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Audio-Technica U851R

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Cardioid Condenser Boundary Microphone

Audio-Technica U851R Cardioid Condenser Boundary Microphone

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Product Description

Audio Technica U851R - From Boardroom to Grand Piano


Accidents happen.


When uninsured drivers hit your truck, it costs you $500 (I know by experience). When you try something different with a microphone, you might save your customers some money (I know that by experience, too).


A few years ago, I was introduced to what was supposed to be the world's best piano microphone. It received great reviews, was made here in the USA from solid brass, and from all indications, it was supposed to sound great, and it did - eventually.


One minor obstacle was that it cost $500 and the first one we received hummed and buzzed like crazy. Of course, the excess noise couldn't have been the microphone, according to the manufacturer, but as it turns out, it was indeed.


After we got all of that straightened out, the microphone sounded fabulous, but I had developed a sour taste in my mouth in getting it all figured out.


Fast forward to mid-2007.


One of my long-time clients called to ask about a "reasonably-priced microphone for grand piano." That's a request that we get all of the time. Finding the right set-up for grand piano can be an adventure and there are several really good solutions. Often, I'm asked for something that "you can't see and that's cheap."


Good and cheap don't often go together.


As I drilled down into my memory for a solution, I thought of the solid brass microphone that ended up sounding so good after all. What made it special? Why did it work?


I thought of its structure; it was a small-diaphragm condenser microphone on a boundary - like those used in boardrooms, except that it was optimized for piano.


My clients buy lots of boardroom microphones (flat, almost disc- or trapezoid-shaped), so I had plenty in stock.


Wondering whether it would work at all, I sent one out just to see what would happen.


I was surprised to find out that with the right placement, that it worked really well and cost 60% less than the solid brass piano microphone. Our clients have found this microphone to work well on baby grands and 7 grand pianos alike. I can't recall anyone trying it on a piano of another size, but I'm confident that if you need a low-profile, nice-sounding microphone for under $200 that I can make it work for you.


Call me to order yours. I'll let you try it out and explain to you how to place it for best results. If you're not satisfied, just send it back.

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