Gear review: Shure SM7B

Shure SM7B

The Shure SM7B is a dynamic microphone that has achieved legendary status among audio professionals and enthusiasts alike. Revered for its versatility, sound quality, and robust build, it is a staple in radio studios, recording booths, and home setups worldwide. This review delves into its design, performance, usability, and overall value, providing insights into why the SM7B remains a top choice in the competitive world of microphones.

Design and Build Quality

The SM7B sports a sleek, professional look with a sturdy metal construction that feels durable enough to withstand the rigors of studio use and frequent handling. Its physical design includes a built-in shock mount to reduce mechanical noise and a detachable windscreen that effectively minimizes plosives and breath noise. The microphone's design and build reflect Shure's commitment to quality and durability.

Audio Performance

What sets the SM7B apart is its exceptional sound quality. It features a flat, wide-range frequency response that preserves the natural beauty of the voice and instruments, making it particularly popular for vocal recordings. Its cardioid polar pattern ensures excellent off-axis noise rejection, crucial in multi-source environments or where background noise is a concern.

The SM7B is also known for its ability to handle high sound pressure levels without distortion, making it suitable for everything from whisper-quiet vocals to loud instruments like guitar amplifiers. It has a built-in pop filter that reduces plosive sounds effectively, which is a boon for vocalists and podcasters.


The SM7B is relatively straightforward to use, but it does require a decent preamp with enough gain, as the microphone's output is famously low. This can be seen as a drawback if one does not already possess a capable preamp or audio interface with sufficient clean gain. However, the microphone's performance and versatility often justify the additional investment in high-quality preamp hardware.

One relatively cost-effective option is the Triton Audio Fethed, which is the one I use when recording. I would advise against using the gain on your mixer, because it surely won't provide you with enough flexibility and the gain will probably won't be clean enough. The Fethed has served me well for a couple of years already, but obviously there are better preamps out there. The advice is: do your research and find something that fits with your recording requirements and budget. Check out this Reddit thread for more information on that.


The Shure SM7B's application ranges from recording vocals, both spoken and sung, to capturing instruments such as electric guitars, bass, and even drums. The SM7B's ability to produce warm, smooth recordings makes it a favored choice not only in professional studios but also for podcasting, streaming, and other broadcast applications.

Comparisons with Other Microphones

The SM7B often finds itself compared to condenser microphones, which generally have a brighter sound profile and higher sensitivity. However, the SM7B's warmth, clarity, and ability to reject electromagnetic hum (thanks to its excellent shielding) often tilt preferences in its favor, especially in environments susceptible to electronic interference.

Price and Value

The Shure SM7B is not the cheapest microphone on the market, but its price is considered reasonable given its performance and the professional results it delivers. It is an investment that pays off for serious audio producers, podcasters, and vocal artists who demand high-quality sound reproduction.


The Shure SM7B microphone is a high-quality, versatile tool that excels in a variety of audio applications. Its robust build, excellent sound isolation, and superior sound quality make it a valuable asset in any recording environment. While it requires a good preamp to reach its full potential, its performance justifies the investment. For anyone looking to upgrade their audio quality significantly, the SM7B is a choice that is hard to regret.

Buy the Shure SM7B on Amazon