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Microphone Month

Shure Beta 91A Condenser Boundary Microphone Reviews

4.5 stars based on 22 customer reviews
Questions about the Shure Beta 91A Condenser Boundary Microphone?

Questions about the Shure Beta 91A Condenser Boundary Microphone?

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Sweetwater Advice

  • Sam Hillman

    The Shure Beta 91A is my favorite mic to use inside of a kick drum, both live and in the studio. Its flat design means that it doesn't use a mic stand, so it's easy to place inside the drum. Being a boundary mic, it has a hemispherical polar pattern that picks up all of the tone and resonance inside the drum. This gives a more natural sound than a cardioid that primarily hears the attack of the batter head. For live situations, the midrange contour switch cuts boxy midrange frequencies for a great pre-shaped sound. In the studio, a tried-and-true combo I love is pairing the Beta 91A with a Beta 52.

  • from Los Angles California April 12, 2017Music Background:
    Theatre Sound Designer/Studio Owner

    Beta 91A

    Man I really like this mic!!! Beta 91 inside and Yamaha SubKick outside just works.

  • from Jordan February 20, 2017Music Background:

    Amazing punch

    Amazing punch full with all the low frequency I need from the drums.

  • from Minneapolis, MN January 26, 2017Music Background:
    Semi-pro/enthusiast engineer, 35 years pro bassist

    Excellent Kick Mic

    I owned a pair of 91s 20 years ago. I had the ability to mount them to thin sheets of 12 x 12 plexiglass. They made a bang-for-the-buck pair of drum overheads the quality and uniqueness of which I still strive to reproduce. Clients were consistently impressed. I tried them out on pretty much everything with good to excellent results, until I wondered, "what if?" and set one on the padding in a kick drum. I hate to use the phrase 'blown away' but there I was. The tonal balance was startling. It was all there. It sounds great and is very forgiving. My go-to mic for kick drums.

  • from October 7, 2016

    Beta 91a

    This mic is great! We had an opportunity to borrow one at a show once. We're always having a time getting the kick drum to sound deep and solid without a nasty ringing tone. Just plugged in this mic and it sounds like it's been compressed and gated by a pro - even we can use it ! Can't go wrong with this baby!

  • from Chicago June 9, 2016Music Background:
    25+years, live audio

    You need this mic

    Being a lifelong user of Re-20s, MD-421s and the occasional ND868/D-6 for kick drum I was very skeptical. I hate B-52s and D112s because of the exaggerated bass and click boost. Warily i finally tried the B-91a and immediately had the tight "rock kick" I'd been looking for, out of the box. I've yet to try the mid scoop switch as i know how to use my console and have a new go to mic.
    I mix on flat systems with as accurate phase response i can get meaning I'm not a bass head metal/rap guy. this mic solved my kick issue for loud obnoxious bands and will be my first choice when mixing rock.

  • from California usa December 9, 2014Music Background:
    Recording engineer, live sound and pro musician

    A must have for kick drum (inside)

    I use this mic for my dw kick inside the drum... It goes well with shure 52a..it's perfect for live and studio

  • from Dyer IN September 9, 2014Music Background:
    Live Sound Engineer, Musician, Songwriter,

    The search for the perfect Live kick mic is over for me.

    I recently just mixed a band that was all self contained, brought their own mics and mixer for monitors and all that. I have a love/hate relationship with it. I love it because I don't have to go through the hassle of dragging out my cables, stands, mics, di's.. etc and makes teardown way faster. I hate it because generally the stuff the band brings out is usually Junk. But the band had this in their kick drum, and when we tested the kick during soundcheck i was absolutely blown away, The attack and punch from this mic was the best I've ever heard in this venue, It was clear and defined but also had a really nice low end thump to it. I've tried everything I have in our workbox such as a D112, D6, Beta 52, RE20 and this mic is definitely going to be a purchase for me.

  • from Cheyenne, Wy USA August 15, 2014Music Background:
    Pro Musician

    Surprising Sound

    I was blown away by the immense sound that comes out of this mic. We had a Christian band come into town and play in our facility. They asked me to have this mic available for the drummer. I was a little reluctant but ordered it with the intention of placing it in our "box of mics that we really don't use collection". The drummer came in with a cahon, and this mic filled the room with a punch. With maybe 15 min to EQ and balance the sound, we this mic sounding full and powerful. I would highly recommend this mic, as we have used it every week since in our drum kit, and retired the Sennheiser mic we had been using up to this point.

  • from los angeles October 18, 2013Music Background:
    Recording Engineer, Live Sound Engineer, Pro Musician

    great for kick

    I added this mic to the kick drum in my studio setup. Along with my old RE20, the combination of tones, especially with the Shure's notch filter, provides a wide and useable rainbow of kick colors for recording. Buy one!

  • from Columbia SC July 30, 2013Music Background:
    Recording and live sound engineer


    I have been a user of the sm91 and Beta91 for years and years, and have always liked their sound. So when it came time to restock the mic cabinet, it was a no brainer. I was looking forward to seeing and hearing the latest incarnation of a tried and true workhorse. After putting it thru its paces over 3 weeks of shows and sessions, i can say the new 91 is the best of the line! first off, Shure FINALLY. Got rid of the mini-xlr cable that was always a hassle, and put a solid xlr connection on the body of the mic. Second, the eq switch gives this mic gives it some tonal variation that i really like; scooping the mids for a rock kick drum, or leaving it flat for a "tape to the piano lid" session. This is a seriously useful mic, it has become my GO-TO solution for a lot of recording and sound reinforcement needs.

  • from Pensacola, FL April 3, 2013Music Background:
    Live Sound / Recording Engineer, Tech Director

    91A Kicks!

    I love using this mic inside a kick drum. Attack and punch when you needed it by itself or combine with other mics for a paired kick sound.

  • from Denver, Co April 2, 2013Music Background:
    Pro drummer

    Shure Beta 91

    I'm very happy with my Beta 91! If you're looking for a lot of bottom end with a lot of punch this is the best kick Mic for the job. And AJ, is the best guy to go to for any drum gear questions.

  • from Pasadena, CA November 27, 2012Music Background:
    Audio Engineer

    Instant Kick sound!

    pretty much a instant good kick sound! I've heard and tried a lot of "Kick drum mic's" but this is the 1st that really did the trick! I should of gotten one sooner! even with out any EQ or Compression the kick drum sounds tight, with some good top end slap and deep fat bottom end.. perfect! Just make sure the bottom of the bass drum is padded with a towel or a kick pad. 5/5 GET IT! worth every penny!

  • from Austin, TX December 19, 2011Music Background:
    Live Sound Engineer/Recording Engineer/Guitar Player

    Worked great on harp!

    I have used this mic many times on kick drum and it never lets me down.

    As well as handling high volume low freq sources, this mic is also a very effective condenser for more subtle material.

    Recently, I was asked to provide audio services for an outside wedding. A harp was to provide all accompaniment music. I had to make sure that about 150 people outside could hear the harp during the service.
    I never did sound for a real harp before. I decided use a beta91a. I attached it to the top of a piece of 1" closed cell foam, and carefully placed that down inside the bottom of the sound board of the harp connected it Into a smallmixer and then to pair of powered speakers on sticks. It worked perfectly, picked up plucks and tone, lows and highs, with no wind noise and hardly any footpedal noise. It was super easy, hardly any eq needed.

  • from South Africa November 12, 2011Music Background:
    Live Sound Engineer

    Great mic for live sound

    I would definitely recommend this mic for live kick drum applications. It's performance is excellent. The bass is tight & clearly defined. I used it on a Pearl Reference kick drum with Camco Vortex-6 amps & Nexo S2 subwoofers.

  • from Connecticut October 4, 2011Music Background:
    pro musician, engineer

    nice mic easy to use

    I'm using it live right now. Good crisp sound that can get the bass drum out there even without subs. Eliminated a stand that players had a tendency to trip over on tight stages.

  • from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil May 24, 2011Music Background:
    Live Sound Enginner

    Letīs have kick!

    This mic really surprised me! I put it inside the kick drum and itīs amazing how well it captured the kick! I like bass drums with more lows and thatīs why I use another mic outside the drum. I combine them, so I have the low end of one mic and the kick and defiinion of the Beta 91 A, excelent! I use it flat, but it also has a low-cut switch. The internal pre-amp is great! Regular XLR cable are much easier to get. And it resists nicely under high SPL, no distortion at all!

  • from Salem, VA February 17, 2014Music Background:
    Musician, Recording Engineer, Producer, Hobbyist

    Great mic.

    I love this mic! You can't beat the tone it gets for the price. It's versatile as hell, too. I've used it for kick drums, other odd drums, acoustic guitar, mandolin, cello, and as a border mic for rehearsals. I love this thing!

  • from Norway March 18, 2012Music Background:
    Live sound engineer

    A must have

    Just had to buy this upgraded b91. Sold my old one and got this with standard xlr and eq switch. Everyone needs this. Period.

  • from Kirkland, WA June 13, 2013Music Background:
    Live Sound Engineer/Tech Director

    Great Piano mic!

    A couple of these, velcro'd to the lid on a grand, and you've got a great-sounding, low-chance-of-feedback acoustic pop/rock piano setup.

  • from Ontario Canada May 22, 2012Music Background:
    Veteran drummer Own a Sound and Lighting Buisness


    This is a great Mic if your a sound guy or just doing your own drum mix.Put it in the bass drum and there's little to any tweaking.Bigger show I put a 2nd mic on the front cover.Unreal bass sound.

  • from Chicago IL April 11, 2012Music Background:
    live sound engineer

    Great idea but....

    Love the old 91 more. integrated pre-amp on 91A is a great idea but a lot of touring guys say that it craps out after a while. Better to have the old 91 with the inline (easily replaceable ) pre.

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