Behringer haters

I enjoy tinkering with professional audio kit – usually for recording more than live work or performance. Largely speaking, I’m an amateur – I don’t normally make any money from audio services (although I do occasionally do work on a paid basis). Having a limited budget to fund my hobby, I can’t always buy the best of everything. Often, this means I buy Behringer equipment, as it is inexpensive and mass-produced.

Behringer logoClearly it isn’t quite as good as equipment that’s several times the price, but that’s to be expected. In my opinion, Behringer kit is pretty good quality, so long as you’re not going to rely on it daily for heavy-duty professional purposes. Everything is a compromise, but the Behringer microphones I’ve used are made of strong metal and feel nice, and sound great.

And yet, everywhere I look in online audio forums, people say how awful Behringer is, how nobody should ever, ever buy their kit – even home amateurs with hardly any budget.

While it’s true that Behringer kit isn’t the best the world has ever seen, it is the best at its price point and it represents remarkable value for money. All of the Behringer kit I’ve ever owned has been outstanding – good sound quality, good build quality, reliable and with a professional feel. For someone who has only used dynamic microphones before, using even a cheap condenser microphone is a miracle in its own right. To date, I’ve owned the following Behringer kit:Behringer B-1 microphone

Based on the positive experience I’ve had with every single one of these products, I wouldn’t hesitate to buy more products from their line-up. In fact, on my wish list I have more C-2, B-1 and B-5 microphones, and if I have need of it, a more powerful amplifier and speakers for PA use.

So, for anyone reading this: Behringer equipment is fine. It’s better than fine. It’s good, and is excellent considering the price. I recommend Behringer wholeheartedly to anyone setting up a home studio or for occasional use, for example in a church.

Anyone who tells you Behringer is no good for amateur small-scale professional is just a snob 😀

The one thing I will concede about Behringer is that their website is full of overused hyperbole such as ultra and super. Never mind – the kit is good!

5 Comments

  1. JA
    April 17, 2013
    Reply

    Hello Jonathan,

    Great article! I agree that Behringer products have been steadily raising their quality over the past years and although I don’t own or have never used one, I am beginning to realize after heavy research on the internet, that these are actually great affordable equipment to use in a budget home studio setup. I am overseas and don’t have the opportunity to test and try out gear, so I have to rely on the opinion and reviews of other users.

    Unfortunately, as you pointed out in the article, many of those commenting on forums are complete snobs. It has actually been quite tough to weed through all the nonsense and find a decent, non-biased review.

    I have a question for you: I am looking for a small diaphragm condenser microphone and like I said, being overseas, I need to do plenty of research before I make my decision and send for a microphone from someone coming back from the States. I have a Shure SM58 and a Studio Projects B1 so far but need something like a SDC with multi pattern (omni directional, specifically) for recording acoustic guitar. I had my mind set on a Behringer ECM8000, as they are highly praised for their flat response. Then, upon further researching, I found out the new models were not as great, and have a different curve response and higher self noise than previous models. The new generation is not recommended, even by noted Behringer loyal fans.

    So now that I have done a bit more reading, I have decided that getting a Behringer B-5 is really the way to go, with lower self noise than the ECM8000 and multi-pattern options as well. For the price, I think it is a steal. Could you recommend this based on what I need it for?

    Also, I am thinking of getting a Behringer XM8500 as a backup for the SM58. Based on reviews, this is sounds equal, if not better to than the SM58 (although I hear it is “hotter” but that’s nothing a bit of EQ can’t fix!).

    I would appreciate your insight 😀

    Regards,

    Jonathan Abarca

    • April 17, 2013
      Reply

      Yes, I think you’ll be happy with a Behringer B-5. I haven’t done any detailed tests on it but I have used a pair of them for choir and organ recordings in a church, and they sound very good.

      I haven’t personally used an XM8500 mic, but as you say the reviews are good, and I wouldn’t hesitate to buy some if I needed them. Currently I have three XM1800 dynamic mics which are cheaper and noticeably worse, but they work nicely for live voice applications, and they’re so cheap I don’t mind if they get broken.

      Let me know how you get on with the B-5s, I’d be interested to hear.

      Cheers,
      Jonathan

      • JA
        April 17, 2013
        Reply

        Hi Jonathan,

        Thank you for your prompt response. I have someone coming down from the States in July, I will send for a Behringer B-5 and I will let you know then how things panned out.

        Thanks again, and happy recording!

        Sincerely,

        Jonathan

  2. JA
    December 24, 2013
    Reply

    Hi Jonathan,

    I wrote a few months back in regards to the B5; I’ve finally managed to get my hands on one and I’m happy to report back on it. It sounds much better than I expected, in fact, I’m still tinkering it, I need to lower my gain on my interface/preamp as the microphone is a lot louder than I had expected. I am satisfied with the mic, and I dare anyone to say that this is a bad microphone! In the hands of an experienced user, great things can be done 🙂

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