audio technica at4081 review

Other than the smoother‑than‑life high end, the sound comes over as very natural, with plenty of low‑end depth and mid‑range detail, and because the circuitry is active, the output level is high enough when working with quieter acoustic instruments, without needing a dedicated ribbon‑mic preamp. When the company offered to loan me the new AT4080 and AT4081 active ribbon mics, I jumped at the chance. The contents of this article are subject to worldwide copyright protection and reproduction in whole or part, whether mechanical or electronic, is expressly forbidden without the prior written consent of the Publishers. AT8471 isolation clamp for 5/8"-27 threaded stands; 5/8"-27 to 3/8"-16 threaded adapter; windscreen; protective carrying case, Low-profile stick design maximizes placement options, Smooth, warm and natural sound tuned for instrument reproduction, Innovative dual ribbon construction for increased sensitivity, Extremely powerful N50 rare earth magnets for high output level, Superfine mesh guards against ribbon damage, High-SPL capability and extended frequency response, Handmade production – including ribbon corrugation, imprint and assembly, Phantom-powered active electronics provide stable impedance and higher output for maximum compatibility with microphone preamplifiers, Certified by the METAlliance (Music Engineering and Technology Alliance). Like other manufacturers, they've also tried to increase the output level by adding active circuitry, because traditional, passive ribbon mics tend to need a lot of preamp gain, which in turn can lead to unwanted noise. Prices include VAT. Web site designed & maintained by PB Associates & SOS. You choose ribbon mics for their sound rather than their accuracy, though, so the paper spec is rather less important than the subjective tonal character. Overall, I found that the sound was a little less fat and warm than the Coles, but still very musical. Both are useful in a variety of situations. PreSonus StudioLive 32SC Series III Mixing Console. Most of the crucial processes during manufacture, including the imprinting of the ribbon, are done by hand. Weighing 152g, the mic is 155mm long and 21mm in diameter at its widest point. Audio-Technica AT4081 Active Ribbon Microphone | Sweetwater With its low-profile stick design, this microphone is a natural for use on a wide range of instruments (horns, strings, drum overheads, orchestras and more) and guitar cabinets in recording studios and live-sound settings. The perforated metal grille allows a good view of the ribbon element, while offering reasonable protection from air blasts. Audio Technica's first ever ribbon models, the AT4080 (far left) and the AT4081 (left), are both active designs, which means that 48V phantom power is required for operation. The more costly 4080 performed exactly as I'd hoped a good ribbon mic would, but with the benefit of a little more high‑end extension, handling pretty much everything we threw at it. All contents copyright © SOS Publications Group and/or its licensors, 1985-2020. That said, this same tonality worked in its favour when recording electric guitar, as the note attacks were better defined, and overdrive guitar had more 'rawk' and attitude, but without the top end getting too ragged. N50 neodymium magnets are employed to maximise the output from the ribbon motor. These are both very flexible and beautifully built microphones that capture the familiar ribbon‑mic character, but without the usual low signal‑level complications, and they preserve a little more of the high end too. The other benefit of an active ribbon is that, unlike a passive ribbon mic, you won't risk damaging it by plugging or unplugging it with the phantom power switched on, and the choice of mic preamp becomes less critical. Win! None, really, although the AT4081's coloration makes it better on some sources than others. Both mics deliver adequate output levels, thanks to the active circuitry, and the noise level is acceptably low for most types of studio recording. Delivering the warmth and natural sound of a classic ribbon microphone, Audio-Technica s AT4081 offers outstanding durability and phantom-powered active electronics in a low-profile stick design. The All-New Behringer Keyboards 'n' Stuff Thread. My standard AT shockmount (the one I use with my AT4033) fitted perfectly, and was used for this review. By comparison, the AT4081 had a little less low‑end extension, and on our spoken‑word tests it exhibited a mid‑range coloration that made it sound slightly harsh in comparison with the Coles. Audio-Technica manufacturers gear that’s consistently high in quality and relatively affordable in price. It’s a well-built and hefty little number, finished in brushed silver and sporting an ultra-fine mesh that affords you a bird’s eye view of the inner workings of the transducer. Traditional ribbon mics (and many newer models, come to that) are very fragile in comparison with their capacitor and dynamic counterparts, so Audio Technica's engineers set themselves the task of creating a more mechanically robust ribbon element that was still capable of delivering the familiar sonic character of a ribbon. JavaScript seems to be disabled in your browser. Choosing A USB Microphone | Audio Examples. It’s a pretty cool looking mic actually; a design that’s grown on me over time… despite earlier concerns that the mesh loo… Mastering Essentials Part 3 - How loud should I master? It will perform just as well live as it will in the studio. For comparison, I put up a Coles 4038, which has a particularly warm sound and a very generous low end. I've used this mic in nearly every situation that I could throw at it. Why Are Some A-B Stereo Arrays Angled Outwards? Frequency-agile True Diversity UHF Wireless Systems, Phantom-powered Bidirectional Ribbon Microphone. Its main strength is in bringing out the detail in sounds where the upper mid‑range needs a helping hand — just like many condensers, but again with the ribbon's natural ability to put a positive spin on the high‑frequency end of the spectrum. There are mid‑priced ribbon mics on the market these days, both active and passive, from companies such as MXL, Sontronics, SE Electronics, Shiny Box, Superlux and Golden Age Projects, to name but a few. The AT4080's documentation describes an acoustic baffle system which, in conjunction with a generously large output transformer, maintains an extended low‑frequency response, while maximising dynamic range and allowing SPLs of up to 150dB to be tolerated. Despite my initial impressions (I found the forward character somewhat surprising), the AT4081 has some very useful characteristics that can help pull sounds out of a mix without adding an abrasive high end. The Audio-Technica AT4080 features dual-folded ribbons and other innovations allowing the mic to take up to 150dB SPL. That's not necessarily a bad thing, but it does mean it's better at some things and worse at others, and thus less suitable if you're looking for a good all‑rounder. Mastering Essentials Part 4 - Mastering EQ: Balance, Don’t Match. Typical applications are stated as horns, strings, drum overheads, orchestras and guitar cabinets. Accessing our website tells us you agree to our use of cookies. A-T's brand-new transducer technology has produced a robust design intended to deliver high signal levels as well as that prized ribbon character... A peep inside the AT4080 reveals the ribbon elements and the chunky transformer beneath. In just more than a decade, the migration of ribbon mics into manufacturers’ product lines has rapidly increased, Audio-Technica unveiled its first ribbon mics—the AT4080 and AT4081… As with all conventional ribbon mics, the polar pattern of the AT4080 is figure‑of‑eight. We’ve published many reviews of Audio-Technica microphones in Tape Op — for good reason. Delivering the warmth and natural sound of a classic ribbon microphone, Audio-Technica’s handcrafted AT4081 offers a robust build for long-lasting performance and higher output for maximum compatibility with microphone preamp Both these mics are beautifully engineered, and both have their strengths. Moving onto acoustic guitars, if you want a sound that tends towards the 'zingy', a ribbon mic is probably not the best choice (unless used in conjunction with a capacitor mic), but if you're going for a more natural sound, or recording classical guitar, the AT4080 is certainly worth trying.

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