We got a new old microphone here at the studio- an RCA MI-6203-B. Otherwise known as "The Gas Pedal". It's a brick, weights about 3 1/2 pounds. Here's why-
There's this big old magnet inside, and it's shaped like a pair of horns, directing its magnetic field across...
...a ribbon of thin corrugated aluminum, which shines all silvery behind that screen there.
Here's a close look at the structure. There are end caps that clamp the ribbon of aluminum in place. The ribbon
itself is not visible in this shot, mainly because it has sagged over time.
Here's a look at the rear of that structure. The screened opening in the tube allows sound to reach the back of that
ribbon. A sliding mechanism can be adjusted to gradually close off that opening. This adjusts the response of the
ribbon, from a pressure to a velocity response. I don't know what that means, but it makes it sound
different, and changes the pickup pattern of the microphone.
Here's the inside of the rear cover. They made a lot of these mics back in the 1940's. This one needs to be
repaired before it can be used for recording- the output is extremely low, even for a ribbon mic, because that
ribbon is out of position. I did manage to get some sound from it however...
As bad as it is, it has that warmth these things were famous for-
September 17, 2011
Here is an item from the auction where I got the wire recorder. They threw this in to sweeten the pot on some other thing I wanted- who knew it was a guitar amp? It says it's a signal tracer... but clipping a guitar cord onto the high-impedence (tube preamp) test lead works. By itelf it's a radio receiver as well.
Be sure to check the action of the Magic Eye there on the upper right. (the clicking sounds at the beginning and end is actually my camera making auto-focus noises- I must have had it on macro)
September 12, 2011
Meet Patty! Patty McCabe was over here on Saturday and we started work on her song Rockin' Chair. She
plays a big ol' 12-string guitar and sings like a bird. I think she's a lost Rambler...
September 08, 2011
This little baby has been sitting in the studio for years, and it has always had a little problem. The C# key
sounded nasty. I tries to fix it several times, but today I finally done it.
September 07, 2011
Black Rock City, NV
54,000 people lived there for a week this year. The cost to produce the event? Around $17M.
There are all sorts of easy things to say about this, but I'm trying to avoid them. What is most interesting to me is
that humans are really good at this sort of thing. It's hard, hard work, and we love doing it.