Blue Microphones has slowly but surely become a workhorse company that produce budget microphones of high quality. In addition to their famed Yeti series microphones designed for podcasting, streaming and broadcast, Blue Microphones produce professional grade microphones with vintage looks for studio use. The Blue Ember is one such microphone that can be used for both studio recordings as well as broadcasting or streaming.
With elegant looks reminiscent of its very expensive vintage counterparts, the Ember is a cardioid condenser side address microphone that responds well to most sources. It’s very transparent, so may require some colour, but the sound is malleable enough to be tweaked however you desire. As far as budget microphones go, the Ember is a no-brainer with specs to match.
Responding from 38Hz up to 20kHz, the Ember has a pretty wide range, filtering out only the very bottom of the frequency spectrum - something the mic wouldn’t be used for anyway. It’s a condenser so it requires phantom power, with a nicely coloured pre-amp feeding the mic that power to boot. The Ember has a very balanced frequency response, slowly filtering out at the super lows but remaining fairly even up until it starts to peter out towards 20kHz. The 38Hz filter stops the mic from picking up any air conditioner noise, traffic rumble or other low end spill. Weighing in at just 0.38kg, the included mic clip will work just fine, but when using the mic for vocal or drum overheads, a shock mount wouldn’t have gone astray, as with any mic for this use.
The classy, sleek looks of the Blue Ember don’t go unnoticed. The bulk of the microphone is finished in a light powdery blue and the grille catches the light in a pleasing way. The mic wouldn’t look out of place when live streaming, and would add an air of class to its clear and consistent sound. In use, the Ember provides a clear, concise vocal either spoken or sung, but it also provides super balanced room sounds for ambience or drums or other acoustic instruments. On an acoustic guitar, the results are similar to a vocal, spacious and roomy but articulate and honest. The strings sparkle but the tones resonate and harmonies become rich and full. Move the mic a little closer to the fingerboard and it’s all finger noise - if that’s what you’re going for. Whatever way it’s used, the Ember provides a full and balanced reproduction of it at the other end.
Overall, the Blue Ember would be a great addition to any microphone collection. It boasts a long list of possible use, but in practice it would be your mic of choice in any situation you’d need a balanced and uncoloured recording of the space, even as a small part of an overall sound. It’s a lightweight cardioid condenser with class and a functionality that outweighs its size. Low end noise is filtered for you, the rest of the response is balanced, and it would take more coloured gear in the signal chain very well. The Blue Ember is an empty canvas, the brush and I suppose the paint too. A solid investment no matter how you choose to use it.
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