BM800 Microphone and Icom SM-50 Comparison – Recorded Audio

I am on either the Icom 7610 or Icom 7300 daily and I spend a lot of time on SSB. A while back I got an Icom SM-50 off of e-Bay for a low price. It does happen occasionally, hi hi. I compared it to my BM800. The BM800 Microphone ($20) really does sound good. You won’t be disappointed. Lots of Hams ask how the BM800 is connected to the Icom radios. I use a Y cable that came off E-Bay (HS-01C), a foot switch and a Samson mic boom.

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BM800 Microphone and Cables

BM800 XLR Cable

The BM800 Microphone comes with a XLR to 3.5mm cable.

To connect to my Icom radios I have used this Y Cable I got off of E-bay (HS-01C). It’s in my camper with the 7300 right now.

I use this foot switch. Be sure to get the correct plug for whatever Y cable you are using.

Currently, in the ham shack with the Icom 7610, I am using a Heil AD-1-iC cable. I like this one, but it does require a small stereo female jack to mono plug adapter for the microphone input. Not a big deal.

No need for phantom power. This mic gets power from the Icom radio. I have it on a Samson mic boom.

This microphone works great using VOX.

Icom SM-50

I got this one pretty cheap off of E-bay, but I was prepared to buy it eventually at full price. It’s a nice desktop microphone and well built. It seems bigger in person than in the pictures I’ve seen. I like this sturdy microphone.

The lock comes in handy and I can tell a difference between low and low cut. Listen below.

Audio Recordings of BM800 and Icom SM-50

Curious to know what your TX audio sounds like? Use a online SDR.

These audio recordings were saved from a SDR receiver in Utah. There are many variables, including band conditions. So many mic settings to choose from.

Note: SM-50 can be used with mic bias on or off. I have it on.

BM800 Microphone – Comp 3, Bass -2, Treble +4, TBW, Wide 200-2900 Hz.

Icom SM-50 – Comp 3, Bass -2, Treble +4, TBW, Wide 200-2900 Hz., Low Cut.

Icom SM-50 – Comp 3, Bass -2, Treble +4, TBW, Wide 200-2900 Hz., Low.

 

What do you think? Which microphone sounds better? Post your thoughts below in the comment section.

If you have any questions, comments or solutions, please comment below. I prefer the comment section here or in YouTube over e-mail because your comments and questions will help others as well.

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73,
Rich, K0PIR

Sources:

BM800 Microphone

Y Cable I got off of E-bay (HS-01C)

Foot switch I use in the camper with a 3.5mm plug

SDR receiver in Utah

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K0PIR

I'm an Amateur Radio enthusiast. I love the hobby and experimenting with radios, antennas and software. On my YouTube channel I upload videos on the Icom 7300 and Icom 7610 along with Ham radio software programs. I hope to inspire people to try new things in Amateur Radio.

24 Responses

  1. Eric says:

    Hi Rich,

    I was afraid of that. For some reason I thought dynamic was the one that would have worked.

    I did email the seller, but he is out of town right now, so I will let you know in about three weeks.

    If I dared to, can’t I just rewire the one I have?

    I guess I don’t understand the difference between the two.

    I searched eBay and came up with no matches.

    Thank you for all your help.

    As I said, I will keep in the loop.

    Eric

    • K0PIR says:

      There is a capacitor in the line blocking the mic bias. I would wait for the seller to return and ask him about it. Tell him what you have and what you want to hook up.

      I’ve had many times where I had to wait on the right part to come in. Just part of the hobby, hi hi. You’ll enjoy the BM800 when it’s done.

      73,
      Rich, K0PIR

  2. K0PIR says:

    Hi Eric,

    Thanks for commenting here and sorry to hear about your trouble. I clicked on the link and it took me to the expired listing (the one I have) that is for the one ending in C. I read the description of the CD and it is for a dynamic mic. You will have to send that one back and get the C. The BM800 is an electret condenser mic and needs power.

    I will look for a better link. Thank you.

    73,
    Rich, K0PIR

  3. Eric says:

    Hi Rich,

    I just got the HS-01CD adapter along with the BM-800, but the Mic isn’t working.
    The PTT works fine.

    I received a HS-01CD. Do you think that the HS-01CD is different from the HS-01C?

    When I clicked on your link, the CD was the suggested.

    The seller is out of town for a couple weeks, so my inquiry will be delayed.

    Any suggestions are greatly appreciated.

    Thanks

    Eric

  4. Sean Dickerson says:

    Just got all of my parts for this exact same setup. We’ll have to catch up soon! Thanks Rich!

  5. K0PIR says:

    Hi Eric,

    Same mic as the BM800, just different names.

    73s
    Rich, K0PIR

  6. Eric says:

    HI Rich,

    Do you think there is any difference in these two mics, although they are the same?

    Between the Zingyou and Voilamart, that is.

    Thanks for any help.

    Eric

  7. Eric says:

    Hi Rich,

    I have the 7300. Call me a ninny, but can you show how you connect the BM800 to the 8 Pin Mic Headset Adapter HS 01 C? The 8 pin has 2 connections and the BM800 (as far as I can see) has one.

    I just want to make sure I am getting the right parts for the project.

    I’m not to savvy with the microphones.

    Thanks,

    Eric
    w7igc

    • K0PIR says:

      Hi Eric,

      Nice to hear from you and thank you for commenting here.

      You plug the BM800 into the mic end of the HS 01 C (Y cable). The other connector on the Y cable is for a foot switch. You can use the BM800 without a foot switch by using VOX.

      I use a foot switch like this one. My Y cable takes a 1/8″ plug on the foot switch.

      I hope this helps.

      73,
      Rich, K0PIR

  8. John Dolan says:

    Hi Rich,
    I favor the sound of the BM800.

    73, John WB4YAL

    • K0PIR says:

      Hi John,
      Nice to hear from you and yes I am convinced now. I think the BM800 just edges out the SM-50. I guess the SM-50 is going to the camper, hi hi.

      73,
      Rich,K0PIR

  9. Ed Henderson says:

    Hi Rich,
    From my OLD ears, there is not a lot of difference from the BM-800 and the Icom SM-50 set to the “Low” position. However, I prefer the audio from the BM-800, it may have a little wider audio response and a little more presence.
    Thanks, Ed KD5EH

    • K0PIR says:

      Hi Ed,
      Nice to hear from you and thanks for commenting.
      I’m leaning towards the SM-50 in the LOW position only because it was 5X the price of the BM-800 Hi Hi!
      See you on the BC!
      73,
      Rich, K0PIR

  10. W5CMM says:

    Hi Rich,

    Have you tried either microphone with your Drake TR-7?

    73,
    Chris
    W5CMM

  11. K0PIR says:

    Thanks Ken. They are both good and a friend who views it on a scope says the BM800 is better.

    73,
    Rich, K0PIR

  12. Jürgen Martens says:

    Hi Rich,
    For me the BM800 Microphone sounds much better than the SM-50.
    However, I am 73 years old and I know that this might not be true under hard conditions.
    Jürgen

  13. W6BZY, Ken Hendrickson says:

    BM800 gets my vote, but both sound good to me.

  14. K0PIR says:

    Yeah my iPad Pro is having a problem. Are you on a Mac?
    I updated it and you should be good now.
    Thank you for the input.

    Best 73,

    Rich,K0PIR

  15. John, G3UCQ says:

    Hi Rich
    For some reason my laptop cannot play your files.
    Either unsupported format or wrong path.

  16. Sam P says:

    I just connected a Heil ICM mic, and was surprised to learn that I now must set mic gain to 10% with comp on, or
    18% with comp off. Your BM 800 sounds good.

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