12 mics that made history

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12 mics that made history

May 29, 2019 6:21:22 AM MST 0

Jim Webb is a well respected audio professional with an impressive career, however there are a number of 'facts' in his article which, after extensive research, prove to be incorrect.

Here are the most important conclusions that differ from his findings:

1- The Western Electric Double Button Carbon Microphone

- this was not the World Wide standard in broadcasting: it was in the US, but in many other countries it was the Reisz carbon microphone (invented by Georg Neumann), models 104 & 109, or Marconi’s carbon microphone, based on the same design), that were used as standard, between the Twenties and the early Thirties.

2- The Western Electric Moving Coil

- the dynamic microphone had been invented by Ernst Siemens (Germany) in 1874.

3- The Western Electric Condenser

- Western Electric offered the first more widely available condenser element, sold in 1924-25 as a Model 361, and an improved model 394 in 1925-1926 that was by 1928 available in five different styles.

The WE D 80513 (394 transmitter with D80513 pre-amp), was used for Western Electric’s electrical recording system and cinema ca. 1926

4- Olson and the RCA ribbon microphones

- Olson’s ribbon designs were based on the Siemens & Halske ribbon microphone designs of the mid Twenties: the bi-directional Siemens & Halske Grosses Bandmikrofon Rel.mph.1a (‘Large ribbon mic’, with field coils) and the Kleines Bandmikrofon Rel.mph.2a - ( ‘Small ribbon mic’, with permanent magnets) both from 1925.

- The first microphones with "directional" characteristics were the bi-directional Siemens & Halske Grosses Bandmikrofon Rel.mph.1a (‘Large ribbon mic’, with field coils) and the Kleines Bandmikrofon Rel.mph.2a - ( ‘Small ribbon mic’, with permanent magnets) both were bi-directional and date from 1925. The first with directional characteristics was the Siemens & Halske ELA M 25 ribbon (1930), not the later RCA 44, which Olson based on the S&H design.

Marco C. van der Hoeven - Vintage Microphone World