Other Equipment

Elvis shure microphone

1

So I have a couple of sh55 style mics that could do with a better capsule. Anyone here done that? Looking to add something super cardioid to reduce feedback, any advice welcome

2

A guy in a band I used to work in has a couple of cheapo 55 copies and he replaced the capsules with SM58 capsules. Didn’t really work too well, better to just bite the bullet and get the real thing.

3

I've heard of a few folks who do it. The Rev Horton Heat is a tinkerer and he does it to sh55's to get all super cardioid. Plus Tavo does.

5

What makes you think a supercardioid will feedback less? Shure makes a Super 55 if you’re intent on going that way. I use a 55SH along side of SM58’s with no real performance differences. My preference is for the vintage capsule like I had in a 55SW but they stopped making them long ago.

6

Like Charlie said---Shure makes an upgraded model. Super cardioid "ought to" have less of a feedback issue. The originals were piezo/crystal, weren't they? 55s are more about looks than sound quality.

7

The cartridge in the original Shure 55 was an R55 dynamic capsule not crystal. I think you are confusing this with the green bullet mics.

I disagree about the sound quality. Like all mics they have a proximity effect. If you’re a foot away from a 55 trying to look cool it’s going to sound week. You need to be right on it and the current 55SH sounds every bit as good as an SM58.

8

The cartridge in the original Shure 55 was an R55 dynamic capsule not crystal. I think you are confusing this with the green bullet mics.

I disagree about the sound quality. Like all mics they have a proximity effect. If you’re a foot away from a 55 trying to look cool it’s going to sound week. You need to be right on it and the current 55SH sounds every bit as good as an SM58.

– Charlie Vegas

I wasn't totally sure about it. Many early '50s mike were crystal. The Green Bullet was a WWII mike, mass produced for military use---hence the color. I agree with the proximity effect. That was common on many mikes.

9

I've had a couple of SM55's, a Yamaha (forgotten the model) and about three others, yet my original SM58 -picked up in 1984- is still my preferred go-to onstage and lives at the top of my gig bag as a result.

An added bonus is that the thing is pretty indestructible. It's been dropped, kicked, stepped on and the screen is dented in about a half dozen places, yet it still works and still sounds exactly like it did 35 years ago.

(I only wish I still sounded like I did 35 years ago!)

10

Thanks for the suggestions. I should have been clearer in my description of what I'm aiming for. I said 'sh55 STYLE microphones'….not actually Shure models. So the aim is to add new capsules to achieve the standard of an SM58 or indeed, the Super 55 which I'm familiar with. New capsules are a lot cheaper of course.

11

Plus the mics as they are at the moment are only useful for hitting a burglar

12

I have a bunch of lookalikes but with mediocre capsules. I tried to find replacement capsules here in NL but an SM58 capsule is almost as expensive as a complete new one. There are electret capsules everywhere but I have not found a source with good replacement other than some Chinese Aliexpress ripoffs. Anyone know a source for dynamic capsules?

13

I've bought SM55s in the Elvis casing for a couple of singers in my bands - they weren't much more expensive than a regular SM58. In one case I hardwired the switch because (a) it was noisey and (b) he kept switching it off!

14

I had a guy make me a pink meshed Elvis that lights up with the phantom power. It has a beta 58 capsule. It's still not that great and the last mic I will use when I've run out of all the others. I keep it around as the visual effect it offers may be useful someday.

That and being in London being able to hit burglars is helpful.

15

I had a guy make me a pink meshed Elvis that lights up with the phantom power.

You do know we're talking about microphones, right? I'm not sure I'm gonna be able to unsee that. Excuse me while I go poke out my mind's eye...

16

I've bought SM55s in the Elvis casing for a couple of singers in my bands - they weren't much more expensive than a regular SM58. In one case I hardwired the switch because (a) it was noisey and (b) he kept switching it off!

– JimmyR

Great to see you around, Jimmy!

17

I had a guy make me a pink meshed Elvis that lights up with the phantom power.

You do know we're talking about microphones, right? I'm not sure I'm gonna be able to unsee that. Excuse me while I go poke out my mind's eye...

– Deke Martin

It actually was distinctive in a rockabilly band whose schtick was a female lead singer which is why I got it. She had a powerful enough voice to overcome the limitations of that mic, whatever capsule is in it, and so I was comfortable buying it. I don't make decisions without a lot of factual considerations.

My point above and why I bothered to post here is that to date I've heard nothing in that 55 housing that sounds all that great. If Vince Ray comes up with something that actually sounds good, I will be curious to learn about it.

I am not sure what it is you would try to "unsee". Are you actually presuming to lecture me about microphones? There is no need; just give me one listen to what you have done in your studio with your studio microphones and I'll know exactly how much it is you know about microphones.

18

And a happy New Year to you!

19

I had a dead 55 case that I went the other direction with...

I mounted a vintage style cardioid passive moving coil transducer similar to what is used in Mark Pirro's copperphone mics for a more distinctive lo-fi sound. I got the transducer from a military surplus store years ago. Mounting it was a matter of trial and error as the "capsule" has a pretty definitive proximity zone. Too far - barely picks up. Too close - booms. It was also pretty sensitive to mechanical noise before I suspended it in the case with a web made with hot glue and a long shoe lace. (a maker's gotta do what a maker's gotta do...)

Before the 55 case, I had it mounted inside an old black telephone handset. And before that - an empty PBR beer can which looked and sounded great, but our singer at the time kept crushing the can while singing into it!

20

My basic idea was to ask if it's possible to add a better quality component to a cheapo sh55 style mic. I was wondering if anyone knew how to do it and whether they'd had good results. I'd heard that Tavo had done this (or not, was hoping he'd catch up with the chat). And the Rev told me he'd done it. That's all I know!

21

So here's something I found on a forum from Tavo regarding the experiment...

'Regarding your mic choice.. I know its hip to have that SH55 elvis mic look but those mics just dont sound good to my ears, unless you get the upgraded one with the SM57 capsule. If you are a crafty person, you can transplant the Shure SM57 capsule from that mic into your mic and get the best of both worlds. I'm pretty sure thats what Reverend Horton Heat has going in his mic. I've done this with vintage Turner microphones. They look really cool and vintage 40s but inside is the stage standard.'

22

Well, and I thought I was going a bit crazy! Here's a link to a guy who seems to know his way around the idea of sorting out the sh55 with adding different capsules. So there we go

http://www.mutantmics.com/3...

23

The guy from Mutant Mics works predominantly on hot rodding name brand mics, mostly Shure 55’s. The Shure 55’s all have the same internal mounting holes, vintage or modern. So it’s not hard for him to upgrade. I know nothing about the Chinese cheep-o’s. By the time you upgrade a cheep-o you might as well have bought a Super 55.

24

It's like getting blood from a stone... I already have both mics, just want to hear some advice about how to put a capsule and case together. To all those who have or love or hate sh55 or super 55's...good luck. Have fun.

25

If you want to try to upgrade, the Shure super cardioid replacement element with mounting bracket is R115S. Be sure to order the "S" variant. It's $100 and no garuntee it will bolt into your knock-offs.


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