Avantone Audio CV-12 Reviews4.8/5.0 based on 21 customer reviews
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April 10, 2013Music Background:
Recording Engineer, Live Sound Engineer, Musician
Great all rounder, no shortcomingsI received my Avantone CV-12 yesterday. I've already used it on ukulele, vocals, and percussion. It's gorgeous. The highs are shiny without any harshness, and there are no inherent midrange issues that need EQ. The proximity effect on this mic is quite pronounced, with dramatic tone shifts available by moving the microphone only a few inches closer to or farther from the sound source.
I now feel like I have that one great mic my studio has been missing.
from Sedona, Az United States
January 20, 2013Music Background:
Music Producer/ Sound engineer - Star Tracks Recording
Yessssss!having an assortment of mics from a rode NT1 to a Neumann U87 I was amazed of the sound that this beautiful mic puts out.. warm , clear, quiet
think I read a review for past years and had been wanting it for female vocals mainly and did it ever pay off.. LOVE IT.. just get it .. you will not be disappointed..
from Washington, DC
January 15, 2013Music Background:
Studio Owner Producer/Engineer
WOW!!I can not even describe in words how awesome this mic is/sound.. I was using my Rode NT1-A to record my daughter vocals & then decided to just switch & use the Avantone, oh boy was I in for a real rude awakening..! I was shock & surprise at the sound, the sweet warm sound that was coming from this mic.. This is an amazing mic & wih the right pre-amps 7 converters you will really hear how sweet the sound is coming from it...
This Mic should cost more than what they are selling it for, I mean this is an all around winner. If you dont have the $1,000 & above for a big name brand mic than you'll be crazy not to get this for just $500 & it siunds better than some of the top $1,000 mics.. trust me you'll be very happy in making this choice.
Thanks Tom, once again bro you hooked me up...
from Aguadilla, PR
November 8, 2012Music Background:
Musician, Recording Engineer
Warning... SUPER WARM!Be careful, this thing is WARM!
very nice and easy on vocals, extremely rich on acoustics and used it once in omni to capture some drums... again, very nice results...
the more I use it...the more I like it and understand it
simple as that!
from United States
October 27, 2012Music Background:
Yes PleaseAmazing product for the price. I am using it with a Universal Audio LA-610 and it sounds great on everything. The multi pattern function gives me a lot of room for experimenting. a must have
from Cincinnati, OH
August 29, 2012Music Background:
Commercial studio owner, Audio engineer, Pro musician
A Beautiful Microphone (a C12VR killer)I own an AKG C12VR that I paid around $3K for new over 10 years ago. I had heard a lot of positive comments about this Avantone CV-12 and it's similarities to the AKG, so I tried one out. Side by side in blind listening tests I had a hard time determining which mic was which. I'd like to say the AKG is the better mic but that's probably because I paid considerably more for it. For what the AKG C12VR goes for "street" or "auction" price, you could get 3 of these NEW with a few bucks left over. If you want a C12VR, but are on a budget, or are trying to stretch your microphone dollar here you go! There are some very good lower cost mics out there these days and this mic is definately one of them!
August 20, 2012Music Background:
Blown Away...I was skeptical of the reviews with a mic of this price. I had read the reviews and frankly can afford any mic I want. However I am thrifty by nature so I wanted to see this mic. I REALLY like this mic. My acoustic guitar sounds like I wanted it to since 1989 when we threw a Schoeps on it. This mic sounds expensive but isn't.
from Saratoga Springs, NY
June 25, 2012Music Background:
Solid mic at a ridiculous price!I had my eye on this microphone for quite some time. After recording some acoustic tracks and not being happy with the sound I decided to give this a try. I needed a solid vocal mic and from the reviews I read this one seemed to fit what I was looking for.
Well, I can say that vocals sound great through this mic and I can finally say that I have my acoustic guitar mic. The CV-12 picked up the room and the sound of the acoustic nicely. Having multiple polar patterns between the standard 3 patterns is also nice for sound shaping, it really helps you get the sound you want going in.
I am very pleased with this mic. I have the Avantone CK-40 that I use as a stereo drum overhead mic, if I didn't have that I would consider picking up another one of these for drum overheads or possibly even just using them as room mics.
February 3, 2012Music Background:
Awesome MicrophoneAfter reading many reviews for this mic I purchased it and gave it a spin. The nine polar patterns really make this mic shine. The frequency response changes slightly with the different patterns and you can tune in on a tailored made sound for the application. This mic is very sensitive and should be used in a quiet room, but can be used in a homestudio with a little preparation: (Turn off all appliances that produce noise,TV, Air Conditioner etc.) and make sure the neighbors dog isn't barking and the traffic flow is slow on your street when you try to record. A noise gate set around -60db can help knock down many background noises. The sound of this mic is fantastic, but if you sing off key you will know it as it tracks what you put into it. A lot of pro studios use this mic for female vocals, but it works equally well on male vocals with the right singer. It makes an acoustic guitar shimmer with pristine sound. As with all tube devices I would recommend a little tube burn in time. Mics are subjective and not one mic is right for everyone but this is a quality sounding mic for very little cash to speak of and hey it has recorded some Grammy winning records....
from Columbus Ohio
December 30, 2011Music Background:
Musician / Engineer
WOWI was using an Octiva MK-319 and my recordings were OK but then I started using this mic and my recordings went to almost pro quality. I could not believe my ears. I also wanted to say that the sales staff was so helpful I must have called about 5 or 6 times getting information about different mics.
from Atlanta, GA
July 5, 2011Music Background:
Recording / Live Sound Engineer
Amazing Bang for Your BUCK!!!This microphone is an incredible buy at this price range and has been my go to microphone in my 25+ microphone arsenal (until I bought the Avantone BV-1, but still put them both in front of the artist). The quality of this mic is outstanding. Smooth vocals, brings out that intimate acoustic guitar sound that i love, and basically sweetens up anything you put in front of it. I recorded half of Sho Baraka's Lions and Liars Album with this mic and the other half was through a U87 into an Avalon. Both sound amazing. I now own my second CV-12 and will probably continue to buy a few more. You cannot go wrong with this mic regardless if you have a project studio or a multi-million dollar recording facility. You will always find a use for your Avant CV-12 in any and every session!!!
from Boston, MA
January 15, 2010Music Background:
R&B/Pop Singer/Songwriter, Recording Engineer
The Truth of MusicI am newly a gear junkie...I define that as a person who reads everything on a piece of equipment before buying. I ask friends, and go to all kinds of web-sites to find objective points of view on equipment.
I had my eye on the Neumann TLM-103, TLM 102, Blue Baby Bottle, and BlueBird, Rode NT-2000, and AKG C214. What was I looking for? I want a professional sounding microphone. One that will sound crisp and clean on vocals before I even hit a processor. I never heard of the CV-12 before researching different companies. I assumed everyone already knows what the Neumann's, Blue's, and others offer. Let me look at these other companies and see what they have to offer.
Within two hours of reading up on the CV-12, I bought it! There was no way I couldn't buy it. Everywhere I read (including here at Sweetwater), there was not a bad thing people could say about it. I'm still a person that likes hearing equipment before I buy, and I only found one youtube video of someone singing into this mic. They were German or something, but I could tell they loved it.
I was sold when I saw Taylor Swift used this microphone to record her last album "Fearless", probably the biggest selling album of 2009. I don't sing country, but that is saying something when on of the world's biggest artist chooses a mic that sells for $500!! Just goes to show, it's about the sound, not the price.
With all that said, the mic arrived in two days, and I am estatic over the results! I'm going directly into my Mbox2Mini onboard preamp, so I don't have an outboard pre (which is my next purchase), but it still sounds amazing! It sounds real! It represents who I am as a singer. Some mics have a certain tone that doesn't capture real. For instance, my other mic was the AKG Perception 420. The AKG sounds muffled compared to the CV-12. The CV-12 opened up my sound.
The best thing I can say is for $500, you would be crazy not to get this tube microphone. One of my producers says my voice sounds great on a Blue mic, and there will come a time when I do get one of those too (remember, it's about preference and the sound that you want to hear and put out). But the CV-12 is like a gift to music. It's the truth. I can't wait to hear what it sounds like when I actually run it through a pre!!
from Denver, CO
May 4, 2009Music Background:
Pro Musician / Producer
FantasticI was recommended this by a guy I knew and pretty much just purchased it blind on his referral since the price point was so good. This mic definitely has that 'wow' factor. Got a really warm sound but with tons of air in the highs. Super detailed sound. I've used this on lead vox, background vox, electric guitars, acoustic guitars, percussion and everything sounds great through it. If you're on a budget and need one mic you can use on everything I think this is your best choice.
I also have a Neumann TLM 49 I record with, but this wins in most applications unless you're going for lots of mid-presence. If I had to choose one to have it would be the CV-12 hands-down.
This is not me hyping a product...I've tracked records through some of the best mic's in the world and this one hangs next to them.
from Nashville, TN
March 4, 2009Music Background:
WowI had heard some great things about this mic so I pick up one a few weeks ago and tested it on just about everything. It sounds really good especially with the price that it is at. It has a very warm sound but still keeps the presence that lot of tube mics lack. For a thin female vocal it is amazing when u put them right up on it and get the proximity effect into play it really thickens it up nicely. All in all for the features and sound quality it is a great mic for the price.
Producer - Anvil Records
January 3, 2009Music Background:
Producer - Recording Engineer
The Blind Test WinnerThis mic won me over in a blind test. It has an "open presence" that is missing in other mics in our cabinet. The top end on this mic is very smooth making it a go to for vocals. The nine patters make it versatile. It also shines on stringed instruments.
We're not surprised to see that it was used for the vocals on the most recent Taylor Swift CD.
The Avant CV-12 has been a great addition to our studio and a wise purchase. This is the mic that goes up first and is used in many applications.
It also responds well to NOS tube mods.
March 20, 2013Music Background:
Producer, Writer, Recording Engineer
Excellent MicI was skeptical at first, but after using it, I was extremely impressed. The warm tones and bright highs were perfect. no distortion or that harshness like I get with the TM103 or AKG214... the thing is nice. I got the 2 other tubes for it too but didn't test them out yet
from LA, CA
November 4, 2012Music Background:
Surpassed my expectationsI got to use this for a few weeks on a female singer for a very Paramour-like band. I'll admit, I thought this mic was a lot of hype and just a prettier Apex 460 like many other gear heads. But this is a wonderful sounding mic for $500. I don't know exactly what Avantone does behind the scenes to make this mic magical, but it's working. I know they use very intense quality control measures to make sure all the components meet their expectations. I've used actual C12's and several other clones from Peluso, Miktek, and Telefunken. This one held up well with them all, although the Miktek is my favorite, but less clone-ish than the rest of them. But this mic has every positive character you want from a C12 design. Very smooth high end (much more so than a u47 design), presence/forwardness that's impossible to eq into a vocal, and what I believe is its biggest attribute, that sibilance comes out smooth, unhyped, and fits in really well in a mix without a lot of de-essing. I think the build quality could be better, but maybe not for the money. Long story short, there's a reason there's a lot of buzz around this mic. An affordable C12 that actually sounds like a C12? Sign me up.
September 23, 2011Music Background:
Professional musician, recording and live sound engineer, and gear enthusiast (regardless of price range)
Buy it!I bought this mike about a year ago and liked it so much, I bought another one. I have used it on accoustic guitarts, male rock and metal vocals, drums, and as a room mic. In all applications, it won hands down against all my other mics regardless of which pre-amp I chose. But for me, the real magic happened when I used it on a male rock vocal running into my 6176 pre. WOW!!! You can't go wrong with this mic.
from Los Angeles, CA
October 10, 2009Music Background:
Freelance Recording Engineer
A worthy investmentI've been recording for quite a while now, and I've had the opportunity to use some wonderful equipment (your standard gamut of Neumanns, fantastic Neve preamps, etc.)
Unfortunately, none of that equipment is actually mine, it is the property of various studios. After hearing so many good things about this mic, I finally sucked it up and bought one (I don't like to spend a lot of money on gear, because I'm mostly using a rented studios gear and not my own). All I can say is...wow. I took it in to my next session at a fantastic studio east of Los Angeles, and we put it up against a Neumann U87 and a TLM49. Holy cow, this thing is gorgeous. The top end is a bit smoother than the U87; the TLM 49 was just too heavy in the mids and felt like it lost those smooth, dreamy highs (something I hadn't really noticed until it was compared to this mic). As stated in previous reviews, this mic excels when put in front of female vocalists.
I take this one with me to all my sessions now, and it's my vocal mic of choice. In addition, it's got nine different polar patterns (Omni thru cardioid thru Figure-8, 3 "mixed" patterns between each one) to play with for applications other than vocals. I'm really considering grabbing another one and tossing them up in front of acoustic guitar or as drum overheads to see how they fare there.
My only gripe about this mic is the fragility of changing tubes if you decide to try a NOS tube mod. I did it once with a NOS Russian tube and was scared I was going to break some wires on the tube socket, which is lightly held in place by a rubber disc in between the frame. But for sound quality, I don't think you could beat this mic for at least twice or even three times the price. It outshined two of my previous favorite vocal mics.
from Tampa. Fl
November 5, 2011Music Background:
Hobbyist in recording (on a budget)!! Play simi-pro around town.
Avantone CV-12Jeffery recommended the Avantone to me as an upgrade from my AKG Perception. I told Jeffery that I mainly do 60ish recreations as a hobby and am starting to write some simple songs for fun. I give the Avantone a 4 only because I really have not worked with it enough to fully appreciate it. What I will say is that it has a warmer, full and natural sound compared to the Perception on my vocals and acoustic guitar. I can see where I will grow to love this mic with more usage; and the pricepoint was workable for me!
from South Louisiana
May 19, 2009Music Background:
All I Read is TrueI did a lot of research on this mic before buying it. The results say it's worth the money- by far. I gave it only four stars because of the switches (pad and roll-off) are pretty cheap looking- and acting. That aside, ...this thing is awesome sounding. My first two sessions confirmed that it's 'higher-end' sounding than the Neumann TLM-103 and AKG 414 that I've been using for vocals and acoustic guitar (and I aint slighting those great mics!). It's new and I can't say anything about the build quality regarding how long it will perform like it does now. But ya just can't go wrong with this thing.