Audio-Technica AT4033/CL Reviews4.3/5.0 based on 15 customer reviews
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December 9, 2011Music Background:
ClassicThis microphone has a very clean open sound. This mic sounds great recording vocals and instruments. Very low noise. Finally the mic is great at capturing acoustic space in a live room while maintaining its focus on the primary instrument. Highly recommended.
from Nashville, Tn
February 19, 2010Music Background:
Producer, Musician, Writer.
shoot-out, hands-down, Winner!Blind TEN mic shootout including M49, U87, 67, 414, all kinds of great high-dollar mics. This thing won with ALL the judges hands down, no questions asked. Well until I asked "how much" and was just blown away. Used this mic for a day and realized after mixing and laughing with satisfaction, for a small studio, this is it! Very True but it's not like it's trying too hard. Just another one of those
May 20, 2009Music Background:
recording, composing, producing,
If you can only afford one mic for your project studio........this is it- no kidding- i have ribbons, multi-pattern condensers, did the A/Bs with higher end mics, and this one still gets pulled off the shelf every session. i compared it to 414s, and it held its own- great on acoustic guitar, overhead on drums,and vocals. you just can't miss- even recorded horn sections with it- it works. It doesn't color the sound, but provides a true, clear sound-I think that's why it does well on acoustic guitars-
It helps if you have a good pre on it, but even on one of my mackie 1604 mixers, this mic holds its own- Worth every penny, and AT has created a classic.
from Kansas City, MO
September 28, 2012Music Background:
Musician, Recording Engineer
Great micThis is a great mic, really good for male and female vocals, acoustic guitar, and also as a "room mic" picking up natural ambiance and reverb in a room.
June 4, 2012Music Background:
It's the foundation for your lockerWhen I started my shopping for a project studio I was on a tight budget so I asked my Sweetwater sales engineer what my first mic should be and he said hands down the AT 4033 CL. Since then Iíve bought mics from Mojave, Rode, and others, but I still find this is the go to mic for almost anything from vocals to strings including standup bass and arch top guitars. The only reason it doesnít get a rating of 5 from me is it isnít multi-pattern. Iíve made some really great recordings with this mic and I would highly recommend it as the foundation of your mic locker.
from Santa Barbara, CA
April 12, 2012Music Background:
Home Recording Geek, Musician
Excellent Home Studio MicI've been using this mic for a few months now. It was an upgrade from the first large-diaphragm mic I'd ever purchased, a $90 MXL. You can read around various places and see that AT has starting making some really great quality mics for under $500 and this is one of them. Really, really clear vocals, low noise, built-in rolloff and 10dB attenuation. This mic will do for me until I'm purchasing something very high end.
Also notice that the Hans guy who gave this mic a so-so review is rating it against Neumann mics that cost more than $2,000. Relativity is not his strong suit.
October 30, 2010Music Background:
Good all around mikeI have used this mike on a lot of sources.I love it on acoustic guitar.i have used it on death metal vocals and it sounds great for that as well.For a affordable mic it definitely has a expensive sound.
from New City, Ny
September 19, 2008Music Background:
Go-to for a lot of sourcesI decided to pick up a 4033 after discussing microphones with another engineer friend of mine. His recommendation was for acoustic guitar, and he was right. This 4033 really did the trick (used with a Grace 101) to give me a nice clean acoustic track that I could warm up nice with a little EQ, Massey Tape-Head, and a little Massey CT4. Little did I know the 4033 would also be awesome micing up my bass amp. Turn the pad on, put it back around a foot or more (to taste) and I get a nice round bass sound that sits just right in the mix. I'm very happy with my 4033.
from Seattle, WA
September 28, 2007Music Background:
Recording, Live Sound engineer.
My go-to micThis has been claimed for a lot of microphones, but...
This mic sounds good on everything.
Really. I've used it on many different sound sources, and I liked it on each one. A stereo pair make incredible drum overheads, and sound excellent on acoustic guitar. I used two to mic a string trio. Each instrument found its place in the mix naturally. It's OK on acoustic bass, and sounded great on a soft-voiced female vocalist (though the mic I use for her vocals usually is an AT4047).
I have yet to find an application for this microphone where the result was anything less than quite useable, and in most apps the sound is quite excellent.
I bought these after doing a side-by-side comparison with AKG 414s. At half the price, to my mind, they sound twice as good. The 414s are dull and muddy in comparison.
from Highland Lakes Nj
August 25, 2012Music Background:
Recording Engineer (hobbyist)
DUDE!Do not let the price tag fool you. Very underrated mic. Great all around mic?
from Kalamazoo, MI
October 13, 2011Music Background:
Live Sound Engineer
Very good mic.I needed a moderately priced condenser and the 4033 worked great!! I use it primarily as a single source mic for live performances of acoustic groups of 3-4 vocalists with insturments. (bluegrass type stuff) I was very surprised by how warm the low end sounded even at 3-4 feet from the vocalists. The high end is articulate without the harshness of some mics in this price range. The pickup pattern was good and the rear rejection allows for moderate volume monitors without a lot of drama. All in all a very good mic for the price!!
from Salt Lake City, UT
October 11, 2006Music Background:
A serious step upIn my part time, home recording career, I've used a number of inexpensive large diaphram condensor mics. I had liked their sound, I thought the difference in microphones was purely subjective and that I didn't need anything fancier. I wanted to try the AT4040, but instead ended up trying the AT4033. Upon plugging in the 4033, I immediately noticed a very 3D sounding microphone, the captured signal sort of stuck out and felt more alive. I plugged in a few of my other LDCs and heard what I used to think was a decent mic, were by comparison, not very impressive. The 4033 also has a much smoother top end, even my own voice sounded delicate and pretty (which it is not). I have yet to try this microphone out on any other singers, but I would expect it to excel.
from Bellingham, WA
July 15, 2006Music Background:
Semi-pro musician/recording engineer
Pleasant sounding, great valueI have used this side-by-side with an AKG 414 ULS and though it has a lot of midrange color, it is a more pleasant sounding vocal mic. This may be annoying to some, but for the right voice it works wonders. I found that if a person sounds "nasaly" than it isn't the better microphone though.
Try this on guitar amps - definitely a different approach than the typical SM57. It has a lot more bite.
I paid a lot more for mine than the going price now and even still, I can't believe I got such a great mic for so little.
from Sturgeon Bay WI
November 23, 2010Music Background:
producer, studio owner, pro musician
4033 so so...Sorry to disagree with all the cheerful reviews but this one didn't cut it for me. Compared to a Neumann M147 or a TLM127 this mic didn't impress me- it was technically ok (no noise issues) but it reminded me of a Toyota Corolla, ca. 1998. Boring. The sound quality tapered off compared to above mentioned mics, especially with hi-end preamps. But, for the price it is an ok home studio mic. I sold mine on eBay.
January 1, 2004
I tell you what...This mic is pretty damn good. To be completely honest, for what you pay for this mic, you get a great sound. Describing how a mic sounds is like telling a blind guy what color walls his nagging wife wants, but I'll try to enlighten you:
-The sound is overall smooth. The high-end is crisp, but not too airy. I would give it a "sweet" quality-- accurate, but colored just the right amount so that very little (or none at all) EQ is needed. This is a great mic for singers. Instrumental use for this mic is limited- it will find its place if you don't have anything else, but stick to using it for vocals. It really shines as a voice-over or rap/hip-hop microphone. Like I said, the detailed sound is accurate, so all of your diction and articulation comes right through while still sounding natural. Vocals sit up front and are intimate in your mix.
-If you buy this mic, get a tube pre-amp, or use a tube compressor on it. Introducing warmth to the signal that this mic provides makes it sound much better than you would ever expect. Some of my best vocal takes have come from a combination of this mic and a tube compressor. For some reason, it just works well. There are many better mics, but this one is reliable, so you will find yourself reaching for it time and time again because you know what you can get out of it.
You owe it to yourself to have at least one of these mics. If you want to use something different on vocal tracks, use this one on harmonies, and a BLUE or Neumann on the lead. The sweet quality of this mic makes the harmonies sound AWESOME! It really makes the recording and mixing process easier. Keep this mic in your locker for one of these situations. For the price, it definitely works, and sonically, it is very underrated.