DonnyThompson

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Joined
Nov 25, 2012
Location
Akron/Cleveland, OH
Has any of you compared the Royer's 121 or 122 to the Rode NTR ?

Well, the NTR is a bit different in that it's an active ribbon mic, mon ami'. It's characteristics are different, in that it has a much higher top end response than traditional ribbons do; the NTR specs show a frequency range of 30hz - 20kHz... which is quite a bit wider on the top end than most ribbons, which tend to start to slope down pretty fast above 12-14k...

Now, to be fair, the NTR I heard had been modified by Michael Joly ( at least I think it was an MJ mod, I can check with my buddy who has it), so I haven't heard one right out of the box from the factory.

I can tell you that the one I heard and worked with for a few hours had far more output gain than any other ribbon mic I've ever worked with ( obviously the active circuitry plays a part in that).

Most ribbons don't do too well with preamps that have any less than 65db of gain; and most entry level preamps top out at around 60 db or so... ( some ribbons need even more than 65; more like 70db to sound at their optimum, so you need a pretty beefy pre for ribbons to sound like they should - or, an inline gain boost like the Cathedral Pipes Durham, or Cloudlifter, both of which converts Phantom Power on a preamp to an additional 20-25 db for those low-output ribbons and dynamic mics, like the Shure SM7)**

To be honest, pal, what I heard sounded a lot more like a condenser than a ribbon mic - or at least what we have come to expect sonically from ribbon mics.
And I'm not saying it sounded bad... because it didn't... I'm just saying it didn't "sound" as much like a ribbon mic, as Royers, or AEA's, or RCA's do; those mics that have the "classic" ribbon sonic-signature.


**this wasn't aimed at you Marco... I know you know this stuff, ;) I mentioned it for those who may not be as experienced with ribbon mics, and who have maybe found this thread through a search. ;)

-d.
 

pcrecord

Quality recording seeker !
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Joined
Feb 21, 2013
Location
Quebec, Canada
To be honest, pal, what I heard sounded a lot more like a condenser than a ribbon mic - or at least what we have come to expect sonically from ribbon mics.
This was the kind of info I was looking for. I'm still craving for a great vocal mic (different that those I have)

Did you record vocals with it ? I know mic shootouts are bogus*, but after watching maybe 10 videos this week, I got about 6 very different sounds.. Some very tamed in the HF like a ribbon and others pop bright. This is very disconcerning...
What was the mod ? circuit mod, recap ? retentionning ?

* I should know, I did a video about them ;)
 

audiokid

Chris
Moderator
Joined
Mar 20, 2000
Location
Nanaimo BC, Canada
Has any of you compared the Royer's 121 or 122 to the Rode NTR ?

I have R-121 and R-122 including the SF-24V here. The R122 (they are active) don't need the extra gain none active ribbon mics do. They are wonderful mics I have no idea about the mentioned RODE but like most RODE mics, they sound better with good mic-pres.

I'm still craving for a great vocal mic (different that those I have)
Marco, Mojave MA 200 or 300 are great vocal mics, very affordable. Have you ever tried one? So are the RODE K2. I have a few of those and really like them, again especially when used through a good preamp.

That being said, the day I added an LA2A in my vocal chain, was the day I said, ah... that's how they do that. Save your pennies for one of those. You will never regret..
 

pcrecord

Quality recording seeker !
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Feb 21, 2013
Location
Quebec, Canada
I own both R-121 and R-122 including the SF-24V. The best preamps make these mics sound like silk. The R122 don't need the gain as other ribbons do. They are wonderful mics I have no idea about the RODE but like most RODE mics, they sound excellent with excellent mic-pres.


Marco, Mojave MA 200 or 300 are great vocal mics, very affordable. Have you ever tried one? So are the RODE K2. I have a few of those and really like them, again especially when used through a good preamp.

That being said, the day I added an LA2A in my vocal chain, was the day I said, ah... that's how they do that. Save your pennies for one of those. You will never regret..

No I haven't try the Mojave yet... I'm gonna look for a store that has them ;)
Thanks for the tip..

About the LA2A, I guess, I'm geting a glimpse of that optical compression with my LA-610. Anyway, I'm far from having the 4k for the real thing.. ;)
 

audiokid

Chris
Moderator
Joined
Mar 20, 2000
Location
Nanaimo BC, Canada
Maybe Warm Audio ? http://www.warmaudio.com/tube-opto-compressor-wa-2a

Just saying. You know I like the real deal but there are others.

All I'm saying is I have literally had about 85 mics come through here, nothing got me so excited as did leveling amps with a valve on vocals. Not compressors. Not valve preamps.
Those leveling amps do something to the vocal chain and bass... that always makes me smile. Its a 3D kind of sheen (padding) that speaks pro audio right away. Its the sound of silk electric energy in a very soulful effect.
They also reduce the metallic sound cheaper mics and converters have. This is why I'm suggesting to try something like the LA2A (or clone).
You will at least know more about a particular sound that might end your quest in the mic search, thus, refocusing towards some sort of affordable clone.

You mention other products which makes me think you aren't finding that sound in vocals, so I keep thinking to mention the leveling amp direction. :)
 

DonnyThompson

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 25, 2012
Location
Akron/Cleveland, OH
This was the kind of info I was looking for. I'm still craving for a great vocal mic (different that those I have)

Did you record vocals with it ? I know mic shootouts are bogus*, but after watching maybe 10 videos this week, I got about 6 very different sounds.. Some very tamed in the HF like a ribbon and others pop bright. This is very disconcerning...
What was the mod ? circuit mod, recap ? retentionning ?

* I should know, I did a video about them ;)

I tracked vox with it.
I don't know about the mod, brother, I'll call my buddy and find out.
 

pcrecord

Quality recording seeker !
Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 21, 2013
Location
Quebec, Canada
Would it help if I posted the song that I used the NTR for vocals on? ( Lead vocals)
Don't trouble yourself just for me ! ;)
If you think others may enjoy it that's ok..
I'm gonna make a move for another mic only in the 2017 anyway..
For now, I want to fix my LA-610 with a defective compressor. (good chance I got two la610 an it still works as a preamp alone). Once that's done, I think I'm gonna sell one and aim for a ISA channel strip. I realise that having a compressor in the way in for vocals is needed more and more at my studio because not many signers knows how to work a mic, and having a different flavor of preamp would be nice.. Some will say why don't you get a compressor alone.. Yes, I'm thinking about it but for I rarely use the 2 LA-610 at the same time anyway... If I sell my la610 for 1k and get a 1k ISA 220 or 430, I'm a winner :LOL:
 
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