AKG P420 Large-diaphragm Condenser Microphone
Gearank High Notes
- October 2016: Equal Highest Rated Studio Vocal Mic from $100 to $200
The AKG P420 features a dual element design that enables you to switch between cardioid, omni and figure-8 polar patterns.
This makes it a versatile mic for recording solo or group singers, interviews and even instruments.
High SPL handling also allows it to be used with loud sound sources like percussion.
This mic comes with a sturdy metal enclosure for added long-term durability.
The reviews we examined showed this mic to be popular among home studios and podcasters.
- Type: Condenser
- Polar Pattern: Cardioid, Omni, Figure-8
- Frequency Response: 20 to 20,000 Hz
- Impedance: 200 ohms
- Max SPL: 135dB (155dB w/Pad)
- Power Requirements: +48V
- Attenuation Pad: -20dB
- Applications: Recording vocals, percussions, drums and acoustic instruments
Common user comments show it to be a good "daily driver" mic for most tasks. The multiple polar patterns and high SPL handling was appreciated by many home studio engineers that have it as their only mic. Some loved the build quality and durability which helps when it's the only mic in your arsenal.
Some concerns were raised about self-noise and the noise floor. The -20dB pad felt too much and some wished for a -10dB pad.
If you're looking for your first "desert island" or "beater" mic that you can use for almost any application, the AKG P420 is an excellent choice with its multiple polar patterns.
Although this was previously on our recommended list, there are now more highly rated options available which you can find in our guides to Condenser Mics: Small to Large Diaphragm and Studio Vocal Mics.