Just got my first Ribbon Mic and am Blown Away

Discussion in 'Recording/Live Sound' started by shawntp, Jun 2, 2008.

  1. shawntp

    shawntp Member

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    ...and all by this little Cascade Fat Head for $159 running through my Apogee Duet.

    Let me start with I am a solo home/hobby musician and I record 3 sources - My Carr Mercury Guitar Cab, my baritone Voice, and sometimes Acoustic guitar. In the past ive owned a Neumann TLM103, SM57, Peluso CEMC6, several others and am currintly using a SM7b, Rode NT4, and some 57's for the above sources.

    Man - Ribbon is the way! (at least for me).

    I can't believe this thing - its not perfect and definitly take some work to get the gain/distance right but it does it all (crank the Duets gain and back way off an acoustic, or move into 1ft from my cab).

    It also seems to be pretty easy to EQ which I will admit everything but my guitar cab required.

    Man though - it seems like every mic I have doesn't hold up to that smooth real sound the ribbon has. Not the SM7b on my voice (once the fat head was EQ'ed right), not the SM57 or 7 on the cab, acoustic I am still dialing in but in a pinch it works great. I even tried blending mics but the Ribbon sounded best on its own - just Real and Smooth.

    I starting to think I was missing out all these years - maybe I should dump some of my gear and go for something further up the line like the Naked Eye. Anyone else use a ribbon on almost everything?
     
  2. wolf9309

    wolf9309 Member

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    A naked Eye is probably one of the greatest purchases you can make IMO. I find that they blow away Royers and other ribbons.

    That said, I like ribbons a lot and will often use them for many different instruments, but rarely by themselves unless its on something like brass instruments. They just don't always seem to sit right in the mix for guitars and vocals by themselves.
     
  3. placebo62

    placebo62 Supporting Member

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    cool man, got any clips of the recording? How do you like the apogee?
     
  4. Rumblefish

    Rumblefish Silver Supporting Member

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    Love my Fatheads in a stereo pair.Love my Heil dynamics too.
    Who makes the Naked Eye? I feel GAS comin' on.Never heard of it.Oh no!
     
  5. Sniper-V

    Sniper-V Member

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    I've wanting to go with Royer because I hear it tracks pretty darn close to what your ears hear.

    The Naked Eye has me curious...
     
  6. Rumblefish

    Rumblefish Silver Supporting Member

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    Go to the fathead site for clips comparing the fathead to the royer.Fathead sounds great for a lot less money.I'm doing some pretty impressive sounding tracks with the Fathead stereo pair and Heil PR30 up close to my 4x 12 Scumback loaded cab driven by my '68 Plexi. with various fuzzes.I believe in getting the raw sound as faithful as possible before mixing and eq'ing.This is working real good so far.
     
  7. elambo

    elambo Member

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    This I gotta hear. The Royer 121 has started to settle in as the new high-end standard in front of guitar cabs. If it has a competitor for "a lot less," it's something I'd be very interested in.
     
  8. LSchefman

    LSchefman Member

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    >>I find that they blow away Royers and other ribbons.<<

    Like with explosives, or guns or what? :)

    They're different. Everything has its uses in a session and will work for you on a particular source depending on what you want to hear that day. Nothing more, nothing less.

    Studios have lots of mic choices for a reason. There is no "best."
     
  9. shawntp

    shawntp Member

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    I did a rough take which is and posted below.

    I double miced with a SM57 and FatHead and then put each take back to back so you could hear the FatHead first and the 57 second.

    The tracks are:
    (L) Telecaster Bridge with TIM low boost (R) Les Paul Neck with TIM and Higher boost
    There is a midi bass track in the background just to give it a little feel.

    The take is the fatheads from 0-53 seconds (half way) and then the same take starts again at 53 seconds with the SM57.

    This is just a quick hack job sample to illustrate the Fat Head as a lone mic comparred to a 57. I totally get the studio need for lots of mics - but for a solo guy at home that just wants a decent easy setup/capture with body this ribbon is where its at (easy to place - always seems to sound decent - one mic to hassle with but you still get a full bodied sound).

    FatHead & SM57 Sample
     
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2008
  10. DANOCASTER

    DANOCASTER Supporting Member

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    Ribbons are great !!

    I have a royer - and always use it in conjunction w/ a '57 or a 421.

    the combo is even better !!

    congrats - I've heard the Fatheads are great as drum overheads also
     
  11. elambo

    elambo Member

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    That 57 sounds pretty thin, even for a 57. I'm 100% sure that there's a different mic placement which would make the comparison more fair.

    The Fathead sounds really good. More detail than the 57. I'd like to A/B it and a Royer.
     
  12. shawntp

    shawntp Member

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    Yeah - the 57 is 1" off the grill at the outside edge of the cone's center and the FatHead is 1' back center.

    I set the 57 for the tele track and never adjusted for the LP. One of the nicest things I am finding is that the Ribbon seems to be easy to place - what you hear is what you get.

    Probably if I were layering a bunch of riffs I could see the 57 working better in a denser mix - but the ribbon seems like the ultimate whip out and go / home songwriters tool (for some styles anyways).
     
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2008
  13. khudson

    khudson Member

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    thanks for posting.

    :agree
     
  14. TAVD

    TAVD Guitar Player Gold Supporting Member

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    The Heil PR-30 and the Naked Eye match up very well, imo. I use that combo often. I also use a M260 quite a bit on amps. They don't get the love they should so you can usually find them cheap. BTW, the NE is made by Crowley & Tripp.
     
  15. wolf9309

    wolf9309 Member

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    well true, buuut, we are talking a subjective, qualitative judgment. I'm just saying personally I find myself going for the naked eyes more than the royers, doesn't mean that i never use royers or think they're bad mics, just saying if I was to buy just one ribbon, that would be it.
     
  16. tedm

    tedm Gold Supporting Member

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    check out the the threads on gearslutz and other forums, there is also a CD out there comparing the inexpensive ones to the Royer 121.

     
  17. elambo

    elambo Member

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    I've seen the threads but hadn't heard any MP3s before today.

    If you take money out of the picture, there's still no question (to me) that the Royer sounds better - and in each sample, of each type - but when you put money back into the equation it becomes an incredible mic. The samples I heard were of the stock mic. I wonder how much better the upgraded mic would be...?

    I'm very impressed, but nowhere close to kicking the Royer out of the mic closet.
     
  18. buddaman71

    buddaman71 Student of Life Silver Supporting Member

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    I participated in a mic shootout at Sweetwater a few years ago and the Royers were absolutely killer on guitar cabs.

    The stereo SF12 had a very warm, vintage feel as an ambient/overhead mic as well.
     
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2008

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