Electro-Voice RE320 Variable-D Dynamic Mic
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The Electro-Voice RE320 is the latest incarnation of the famed RE20 mic I grew up with in the recording studio. Like the RE20, the RE320 has the patented Variable-D feature that reduces the proximity effect common to cardioid-patterned mics.
The RE320 works well very close to kick drums and bass amps--it seems to love those applications. The RE320 also retains the RE20's humbucking coil structure surrounding its neodymium magnet. All new for the RE320 is the dual-personality switch in place of the low frequency roll-off switch on the RE20.
Like two mics in one, the dual-personality switch reshapes the microphone's entire tonal response. One position is for a flatter response curve ideal for voice and most musical instrument while the other switch position specifically tailors the mic's response for kick drums. This is an irresistible feature for FOH and recording engineers alike.
I looked at the response chart for the kick drum response and found a rising peak at 125Hz but a carved -4.5dB dip centered at 380Hz. In addition, there are substantial bumps at 2.8, 4.2 and 7.2kHz spots. This looks and sounds like typical EQ settings engineers apply to a many bass drums they encounter in the studio and on stage. By using this mic that work is already done at the source--better than using an equalizer.
The RE320 beats my usual dynamic mic choices for guitar, kick and bass amp recording--especially in reproducing the low frequencies accurately. On guitar, the flat position produces a warmer tone with more output level than my "go to" dynamic--I was careful to place them in exactly the same place on my amp. On guitar, I found the kick drum switch position to offer a slimmed down version of the sound--a more specific low frequency change than just a simple LF roll-off and this tonal shape counter-balanced the "woofy" tone of my amp.
The RE320 is an excellent updated RE20 that retains its classic, full-range sound but now adds a useful secondary mode especially sculpted for recording problematic low frequency sources. It sells for $499.95MSRP and for more information, go to: www.electro-voice.com
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