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Brauner Phanthera Shrill Issues..Pre Amp advice..?? Condenser Microphones
Old 10th January 2015
Gear Head

Brauner Phanthera Shrill Issues..Pre Amp advice..??


I own a Brauner Phanthera mic and seem to have problems with the top end being too shrill/ almost distorted. not really sure what it is but think a change in preamp may be due..

I'm currently using an AML 1073 which is an incredible pre on absolutely anything.. Apart from this mic. Seems like the sound is so forward that it exaggerates the problem area with this mic.

Does anyone have a good recommendation for a 500 series pre amp that would work well..

Not sure if I need cleaner.. Or smoother...or duller... Or clearer.. to solve the problem.. Definitely warmer.. Not brighter But added distortion/ drive is probably not the way forward.

Was looking at the usual suspects .. Ma5, forsell, greatriver etc.. But uncertain if I need cleaner/ faster/ slower.. To get round the shrill end of the mic..

I suppose there's a small chance there could be something wrong with the mic. Seems to sound great apart from this annoying sort of brightness distortion that sounds a little detached from the vocal.. Almost like a resonance.

anyway.. If it's just me..not the mic then I maybe need to sort it with a pre amp.

Last edited by burtoni; 28th January 2015 at 10:54 PM..
Old 11th January 2015
Lives for gear
cheu78's Avatar
I'll make sure that your Brauner works properly first (check with Brauner).
I consider Brauner's rather on the bright side of spectrum type of mics..very detailed, but for sure should not sound distorted.

Before looking for a different preamp, after having checked that the mic works properly, I'll make sure that the mic fits the source (your voice).. if it doesn't I suggest to test few other mics and buy the one that fits best. It's not strictly a matter of quality or price (most of the times).. your Brauner might simply not be the right tool for the job. Or at least for your goal, apparently.
Brauner makes excellent mics, and I do like them, but sometimes or for some genres (or simply taste) they might not be the best tool.

I'm a big fan of the MA5 and I consider it superior to just about anything else out there, but I don't think this will solve your issue.

Funnily enough few years ago I did a shootout with a sibilant singer, in order to find the best match for his vocals.. we had U87, U47, Beesneez Arabella, Brauner classic, coles 4038, SM7, several Violet mics, AEA's..etc.. lots of mics..all of them were very good (or excellent) quality mics.. only two were a "right" match though.

the winner was a coles 4038 with an MA5, the second best was (also a winner for a more "modern" sound) a Brauner Classic with a DIY api 312 type of preamp.
these could not be more different sounding, but both worked very well for his vocals.. no harshness and no sibilants in the brauner.. I'd never had thought of that..

So try to find the mic that fits best your vocals for your production goal/taste..
It's not always a matter of price, even if great mics are usually not cheap.

I'd test the more mics you can.. some Violet mics, the Grand Pearl (looks like an handheld mic, very nice though), the Globe Vintage, maybe an old 414, Beesneez Mahalia, a Neumann Fet47 (or maybe a clone of those), or some ribbon mics (you need to have a well treated space though..well in anyway, but especially with ribbons), or also some good dynamics like the beyer M88 or an SM7.

I hope this helps,


Last edited by cheu78; 11th January 2015 at 07:00 AM..
Old 11th January 2015
Lives for gear
Stimmt's Avatar

Brauner is a Tube Mic Company (originally called "Brauner Röhrengeräte Manufaktur"). I love the Vm-1. But whenever I go back and listen to older recordings with the Phantom (long sold), it makes me cringe. Brauner should really never touch Solid State. Take this from a German fellow.
Old 12th January 2015
Gear Head

Thanks for the reply guys! Very helpful

Paul B
Old 28th January 2015
Gear Head

Turns out the Phanthera is fine.. I have problems with My Apogee AD16.. Causing the high end distortion.

Think maybe Apogee power supply is on its way out.

I hired in a VM1.. and it did the same thing (High end distortion).. so chased things through a bit..A/D was the culprit.
Old 29th January 2015
Lives for gear
Vintageidiot's Avatar
Good old research, glad to hear you've isolated the problem.....
Old 25th February 2015
Gear Head
Originally Posted by burtoni View Post
Turns out the Phanthera is fine.. I have problems with My Apogee AD16.. Causing the high end distortion.

Think maybe Apogee power supply is on its way out.

I hired in a VM1.. and it did the same thing (High end distortion).. so chased things through a bit..A/D was the culprit.
So.. How do you like the Phanthera now? I'm about to get one.. Heard a lot of demos vs. other high end mics.. My impression is it's very clear/defined across the whole spectrum with a nice bite in the low end and the top end can get harsh if you push it..

Seems like it would cut right through just about any mix because it does have a big sound, not just for a FET mic either...

Interested to know what you think. Thanks...
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