The No.1 Website for Pro Audio
 Search This Thread  Search This Forum  Search Reviews  Search Gear Database  Search Gear for sale  Search Gearslutz Go Advanced
Condition of this U87 Capsule? Effects Pedals, Units & Accessories
Old 11th September 2009
  #1
Deleted #38607
Guest
Condition of this U87 Capsule?

Hi,

i want to ask you what do you mean about the condition of this capsule.

I bought this old U87 (made in western Germany) very cheap.

Is this a K7 Capsule? U87 -> K7 i am right? How can i see what capsule it is. There is only written "G59" on the one side and "43" on the other side....

It sounds ok, but i have no comparison.

Someone knows how much it will cost 1) to check the mic at Neumann Germany and 2) to replace it with an new capsule.

Are there anymore capsules from the old u87 or will i get a capsule from a u87ai? Is there a Difference.

Thanks für your Answers from an unknowing MicUser;-)

Cheers!





Old 11th September 2009
  #2
Lives for gear
 
Matti's Avatar
"The capsule in all U87 until 1986 was called "K87"
Since then it's called "K870/67" " quote from Klaus Heyne

Seems ok, but as you can see, the cold is coming off, maybe because of someone trying to clean it?
You could have it reskinned by Neumann or i.e. here Thiersch elektroakustik

Matti
Old 11th September 2009
  #3
Deleted #38607
Guest
Thanks Matti!

I will contact Thiersch Audio to call for a price.

Cheers!
Old 11th September 2009
  #4
member no 666
 
Fletcher's Avatar
Between the red reflection and the lack of focus in the photo its kinda hard to say. It looks like you have some dust but that could be significant or insignificant, it's tough to tell with the "out of focus" aspect of the photo and the reflection off the gold from whatever you had near it that was red.

May I suggest that you install it in the microphone. If it sounds as good or better as your existing capsule then keep it, if it doesn't then consider sending it out for a cleaning and possibly "re-skinning".

Cleaning a capsule is like a $100-$125 operation... re-skinning is a whole lot more. Cleaning is like a routine maintenance kind of thing [like changing the oil in your car] where re-skinning is a major operation [like rebuilding the motor in your car]. No need to rebuild the motor when all that is called for is an oil change... if you catch my drift.

Peace.
Old 11th September 2009
  #5
Lives for gear
 
hobson's Avatar
 

for comparison purposes - this capsule was replaced - it was too far gone and would shut down if you blew too hard on it... a known testing method.

enjoy!!

.
Attached Thumbnails
Condition of this U87 Capsule?-dscn0612.jpg  
Old 11th September 2009
  #6
Lives for gear
 
MonoBrow's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by hobson View Post
for comparison purposes - this capsule was replaced - it was too far gone and would shut down if you blew too hard on it... a known testing method.

enjoy!!

.
Wow..it looks like somebody puked on it and let it dry....eeeek.
Old 11th September 2009
  #7
Lives for gear
 
DarkSky Media's Avatar
Apart from needing a clean, the main thing we can tell from these photos is that the camera's depth of field setup was way too shallow for macro photography of this kind.

To get a photo we can actually *see* stuff in, you will need a lot more light (and/or slower shutter speed) so the lens aperture can be stopped way down to increase the depth of field. You'll need an aperture equivalent of f16 or greater (pref at least f22). Then you'll need to set up the angle of view of the capsule to be oblique enough to keep the whole surface within the lens' focus range. Then you need a distant neutral background (eg a white or cream wall) at the incident angle so that there are no reflections obscuring the detail of the diaphragm surface.

But it might be simpler/quicker to see if the capsule collapses under breath and/or send it for cleaning and inspection, as others have already said.
Old 12th September 2009
  #8
Lives for gear
 
Matti's Avatar
Listen these men rather than me

Cheers

Matti
Old 12th September 2009
  #9
Lives for gear
 
Matti's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by sounds nicely View Post
Thanks Matti!

I will contact Thiersch Audio to call for a price.

Cheers!
If you do, send the best pictures you can produce to them for them to see wat´s needed if any. I´m sure they don´t mid if the conclucion is like -no broblems... yet

Matti

Tired 04 26 am local
Old 12th September 2009
  #10
Deleted #38607
Guest
Hi,

thanks for your replies. You were right. My photos weren't the best to decide if it's time to reskin the caspule. Here are better photos.

What do you think about the points where the Gold is off?

But if i compare my caspule to hobson's capsule, i would say "hey, mine's just fine! Like a new one!" ;-)

I will do the "blow the membrane" test and check if the signal goes off.

I contacted Thiersch Elektro... but no answer since then, i think they enjoy the weekend;-)

Thanks to all! Wish you a nice weekend!

Cheers!

P.S.: Sorry i don't know how to embed the pictures that they aren't so big... and yeah, my english isn't so good;-)



Old 12th September 2009
  #11
member no 666
 
Fletcher's Avatar
Ah... just looks like a little shmutz... doubt it's a big deal.

BTW, the "blowing on the capsule" thing is more like "fogging a mirror" than "blowing out the candles on a birthday cake" thing.

The idea behind this "test" is to add weight to the diaphragm to determine if it will stick to the backplate... the "fog" [moisture] from your breath adheres to the dirt on the diaphragm adding additional weight.

Best of luck.

Peace.
Old 12th September 2009
  #12
Lives for gear
 
Matti's Avatar
Thanks
M
Old 12th September 2009
  #13
Gear Addict
 
Admiral James T.'s Avatar
 

Yeah, looks like just some dirt/dust on it. Before sending it to someone and spend a hundred bucks, put it on top of something warm, like a tube compressor or a tube guitar amp and leave it there for a few hours. This often helps to get the dust off it.
Old 13th September 2009
  #14
Lives for gear
 
Martin Kantola's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fletcher View Post
The idea behind this "test" is to add weight to the diaphragm to determine if it will stick to the backplate... the "fog" [moisture] from your breath adheres to the dirt on the diaphragm adding additional weight.
No, this is not really how it works. The moisture with the dirt make an electrical connection, and the polarization voltage will leak through it and make a loud noise. Nothing to do with weight or sticking to the backplate.

Martin
Old 13th September 2009
  #15
member no 666
 
Fletcher's Avatar
Interestingly I was talking about the capsule "shutting down", not "making a loud noise"... so... I either misunderstood Klaus when he explained this to me, or we're talking about two different things... or [fill in the blank... this is boring]
Old 13th September 2009
  #16
Lives for gear
 
Martin Kantola's Avatar
 

If the short is really bad, the sound will eventually fade out, but it usually begins as noise.

Martin
Old 13th September 2009
  #17
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by hobson View Post
for comparison purposes - this capsule was replaced - it was too far gone and would shut down if you blew too hard on it... a known testing method.

enjoy!!

.
The same thing happened to my u87 capsule when I accidentally sprayed it with vomit from a firehose.
Old 13th September 2009
  #18
Lives for gear
 

try this on for size...
Attached Thumbnails
Condition of this U87 Capsule?-gotham_1.jpg  
Old 13th September 2009
  #19
Lives for gear
 
DarkSky Media's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Axelrod View Post
try this on for size...
I did. It doesn't fit.

Specifically, the letter was too large for the scan/image format and the right-hand side of the text lines is clipped. Both whole words and some part words are missing, it seems.

Happy to try again if you can provide a scan of the complete letter.
Old 14th September 2009
  #20
Lives for gear
 
mics's Avatar
 

Hi there. the Capsule in the picture has had a cleaning attept. I'd say at a glance that it was cleaned with a cue tip rather than a micro bush, the cue tip has a tendancy to remove the gold as pictured. there are a few ways to test this type of problem. If you look at the metal under the diaphragm, can you see if it is discolored at all, if so it needs to be re-skinned as the discoloration would indicate atmospheric contamination due to a pin hole or two.

If you need any more advice, pm me.

cheers.
Old 14th September 2009
  #21
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by DSM Interactive View Post
I did. It doesn't fit.

Specifically, the letter was too large for the scan/image format and the right-hand side of the text lines is clipped. Both whole words and some part words are missing, it seems.

Happy to try again if you can provide a scan of the complete letter.
really? you can't figure it out?
Old 6th December 2009
  #22
Lives for gear
 
DONNX's Avatar
 

Here's one from 1968, never touched yet.

Here's one from 1968, never touched yet. What do you think? Cleaning time?

The is the original capsule from 1968. U87
The second capsule looks like a newer issue or replacement. Would like some confirmation on that. Both are 1968 era U87s.

What flipped me out, was the U87 with the virgin inspection of the capsule had blonde hair all inside along with the other debris stuff. Whatever it is.
Amazing how hair gotten inside as well over the last 41 years of use.
Attached Thumbnails
Condition of this U87 Capsule?-u87-capsule-front-jpeg1.jpg   Condition of this U87 Capsule?-u87-capsule-back-jpeg1.jpg   Condition of this U87 Capsule?-u87-capsule-newer-cap-jpeg1.jpg  
Old 6th December 2009
  #23
Lives for gear
 
Matti's Avatar
Those capsules probably sound quite unique?

Matti
Old 6th December 2009
  #24
Lives for gear
 
DONNX's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by MATTI View Post
Those capsules probably sound quite unique?

Matti

They sound dark and got plenty of mojo magic.
Old 6th December 2009
  #25
Lives for gear
 
Matti's Avatar
I can imagine, heh PSW Recording Forums: Klaus Heyne's Mic Lab
Show the pictures there to get information of the history of those and mayby some advice for what to do with them

Matti
Old 6th December 2009
  #26
Lives for gear
 
jjblair's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by DONNX View Post
Here's one from 1968, never touched yet. What do you think? Cleaning time?

The is the original capsule from 1968. U87
The second capsule looks like a newer issue or replacement. Would like some confirmation on that. Both are 1968 era U87s.

What flipped me out, was the U87 with the virgin inspection of the capsule had blonde hair all inside along with the other debris stuff. Whatever it is.
Amazing how hair gotten inside as well over the last 41 years of use.
The second one is not of the same vintage (note the cream ring, and lack of brass hexagonal holder), I've never seen Neumann use red wires on their capsules. The fuzz is most likely due to the foam around the collar deteriorating, and sticking to the capsule. Sometimes, as may be the case here, it might be from the foam inside the case. I see that happen a lot. The mic is laying on the back side, the foam falls from the inside of the lid, goes through the mesh, and sticks to the capsule mainly on that side, like you see here.

As far as the shorting, both Martin and Fletcher are correct. Either the capsule is dirty, and condensation adheres to the dirt, and creates a conduit between the edge and the gold sputtering, or the capsule may have lost tension, and plosives are causing the diaphragm to stick to the backplate. Both situations can occur on Neumann capsules. Only the latter occurs on edge terminated capsules.

I've seen this happen very frequently on those 3µ and 1µ reskins that one mic tech is famous for. Excessive voltage to the backplate can exacerbate the situation.
Old 6th December 2009
  #27
Lives for gear
 
DONNX's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jjblair View Post
The second one is not of the same vintage (note the cream ring, and lack of brass hexagonal holder), I've never seen Neumann use red wires on their capsules. The fuzz is most likely due to the foam around the collar deteriorating, and sticking to the capsule. Sometimes, as may be the case here, it might be from the foam inside the case. I see that happen a lot. The mic is laying on the back side, the foam falls from the inside of the lid, goes through the mesh, and sticks to the capsule mainly on that side, like you see here.

As far as the shorting, both Martin and Fletcher are correct. Either the capsule is dirty, and condensation adheres to the dirt, and creates a conduit between the edge and the gold sputtering, or the capsule may have lost tension, and plosives are causing the diaphragm to stick to the backplate. Both situations can occur on Neumann capsules. Only the latter occurs on edge terminated capsules.

I've seen this happen very frequently on those 3µ and 1µ reskins that one mic tech is famous for. Excessive voltage to the backplate can exacerbate the situation.

Thank you JJblair. Yea, I found it out when I saw those red wires. I guess somebody down the line replaced the capsule is my best quess. 41 years is alot of time. Yea, these are going off to a pro in Germany to get cleaned and looked at pronto.

The head baskets have golden hair and the same debris as well.. Either a fine blonde vocalist left them or a hippie. heh

The cases are the original grey vinyl with red plush inside. No foam that I can see. Maybe they had a wind screen on them or something or like you said the foam inside the head basket perhaps.. You don't think it was the Pop filter way back then?
Old 6th December 2009
  #28
Lives for gear
 
Klaus's Avatar
 

The capsule on the right is an authentic Neumann-replacement K87/67. It was made in 1994, and, as all K87/K870 of that era, came with red lead outs from the factory.
Old 6th December 2009
  #29
Lives for gear
 
DONNX's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Klaus View Post
The capsule on the right is an authentic Neumann-replacement K87/67. It was made in 1994, and, as all K87/K870 of that era, came with red lead outs from the factory.


Thank you Klaus, that was very kind of you. Anyone know if the capsule wire orientation or placement has any effect on the capsule capturing the sound properly?
I have seen that center lead wire from capsules orientated down, some to the left side, some curled around the capsule. Whats the shin dig on this? And can you be very careful to unscrew it slightly to reposition it? Or will that knock out the tension? or tuning? Thank in advance.
Old 6th December 2009
  #30
Gear Addict
 
andrewenson's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by hobson View Post
for comparison purposes - this capsule was replaced - it was too far gone and would shut down if you blew too hard on it... a known testing method.

enjoy!!

.
not surprised. looks like someone stuck it up an elephants rectum
Post Reply

Welcome to the Gearslutz Pro Audio Community!

Registration benefits include:
  • The ability to reply to and create new discussions
  • Access to members-only giveaways & competitions
  • Interact with VIP industry experts in our guest Q&As
  • Access to members-only sub forum discussions
  • Access to members-only Chat Room
  • Get INSTANT ACCESS to the world's best private pro audio Classifieds for only USD $20/year
  • Promote your eBay auctions and Reverb.com listings for free
  • Remove this message!
You need an account to post a reply. Create a username and password below and an account will be created and your post entered.


 
 
Slide to join now Processing…
Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Similar Threads
Thread
Thread Starter / Forum
Replies
networkresearch / Geekslutz Forum
1
michj / So Much Gear, So Little Time
2
Diegel / So Much Gear, So Little Time
22
Seventies man / High End
1
KROK / Geekslutz Forum
5

Forum Jump
Forum Jump