Home Microphones Fifine K669 Review: Crystal Clear Sound With A Caveat?

Fifine K669 Review: Crystal Clear Sound With A Caveat?

by Stuart Charles Black
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Fifine K669

Price: Check Amazon! | Check Fifine!

Note: You can choose the Condenser or Dynamic version from the drop-down menu on Fifine’s website.

In The Box

1x XLR Condenser Microphone

1x Tripod Stand

1x User’s Manual

Specifications

  • Model Number: K669C
  • Connection: XLR
  • Element: Condenser
  • Polar Pattern: Cardioid
  • Diaphragm Size: 16mm
  • Sensitivity: -43dB±3dB
  • SPL: 130dB
  • Frequency Range: 30Hz – 20kHz
  • Power Requirements: Phantom Power 48V±4V

Introduction

Fifine K669 Review

In recent years, the world of audio equipment has undergone a remarkable transformation.

What was once considered a niche and often expensive hobby has become incredibly accessible, thanks to a new generation of affordable yet high-quality products.

I’m still extremely skeptical of this movement as so many copycat products end up being complete crap, but there are certainly exceptions.

This shift raises an intriguing question: Does the Fifine K669 Condenser microphone, like many others in this evolving landscape, offer more than its price tag suggests?

Let’s delve into this intriguing question.

Today we’ll review both versions: The K669C (Condenser) as well as the 669D (Dynamic).

I’ll also briefly discuss the differences between the mic types at the very very end if you need a quick crash course.

What Is It?

For those new to the hobby, the Fifine K669C is an XLR condenser microphone that requires phantom power to reach acceptable volume levels.

This means it needs some sort of audio interface, mixer, etc. to connect to.

For this review I’m using the Universal Audio Volt 2; a fantastic interface with some nifty features and plenty of gain; 55dB to be exact.

I would highly recommend it if you’re just starting, but even if you’re not, it’s a great product in general and you owe it to yourself to at least check it out.

Build

Fifine K669 Review

The most jarring aspect of this microphone is just how durable it feels in your hand.

In fact, sitting down to write this review, I did a quick Amazon search to see how much it was going for; fully expecting it to be in the roughly $100-$150 range. 

I was absolutely floored to find out it’s a measly $38 (Subject to change).

Huh?

Are you serious?

It’s built like a tank.

Out of curiosity, I weighed both the Shure SM57 and K669 and was again astonished to find that the latter is actually a tad heavier.

The K669 weighs 11 Oz. and the SM57 only comes in at 9.7.

Note: My scale may show slight discrepancies with numbers found online.

The SM57 has been famously parodied over the years for its insane durability; some even say you can hammer nails with it.

But the fact that the K669, at its price, feels pretty comparable is pretty crazy to me. It’s important to note that the SM57 is arguably one of the most well-built products to ever hit the market and has a proven track record.

Time will tell, but I have full confidence the 669 will also serve me well for many years. It’s made of rugged metal and also doesn’t collect fingerprints which is a huge plus.

Its understated, utilitarian aesthetic also may appeal to the minimalist in you, as it looks sleek and is pretty compact for a cardioid condenser.

The 5/8″ thread mount that comes packaged in the box is plastic, but it feels perfectly serviceable and I haven’t had any issues thus far.

Now that we’re dancing around the subject, let’s discuss the setup.

Setup

What Is 48v Phantom Power?I’ve been using this InnoGear Scissor Arm since 2021 and it’s a great option for pretty much any microphone you may have.

We discussed earlier that the K669C needs phantom power from an interface, but what about the dynamic version?

The K669 Dynamic also sent to me, does not require phantom power but needs plenty of gain.

The Volt 2 provides around 55dB, but I wouldn’t rely on that solely to power any dynamic; including the 669. 

In other words, I would, at minimum, plan to purchase either a Fethead or Cloudlifter, which will essentially give you around 25-27dB of extra gain to compensate.

This ensures you’re not jacking the gain up on the Volt 2 which can and will introduce unwanted noise/artifacts, etc. from the surrounding area; in addition to whatever self-noise the microphone has. 

For my tests, I had the gain set to around 75% and normalized the levels inside FL Studio’s Edison.

Lastly, you’ll need a good XLR cable to complete the setup.

Sound

Fifine K669 Review

Normally when companies send me cheap mics, they sound, well, cheap.

So it’s safe to say that upon trying both the Dynamic and Condenser version of the 669, I wasn’t expecting much but ended up being pretty impressed by how clear they both sound.

Fifine K669: Condenser Version

Fifine K669: Dynamic Version

Fifine K669 Review

What?!

For $38?!

These mics definitely outperform their price tag but do have some issues.

You can probably guess what they are when after listening to these next 3 recordings and comparing them.

Before we do that, the dynamic version of this mic was a bit trickier to record with. That said, I found a gain of slightly less than 50%, with a 12dB boost to be a nice sweet spot.

I wouldn’t jack the gain up on your interface much more than 50%, as it can introduce unwanted ambiance, noise, artifacts, distortion, etc.

Here are some other mics for comparison that I currently have or owned in the past:

MXL 990

  • Record Date: 2023
  • Interface: Universal Audio Volt 2
  • Gain: 75%
  • Pop-Filter/Windscreen: Yes
  • Currently Own: Yes

Audio Technica AT2020

  • Record Date: 2016
  • Interface: Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 1st Generation
  • Gain: 95%
  • Pop-Filter/Windscreen: Yes
  • Currently Own: No

Samson C01

  • Record Date: 2015
  • Interface: Focusrite Scarlett 2i2
  • Gain: 95%
  • Pop-Filter/Windscreen: Yes
  • Currently Own: No

As you can probably tell, in comparison to the above 3 XLR condensers, the Fifine sounds a little brittle/ragged and not as smooth as the 990, C01, or AT2020.

Use Cases

In addition to Podcasting, YouTube, and general voiceover work, the K669 is also viable for rapping and perhaps singing.

You could probably also use it to record an acoustic guitar given how clear it sounds, but for that, I recommend a small-diaphragm condenser like the MXL 991; a mic tailor-made for the instrument.

Before we give a final verdict, let’s recap some things I liked and disliked about the Fifine K669C (Condenser) and D (Dynamic).

What I Liked:

  • Incredibly durable and robust microphones. They’re low profile, sleek additions to any studio space, and look utilitarian and unassuming.
  • Insane value. I still can’t believe these are going for under $40. It just goes to show how much times have changed. It’s never been easier to quickly get up and running without forking over your kidney in the process.
  • Sound. Despite picking up some noise and not sounding as good as some other mics, they’re pretty clear and crisp. This point and the last one kind of go hand in hand, but I firmly believe they outperform the price tag. It’s also pretty easy to get a good first take with the Condenser version, but recording with the Dynamic is slightly trickier.
  • The 2-Year Warranty, while not a world-beater by any means, it’s actually better than most companies’ 1-Year and shows that Fifine is pretty confident in the mics. That said, I fully expect both to outlive 2 years by a considerable margin.

What I disliked:

Stand

I’m not a huge fan of the provided stand as I’m personally never going to use it.

The reason is that it doesn’t elevate the mic properly and ends up being too far away (roughly 9 inches).

I would plan to invest in some sort of dedicated stand if you don’t already have one.

Noise/Sound

In going back and forth with some of the other condensers, you can definitely hear that it picks up significantly more noise – similar to something like the Blue Yeti. 

It’s also not quite as professional sounding as the MXL variety mics, but hey, it’s less than $40.

Video Review

Shoutout to Podcastage for a phenomenal rundown!

 

Final Verdict

Fifine K669 Review

The Fifine K669 Condenser and Dynamic microphone bundle commands attention with its exceptional build quality, delivering an astonishing level of durability and reliability rarely seen at its under $40 price point.

Its ability to capture crystal-clear sound effortlessly facilitates quick and impressive initial recordings, making it an enticing option for beginners and budget-conscious creators.

However, it’s worth noting that despite its admirable performance, the K669 doesn’t sound as smooth or professional as the MXL990, 770, or V67G; all of which I’d reach for first over a 669.

While this might be forgivable given its affordable price, users seeking a more professional-grade sound without such interference might consider investing around $60 more for the MXL 990, 770, or V67G which offers a refined audio experience with reduced background noise.

Those looking for a fantastic dynamic mic should highly consider the SM57.

Overall, the K669 stands as a remarkable entry-level option with incredible value, yet those prioritizing a quieter, higher-tier performance may find the MXL 990 a worthy upgrade for a more pristine recording experience.

Learn More:

 

Well, that’s about it for today my friend! I hope you’ve enjoyed this Fifine K669 Review and came away with some valuable insight.

If you love what I do here and want to support the blog and channel in a more personal way, check me out on Patreon and discover all the value I have to offer you.

Questions? Comments? Requests? Did I miss the mark on something? Please let me know down below or Contact me!!

Which of these mics would you be most inclined to purchase? I would love to hear from you. Until next time…

All the best and God bless,

 

 

-Stu

[Xtr@Ba$eHitZ]

Can’t decide which headphones to purchase? Interested in a complete buyers guide outlining over 40 of the best options on the market? Click on over to the best audiophile headphones to learn more!!

Dynamic Microphones vs. Condenser Microphones

Shure SM57 Review

Dynamic microphones and condenser microphones differ fundamentally in their design, functionality, and ideal applications.

Dynamic microphones utilize a straightforward design with a diaphragm attached to a coil that moves within a magnetic field upon encountering sound waves.

This movement generates an electrical signal, producing audio output. They are robust, less sensitive to handling noise, and capable of handling high sound pressure levels, making them suitable for live performances, recording loud instruments, and stage use.

Condenser microphones, conversely, feature a more intricate construction with a diaphragm positioned near a backplate, forming a capacitor.

These microphones require an external power source, termed phantom power, as they use a charged capacitor to convert sound waves into electrical signals.

They possess higher sensitivity, capturing a broader frequency range and subtle nuances in sound accurately.

Condenser mics excel in capturing vocals, acoustic instruments, and studio recording where detailed and clear audio reproduction is crucial.

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