Reviewed: Audio-Technica AT4033a Cardioid Condenser Microphone
Audio-Technica has a large stable of microphones to suit just about every need. When it comes to large diaphragm condenser microphones, their expert team has worked hard over the years to deliver microphones to suit every price point, from a first microphone right up to a professional studio centrepiece. This is why you know before even hearing one of their microphones that you’ll get excellent quality within the price point. When it comes to the AT4033a, you soon realise that this is a standout capsule for the price. There are very few microphones that offer what the AT4033a does for under $1000, and this guy does it at a price quite below that.
Reviewed: Sennheiser EW100 G4-835 Wireless System
There is no doubt that when it comes to wireless microphones, Sennheiser is one of the world leaders. Their systems can be found being used at the local pub every weekend, to large scale tours, broadcasts and some of the biggest events around the world, like the recent Eurovision contest. It’s because of the quality of build, reliability and flexibility that Sennheiser wireless systems offer that they get chosen for so many large scale events. And with that, there is no reason why you too can’t have the same quality of wireless transmission and exceptional audio quality, no matter what size your audience. With the recent release of Sennheiser’s G4 wireless systems, it is now even more affordable to have the best quality wireless system in class. Let’s have a look at the EW100 system.
Reviewed: sE Electronics Voodoo VR1 Ribbon Microphone
I know there are many of you who simply own one studio microphone - or worse, have several yet still fall back on the same microphone time and time again. Going with the safe option on a microphone, you know it can have its pros and cons. Yes, you understand how that microphone works and can get a good result with it, but usually the results are all the same. There is no variation in colour or tonal texture, which is why I always recommend using several microphones in different ways for any application. Whilst the large diaphragm condenser is the staple for studio recording, the benefits of a ribbon microphone usually stand out in the mix when added for some tracking. It’s because of this that the sE Electronics Voodoo VR1 is such a clever option for the home studio recording kit.
Reviewed: sE Electronics V7 BFG Billy Gibbons Dynamic Mic
ZZ Top occupies a strange place in the pantheon of modern music. If you asked the everyman on the street what they thought of the band, nine times out of ten the best reaction you could hope for is to have “SHE’S GOT LEEEEGS…” screeched in your face. Their comical, Muppet-like appearance and oversexed, bikes n’ babes subject matter tends to lead most people to drop them in the box marked ‘novelty’. Unbeknownst to many, however, their influence is a little further reaching than you’d expect. The seemingly simple, fuzzed out guitar wizardry of the one and only Billy Gibbons has garnered a cult following that far outreaches the few songs you know from karaoke bars the world over, and modern rock bad asses like Josh Homme and Jesse ‘The Devil’ Hughes count him among their key influences. All that being said, even the most avid Top fan would scarcely call him a singer’s singer, so it seems odd that sE Electronics would etch his signature on the side of their V7 dynamic microphones.
Reviewed: Soyuz SU-023 Bomblet Handmade Condenser Microphone
Ah Mother Russia, what strange, terrifying and wondrous secrets are hidden behind your borders? We in the western world are snuck glimpses of your treasures every now and then, and truly and more often than not they change the way we think about so many things. Your Big Muffs are thicker and more intimidating than our measly Yankee ones, your vodka more potent and life affirming, and now, with this Soyuz Bomblet SU-023 on a mic stand in front of me, you might just have changed what I expect from a large diaphragm condenser mic.
Reviewed: Audio-Technica ATM350a microphone
I do enjoy coming across a new microphone that offers better solutions to previous applications that haven’t been addressed properly before. There are plenty of microphones on the market all trying to achieve the same purpose, but it’s great when a manufacturer takes a step outside the box and considers how a microphone needs to be used in practical placement when designing not only the capsule, but also the housing. This is exactly what Audio-Technica have done with the ATM350a and its associated attachments. If you’re looking for a quality condenser microphone for drums, percussion and other instruments that requires precise placement and far from standard mounting, this is going to be worth a look.
Reviewed: sE Electronics sE2200 Cardioid Condenser Microphone
Those of you who have not come across sE Electronics’ microphones by now must have been living under a rock. Their range of studio and live microphones covers just about every application. They have a microphone to suit your needs no matter what you need to record and no matter what your budget. But for now let’s focus on just one, the stalwart of the sE range, the sE2200 cardioid condenser microphone. It’s a casing that many of you will be familiar with, as several versions of the 2200 have been available over the years, but this month I got to unbox and test out the cardioid patterned version.
Reviewed: Sennheiser HandMic Digital
Nowadays it seems everybody with half a brain and a mixed bag of opinions wants to be a podcaster. Not only has The Internet Age brought about an army of bedroom producers and engineers, but it has also given rise to the concept of DIY journalism, and as usual technology has followed suit. As with music recording, the demand for products that make it cheap and easy to be Brian Naylor or Stephen Colbert from the comfort and safety of your own home has been met with haste by some manufacturers. Others, however, have taken their time in developing a product that meets the quality quotient as well as that of quantity. Take a company like Sennheiser for example, who has made home stereo and recording equipment with a steady and unfaltering eye on fidelity for decades. Would they dare rush to market with a second rate, throwaway mic just for the sake of rising to a trend? Not a chance.