A while back I picked up an MXL 770 after reading some good reviews. I enjoyed the sensitivity and build quality for the price, but the sound was harsh and sibilant.
What made the mic really shine though was using EQ to flatten the frequency response:
- Look up the tonal balance / frequency response of your mic.
- Use Waves Q10 to create an inverted EQ of the frequency graph. (If your mic has a +9db boost at 9.5k, apply a 9.5db cut at that frequency. Tune the Q to match as closely as possible. Do this for the whole spectrum, using as few EQ filters as possible to invert the curve.)
- Save the preset, and use it on every instance where you record (or even put it in your chain and bake it into the recording)
- Follow up with a good channel strip like SSL Channel or especially Waves Omni Channel and adjust your final EQ to taste.
In my case, flattening the EQ response of the mic made an enormous difference. What was harsh before became smooth and appealing after.
Final tweaks in your channel strip become easier because you’re starting with a more natural sound to begin with.