This shootout features 3 microphones that are tied together by history. The Neumann KM84 was developed in the 1960s, and is a SDC mic with a warm, natural, and detailed sound. The modernized version, the Neumann KM184, features a slightly different tone and response resulting in some engineers preferring one over the other depending on their recording application. Because vintage Neumann KM84s are limited in number, relatively expensive, and can require some touch up repair work due to their age, the Peluso P84 was developed – which was modeled after the sound of the vintage KM84 despite being a brand new microphone.

The three 84-styles chosen for this shootout are mics that have come through Sound Pure Studios that we feel really passionate about and feel we can recommend with no reservations, whether you’re just getting started with a home studio or adding to your recording studio collection.

Can you tell which 84-style mic is which? Does a clear winner stand out to you?

Once you’re ready for the answers, shoot us an email at, or give us a call at (919) 682-5552 (you can also reach out to us on Facebook). Also, every mic in this shootout is available for our Try Before You Buy demo program, so you can do some testing for yourself with no obligation to purchase.

The Contenders

Neumann KM84

Neumann KM184

Peluso P84

Why Do We Do Our Shootouts Blind?

Good question! In our own experience as recording engineers and musicians, we’ve found we have unconscious biases that favor one microphone, preamp, instrument, etc. over another based merely on preconceptions and brand associations. We’re often surprised at the results and want to present that same unbiased listening opportunity for you.

Also, we hope you request the hi res files, because YouTube compression affects the audio considerably. And, last but not least, we want to help you purchase the right gear for your exact needs and setup. This is a shootout on one specific recording application, and it can give you some great info, but the devil is in the details! We specialize in the details and are here to assist you with your choice.