The world of audio and musical equipment can be a tricky one to navigate at the best of times. With so many different products, conflicting opinions and confusing reviews, it’s hard to know what’s actually the best product for your needs. Luckily, the team at Mixdown have put in the legwork for you, sifting through the spec-sheets and putting the products through their paces to bring you Mixdown’s Picks - a new series of expansive, category defining product guides across our digital channels. Anything that has made the cut has rated highly across the board with the Mixdown staff, garnering a unanimous tick of approval from our staunch critics.
Chandler TG Microphone (Abbey Road)
Category: Solid-state Large Diaphragm Condenser | Pattern: Cardioid/Omni
Key Features: Anything with the name Abbey Road attached to it tends to grab the immediate attention of any audio savvy pundit, and the Chandler TG is no exception. The most recent installment in a decade long collaboration between the reputable audio manufacturer and one of the most iconic (and productive) studios in popular music history (the famed EMI/Abbey Road Studios in Westminster, England), the TG takes things to a whole new level, injecting the essence of the fabled studio’s console and outboard gear and distilling it into an incredibly unique microphone that sounds just as good as it looks.
Taking the functionality and unique flavour of the revered EMI TG12410 mastering console and magically channeling it into the confines of a solid-state large diaphragm condenser mic, the Chandler TG stands alone as an extremely unique and versatile offering, with features like an inbuilt tape equaliser as well as a ‘Dual Tone System’ that tweaks the input stage of the TG, enhancing the scope of the microphone to let is play nicely with a greater range of sources.
Mode A is classic TG mid-forward tonality, while the B voicing is much more delicate and similar in many respects to a FET47, handling extreme SPLs like a champ. Even without all the history, this breadth of application and ability to actively alter the tonal profile from the mic itself, is sure to bring the Chandler TG plenty of friends amongst the army of working engineers out there.
Elsewhere, the Chandler Abbey Road TG comes with a dedicated external PSU to eliminate the typical issues that come with solid-state microphone designs. It boasts dual cardioid and omni patterns, and offers a custom low-cut filter that’s frequency selectable at 90 Hz or 50 Hz, which can be used in tandem with the inbuilt tape equaliser to create an additional five tonal variations. All in all, it’s the combination of these features that go the distance in making the Chandler Abbey Road TG such a wonderfully versatile microphone, and it really is full of constant surprises.
Mixdown Says: Obviously, anything that’s replicating the technology and sound of Abbey Road’s arsenal of equipment is going to impress even the pickiest of producers, but the Chandler Abbey Road TG really is a cut above, both in concept and execution. Characteristically, the Chandler Abbey Road TG bears all the broadband scope and acute detail to place it right up there some of the classic large diaphragm condensers of yesteryear, but the amount of tonal variation at play here means that there’s no cloning going on whatsoever - plus, the ability to also capture high spl, fast transient information with equal virtuosity, simply at the turn of a dial, gives this mic an insanely high ceiling, both as a character piece and as a studio workhorse.
With so many tonal variations on offer courtesy of the Dual Tone System and inbuilt tape equaliser, finding a great sound for your chosen source is unbelievably simple. Whether you’re recording sung or spoken vocals, electric or acoustic guitars, bass, drums or percussion, this microphone will shine.
Overall: 100% worth the price of admission. The Chandler Abbey Road TG is the kind of mic that you’ll never want to pack down after setting it up. It will always surprise you with what it is capable of achieving. All in all an extremely flexible studio tool with an incredible pedigree - I’m fully sold.
Find out more about the Chandler Microphone range.