Brilliant first ribbon mic
As my mic collection has been growing over the last few years, the time soon came to purchase a ribbon mic. Now, the ribbon mic market at this level is pretty saturated with choice. So, armed with reviews and a bit of email correspondence with dealers I managed to narrow it down to the Golden Age ribbons, in particular the active ribbon.
At the time, the active ribbon was perfect for my setup as I wasn't sure if my current preamps would have enough gain for a passive model. You're going to loose some of the "pure" ribbon sound because of this, but hey, this was my first ribbon and needed a place to start, without breaking the bank.
This mic is a wonderful character and with that, it doesn't suit everything. I've recorded female vocals, acoustic and electric guitar with this mic and so far it's been a welcome change from my limited stock of dynamics and LDCs. On acoustic guitar you can really mellow the high end and mechanical noise, such as picking and fretting noise, which is welcome in some productions, giving a very natural and balanced tone. Some female vocals work really well with this mic, perhaps for taking the edge of slightly shrill frequencies and once again, on electric guitars, the mic takes the high frequency harshness to a more mellow state. The sound of this mic was very easy to get used to and is very pleasing to the ear. The mic is also equipped with a 10db pad and a low cut, which are always welcome features on any mic.
My only concern with this mic is it's packaging. I'd happily spend a little more if it came with a hard case of some description. Instead it comes with a soft carry bag, which may not be suitable if you're planning on travelling anywhere with it. I bought a small flight case from Maplin to keep it safe, which wasn't too much trouble, but we do like nice packaging, especially if its going to keep our delicate ribbon mic safe!
If you want a mellow sound, or want to take the edge of a harsh guitar or string sound, then this could be the one to go to, especially if it's your first ribbon purchase and it's all your budget will allow. It's a smooth sounding mic which will always find a use somewhere along the line and there are no worries about having enough gain. This mic makes me want more Ribbon mics.