Anyone used one of these?
I have an engineer acquaintance who is liquidating some gear in an effort to pay some medical bills...
He wants $129 for it.
Is it just another one of those cheapies? It's made in the U.S., I've never had the opportunity to use one.
No one, eh? LOL...sorry, just giving it a bump because I need to decide today. :)
I'd rather not throw the money out the window, just for the sake of owning a ribbon.
But my inclination is that for the $130 he wants for it, it's not a huge gamble.
There were many nights in my somewhat tainted past where I spent a lot more than that on stuff that disappeared in just a few hours.... ahem...uhmm... just sayin'. :rolleyes:
will he let you try it first?
What do you want it for Donny? guitar?
Kurt.... it's been sold to someone else. I waived off on it because I just didn't know enough about it. And, my current mic pre / audio I/O is likely too shy for the power that a ribbon would need, anyway.
Truthfully, my first thought was to simply have a ribbon mic in my locker for any number of possible applications, considering that it was only $130 - but - that got me thinking too, quality-wise, in that what kind of mic would only cost that little?
Guitar (amp) came to mind; I've used ribbons in the past and have been happy with their performance on amplifiers.... but I was also thinking it might be cool to use as the fig 8 in an MS array too... I k now many people prefer matching mics (like 414's) for an MS rig, but I've used different models before with great success as well. The 10k top-out didn't bother me. I can think of plenty of applications where I wouldn't need to rely on reproduction that high in the bandwidth.
I can't afford any of the tried and true ribbons right now... the Royers and such are just too far out of my current price range.
I'm not upset though, I have seen them since on ebay for not a whole lot more than what he was asking. In fact, several online stores have them at around $160... new. So it's not as if I turned down something rare, or a once in a lifetime deal.
I just remembered a mix I did for someone with that mic Donny and the vox sounded like wool. Really low mid dominant. Exactly what you don't want for vocals imho. It was near impossible to do anything with it that made me happy.
my bad, you weren't thinking this for Vox right?
Thanks for that info, Chris. Yeah, I wasn't really thinking of using the mic for vox. I'm not against using a ribbon for vocals, I've recorded many vocal tracks with ribbons in the past that sounded fantastic, but they were all models like Royers, Beyers, and AEA's... based on the low price and specs of the CAD, I wasn't expecting it to sound like any of those. ;)
My main intention for its use was really more along the line of using it to mic guitar amps. I've used less expensive ribbons on amps before with really nice results. (Of course, the amp itself plays a large part of that sound, too). ;)
I had also considered the possibility of using it as the Fig 8 in an MS array for things like percussion, horn sections, etc.
It doesn't appear as though this would have been a good buy for me, and from what I'm finding out from reviews and what you've said, I'm kinda glad that I passed on it.
I'll have a nice ribbon at some point, but for now - with the limited money that I have allocated for gear, and considering the other more important improvements I need to make (along with personal bills like taking care of my Mom) - it will have to wait.
I've helped out a guitarist friend of mine, over the years. I've done plenty of recording for him. Sold him an Auditronics 110-8. He liked my Beyer's but couldn't afford those so he got the Triton 7000. It sounds like a ribbon microphone, for sure, when you want that sound. It was more reminiscent I felt of the RCA BK 44's then it was the 77 DX series or, the Beyer's. So Chris was right. It was dark and woolly. I think it would be great on an amplifier that was already screamin' too hot in the high-end? Thankfully, Darrell didn't play like that. So we used the Sennheiser he had. I don't have one but, the little square one you can drape over the amplifier so easy, 409. And I didn't like those two together either. It got too fat. Worked better as a room microphone. (Even the 57 with it, didn't cut it. I tried.)
So the 409, was used by itself, in the end.
I mean draped over the guitar amplifier.
Mx. Remy Ann David
Donny, if you're looking for an inexpensive ribbon mic, I bought this kit not long ago for 399$ US : [[url=http://[/URL]="http://www.amazon.c… "]http://www.amazon.c… fathead[/]="http://www.amazon.c… "]http://www.amazon.c… fathead[/]
Of course they are not Royer's, but they do exactly what I wanted them to do, get a signal with warm bass and thame hi frequencies.
I combine it with a SM57 or a 421 which sometime lacks of what the fathead offers.
Thanks PC... those actually look familiar to me, I might have used them on a session in the past. I don't remember if I did, but I do know that I would have remembered them if they had sucked. LOL :)
Do you have any samples you could post where you used the Fathead?
I just made one for you.. keep in mind I'm not a guitar player..
A sample is nothing without comparing it to something you know so I made a sample with the fathead and one with a sm57
Thanks so much for taking the time to do this PC... Neither one sounded worse than the other, just different. I thought the Ribbon track was "creamier", whereas the 57 had more edge and bite. Certainly either one is perfectly usable.
But I really do like the smoothness of the ribbon.
I'm really intrigued by the tonal possibilites of using two of these in a Blumlein array.
Thanks for the link, Chris. There's no doubt that the Beyer is a good deal. I'm gonna have to save up some more money and then make my decision as to which way to go.
DonnyThompson, post: 414284, member: 46114 wrote: Thanks so much for taking the time to do this PC... Neither one sounded worse than the other, just different. I thought the Ribbon track was "creamier", whereas the 57 had more edge and bite. Certainly either one is perfectly usable.
But I really do like the smoothness of the ribbon.
I'm really intrigued by the tonal possibilites of using two of these in a Blumlein array.
The good thing about ribbon on a cab, is the possibilty to blend it with other mics. The Amp and settings I used were already warm but the ribbon helps alot with strident amps/cab, it makes them more bearable ;)
Blumlein array is another thing I could test. (could'nt with a sm57 because it's not a figure of 8) Also, maybe I'd combine a condenser and a ribbon on a cab. (not 2 ribbons which would make the sound a little too dark)
I could Also make a M/S test !!
I don't know about "dark"... that may be so, in that the top end of ribbons is traditionally lower than condensers, but I bet a Blumlein on an amp with two fatheads would sound pretty nice - depending of course, on the style.
Take care when thinking about an M-S configuration made up from different microphone types. Ribbons are inherently velocity-sensitive and condenser mics in cardioid are pressure-sensitive, resulting in a 90 degree phase difference when applied to the same sound source at the same distance. This means that an M-S configuration made up of a cardioid condenser as the M mic and a fig-8 ribbon as the S-mic will not decode to L-R correctly using the standard matrix.
For a M-S test, I was more thinking of 2 figure of 8 mic, the ksm44 and the fathead.. Is that also a problem ?
DonnyThompson, post: 414287, member: 46114 wrote: I don't know about "dark"... that may be so, in that the top end of ribbons is traditionally lower than condensers, but I bet a Blumlein on an amp with two fatheads would sound pretty nice - depending of course, on the style.
Also depending on the amp/cab ;)
pcrecord, post: 414289, member: 46460 wrote: For a M-S test, I was more thinking of 2 figure of 8 mic, the ksm44 and the fathead.. Is that also a problem ?
Whether a two-capsule condenser mic like the KSM44 switched to "bidirectional" pattern operates as velocity-sensitive or pressure-sensitive, I don't know. It could have been designed either way, although I suspect it will still be pressure-sensitive, like the other patterns. You would have to ask Shure.
Not sure if this answers the question in regard to the KSM, but I found this from Shure:
As discussed in Section 3.2 of , the diaphragms are stiffness controlled in the frequency range of interest so they are modeled simply as an acoustic compliance
and represent the compliances and resistance of the acoustic phase shift network. The sources represent the sound pressures at the front and back of the capsule.
That's interesting - as I suspected, they retain their pressure-sensitive characteristic in all patterns. It means that if all Shure condenser mics operate like this, those that can be switched to have fig-8 pattern exhibit a response that is always 90 degrees phase-shifted from that of a ribbon at all usable frequencies.
The .pdf file that I was reading and sourced my previous post with didn't mention if Shure used this across the board on all of their Figure 8 mics or not. And, I can't say that this white paper was even referencing the KSM line.
But, it certainly makes it sound as if Shure is indeed using pressure sensitivity on all of their dual element microphones... although I could be wrong, and please correct me if I am.
On another related note, I've seen some of their mics that have apparent dual-side address, that in fact don't have a functioning diaphragm on the backside, (passive) even though they physically appear to be dual element, when in fact they are cardioid only.
Also, the KSM44 has been discontinued. I wasn't able to find a new model that was similar, at least with the polarity patterns that the 44 had. I'm not saying that such a newer model doesn't exist, I'm only saying I wasn't able to find one.
I did find an SDC with bi-directional capability, but not an LDC.
I've read nothing but very good reviews on the KSM44, I have no idea why they would have discontinued it, the obvious reason would be a lack of interest from consumers.
Maybe that's it - that for the price of one KSM44 ( based on the MSRP of $1500, anyway) you could come pretty close to being able to get two 414's. I don't know...just a guess.
It's the data sheet for KSM44A I was looking at, so I guess the non-"A" version was discontinued in 2010 when the newer version was introduced. I have to say that I'm by no means an expert on the Shure product range.
Boswell, post: 414298, member: 29034 wrote: That's interesting - as I suspected, they retain their pressure-sensitive characteristic in all patterns. It means that if all Shure condenser mics operate like this, those that can be switched to have fig-8 pattern exhibit a response that is always 90 degrees phase-shifted from that of a ribbon at all usable frequencies.
Okay... I'm trying to follow here, so let's use an example; What would the results be in the case of using these pressure sensitive diaphragms (2) in an M-S or Blumlein array?
Oh... wait a sec... I just re-read your statement comparing this condenser in the context of phase relation to a ribbon.
One thing that puzzled me a bit about that white paper, was that they were discussing "useable" frequencies... is this simply another way of saying fundamental frequencies? Or, frequencies within a certain rang/bandwidth in comparison to when the mic is in cardioid position? I'm a bit confused about that... but then again, confusion is pretty much an everyday normal state of mind for me, so... LOL
I'm not a microphone designer, but my understanding of the way the various microphone design parameters are worked out is that you start with amplitude, phase and incident angle responses for both the transducer element(s) and the acoustic labyrinth. The skill of the designer is to balance these as required as far as possible over the main frequency band, and he might include a "presence" bump in the several KHz range, for example.
The frequency spread over which the the parameters are controlled gives the "usable" range, although the actual electrical response of the transducer may go higher and lower than this. Acoustic energy having frequencies above or below the usable range may still give an electrical output from the mic, but its amplitude and (especially) its phase may not be controlled or characterised. This could give problems if the mic were being used in conjunction with a different model in a multi-mic configuration where phase angle is important, such as M-S.
I know I have to be careful when recording large pipe organs that have fundamentals in the 20-25Hz region that my mic's phase response is behaving in the way I expect. I normally use a matched pair of omni capsules in A-B configuration for this type of work, and when setting up, I ask the organist to walk slowly down the pedalboard from the top while I display an X-Y phase diagram from the microphone signals on a laptop. I'm content if I see no severe phase breakup over the range, but often have to move the mic array around to get an acceptable result because of reflections and standing waves in the building that may be affecting one mic of the pair. These frequencies get recorded, but rarely end up in the final mix. However, they can cause problems a few octaves higher if not sorted out at the fundamental before any tracks are laid down.
You explained that well, Bos. Thanks.
I can't imagine what you'd have to know to really get started recording a pipe organ in a large room........I attend a couple of Churches that have these things and sitting in the room with one going full-steam....is awesome in their complexity.
And to Donny.....break down and buy a Royer R-101. Around 800 street. You will never again NOT use it on any guitar amp. I use that and old SM57 Unidynes. Easy.
Also the Avantone ribbon mic is impressive for not much cash. Not a dark mic at all. Short ribbon .
Added this video.
[GALLERY=media, 412]CAD Trion 7000 Ribbon Microphone - YouTube by audiokid posted Jun 18, 2015 at 6:27 PM[/GALLERY]
Thanks for posting that, Chris.
I never did get a chance to actually use this model, in the end I picked up an MXL 860 ( which is a sort of 121 knock-off, although having also worked with the 121 over the years, I can say that the 860 doesn't sound as good as the Royer); that being said, it doesn't sound bad or "cheap", either. I've used it on tube guitar amps with very nice results tonally - usually paired with a 57 or 58 - but not always.
I would agree with the guy in the video that ribbons do tend to work nicely on guitar amps all the way around, and as he mentioned in the video, jazzy-style drum combo kits, and while it's not something I use on a day to day basis, it's nice to have around for those times when a ribbon serves the recording well.
Again, I wouldn't compare any of the cheaper models to an AEA or a Royer, but for basic applications where a ribbon would work, these would probably be a good thing to have in your locker - without breaking the bank.
And for those reading this thread who might not know... if you do decide to pick up a ribbon - any ribbon - you'll need a pretty beefy preamp to gain them up, say, 70db or better, ( the more the better), or , something like a Cloudlifter to up the gain, because ribbon mics are traditionally very low output microphones, even lower in output than dynamics.
Here's a vid I found showing the CAD ribbon on a guitar amp... although this CAD has been upgraded with a Lundhal transformer and is being run through a Chandler mic pre, and I have no doubt that these make a big difference.
I have 2 Fathead 1, no modification. They sound good on electric guitars but also on acoustic guitars in M/S configuration. Other application is as drum room mic, since I have a very small room, the fathead gets a good dark and deep sound of the whole kit. A bit of comp and room reverb, I love it ! ;)
Althought they are cheap ribbon, I get to use them very often.
Since my last post I have added another ribbon to the collection. I understand about budgetary constraints and all and am a firm believer in "bang-for-the-buck"......BUT....You ALL owe it to yourself to invest in one (or more) quality ribbons.
Late last year I added the Cathedral Pipes Seville ribbon mic to my locker. If ever there was an one-size-fits-all ribbon mic, this is it. Tape-Op has a nice review in the Mar-Apr issue #106. While I still think the Royer R101 is one of the most underrated ribbons out there, mostly over-shadowed by the more expensive Royers, the Cathedral Pipes Seville is something that rivals an SM57 for amount of usage...except it sounds amazing on everything. Vocals, drum overs, acoustic and electric guitars, horns, ESPECIALLY baritone sax!!!, room mic....I would mic a leslie with this. In a big room with time for the 'bloom' to develop and take advantage of the figure-of-eight, this would be something that simply stays on the stand no matter whats being captured.
Not that expensive considering...around $900 and custom built.....