How to check your ribbon mics for wear

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gswitz
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2017/03/07 02:47:20 (permalink)

How to check your ribbon mics for wear

I've grown to really love ribbon mics. I'm not sure how to test them though.
 
One of my mics came with white gloves for handling. :-)
 
MXL R77
 
In any case, while I'm careful, I do use them. After a session the other day I wondered if the soundhole for an acoustic guitar was pointed too directly at the mic. It's hard to be that careful of where you aim the soundhole when you're having fun.
 
So, that brings me to how to know whether they need attention.
 
In the care and maintenance section for my Royer it mentions...
"Royer"If the microphone is accidentally dropped, test it to see if damage has occurred before returning it
to service. Low output or a dull sound would indicate a damaged ribbon.

 
So if I can't hear a problem, I don't have one, right?
 
I'm actually thinking of recording some track to compare in the future so I can AB the before and after to see if the mic is starting to suffer. I'm guessing pros don't need to do this kinda thing.

StudioCat > I use Windows 10 and Sonar Platinum. I have a touch screen.
I make some videos. This one shows how to use a pan pot to alternate between two stereo tracks.
#1

6 Replies Related Threads

    Jim Roseberry
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    Re: How to check your ribbon mics for wear 2017/03/07 15:07:41 (permalink)
    IMO, If you can't hear a problem... you most likely don't have one.
     
     
    The Royer R121 is more robust than most ribbon mics (maximum SPL >135dB).
     
    From the Royer Labs website:
    "The R-121 gives all of the warmth and natural sound that experienced engineers have long turned to ribbon mics for, but in a compact, light-weight, high output and tough-as-nails package that was unheard of in a ribbon mic before the R-121."
     
    The R-121 has HUGE proximity-effect
    As such, it sounds better at a distance... (making SPL less of an issue)
     
     
    If dropped from any distance (especially onto hard floor), I'd want the mic checked out by the factory.
    • Royer quotes $135 to "re-ribbon" the R series (two week turnaround)
    • Rush service is available for an extra $40 (three days turnaround)
     

    Best Regards,

    Jim Roseberry
    jim@studiocat.com
    www.studiocat.com
    #2
    gswitz
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    Re: How to check your ribbon mics for wear 2017/03/07 23:23:03 (permalink)
    Thanks, Jim. I noticed that with the r-121 the first re-ribboning is free too. :-)
     
    As a follow up question, when I drop my ribbons in a box to take out to record (I go out quite often), do I have to make sure the ribbon mics aren't near each other in the plastic crate? Both are in wooden boxes.

    StudioCat > I use Windows 10 and Sonar Platinum. I have a touch screen.
    I make some videos. This one shows how to use a pan pot to alternate between two stereo tracks.
    #3
    davdud101
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    Re: How to check your ribbon mics for wear 2017/03/09 03:29:48 (permalink)
    Not to detract from the main point of this thread- but how does the MXL R77 sound? I'm hankering to get myself one of their lower-end ribbons since I record so much brass (have had great success using primarily MXL mics).

     
    Mics: MXL 990, 2x MXL Tempo XLRs, Cobalt Co9, SM48
    Gear: Cakewalk X3 Studio - PreSonus Firepod - Alesis Elevate 3 pair - Casio WK6500
    DAW: Win10, AMD FX-8300, 16GB DDR3
    #4
    gswitz
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    Re: How to check your ribbon mics for wear 2017/03/09 09:35:32 (permalink)
    @Davdud101

    https://youtu.be/L3GKLkHxGqI

    I made a video where I compared a bunch of Mics and tried to get TH3 to sound similar. My Royer r121 and MXL r77 get compared. You also hear them compared with an sm57, km184, and AKG c414 xls.

    To me, the r77 recorded at high impedance sounds similar to the r121 at low impedance. It has slightly brighter high end. I love it, btw.

    It came with a pair of white gloves. Ha ha.

    The r77 Mic is physically bigger than the r121.

    For me, on loud sound sources it has been awesome.

    The ribbon on the mxl is thinner than the Royer. Don't walk around holding the Mic with it uncovered. I use the plastic wrap it came in as a Mic sock to cover it when I'm moving it around.

    Also, they say be careful of smoke.

    While I'm sure they are fragile, I use them and haven't broken them in my first year of use.

    I tracked a sax using both the r77 and the km184 for a CD not long ago. Not mine. The engineer loved the recordings.

    StudioCat > I use Windows 10 and Sonar Platinum. I have a touch screen.
    I make some videos. This one shows how to use a pan pot to alternate between two stereo tracks.
    #5
    Jim Roseberry
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    Re: How to check your ribbon mics for wear 2017/03/09 19:59:42 (permalink)
    gswitz
    Thanks, Jim. I noticed that with the r-121 the first re-ribboning is free too. :-)
     
    As a follow up question, when I drop my ribbons in a box to take out to record (I go out quite often), do I have to make sure the ribbon mics aren't near each other in the plastic crate? Both are in wooden boxes.



    If you have the R-121s in their cherry wood boxes, they're pretty safe.
    I wouldn't worry about placing the wooden boxes next to one another.

    Best Regards,

    Jim Roseberry
    jim@studiocat.com
    www.studiocat.com
    #6
    gswitz
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    Re: How to check your ribbon mics for wear 2017/03/09 21:59:05 (permalink)
    Thanks Jim.

    StudioCat > I use Windows 10 and Sonar Platinum. I have a touch screen.
    I make some videos. This one shows how to use a pan pot to alternate between two stereo tracks.
    #7
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