Shure 55SH Series II Unidyne Vocal Microphone Review

At last the day has come. We are reviewing the legend of vocal microphones which history have already more than 75 years. The younger brother of the Super 55 in the classical line-up of Shure. This masterpiece is a mixture of good old days style mics that have become iconic in many ways, and innovative features which correspond modern standards and tendencies. The main feature of Shure 55SH is cardioid polar pattern, which makes it ideal choice for broadcasting or public speeches when you need clear sound without external noises. But let us start from the very beginning. And by the tradition, specs firstly.


Type: Dynamic
Polar Pattern: Cardioid
Frequency Rate: 50Hz to 15000Hz
Output Impedance: EIA rated at 150Ω (270Ω actual)
Sensitivity: −58.0dBV/Pa (1 Pascal=94 dB SPL)
Net Weight without Cable: 624gram
Housing: Chrome Plated
Size (microphone without switch): 100mm x 55.6mm x 77.8mm
Set Includes: On/Off Switch, Swivel Stand Mount

Shure 55 History

We have decided to add this chapter in order to prove this microphones greatness.

The Unidyne Microphone, model 55 was released in 1939 and from the very beginning it was considered as the classic of mics due to its great futuristic design and performance specs. Soon the Unidyne series became synonymous with the company name and earned worldwide fame. A lot of famous people used 55 (like Elvis Presley, Billie Holiday, Frank Sinatra and others). During war 55 showed its abilities to work in extreme circumstances and quickly Unidyne became the symbol of a microphone itself.

Since 1939 more than 20 versions were released and there are two reasons why this legend remained iconic even nowadays:

  1. New versions always correspond with world science and music trends.
  2. Overall design always remains the same.


So let’s go back to 55SH version which was released in 2014. It is rather awkward to describe design of this microphone but we cannot miss this part. So the fully metal chrome housing looks elegant, vintage but at the same time it looks modern. This form is out of time comprehension in peoples’ minds, it is above it. When you are going to raise lips to it you fell more shyness than before you first kiss and this ‘grandma’ is better than all these girls.

The comfort of using is on a high level. You can tilt this mic 45 degrees forward and 80 back with its swivel mount. Also there is built in on/off switch and shock mounted cartridge. Also there is possibility to grab it like walkie-talkie during performance to look Elvise-like, go ahead.

XLR connector makes it even easier to use, and there are millions of all style stands and boom arms for this type of microphone.  Although this mic is solid we recommend you to transport It in some case or special bag. Of course case doesn’t come with a microphone, so we suggest you buy Auray WMC-100 wide mouth microphone case. Also if you want a mic stand at the retro style, we can offer you Atlas Sound MS-10C Chrome Stand (this stand will perfectly match the Shure 55SH style).

Sound Quality

This particular model has frequency rate from 50 up to 15000 Hz, cardioid polar pattern and special cartridge. These three features mean clear voice of speaker / singer/ broadcaster without any unwanted noises. Moreover, more and more people start to use this model for instrumental recordings and they sound great because of its frequency response, which give you saturation on 5000Hz – 9000Hz. So you can also upgrade your 55SH Series II to Super 55 by installation of R115S Cartridge (you’ll get more clear frequency response and supercardioid polar pattern).

Here You Can Check Some Examples of Shure 55SH Recordings

Shure 55SH Series II vs Shure Super 55 vs Shure SM58

Let’s start comparison from Shure 55SH and Shure Super 55. Both microphones belong to Shure Classic Line and it is worth noting that they differ in almost everything except style design. They have different polar patterns, frequency response, sensitivity, price. But the most important thing is that Super 55 expensive at $70 and it’s sounds a little bit better that 55SH Series II. All detailed differences you can see in our comparison table, but if you want to learn more about Super55 – you are welcome to our Shure Super 55 Review.

At the request of our readers, we have also included Shure SM58 in the comparison. The main similarity of these microphones is in polar patter, dynamic type, sensitivity and they both good for live vocals. But it is worth noting that 55SH sounds better and more saturated (also Shure 55SH better for studio recordings) than Shure SM58, which is justified by the higher cost of 55SH. Also these mics have very different overall build & design and it is very difficult to compare these two models. We have an article about Shure SM58 where you can find detailed mic features.

Shure 55SH Series II Shure Super 55 Shure SM58
Polar Pattern Unidirectional (Cardioid) Supercardioid Unidirectional (Cardioid)
Frequency Response  50Hz to 15000Hz
Frequency Response on Scheme
 60Hz to 17000Hz
Frequency Response on Scheme
 50Hz to 15000Hz
Frequency Response on Scheme
Transducer Type  Dynamic (moving coil)  Dynamic (moving coil)  Dynamic (moving coil)
Sensitivity  −58.0 dBV/Pa
1 Pascal=94 dB SPL
 −53.0 dBV/Pa
1 Pascal=94 dB SPL
 –54.5 dBV/Pa (1.85 mV)
1 Pa = 94 dB SPL
Pros Perfect Sound Quality
Vintage Chrome Plated Body
Price / Quality
Great Sound Quality
Supercardioid Plar Pattern-
high gain befoure feedback
Signature Chrome Plated Body
Good Sound Quality
4 Package Bundle Configurations
XLR to USB Adapter – Configuration Type
Low Price
Price / Quality
Cons Poor Package Bundle Poor Package Bundle Not so good for studio recording solutions
Check the Price

Final Verdict

So many years of worldwide popularity can be only a signal of something-above-greatness. 55 Connected millions of singers hundreds of music genres and dozens of years. Speaking the truth, there is nothing we can write here. The choice is obvious just because Shure almost 78 years are proving that every person is able to buy true music legend from middle price range, so what are you waiting for? This microphone needs new Elvises.

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Global Shure 55SH Series II Rating
  • Sound Recording Quality - 8.3/10
  • Overall Build & Features - 8.2/10
  • Design - 9/10