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MICROPHONE OF THE MONTH JUNE 2016

STEDMAN N 90

 

 

Mic month of June 2016, is the Stedman N 90 cardioid (unidirectional) dynamic studio microphone.
A pretty young vintage type, in the nineties it was handmade in the United States, with the appearance of a large diaphragm condenser microphone.


The large 30 mm element comes from Stedman's former employer, Electro-Voice, which uses these capsules themselves for the PL / RE 20 dynamic microphones, but the sound is quite different.

Probably the fact that the N 90 is a side-address model influences the tonal quality, but also because in the EVs the proximity (close-range) effect is missing, this is present in the Stedman and can be used to thicken the low-end of the recorded sound. The frequency range is slightly larger than that of the PL / RE 20's: 35-19 kHz for N 90 and 45-18 kHz for EV's.

These microphones are often found in studios and are used as a "secret weapon" for recording, a.o. bass and snare drum, percussion, electric guitar and vocals. It can handle huge noise levels, exceeding 155dB, without distorting the sound, the flat frequency response even allows using it to record overheads. The N 90 is also suitable for use on stage, especially since it is smaller and much lighter than the Electro-Voice RE / PL 20's. The price was another aspect that made it attractive: around $ 400, not a large amount for a studio.

Al these factors make it regrettable that Stedman does not produce these (and an even scarcer capacitor model) microphones anymore since the turn of the century. Fortunately, there are still a few companies who make microphones in the United States, not all migrated to low-wage countries like Shure did.


Stedman still makes other products for the studio, such as Pop filters and various clamps and hooks for microphone stands.

This is one of the types that feature in my book Witnesses of Words, which was recently released. More information about that can be found at www.witnessesofwords.com

wow cover

Stedman N 90

 

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