Microphones microphones again

Discussion in 'Electronics & Recording' started by aldevis, Jul 29, 2013.

  1. aldevis

    aldevis Surrealist Contributor. Cafe Moderator

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    Has anyone tried any microphones from this company?
    http://www.sontronics.com

    I had an interesting email exchange with the founder and I am wondering if it could be worth for me trying their more expensive models.
     
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  3. Chris98

    Chris98 Senior Member

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    Hi Aldevis,

    Sorry no experience with them, but have in the past toyed with the idea of trying one, but I think for my purposes my Rodes are going to satisfy my needs. I would however be interested hear what you think if you get a chance to try one.

    All the best,

    Chris
     
  4. aldevis

    aldevis Surrealist Contributor. Cafe Moderator

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    I am more confused than usual. I was tempted of adding a small diaphragm to my existing gear. PT recommends Oktava, sontronic does a slightly cheaper version of it.
    Then the usual "ribbon GAS" started.
    I am wondering what the entry level ribbon microphone is. More ROC microphones than saxophones, at the moment.
     
  5. Chris98

    Chris98 Senior Member

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    I'd love to try a ribbon too... one day maybe. I seem to remember the Oktava SD can take different heads, so you can change polar pattern. I did look into getting a couple of Oktava SD mics, but got cold feet when I read there are a lot of fakes out there.
     
  6. aldevis

    aldevis Surrealist Contributor. Cafe Moderator

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    And consistency issues. Hence Sontronics. Interchangeable heads too and the owner answered directly to my email.
    I am in a phase of political acknowledgement of people's work rather than choosing the cheapest option on the internet.

    I must say that I had good replies from
    Recording microphone

    http://advancedaudio.ca
    and
    http://funky-junk.com/ (that are going to repair my MD441)
     
  7. aldevis

    aldevis Surrealist Contributor. Cafe Moderator

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    Eventually I will have a go on a cheap ribbon and joined the waiting list for a small condenser.
    I contacted this company because I love the name they chose, and the quality of advice in the email exchange with the owner is absolutely impressive. I will keep you updated (ribbon mic will join me in two weeks)

    http://nohypeaudio.com/nhaproducts.htm
     
  8. Juju

    Juju Senior Member

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    Hi there,

    We had Sontronics mics on the trombones for my husband's big band recording. They would not be my first choice, though.

    The general problem with the cheaper ribbons is that unless you have a very good preamp the signal won't be very strong and the sound will be somewhat grainy and you might have to boost the top end. The AEA TRP is perfect for ribbon mics.
    With a good ribbon mic plus the TRP you don't need any additional EQ. I can recommend the Royer 121 (also great for gigs, if the soundguy can be trusted ;) ). Coles 4038 or AEA R84 are also very nice on sax. I recently bought an RCA 44bx which is my personal favourite for sax.
     
  9. aldevis

    aldevis Surrealist Contributor. Cafe Moderator

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    Thanks for posting!
    An old thread of yours have been very helpful. It occurred after I've been sitting with your husband on a big band gig and he used a RE20 (my initial thought). Then you mentioned the possibility of using a ribbon live. I was hoping you could have experimented with something cheaper than Coles.
    My current turnover does not justify such an expensive microphone; AEA would probably be my dream, but in that price range few tube mics are good contestants. It is still cheaper for me to go to a professional studio, if I have to provide that kind of recording.

    Do you have any experience using small diaphragms condensers on bari/soprano?
     
  10. Juju

    Juju Senior Member

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    The RE20 is not bad at all (way better than the usual SM57/58 horror >:) ), but Dave sold it, he just doesn't like it and he prefers to take the Royer for gigs, it's nice and small...
    I don't use small diaphragm condensers on bari/ soprano, I prefer ribbons or large diaphragm condensers. On soprano, I like two mics, ideally a combination of ribbon and large diaphragm condenser. We love using ribbons on almost everything, although at the moment we are looking into getting another tube mic, so we'll go to Funky Junk sometime soon... Very dangerous... I always find more mics that I really want - I have a serious GAS problem with mics.... :blush:
     
  11. aldevis

    aldevis Surrealist Contributor. Cafe Moderator

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    I have my MD441 currently being fixed there. They have some very cute Royers ... well above my possibilities.
     
  12. Juju

    Juju Senior Member

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    Another thought - a Beyer M160 might be an idea, it's a very good mic and the perfect option for flute overdubs. Very nice on soprano, too. You could boost the signal with a TritonAudio Fethead.
     
  13. aldevis

    aldevis Surrealist Contributor. Cafe Moderator

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    Its shape it's not cool enough for my stylish lifestyle.
    Have you tried the fethead an a good dynamic (like the MD441 or RE20)?
     
  14. Juju

    Juju Senior Member

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    :))) ours wears a wool hat and looks very cool ;)

    Didn't need to use the fethead on dynamic mics, there was always enough gain without it...
     
  15. old git

    old git Tremendous Bore

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    Wozs rong wiv Maplins?
     
  16. aldevis

    aldevis Surrealist Contributor. Cafe Moderator

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    I must say they often have nice and helpful staff, at least here, but their logo is uncool too. :)
    Joking, of course.
     
  17. altissimo

    altissimo Well-Known Member

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    the Golden Age ribbon mics get good reviews - dead link deleted
    Ribbon Mics On Test
    Golden Age R1 Active Ribbon microphone | ribbon microphones


    and there's Michael Joly's modded Chinese mics -
    Award-winning microphone engineering from Michael Joly


    the Beyer M160 has the advantage of being hypercardioid pattern and having a high enough output not to need expensive preamps - one of my friends had a pair that he plugged straight into his digital recorder and he got good results recording his gigs - but if it doesn't look cool enough for you....

    JRS-34 – Microphone | Cloud Microphones
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 3, 2016
  18. aldevis

    aldevis Surrealist Contributor. Cafe Moderator

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    Golden Age was high on the list. They seem quite competent.
    There are few Americans that modify microphones, but as usual import taxes stopped me from contacting them.
    A Canadian company was equally interesting (not on ribbons though) but had the same limit.
     
  19. aldevis

    aldevis Surrealist Contributor. Cafe Moderator

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    I received the nohype ribbon microphone:
    Wonderful stuff! Despite the ultra-low price tag, the definition in the mid high range is amazing.
    I am starting to understand it. The figure 8 is not as bad as I was expecting. Playing with positioning can give a clean signal with no room.
    Finally I can use my software EQ to enhance qualities, rather than to get rid of unpleasant microphone frequencies. A bass cut cleans up the sound a lot. I usually cut everything under the lowest note of the instrument (ie 200Hz on a soprano, 100Hz on a tenor).

    Mr. Nohype has been very, very helpful and patient, even commenting a screenshot of my equalizer.

    I also acquired a Fethead. It allows my Focusrite Scarlett to work at a more comfortable gain. It feels like it sounds better, but I have not done any serious comparison.

    Comments and questions are welcome.


    Here's a clip experimenting with few different instruments. Of course saxophones are Sequoia and mouthpieces Pillinger. If you change .mp3 with .aif, you get CD quality
    http://www.aldevis.com/sequoia/nohype3.mp3


    edit: the drum machine is provocative.
     
  20. Chris98

    Chris98 Senior Member

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    Great, but did you go for the Lundahl output transformer?
     
  21. Chris98

    Chris98 Senior Member

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    Well, I have to say it sounds pretty darn good to my ears and the mic seems quite competent too ;-)

    I hope you won't mind answering a couple of questions for me,

    Roughly how far away did you have the mic from the instrument?
    Did you find positioning harder than say a large diameter condenser mic? I'm particularly interested to know if having the back of the mic close to a wall is an issue or advantage with it being a figure of eight pattern.

    If there is ever a need to have the ribbon replaced, is it a back to base job, and is it expensive. The fragility of these ribbons worries me.

    Thanks for putting up the recording, I'm seriously wondering why I need 2 Rode NT2a's when one would do and a ribbon would be a nice alternative!

    All the best,

    Chris
     

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