I bought the Heil Sound PR-40 over two years ago and there has yet to be a project I haven’t used it on either. It is one of the most well rounded dynamic mics I have ever owned without question. The build is solid and has a heavy quality feel to it. The Heil Sound PR-40 comes in a small metal case with a mic clip and a cutout to fit the mic and clip inside the case. There are various accessories you can order for it also such as a shock mount or even a desktop boom stand. This is a radio announcers dream too because it is a very solid contender on vocals! Other large diaphragm dynamics that are comparable are the Shure SM-7 and the Electro Voice RE-20.
The first place I tried the PR-40 was on vocals in place of my usual Shure SM-7 with a loud rock singer. I usually use a dynamic in place of a condenser for louder sources and the PR-40 was a shoe in for that, but what really surprised me was the condenser like high end. Usually with dynamic microphones you lose some of the high end but the Heil had a very condenser like response. There was even one session where I had forgotten my Kel Audio HM7U and had to use the Heil PR-40 in its place for a few background tracks and it faired well in the track! Not exactly the same sound but closer than any other dynamic would have! For vocals it is a great mic to have in your locker.
Next up was recording drums. I used it in place of the Shure SM-7 again on kick and wow it wiped the floor with it! The low end that the Heil PR-40 picked up was sweeter on the PR-40! Not only did it sound better but it went lower and gave me a more woody, natural sound that really surprised me! I have yet to try it on a bass cab but because of the natural sounding low end I wouldn’t hesitate at all to mic up a cab with it instead of the SM-7 like I usually do. After a few more sessions it started to replace the SM-7 a lot, especially on kick drums. One other place I tried it was snare and it worked well but it is a rather large mic for snare and I prefer it on kick than snare so I’ll be sticking to my i5 for snare.
Last place I tried the Heil Sound PR-40 was on guitar amps and man it blew me away! I first tried it on a metal record on a Marshall 4×12 with a Peavey 5150. Again the low end chug that the guitarist liked was picked up well by the Heil Sound PR-40 and the high end of the guitar solos were just as present. It still blows me away, this mic is incredibly versatile and has amazing spl handling. From screaming vocals, kicks, snares and huge 4×12 guitar cabs its a perfect match. I even tried it on a small Crate Vintage Club 20 combo amp with a 10″ speaker. The amp has a strong mid presence that some mics can’t get past no matter how you position the mic but the Heil PR-40, when positioned correctly, made it sound a lot smoother than any other mic I have tried on it!
I was once told there is no such thing as a bad mic, only a bad mic for that situation. With the Heil Sound PR-40 it seems to be a great mic in ANY situation. There aren’t very many mics I think that of either but the Heil Sound PR-40 deserves it. In all the situations I used it in it performed flawlessly. It’s only been two years but me and my Heil will be together for years to come. It is now a staple in my mic locker.