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Golden Age Project R1 Mk3 Active Ribbon Microphone
|Price:||$229.99 & FREE Shipping|
- Unmatched natural & musical sound of a classical ribbon microphone combined with the constent sound quality offered by addition of active electronics
- The typical large and mellow ribbon sound quality with a very smooth top end and an extended low end
- A Bipolar/FET descrete low-noise amplifier with a low impedance transformer less output stage, powered by standard 48V phantom power
- It raises the level and isolates the ribbon and gain make-up transformer from the outside world
- Removable microphone cable and padded case included
- Switchable -10db pad and 100hz low cut filter
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Top Customer Reviews
|Length: 6:42 Mins|
- Voice-over for both male and female voices that tend to have a bit of sibilance and are not especially dark or deep
- Violin and other acoustic higher register instruments such as mandolin that tend to sound harsh when recorded
For these two main groups, the Golden Age Project R1 Mark III Active Ribbon microphone performs really well, much better than equivalently priced large diaphragm condenser microphones. In fact, because these are the two main things I record, this is my go-to mic almost all of the time and my two other condenser mics and dynamic mics are seeing a lot less use.
Why? Two reasons:
- Bass response--this mic has a warm low end that flatters most voices and most of the higher register stringed instruments like violin. Additionally, you can back the mic away from the instrument a little bit more and still retain the low frequency capture, unlike most affordable large diaphragm condenser (LDC) mics which tend to lose low frequency response pretty quickly once they're moved back from the source.
- High Frequency roll-off--This mic differs from almost all of the less than 500 USD LDC mics in that it does not seem to have a "presence peak"--that annoying "feature" of most affordable LDC mics where the higher frequencies get a pretty significant boost which often results in highlighting sibilance (that annoying "ssss" sound in some peoples' voice) or making an instrument sound shrill.
Because the R1 Mark III is phantom powered (thus the "Active" in its name), it is easy to use with pretty much any pre-amp. This is a unique and welcome feature because ribbon mics typically require pretty beefy pre-amps with quite a lot of gain to work well.
This mic just wasn't right for me.
It DID deliver on the promise of taming the excessive highs and sibilance often associated with budget large diaphragm condensers, and it definitely had a bit of the classic ribbon flavor.
But, I found the mid-bass too colored and slightly exaggerated in an undesirable, inarticulate way for my vocals.
I tried two different preamps. With an ART Digital MPA II (the PRO MPA II with onboard A/D) with Tung-Sol tubes, there was an excessively bright spot in the upper midrange that made singing naturally difficult.
With the Golden Age Project Pre 73 Mk II (unmodded), the upper midrange problem was gone, but the high end was a bit too rolled off for my taste. With the low impedance switch engaged on the GAP, there was more high-end articulation.
I can see where this mic could be great when seeking a particular tone on an instrument or vocal, or for a singer whose voice is has different tonality than mine. But for me, it would have been something that is only right once in a while in special situations as opposed to something that would see a lot of use in my studio.
Update: also discovered that the backside of the ribbon has a more pronounced HF boost like the R121. Nice for more blunt voices like my own, not so great for edgy voices. Don't expect to record twins on both side and have it sound the same. :-)
Update Jan 2016: Having lives with them for a while longer, I have found that for some reason, self noise is most audible with headphones, but not nearly as much through my studio monitors, even in my quiet room. I would even say you could get away with recording solo instruments like classical guitar, if you don't mind your recording sounding a little but like analog tape. I hate to cross promote a product at the risk of sounding like there's a back-door angle, but since I purchased the Waves NS1 noise reduction plugin, these have become so much more useful for solo recordings...Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I used to do use microphone for piano and Male Voice, so far I like the sound but it has very heavy noise floorPublished 2 months ago by Sang J Lee
Great microphone, very sensitive with a good tone. I'm using it on acoustic instruments. I got a pair and they make a great stereo combo.Published 3 months ago by John T.
I was puzzled as to the star rating to give in this instance. The mic performance I would give 5 stars. Read morePublished 4 months ago by beetlebomb
The sound of this mic would be fantastic if it didn't have so much self noise. Even with phantom power the preamp has to be pretty hot to get a good level and once you do the mic... Read morePublished 10 months ago by joe