Royer Labs R-122 MKII Active Ribbon Microphone  From Royer

Now featuring a -15 dB pad and high-pass filter, the R-122 is more versatile than ever before! With the active R-122, gain and impedance issues are a thing of the past, letting you use more pre's with great results.

Royer Labs

$1,795.00

Retail:  $1,995.00

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What We Think

For those who want the sonic palate of a ribbon but can't afford a preamp with loads of gain and/or impedance switching, Royer has designed the R-122. Because of this ambitious new "active" design, Royer has essentially removed the typical problems associated with ribbons (lack of gain, microphone load mismatch) and combined them with the sound and features of their R-121, making this one a new favorite for many of our customers.

Manufacturer's Description from Royer

The R-122 is the world's first phantom powered, active ribbon™ microphone. Its unique electronics package gives the R-122 greater output than standard, non-powered ribbons, and places a perfect impedance load on the ribbon element, greatly expanding the number of preamps the mic operates well with.

Before the R-122, all ribbon microphones were passive devices. Tracking strings, acoustic guitars, vocals and other quieter sound sources required pre's with a lot of gain and a high input impedance. With the R-122, gain and impedance issues are a thing of the past, letting you use more pre's with great results.

Conventional ribbon microphones need high-quality, high-gain microphone preamplifiers to record softer sound sources. The R-122 is as sensitive as a condenser microphone, allowing you to use practically any mic preamplifier or board pre's to record even the quietest sounds. The R-122 contains a fully balanced, discrete head amplifier system utilizing a specially wound toroidal transformer and ultra-low noise FET's. This system is extremely quiet, can handle 135 dB SPL, and brings the R-122's sensitivity to 37 dB! Go ahead and plug an R-122 into any preamp with average gain - you'll get full Royer performance and enough level to drive any recording medium.

The R-122's higher sensitivity does not create additional self-noise. All of the R-122's increased sensitivity comes from its large, specially wound toroidal transformer - that wonderful thing called "free gain." The phantom powered circuitry provides impedance conversion only, adding no noise of its own.

The R-122 is every bit as tough as our R-121. It is a first-call mic for electric and acoustic guitars, drum overheads, brass, percussion, electric and acoustic bass, piano, strings, woodwinds, Foley, and many other applications.

The R-122 is similar to the R-121, but the faster transient response and larger size of the R-122's audio transformer translates into more open highs and a tighter, more focused low end response. Because of the faster transient response and tighter low end, engineers often choose them over R-121's for drum overheads, acoustic instruments and vocals. R-121's tend to edge out R-122's on electric guitars and brass, but it's a matter of taste. If you're recording mostly electric guitars and/or brass, we usually suggest going with the R-121. The R-122 is just as good on these instruments, but you may not need (or want) the additional top-end openness (from the faster transient response) and you certainly won't need the R-122s higher sensitivity on these high SPL applications. If you plan on using the mics primarily for drum overheads, vocals, piano, acoustic instruments, strings, classical music applications and so forth, we heartily recommend going with the R-122.

The R-122's active electronics put a perfect load on the ribbon element at all times, allowing the R-122 to deliver 100% of its full sonic potential regardless of the input characteristics of the following mic pre. Due to its low-impedance output, R-122's can be used on extremely long cable runs with minimal signal loss. In addition, the ribbon element can't be damaged by phantom power, miswired cables or electrical glitches.

The R-122's proprietary offset ribbon transducer (Patent # 6,434,252) is the first of its kind, positioning the ribbon element closer to the front (logo) side of the microphone. This arrangement gives the ribbon more room to move within the prime magnetic field while maintaining full frequency response during high SPL recordings. Also due to this offset ribbon transducer, the back of the R-122 records slightly brighter than the front side at distances of three feet and closer. This can be extremely useful for recording acoustic guitars, vocals, drum overheads and other sound sources that you may want a slightly brighter response on. It's an integral piece of the magic of all Royer R-series microphones.

As with all Royers, pushing up the faders on your ribbon-recorded tracks at mixdown is a revelation. When your tracks sound natural and real, there's nothing to fight and they fit into the mix easily.

 

Features

  • Phantom powered circuitry provides high output and impedance matching

  • High SPL Capabilities

  • No distortion up to maximum SPL rating

  • Extremely low residual noise

  • Ribbon element is not affected by heat or humidity

  • Absence of high frequency phase distortion

  • Equal sensitivity from front or back of element

  • Consistent frequency response regardless of distance

  • Rear side of mic records slightly brighter when three feet or closer to sound source

Applications

  • Electric Guitar Amps

  • Acoustic Guitar

  • Drum Overheads

  • Percussion Instruments

  • Brass and Woodwinds

  • Horn Sections

  • Acoustic Piano

  • Acoustic Guitar

  • Harp

  • Solo Strings & String Sections

  • Choirs and Orchestras

  • Commercial Broadcast

  • Voice Over

Royer Labs

About Manufacturer

After years of designing and manufacturing microphones in Los Angeles, David Royer teamed up with Rick Perrotta, former President and co-founder of the prestigious Matchless Guitar Amplifier Company, and together with studio owner Rafael Villafane and musician/marketing director John Jennings, formed Royer Labs, a California based company dedicated to the development and production of high quality ribbon microphones and transducer elements. DAVID ROYER Best known for his ribbon mics, David has designed countless other mics and outboard devices that are in use throughout numerous LA studios. When David's not designing new gear, his idea of fun is climbing desert mountains or pounding dirt roads in his new pickup. RICK PERROTTA Rick Perrotta's name may sound familiar - he and Rafael Villafane owned LA's Baby-O Recorders during the 80's, then Rick went on to co-found Matchless Guitar Amplifiers, where he was President and Production Chief of the prestigious amp line until 1995. At the helm of Royer Labs, Rick brings an extraordinary level of craftsmanship to every Royer microphone (hold one in your hand and you may never give it back!). JOHN JENNINGS John worked for years as a guitar player and singer, in the studio and on the road. He took an 8-year detour into the corporate world as VP Sales & Marketing for an LA communications firm, but came to his senses in 1996 and ditched the suit to get into pro-audio manufacturing and sales. John handles sales and marketing for Royer Labs. RAFAEL VILLAFANE Rafael Villafane co-founded Baby'O Recorders with Rick. He has produced a #1 and numerous top ten hits in the US and abroad. He drinks too much. Owns a club in Acapulco (Baby'O). If you can prove you own a Royer product, the first ten tequilas are on him---really. Drives too fast. Been doing a record for ten years he STILL can't finish. Has a six-second attention span. He torched a school with young pal Jeff "Skunk" Baxter in Mexico City when they were kids. What else? Oh yeah, he's Mexican... nobody's perfect. CHRIS PERROTTA As another co-founder of Matchless Amplifier Company, Chris was responsible for the high quality detail work that Matchless is famous for, including the light up "dashboard" and three dimensional logo. At Royer, Chris is the chief mechanical designer and another confirmed precision freak. Every Royer microphone owes its beauty and elegance to Chris wonderful interpretations of the designers art.

Specifications

  • Acoustic Operating Principle: Electrodynamic pressure gradient with active electronics
  • Polar Pattern: Figure-8
  • Generating Element: 2.5-micron aluminum ribbon
  • Magnets: Rare Earth Neodymium
  • Frequency Response: 30 -15,000 Hz +/- 3dB
  • Sensitivity: -37 dB (referenced 1v/pa +/- 2dB)
  • Self-Noise: < 20 dB
  • Output Impedance: 200 Ohms, balanced
  • Rated Load Impedance: 1K-Ohm
  • Maximum SPL: >135dB
  • Output Connector: Male XLR 3 pin (Pin 2 Hot).
  • Dimensions: 206mm L X 25mm W (8 1/8" L X 1" W)
  • Weight: 309 grams (10.9 oz)
  • Finish: Dull Satin Nickel/Matte Black Chrome optional

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R-122 User Manual