Neumann U87 Ai: The Legendary Microphone That Continues to Shape the Sound of Modern Recordings

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The Neumann U87 Ai microphone stands as a true legend in the world of audio recording and sound engineering. With a history that dates back to the 1960s, the U87 Ai has consistently been a go-to choice for countless artists, producers, and engineers, solidifying its place as an industry-standard microphone. In this review, we will delve into the rich history, design, performance, and applications of the Neumann U87 Ai, aiming to uncover the reasons behind its long-lasting success.

The U87 Ai’s Rich History

The Neumann U87 Ai finds its origins in the original U87 microphone, which was introduced in the 1960s. As a testament to Neumann’s commitment to innovation and excellence in the audio industry, the U87 Ai has evolved over the years, incorporating improved features and technologies to maintain its prominence among audio professionals.

This versatile microphone has been used in iconic recordings and live performances by famous artists and producers such as Frank Sinatra, Michael Jackson, and Dr. Dre. The U87 Ai has left an indelible mark on the sound of countless hit records, showcasing its unparalleled performance and sound quality.

Design and Construction

One of the key features of the Neumann U87 Ai is its multiple polar patterns, which include cardioid, omnidirectional, and figure-8. This versatility allows the microphone to adapt to various recording situations, making it a favored choice for a wide range of applications. The quality craftsmanship and materials used in the U87 Ai’s construction are a testament to German engineering and attention to detail. The microphone’s durability and reliability make it a trusted choice for audio professionals worldwide.

Performance and Sound Quality

The Neumann U87 Ai boasts a wide frequency response of 20Hz to 20kHz, delivering natural and detailed sound reproduction. Its low self-noise and high sensitivity make it an ideal choice for capturing delicate nuances and quiet sources. When compared to other microphones such as the Neumann TLM 103, AKG C414, or Audio-Technica AT4050, the U87 Ai consistently offers superior sound quality and performance across various applications.

Applications and Use Cases

The Neumann U87 Ai excels in a variety of applications, from recording studios to broadcast and voice-over work. Its versatility makes it an excellent choice for capturing vocals and a wide range of instruments, including piano, guitar, strings, and drums. Additionally, the U87 Ai has found its place in film scoring and sound design, showcasing its adaptability and outstanding performance.

Pros and Cons


1. Unrivaled sound quality and character: The U87 Ai delivers exceptional sound quality, contributing to its legendary status in the recording industry.

2. Versatility due to multiple polar patterns: Its multiple polar patterns make it a flexible choice for various recording situations and applications.

3. Durability and reliability: The U87 Ai’s quality construction ensures long-lasting performance and reliability for audio professionals.


1. High price point may not be accessible for all users: The premium price tag of the U87 Ai may put it out of reach for some audio enthusiasts or those on a tight budget, especially for stereo applications that might require 2!

2. Might not be suitable for all applications or environments: While the U87 Ai is a versatile microphone, certain specialized applications or environments may require alternative solutions.


The Neumann U87 Ai continues to be a legendary microphone that shapes the sound of modern recordings. Its enduring popularity and success can be attributed to its unrivaled sound quality, versatile design, and reliable performance. For those seeking a microphone that has proven its worth time and time again, the Neumann U87 Ai is an exceptional choice. Whether you’re a seasoned professional or an aspiring audio enthusiast, the U87 Ai is a worthy investment that will elevate your recordings to new heights.

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