Dense wads of cotton wool pack the interior of the mic's tubular body to prevent resonances and to stop the connecting wires from rattling. The ribbon microphone has a lot going for it at a conceptual level. The output impedance of the review model was 300(omega), although a 200(omega) model is also available. You may login with either your assigned username or your e-mail address. I gather that the lifetime warranty includes the odd diaphragm replacement here and there, but not when damage is caused by repeated abuse! This mic looks, superficially, like a pair of R121 capsules mounted one above the other on a common body with a fixed 90 degree offset between them. The microphone is supplied in a stylish wooden box with a microphone clip and user guide — optional, but essential, accessories include a foam windscreen and shockmount. Placing a good quality pop-screen or foam windshield in front of the mic would be a very sensible precaution! The physical arrangement of the microphone capsule makes the R121 a side-address design, with 12 slots running across each side of the business end of the mic. The contents of this article are subject to worldwide copyright protection and reproduction in whole or part, whether mechanical or electronic, is expressly forbidden without the prior written consent of the Publishers. i thought phantom power was DC voltage. The r121 is definitely a winner on acoustic guitar. I was so impressed, I even tried it on the 122 Leslie of my Hammond and, although I was careful not to expose it to the draft of the spinning top rotor, it was quite wonderful and produced a very rich, sonorous sound indeed. The Sontronics Sigma is an active ribbon that requires +48. The magnetic motor has been carefully designed to keep the flux field where it is needed between the pole pieces and to minimise unwanted stray external fields, although the external 'ears' running down the sides of the mic body form part of the magnetic circuit around the ribbon and are capable of picking up paper clips without any difficulty! I saw someone had mentioned phantom power with ribbons. The wafer-thin metal diaphragm is not too dissimilar in size and mass from that of a condenser microphone and is therefore capable of an equally wide bandwidth and dynamic range. First Look: Pro Tools | Carbon. The side nulls are amazingly precise in the way that only ribbon microphones can be — it is hard to beat the accuracy of a purely mechanical system like this. Am I mistaken? The mic's own magnetic field is reasonably well contained but does exist, and care should be taken not to place the microphone too close to anything sensitive to this. The microphone sensitivity is quoted as -54dBV referenced to 1V per Pascal which equates to 2mV/Pa and is, surprisingly, only 1dB greater than the classic Coles 4038. The basic design of the Royer R121 is fairly conventional as ribbon microphones go, despite the adoption of sophisticated modern materials. Returning, briefly, to the mechanics of the microphone, the model weighs a modest 243g and measures 6.13 inches long with a 1-inch diameter (156 x 25mm). As far as I know the impedances on these cheap Chinese ribbons are all wrong. Just a friendly reminder that political discussion, (including "offhand" and 'sideways' commenting) is. All contents copyright © SOS Publications Group and/or its licensors, 1985-2020. Placing them in front of a source which was on the loud side of comfortable would not be a terribly good idea either! Like most ribbons, the Royer R-121 Live's pattern is figure 8, its sensitivity is roughly equal to a good dynamic mic, and it exhibits a warm, realistic tone and flat frequency response. The frequency response, figure-of-eight polar patterns and sensitivity, however, are all very similar to those of the R121. For the sake of completeness, I should mention that Royer also produce a stereo coincident ribbon-microphone system called the Royer/Speiden SF12. Beautifully warm and smooth sound quality. From about six inches away and going further out the sound remains completely uniform and well balanced so, to all intents and purposes, the proximity effect can be ignored. Transformers block DC. Development of ribbon mics reached its peak in the late 1940s and early 1950s, until they were overtaken in the quality stakes by burgeoning capacitor microphone technology. The technical specifications are impressive, especially when compared to the ribbon mics of yesteryear! Royer Laboratories in Burbank, California, was founded by David Royer and Rick Perotta in order to bring Royer's ribbon-microphone designs to the pro‑audio marketplace. I thought that was a sure way to kill a ribbon mic? Why Are Some A-B Stereo Arrays Angled Outwards? The mic also sounded extremely sweet on acoustic guitar and even in front of a loud electric guitar amp. I don't doubt it, although care must be taken to avoid damage from excessively strong air movements — avoiding exposing the ribbon to the air blasts from closing hi-hats, for example. However, the ribbon capsule is different from that of the R121 and has been developed by Bob Speiden with an even thinner ribbon diaphragm, just 2µm thick and weighing 0.3mg! Similarly, metal-production techniques for ribbon manufacture and designs for audio transformers have also been improved. Q. The review model had a burnished-satin nickel finish although a matt-black chrome alternative is also available. All rights reserved. It is relatively expensive and most would probably see it as a luxury item, but the R121 is a fairly versatile tool which would find a lot of applications and add very useful warmth and character to many sources. Really needs a windshield and shock mount. The All-New Behringer Keyboards 'n' Stuff Thread. The sensitivity of ribbon mics is determined largely by the strength of the magnetic field encompassing the diaphragm, and the magnetic structures available 50 or 60 years ago could only generate such powerful fields by employing massive magnets. Updated 2016. It was susceptible to mechanical noise transmitted through the microphone cable or the mic stand, but was not unduly prone to external magnetic fields although it picked up buzzes and hums from most power transformers when placed within about six inches. The handbook for the Royer included a sheet of quotes from a number of highly respected American recording engineers and producers endorsing it, particularly for its strengths in capturing amplified electric guitars. The quoted frequency response is flat within around ±2dB from 30Hz to 15kHz, although these figures rather do the mic a disservice. I tried out the mic a couple of feet in front of solo trumpet, clarinet and violin all with excellent results — particularly with the trumpet, which was detailed and crisp without being spitty or aggressive. have a transformer. The equivalent noise figure for the mic can be approximately calculated as being about 14dBA, which is pretty darn quiet and allows a dynamic range in excess of 120dB! For stereo applications, a pair of precision-matched R121 mics can be supplied for a five percent premium over a pair of unmatched mics. My experience with ribbon microphones at the BBC confirmed the relative fragility of the marque: drop the lid on the storage box or expose them to rapid movements of air (people blowing on them, for example) and there was every chance that the ribbon would tear. I took the Stellar rm3 for a side by side with the Royer 121. Mastering Essentials Part 4 - Mastering EQ: Balance, Don’t Match. Unfortunately, I did not have the opportunity to try the microphone as part of a drum rig, although the manual suggests it can deliver good results. Great care has been taken to ensure accuracy in the preparation of this article but neither Sound On Sound Limited nor the publishers can be held responsible for its contents. The model designation and serial number are etched into the body near the base of the mic and a male XLR connector provides the electrical output. It is smooth-sounding but without being dull, and it tends to flatter sounds, particularly brass, woodwind and voices, in the way large-diaphragm capacitor mics can do. A list of the 7 best ribbon mics including: Royer 121, 101, SF-12, Avantone Audio CR-14, AEA R84, AT4081, and Beyerdynamic M160.
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