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Royer R121 good for vocals/dirty guitars?
Old 11th April 2003
  #1
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Royer R121 good for vocals/dirty guitars?

I am trying to find the ultimate dirty electric guitar mic, and I have
heard that the R121 is it. I cant spend much, and I am trying to find
something versatile for other things, primarily vocals. I want to do
some vocals, but I have a thin voice and I would like a mic that
thickens things up a bit. Dunno if this would be that kind of mic or
not, but I hear its the **** for dirty guitar sound.
How does it generally work out for vocals? Does it have the airy,
intimate kind of feel to it, or is it totally different? Does it have
any of the "thickening" charateristics? I have a TLM-103 right now,
how does the Royer compare to that, especially on vocals?
2nd to last question: Anyone use a Royer with an RNP yet? Results?
And finally, who has a great price on Royers?
Old 11th April 2003
  #2
Gear Addict
 

Royer had a demo cd they'd send you for a few bucks. Definitely not a substitute for actually trying one out in your own space, but it might give you an idea if it's something you'd be interested in.
Old 12th April 2003
  #3
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heinz's Avatar
 

Re: Royer R121 good for vocals/dirty guitars?

Quote:
Originally posted by tubedude
How does it generally work out for vocals? Does it have the airy, intimate kind of feel to it, or is it totally different? Does it have any of the "thickening" charateristics? I have a TLM-103 right now, how does the Royer compare to that, especially on vocals? 2nd to last question: Anyone use a Royer with an RNP yet? Results? And finally, who has a great price on Royers?
The 121 to some people sounds "darker", but that's the response curve which is damn near flat (vs. many mics which have a 10k-ish boost). IMO the 121 is all about BEEF, it takes the harsh edge off stuff and has DOPE low end.

I don't record vocals (instrumentalist) but for dirty guitars I like it very much. But not by itself, because personally I like more Fizz or edge in my cranked heavy guitar tones. Lately I've had good results mixing the Royer track with a doubled part mic'd with a Studio Projects C3 (figure-eight setting).

The 121 is really versatile, can be flipped for a brighter tone (but can't do high SPL backwards), and the mic angle relative to the source has a significant effect on EQ. It brightens up when you angle it down.

Overall it is a crucial part of my mic locker.
Old 12th April 2003
  #4
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Zep Dude's Avatar
 

The Royer is killer on dirty guitar but as mentioned above, its best to combine it with a brighter mic (an sm57 will do fine). You'll be very happy with this.

Vocals will let you down -it's just too flat and almost all good vocal mics have some hype up top. If you've got a great EQ you might still make it work. The back side of the mic is brighter but still I have yet to use mine on a vocal.

Zep
Old 12th April 2003
  #5
The Royer has worked a few times for me on vocals, it's not the workhorse though in that application and is far from the norm. It's great on guitars (and horns, drums, harmonica, room, etc), I'd almost say it's the first and only mic on guitars I would use if I had use only one. I'd try combining it with a Sennheiser 421 or SM-7 (not 57). The Royer doesn't have a thickening effect, it's got a rolloff in the sub lows and the extreme highs, it makes for a very mid rich sound which is why it's so perfect for guitar cabinets. It's not "warm" in the same way something like a tube/transformer based condenser mic is. It's "warm" because it is very natural in many ways, but attenuated on top like any classic ribbon. I've got a few extra Royer CD's here if you send me your address.
Old 12th April 2003
  #6
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I've got a Royer 122 and love it on dirty guitar amps. As others have mentioned it lacks the high end sparkle that you'd probably want on a vocal mic.
Old 12th April 2003
  #7
Gear Maniac
 
Sir Bob's Avatar
 

One bit of caution. The R121 requires some gain in your pre-amp for anything in the acoustic area. For cranking guitar, it is the best.
Old 14th April 2003
  #8
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I recommend that you try one before you buy it. Not everyone thinks they're so great. There are a number of famous engineers that I have spoken with who agree with me that's the 121 is mostly hype. I've had one for about two years. I try it all the time, on various sources and with various pre-amps, and offer it as a choice to my clients. If a client ever chose it, I'd use it despite my personal feelings. It has yet to make it to a track, unless it's combined with something else.

IMO it's very cardboard-y and dull. YMMV. Most people seem to think it's God's own mic. I have no way of exlaining this except for mass hysteria.

-Or maybe Royer's quality control stinks and I got one of the bad ones, I dunno. Except that when I listen to their demo-cd, I can't figure out if they're trying to sell me the thing, or scare me away. Do those demo tracks really sound good to anyone?

If you want a great ribbon mic, get a Coles 4038.
Old 14th April 2003
  #9
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Wow, thats a first... send me an email with a really good price..
[email protected]
Old 14th April 2003
  #10
Quote:
Originally posted by tubedude

[email protected]
Hi Paul...
Old 18th April 2003
  #11
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littledog's Avatar
 

I wouldn't go as far as Speer, as I've used the 121 successfully on a multitude of sources. But if we limit the discussion to vocals, i would say that my experience mirrors his - I've NEVER done a comparison test where it was picked first on vox.
Old 18th April 2003
  #12
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Nathan,
Ok, you replied at R.A.P by saying "Paul" and then here just by saying "Hi Paul"... what exactly are you getting at? Kinda funny.
So you know my name, and associate it with an email address... maybe I'm missing your point. Oh well.
Anyway, doesnt sound like much of a vocal mic. I think I'm keeping my sights on the U195 and will try it on guitars and see how it does for me.
Nathan, you ready to sell me one for $800 yet?
Old 18th April 2003
  #13
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malice's Avatar
 

Ribbon on vocals, some insights :

1- Royer might not be the best for that, although it might be nice. Try AEA/RCA too

2- Hi end sparkling/sizling etc... is not always the way to go ...

3- You can Eq ribbons more than any other type of mic, they love it.

malice
Old 18th April 2003
  #14
Gear Maniac
 
Sir Bob's Avatar
 

All I can add in defense of the R-121 is that it loves guitar amps and is a great solution for high SPL's. I like to keep it several feet away from the amp to pick up the vibe of the cabinet and room.
Old 18th April 2003
  #15
Here for the gear
 
OvrMyHd's Avatar
 




My R121 just came from Mercenary yesterday and OMFG it's a dream on heavy guitars. It definately has a "sound" but with the Marshall rig we put it on (TSL 100 head, 4x12 greens) it was simply amazing. Today I'll test combining it with a second mic (421, 57, C3) per Zep Dudes recommendation.
Old 20th April 2003
  #16
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adam_w's Avatar
For me, the R121 makes recording most guitars really easy.

I think you need something more aggressively bright for some "modern" tones..but then the ribbon mics tend to respond really well to being eq'd..
Old 20th April 2003
  #17
Quote:
Originally posted by adam_w
For me, the R121 makes recording most guitars really easy.

I think you need something more aggressively bright for some "modern" tones..but then the ribbon mics tend to respond really well to being eq'd..
Yep, just pull out a little 1k and it's perfect.
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