I have a habit of checking Craigslist for used measurement mics and honestly, have never seen a listing but a few days ago I came across a used Audix TM1. The listing was for $100. Since the mic sells new without the calibration chart for $299, I thought it was worth checking into. After all, I’m not always interested in putting my matched set of Earthworks mics out for basic measurement purposes due to the risk involved.
Yesterday I met the owner, exchanged $100 and brought the mic home. In an ideal world, when purchasing a used measurement mic, you would measure the mic against a known mic before making the purchase. In this case I met the guy in a parking lot. Not a lot of options for an A/B comparison but if we’d met at a church or something I might of gone to the effort of verifying the mic before I bought it. The mic did appear to be in good share and the seller was knowledgeable of the measurement concepts and was a previous Smaart user so based on the sale price, I bought it and took the risk.
For any used measurement mic purchase, I recommend carefully inspection of the mic for signs that it might of been dropped or any deformity to the tip. A mic with a bent tip or one showing signs of damage may be totally compromised but still produce sound. Even a small dent in the windscreen can affect the accuracy of a mic. Buyer beware. The only way to know for sure is to measure a known mic and then the unknown mic and compare the two. Since I didn’t do this procedure before I bought it, I’m going to do it now.