Everyone will tell you there is no such thing as "the perfect microphone," and I suppose, by the strict definition of the word, they would be right. But in my opinion the Lauten Audio Atlantis large-diaphragm, multi-pattern condenser mic comes very, very close indeed. They started off by making a capsule that sounded excellent on its own, and then included three switch-selectable "voices" that change the mic's fundamental character, added 3 polar patterns and 3 gain or pad settings, which results in about 27 different mics for just under $1,500, and if that doesn't justify the tag "perfect" then I'm not sure what does. This one mic will allow you to soften an edgy female vocal, liven up a muffled male voice, capture drums as an overhead and/or room mic, and work really well for all kinds of other instruments, and everything it records will be able to sit well in a mix without having to EQ it to death. If you are thinking about adding just one "perfect" mic to your studio, then make it the Lauten Atlantis!
The Lauten Audio FC-387 Atlantis microphone is without a doubt one of the most revolutionary mics to come around in recent years. Sure, the modern FET circuitry and the beautiful-sounding capsule aren't necessarily groundbreaking (although they do sound remarkable in their own right!). But where the Atlantis really shines is in its flexibility and tonality with modern recording setups. The three polar patterns mixed with the three "voices" of the Atlantis allow you to use this one mic in a variety of setups on just about any instrument - so much so that it will easily become your new "go-to" mic.
The Atlantis will give you that character and richness you expect from a classic microphone without having the drawbacks of vintage mics that were designed to go through consoles full of tubes and transformers, to tape machines full of tubes and transformers, and then back into the console to get that final sound: It'll sound great plugged in to the built-in preamp of your audio interface - without any of the harshness.
Overall, the Lauten Audio FC-387 Atlantis microphone is my new hands-down favorite, because I haven't heard anything close to its versatility, rich tone, and overall build quality. It's definitely worth consideration as the next addition to your mic locker.
Stunning versatile mic
Let me be quite frank. I have a boring, mediocre singing voice. But this mic brings out nuance, depth and warmth that I didn't know possible. I'm a home hobbyist, but I have tried out numerous high end mics and this one just had a warmth to it without feeling like a colored sound. The switches give me multiple options depending on the instrument to dial in the tone I'm looking for. It's a nice match with the Shadow Hills Mono GAMA preamp, which also has multiple settings. Between these two I can get such an amazing range of sounds out of one microphone. No mic is meant for every purpose, but if I only had to pick one, this would be it. And unlike other multi-taskers, you don't get a "good at everything, great at nothing" outcome. The results are truly extraordinary.
I have been searching for a mic for vocals for quite a while. I have a UA LA-610 MkII that I bought from my Sweetwater rep, Ben Robinson. I love the strip, but I struggled to find a mic that paired well with it for my voice. After months of consultation and a trip to Gearfrest, where I had the pleasure of meeting and talking with Ben about my vocal chain, I decided to purchase the Lauten Atlantis on his recommendation. What a tremendous mic! It was designed for use with DAWs rather than a console and tape. It is highly adaptable, including a capsule that features figure eight, omni and cardioid. But the real winner for me is the Multi-voicing. Whether you are looking for a highly versatile mic, which the Atlantis is, or a mic to solve a particular, this is the right mic. The difference in the quality of my vocal tracks is huge. I strongly recommend the Atlantis!
Reivew of the Lauten Atlantics FC-387 Microphone
Lauten Atlantis FC-387
I purchased the Lauten Atlantis FC-387 as my “main” microphone for recording acoustic guitars. I have many makes, models and woods. So I really want to bring out the best audio quality and performance from each guitar. I use a multi-microphone set up – stereo overheads, ribbon in front and the Lauten Atlantis at the 12th-15th fret about 5 to 6 inches from the neck/body. What I really like about the Atlantis is how transparent it is in capturing the “tone” of the wood. The detail and minimal low end build up from the mic is excellent. I run the Atlantis through a Millennia SST-1 preamp with the transformer and tube section. The combination is rich and revealing. The clarity of sonic signature is so detailed that you can hear the tone of the woods and the strings. Trying out various strings, composition, thickness, provided a huge pallet of tones and sounds. And the Atlantis picked it all up. I actually found I could concentrate more on my performance because the sound was so clear and rich. The optional voicing on the Atlantis allows for a “quick change” reference to sus out how different your sound can be with just one switch setting. In balance with the over-heads and a ribbon – a really nice sound. Great job Lauten!
This mic is simply incredible! With the polar patterns+voicings, it is extremely versitile, and on my list of new gear. I'm actually gonna take it a step further with the UA Twinfinity, to bring in some extra flexability. Giving it the option of either a solid state or tube sounding mic. Would highly recommend this to anyone looking for a high end workhorse mic!
Best Versatile Mic under $1500 Period.
I've owned this microphone for 7-8 months now, and have been trying to learn more about it's strengths and weaknesses. It doesn't really have any weaknesses that I know of. It's non-omni polar patterns feel subjectively "tight" and "focused" much in the same way that more expensive microphones, which is a big deal I've learned over the years...
Let me say what it is not, and this will vindicate the microphone after the one negative review left for it on this page - it does not sound like a tube microphone, at least not a modern tube microphone. It does not have the shiny, airy high frequency sheen that tube mics like the Miktek CV4 or the Mojave MA-200/300 microphones possess. The "forward" voicing position gets it in that ballpark, but the subjective quality is not the same. I would describe it as more of an "iron" sound than a tube sound, even though the Atlantis is transformerless. However, if you hook it up to a good tube preamplifier, you can get some of those qualities, but it's not the same.
That however, is no reason to ding it. The Atlantis is a fine microphone for many different applications, and the voicing switch makes it so much more versatile than any tube mic I've used. With the Gentle voicing position, it sounds a lot like a ribbon microphone, albeit with more complexity in it's coloration. Or perhaps a vintage U47 FET in questionable repair. This position responds very well to high frequency EQ to shape the top end as you wish. The Neutral voicing position, to my ears, is wholly unique, and I can only describe it as a blend of the Forward and Gentle voicings. To me, it's just the SOUND of this microphone, and doesn't sound much like anything else out there. In a good way. The Forward voicing position really boosts the air on the signal, and brings it closer to U87 territory, but with a hint more darkness in the mid-range.
And of course, the really great selling feature is the pad switch, which has a +10 position, something I can't say that I've seen on any other microphone. Not only does this switch not raise the noise floor perceptibly, it also allows you to drive your preamp at a significantly lower gain setting, and allows driving preamps that are otherwise difficult to be driven hard - like the Millennia HV-3D. (Not a typical application of that preamp, but it's an interesting sound.)
As long as you don't see this as a desert island microphone (since it is not transparent or authentically "tube-y,") you will get a lot of mileage out of this wonderful tool. If I was looking to get into the higher end from the sub-$600 project studio microphone fare, and was considering this or the two similarly price tube microphones mentioned earlier, I would start with this, and then get a tube mic later. Get the Mojave if you want something that is very present.
The Atlantis is a microphone you'll never need to sell. It will always offer a character that no other microphone possesses. And it is simply unmatched at any price in it's versatility.
Can't Go Wrong With This Mic
I own both a Neumann Tlm 102 and Avantone CV 12 . This Atlantis is a clear winner . With 3 different settings you are sure to find the one that suits you . Whats kool too is that its one of the few mics that you can just plug into your interface and get GREAT results without having to do much tweaking and eqing . The Neutral position is just that Neutral .. and takes boosting of frequencies very very well without getting harsh .. Even the Forward position, which is the brightest of the 3 , isn't harsh at all ..
This thing is built solid like a truck !!!
Lauten Audio Atlantis FC-387
I have had a recording studio in my home for over 25 years. I have always struggled with getting crisp clean acoustics, particularly vocals in front of the mixing board. I contacted Branden at Sweetwater, told him what I was hoping to accomplish, the Atlantis was among his recommendations. By itself, it was very clean, but I decided to pair it with "Warm Tone Beast", the result was perfection. What I hear on the headphones going in is what comes out on the monitors, without touching the mixing board. For writers that want to quickly lay down perfect sample tracks before the creative juices get derailed screwing with the E.Q. this Mic is for you.
Oh my Goodness!!!!!!
Well - I had my opportunity to record my first vocals on the FC-387 I can simply say I was honestly, blown away by the sound. I paired this microphone up with my Tascam UH-7000 and I thought I was in a different studio. Yes I must say it is everything everyone is making the big hype about. Thank you Lauten Audio and a shout out to Ryan Murphy for recommending and getting it to me so fast.
I never thought I would post a review on anything - couldn't help myself it was that good.
beautiful design……..fantastic customer service…..all of the advertised features work as described…….all three position switches are usable and provides tremendous versatility.
that's all great….but how does it sound?????
smooth as butter…..i have never heard a mic that gives you back exactly what you put into any better……it does not hype the lows or the high end…..nor does it scoop the mids……you can pretty much use it with little to no EQ, if that's what you are looking for, BUT, if you desire to shape the sound for a particular mix this mic will take eq very well.
the main thing i love about this mic and noticed right away after recording with it was that it became suddenly much easier to place vocals in the mix……they simply just sit better in the mix with this mic.
the mic also sounds wonderful on acoustic guitars as well.
i can't imagine owning anything any better for the money!
Outstanding quality and value!
I was used to working with some very nice and often vintage microphones from helping with several big studios. When it came time to look for a good vocal mic for my own though I couldn't really afford some of what I was used to. This mic wad recommended and I have to say I was pleasantly surprised at just how great it sounds and the amount of versatility that is built in. I dare day you won't find. Better mic for your money.
Lauten Atlantis Microphone
Thsi mic is very very warm. Used it on steel guitar and vocals and works great on both. I ran it through a Focusrite mic pre - and didn't care for it - ran the mic by itself and was blown away by the way it sounded alone. Only drawback is you have to stand directly in front of it. Pattern is very tight. But other than that..Awesome mic...
Ive been looking for a mic to record female vocals that wouldn't enhance the harshness of the upper mids. This mic is pretty sweet. You notice right away that this thing has a great 3D stage and its crystal clear. The three voicing are extremely musical and tasteful. Super SMOOOTH! I have quite a number of mics but this one is at the top of my list for vocals. You can't go wrong with this. You get more than you payed for! It is big and its a bit heavy, I would recommend getting a good stand if you don't have one to go along with it. Ive been pairing this with a UA6176....its just like butter!
Nick Church Knows What He's Doing
So far I have recorded male vocals (my own), female vocals, and guitar and I am completely blown away at the versatility of this mic. The vocals and the guitar came out so rich and smooth without sacrificing each timbres personality. I was hesitant about buying this mic with the price tag but my sales engineer, Nick Church, assured me that this would be the best sounding and most versatile mic to add to the studio. AND IT IS!!! I can't wait to track strings, drums, duets... everything with this mic. I totally dig the multi pattern settings as well as the pad control. The only thing I don't like about this mic is its size and weight, but hey that's what boom stands are for. Oh and this comes in a wooden box... pretty classy. Get this mic. Your friends, bandmates, and coworkers will die of jealousy.
Lots of flexibility, warm sounding microphone. For the price I think the AKG 414 is a better microphone. However, the 414 I had broke several times and became so unreliable I had to make a change. So far this is a great vocal Mike and excellent on acoustic guitar.
First of all I dont believe anything on earth is 5stars nothing is absolutely perfect.... So Ive owned this mic for a year now I am running it through a daking pre/eq in which I bypassed the EQ mainly because it doesnt need one maybe a hi pass filter but hardly ever. I bought this mic because I was sick of battling nasal vocals I own a mojave ma-200 great mic but it's to bright needs to be eq'd alot with this kind of vocal. I wanted a mic not for guitars, drums, ect. just VOCALS something that centers in on just that and with the three settings it's all I needed I prefer the middle setting. Since Ive had this mic there's no more plosives, nasal vocals, even with heavy compression it hides them all. Put it this way my sweetwater rep calls me from time to time for sales puposes of coarse but I cant think of anything I would or need to buy since I bought this mic perphaps a A Designs Pacifica when I have money to burn. sorry bro but I'm good now and thanks.
A beautiful mic, ignore negative feedback by others
I recently picked up a used Atlantis to try out, which I'm putting up against a Blue Kiwi for my next purchase. I'm not sure which will stay, however I believe the Atlantis to be a high quality product in general. It's built like a tank and oozes quality.
It is very quiet, and hassle free when choosing to eq and compress.
I own a Mojave MA200 which I love, but disagree completely with previous reviewer, as I felt the mojave lacked detail compared to the atlantis. It's more "round" compared to the FET design of the Atlantis.
I think that "smudgy" is very incorrect when pairing an adjective to this beautiful mic. I've got a broad collection of mics, and have never had a mic instantly sound this great on many sources. I hope to keep this mic long term, but the Kiwi is a killer too( granted not nearly as versatile.)
It's the ultimate solution for a high end home studio or professional studio add on. I believe there is relevance to treating the design concept like it's not part of the digital process, as this is where most common people reside day to day. It diffuses the digital consequences of modern production, and sounds smooth and natural. Great job Lauten Audio, thank you Nick L at Sweetwater!
Atlantis - Does it measure up?
How does this mic measure up? I compared this mic on all three settings against recordings I've made through the same chain using various microphones. On the high end, I listened to recordings done on the U87, and on the low end, I used the AT2020. Also note, I only tested these for vocals, as I mainly record vocals with my home studio set up.
First, the positives. It's very versatile. It's great for the price. For a $1500 microphone, it BELONGS where it sits. As I prefer a more modern, clean sound, I prefer this mic over a tube mic. For a home studio setting, this may be your go-to mic, and it excels in the way that it was advertised. The keyword is versatility, especially if you aren't running your mic through a million things before it gets to your computer.
However...I feel that it spreads itself a little thin with the three settings. In other words, it doesn't EXCEL in one particular setting, especially for male vocals. Once I am out of the neutral setting, it is harder to tweak the recordings done with the Gentle and Forward settings. For example, compressing a Forward recording resulted in a very artificial sound, and it was a bit harsh. Personally, when my recording is done, I will be running it through multiple preamps, compressors, EQs, etc., then applying more digital plug-ins, so I require one solid, transparent microphone with a broader dynamic range.
Verdict? 4 stars. It is a solid microphone and most people should be happy with it. It is slightly darker than other mics I've tried, so we'd recommend this for female vocals.
I found this mic to be 'grainy' - i.e. less articulate than the mic I finally got, the Mojave MA-300. It is fair to say that this is an apples/oranges comparison - an FET condenser against a tube condenser. True, but beyond the differences in 'warmth' that define the different niches for tube/tubeless, there is still the quality of articulation. The Lauten's ginormous diaphragm had me worried from the start, and in use, I concluded that the mic was... 'smudgy'. It lacked the fine detail, the delicacy and nuance I was looking for. Add to that the (to me) gimmicky three-position switch, and the entire rap about this mic: that old mics were designed for tape and this is the first pro mic designed to go right into a preamp and into a DAW. This is a very silly argument. I am recording at a place that has a vintage U47 going straight into a Focusrite ISA828 preamp and straight into Pro Tools. It blows the doors off this mic. A good mic is a good mic is a good mic - it does not matter whether you're going to tape or into a DAW - the fundamentals of capsule and diaphragm geometries, gain-staging and other circuitry issues are the same.
After I found myself underwhelmed by this mic (I think of it as a higher-end version of my Rode NTK), my Sales Engineer, Ted Hunter, and I discussed other mics yet again and we decided to try the MA-300. I was originally put off by the 'pimped out' look of the Mojave, but let me tell you, 'Professor' Royer, who started Mojave before he stared Royer, knows mics, especially Neumann mics (he got his start fixing and modding them), and the MA-300 sounds a heck of a lot like a vintage Neumann! Through the same signal chain as that U47 and the Atlantis, the MA-300 was strikingly better than the Atlantis to all ears in the control room, and really sounded good against (but not as good as!) the U47.
On top of that, the continuously-variable polar pattern of the M-300 yields LOTS more tonal variety (and recording utility) than the 3 position switch on the Atlantis.
At any rate, though one is a tube and the other is not, the bottom line for me is the detailed, three-dimensional, nuanced soundstage I get out of the Mojave versus a flatter and blurrier picture I get out of the Atlantis. For the money, you can do better. And if you don't want a tube mic, try the Mojave FET version of their MA-300, the MA-301. It sports a Jensen transformer vs. the transformerless Atlantis, and is multi-pattern (alas, not continuously-variable), and to my mind, has a simply better capsule overall. Head-to-head against this, I think you'll be surprised!
Atlantis Large-diaphragm FET Condenser Microphone with 3 Voicings, 3 Gain Settings, and 3 Polar Patterns (Omni, Cardioid, and Figure-8) More Info...