Red Type B mini-review...
As I mentioned in the previous post, I've just picked up a Red Type B mic from Red Microphones. (As most everyone knows, Red was the vintage mic repair offshoot of Blue, but has now been spun in to a mic maker in its own right.) The Red Type B body is $450, and you have to buy at least one capsule at purchase time. Since I'm a bit short on funds, I went with the least expensive option, the $250 Lollipop Capsule. I also ordered the "Vintage Style" pop filter for $79. They don't charge shipping, and the shock mount and a good quality mic cable are included with the body, so for basically everything but the stand, the total charged to my credit card was $779.
The only real question with microphones is "is it worth the price?" I don't particularly care for buying mono-use stuff for my studio (e.g. monitors, mics, stands, that sort of thing) so I want to get the most bang for my buck when I do. Without being able to taste-test every new sub-$1000 mic on the market, I pretty much had to rely on the testimony of people whos opinions I trust, and I wasn't 100% confident with a blind purchase, even for something that seemed like such an obviously good deal. Nevertheless, purchase it I did, and I took it out for a trial run today.
I do have some minor beefs I should get off my chest straight away. The packaging was quite nice, and the entire system was well-packed, but the pop-filter, cable, and shock mount come in those stupid fucking hyper-protective thick-ass plastic SAF-T-SEALs or whatever the hell they're called. I don't know how many people are admitted to the hospital each year from injuries sustained while trying to open ridiculous plastic packaging, but I very nearly became one of them. Next up, the capsule just barely fit on the body. I had to apply a not-insignificant amount of pressure to get it seated. This brings to mind two things: (a) will I ever be able to get it off again? and (b) will the other capsules fit as tight? I actually knocked the little "Red" badge off the capsule trying to get it seated, as it is just held on with a light epoxy or something. This was an annoying way to start the morning.
Now, those minor caveats aside, this mic is The Business. Run, don't walk, to their site via that link, and get one of these. Even with the most modest capsule, this is a _great_ mic. I tried it out on vocals, acoustic guitar, and electric guitar. I thought it did better at the first two than the last, but I'm a big fan of ribbons for electric, and tend to avoid the large diaphragm condensor sound, so I might be biased in that regard. But I've never heard a mic that was so across-the-board gentle. It sounded especially fantastic on male (meaning "my") vocals, which are notoriously hard to tame. I would liken the Lollipop sound to a 414, except without that low end whatever that the 414 seems insistent on adding.
In short, I'm quite happy with this purchase, and now I'm extra super especially wishing Mercenary would ship me my Chandler Germanium, so I can try it out with a real mic pre. A strong Buy recommendation from me.
Oh, and... the pop filter is excellent. I normally avoid them because I have a soft sibilance, and a normal pop filter makes me sound like I have a lisp. However, this pop filter doesn't seem to do that. It can be used with any mic, of course. It attaches to the mic stand, and is made of stainless steel, so it can be spritzed off between singers. I think I'm gonna get another one so I don't have to move the one I have between mics all the time.