New Music Gear Monday: Mojave Audio MA-D Cardioid Dynamic Microphone

Microphone manufacturers have been trying to come up with a replacement for the venerable SM58 for decades now and no one has succeeded. Yes, there’s been some fairly good substitutes, but it seems like most are either radically different from the original or not different enough. Mojave Audio, a well-company known for its condenser microphones, has jumped into the ring with its new MA-D cardioid dynamic mic, and this just might be the one that finally becomes a true go-to alternative.

Mojave Audio MA-D dynamic microphone

One of the reasons why Mojave has never entered the dynamic mic market is that Technical Grammy winning designer David Royer never wanted to build a mic based on what he considered an inferior design. Years of requests and the availability of new materials prompted him to rethink that decision though, and the result is the MA-D.

The Presence Peak

For one thing, the SM58 was designed way back in the early 1960s when sound systems consisted maily of the cone-driven column speakers with virtually no high frequency response. As a result, Shure incorporated a presence peak in the mic design in order to overcome the problem and have the vocals cut through the mix a little easier.

Today sound systems are light years ahead, and the presence peak is no longer needed, so the MA-D was designed with a smooth response, so it not only sounds better but can also provide more gain before feedback as a result. Not only that, the mic has an extended frequency response going both higher and lower than what most of us are used to in live sound mics.

Aside from the smooth frequency response, the mic provides a uniform cardioid pickup pattern, excellent off-axis reject, and low handling noise thanks to its integrated pneumatic shock mount. A built-in internal windscreen takes care of the plosives. Yep, it works well miking instruments as well, being able to handle peak SPLs of 160dB.

I do a comparison recording under very controlled conditions of every mic I get my hands on, and I can tell you that you’ll be pleasantly surprised just how good the MA-D sounds, especially up against the you-know-what.

The Mojave Audio MA-D cardioid dynamic mic retails for $159. It’s well worth checking out.

Go here for more details and audio examples.

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