Ribbon Mics on Cabs - SPLs and proximity.

Discussion in 'Microphones (live or studio)' started by lostindundee, Mar 20, 2009.

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  1. lostindundee

    lostindundee Active Member

    Mar 25, 2008
    Hi there

    Just took receipt of a stereo pair of FatheadIIs (with Lundhals). Just tested them and they are fantastic.

    Just wondering, given that ribbon mics can be damaged by gusts of air etc, how close to a cab can they be placed when recording bass? I know this is a difficult question given that I can't give a specific recording volume.

    I use a Fender 15 watt bass amp at a reasonable room level - nowhere near gigging level.

    Is there a recognised safe distance(s) for using ribbons in relation to bass and guitar cabs and also vocals?


  2. RemyRAD

    RemyRAD Member

    Sep 26, 2005
    I've never know anybody that has put ribbon microphones on bass cabinets. Not that you can't but I would be reluctant to do so. David Royer's ribbon microphones claim to be more rugged than most. And you frequently see those on electric guitar cabinets in recent years. That's a whole lot of spectral difference from a bass cabinet. And most ribbon microphones aren't known for their ruggedness. Even Royer offers up some newer ribbon material claimed to be more rugged than his stock issues, if required. What's that tell you? It tells you to be more cautious than reckless. You need to treat ribbon microphones like girls. Nicely, gently & with respect. So, be careful when you want your microphones to have a relationship with a guitar amplifier. I've never had any issues with putting more fragile ribbon microphones on jazz guitar amplifiers. I wouldn't necessarily do that with heavy metal. Not unless you have a good budget for replacement microphones. Thankfully, Cascade's are super affordable in stark contrast to the other high-priced spreads. I can't believe it's not butter?

    Beyer & RCA classic ribbon owner
    Ms. Remy Ann David
  3. lostindundee

    lostindundee Active Member

    Mar 25, 2008
    Thanks Remy :D

    Thank goodness I checked with ye'all first otherwise I could have ruined them. Phew. Thankfully I've only spoken into them with a pop sheild thus far as they only arrived yesterday.

    I'll take your advice. No bass what-so-ever. I'll stick with the vocals and acoustic instruments.

    They've definitely been used on fairly heavy(ish) guitar though. Here's a shootout Cascade done between a Fatty a Royer 121. Note: You may need to turn your volume down a little before clicking his link. There are several different samples to listen to.

    I couldn't find any pics of the above shootout but it was very similar to this shootout done a while back. There are pics of this one's setup though regarding how close the mic was to the amp. It looks around 1ft from the amp to me.

    What are your thoughts on this?

    Also, for vocals what do advise distance-wise to be on the safe side, also regarding acceptable singing styles etc? Obviously a pop sheild's a god given. How fare between the sheild and mic?


  4. jammster

    jammster Active Member

    Nov 30, 2008
    Lake Ki-Chi-Saga, Minnesota USA
    Wow, those are some sweet sounding mikes! Thanks for sharing, I see they are affordable and super fat sounding just like ones costing quite a bit more.

    Thanks Lid and Remy!
  5. BobRogers

    BobRogers Well-Known Member

    Apr 4, 2006
    Blacksburg, VA
    Good luck with the Fat Head pair. Here is the thread I posted when I fist god my pair. I've tried they on toms and guitar cabs, but have come back to using 57s. The fat heads get used on all kinds of wind instruments. I like it on trumpet a lot. When I'd recording bari sax my Rode K2 gets the nob, but the Fat head might be the choice for alto or even tenor.

    I have no real feel for how fragile they are. Why not email or call Cascade and hear what they have to say?
  6. lostindundee

    lostindundee Active Member

    Mar 25, 2008
    Cheers Bob

    Your tests were nice. I liked all the samples. There were notable differences.

    I dig what you're saying. I doubt we can ever write off the excellent SM57 when it comes to guitar and bass cabs.

    I dropped Cascade a line earlier to ask whether or not accidentally supplying 48v fantom power to the Fattys would damage them. I'm just waiting for them to get back to me. I'll fire another email regarding the fragility question once they've gotten back to me.

    I sure as hell wouldn't want to goof them up as I shelled out for the Lundhals in them.

    Quality-wise, I was blown away by the presentation when I opened the case. The contents were pristine as though a machine had plonked the mics and blumy bar into their resesses. I must say, it's rare to feel that you're the first human being to handle gear you've bought. Almost everything else I've bought this past few years has always left me sceptical that it's been repackaged. Not on this occasion with the Fattys though.



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