Neumann U87ai LDC vs Neumann SKM184 SDC vs Coles 4038 Ribbon

This microphone shootout illustrates the differences between three different microphone classes on drum overheads: large diaphragm condenser, small diaphragm condenser, and ribbon. The Neumann U87ai LDC, the Neumann SKM184 SDC, and the Coles 4038 ribbon do an excellent job of representing the general characteristics of each class.

All three mic pairs were run through our Phoenix DRS-8 Mic Preamp. The snare and the toms were miked using Shure Beta 181/C side-address microphones, a Shure Beta 52 was used on the kick, and all four drums were recorded through our Vintech 573 preamp modules. All tracks were recorded through our Apogee Symphony Converter.

Our Drum Overhead Shootout Series

This is the first video of our drum overhead shootout series, so be sure to check out the other videos where we go much more in-depth with each type of microphone and compare some of our favorite mics within each class.

LDC Drum Overhead Shootout: Click HERE

SDC Drum Overhead Shootout: Click HERE

Ribbon Drum Overhead Shootout: Click HERE

Want to learn more? Contact a Sound Pure Pro Audio specialist today!

The Contenders

Neumann U87Ai LDC Microphone 


Neumann SKM184 Stereo Mic Set

Coles 4038 Factory Matched Pair Ribbon

Try BeforeYou Buy

All of this gear is available for Sound Pure’s Try-Before-You-Buy demo program, so if you’d like additional info on how you can experience these mics for yourself, or just have questions about which mic style would be best for your recordings, give us a call anytime at 919.682.5552 and we’d be happy to tell you more. Thanks for watching!