers, and I’ll provide links here for you guys to judge for yourselves the quality of the mic. It’s small and comes with its own clamp and soft case, which makes it portable so it’ll be easy to bring around if you’re going on tour or setting up a sound system somewhere.

The mic is pretty affordable, but I was lucky because I was able to catch JB Music’s sale a day before it ended, so instead of the original price being P5000 +, I was able to buy it around P3000.

It feels pretty sturdy in my hand when I hold it, but if you’re thinking of maybe getting your first mic, make sure you’ve got a mic stand as well. Best to invest in that so you don’t just leave your mic lying anywhere, and buy an XLR cable as well, to connect your mic to an audio output. I plan to get a custom wire that connects XLR to USB so I can use this for recording (unless I purchase my own mixer).

Let me know what you think by leaving a comment below!

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