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Realistic 33-1062 Shotgun Mics
Old 24th March 2021
  #1
Lives for gear
 
Realistic 33-1062 Shotgun Mics

Hey Geekz,

I was gifted two Realistic Ultra Directional Electret Condenser Microphones. They appear to be battery powered shotguns (AA) that terminate in 1/8" TS cables and have a 3 way switch for "off" "close" and "distant."

I know these were relatively inexpensive radio shack mics, but they seem really cool, and I'd love to know if it's possible to refurbish them, mostly for my own education, but also because mics are tools and I'd hate to see these go to waste.

They are both functional, but gain hungry and noisy (probably due to the old electret design losing charge). They also pop intermittently - I'm guessing due to a short in the cable or something.

The three way switch appears to change something about the interference tube, and the pickup pattern goes from more open and natural sounding in "close" to narrow and somewhat bandpassed sounding in "distant."

My tentative plan would be to figure out how the output is wired and change out the shot TS cable for an XLR output if possible. Even that would make the mic more practical to use, since the intermittent pops render them pretty much unusable as is.

Is it possible to swap out the electret or recharge it for better signal to noise?

I know this is likely not cost-effective, but is it theoretically possible?

Secondly, does anyone have experience with these mics and care to opine on construction, usefulness, trivia, or anything else that could be interesting to know about them?

Cheers, and thanks in advance for your help!
Old 24th March 2021
  #2
Gear Maniac
 
analogguru's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
You can buy near identical microphones (in black) on evilbay for about $ 15,-- new.
Old 25th March 2021 | Show parent
  #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by analogguru ➑️
You can buy near identical microphones (in black) on evilbay for about $ 15,-- new.
Interesting. I would've assumed this was an obsolete design. Which mics are you referring to?
Old 25th March 2021
  #4
Gear Maniac
 
analogguru's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
If you do a search with the term "shotgun microphone" or "super directional microphone" on the sales-website of your choice you will find tons of offers which are built the same way. This example here is a more expensive one with an XLR-connector:

https://www.ebay.com/itm/HTDZ-SUPER-...MAAOSw9N1ViYF6

But don't expect that they will be "owerwhelming" .....
Old 25th March 2021
  #5
Gear Guru
 
Thomas W. Bethe's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 15 years
Sometimes old equipment is just that...it is not vintage and even if you spend some $$$ you will not get something that is very useful. Now if you were talking Sennheiser or the like it would be worth the time and $$$ to get it working again. MTCW
Old 25th March 2021
  #6
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emrr's Avatar
 
24 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
I have noticed a lot of the Radio Shack mics appear on ebay new in the box for very little, it is worth looking to see if $20 will get you the same mic 'new', if interested. Usually the paperwork has a schematic, so maybe there's a scan you can find online right now.
Old 26th March 2021 | Show parent
  #7
Lives for gear
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by analogguru ➑️
If you do a search with the term "shotgun microphone" or "super directional microphone" on the sales-website of your choice you will find tons of offers which are built the same way. This example here is a more expensive one with an XLR-connector:

https://www.ebay.com/itm/HTDZ-SUPER-...MAAOSw9N1ViYF6

But don't expect that they will be "owerwhelming" .....
Oh, I see them now. Thanks!
Old 26th March 2021 | Show parent
  #8
Lives for gear
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by emrr ➑️
I have noticed a lot of the Radio Shack mics appear on ebay new in the box for very little, it is worth looking to see if $20 will get you the same mic 'new', if interested. Usually the paperwork has a schematic, so maybe there's a scan you can find online right now.
That's not a bad idea. Could be fun to reverse engineer the newer version with the XLR. Although, I'm not really trying to collect more of these mics, just want to fix the ones I got, so a schematic would be grand. Thanks!
Old 26th March 2021
  #9
Lives for gear
 
Anyone else know if it's possible to recharge an old electret mic to raise the signal to noise ratio?
Old 26th March 2021
  #10
Gear Maniac
 
analogguru's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
No need to recharge the electrets, just replace the capsules with two Panasonic WM-55A or similar capsules, there is nothing else inside (except if they would be from the 80's, what I doubt).

So if you remove the battery cover, the switch button and two screws on the other side you should be able tho slide the innards to the outside and get access to the component side of the pcb. If you unscrew the pcb you get access to the track side of the pcb. If you take a picture from the innards (including capsules), the component side and the track side of the pcb, I can tell you more what you have got.
Old 26th March 2021 | Show parent
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by analogguru ➑️
No need to recharge the electrets, just replace the capsules with two Panasonic WM-55A or similar capsules, there is nothing else inside (except if they would be from the 80's, what I doubt).

So if you remove the battery cover, the switch button and two screws on the other side you should be able tho slide the innards to the outside and get access to the component side of the pcb. If you unscrew the pcb you get access to the track side of the pcb. If you take a picture from the innards (including capsules), the component side and the track side of the pcb, I can tell you more what you have got.
Amazing. This gives me a shot of confidence. I'll open one up this week and post a picture. Thank you!
Old 4 weeks ago
  #12
Gear Maniac
 
analogguru's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
So the second weekend is over...... is the problem already solved ?
Old 3 weeks ago
  #13
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Sorry I'm actually in the process of moving so this particular project is on hold. I did take a look just now and it's not obvious to me how to open the mic, so rather than risk breaking it, I will need to do more research.
Old 3 weeks ago | Show parent
  #14
Gear Maniac
 
analogguru's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by sirjuxtable ➑️
....how to open the mic, so rather than risk breaking it, I will need to do more research.
No, you only need to read, understand and follow my advice from above:

.... remove the battery cover, the switch button and two screws on the other side (rem: = opposite side of the switch) you should be able tho slide the innards to the outside and get access to the component side of the pcb. If you unscrew the pcb you get access to the track side of the pcb. ....
Old 3 weeks ago | Show parent
  #15
Lives for gear
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by analogguru ➑️
No, you only need to read, understand and follow my advice from above:

.... remove the battery cover, the switch button and two screws on the other side (rem: = opposite side of the switch) you should be able tho slide the innards to the outside and get access to the component side of the pcb. If you unscrew the pcb you get access to the track side of the pcb. ....
I totally forgot that you told me this already. Sorry, can you tell I've been distracted lately?

Thank you!
Old 2 days ago | Show parent
  #16
Lives for gear
 
Just wanted to let you know I still plan on working on these. I just finished a whirlwind move and am now out of town for a few weeks. But when I get back this will be a fun project. Thanks again for your guidance!
Old 2 days ago | Show parent
  #17
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gradivus's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by sirjuxtable ➑️
That's not a bad idea. Could be fun to reverse engineer the newer version with the XLR. Although, I'm not really trying to collect more of these mics, just want to fix the ones I got, so a schematic would be grand. Thanks!
You will see stuff like this on the bay listed as NOS (New Old Stock). Basically old stuff that is supposedly still new in the box or whatever.

I'm gonna try to wire up a strange old speaker that's supposed to plug into an old headphone jack on radios from the 50s or something. Yeah, I could buy another one that had the plug and not leads and get an adapter, but now I can tinker with it until it works, have some fun, maybe learn something, and add another weird tool to my audio shed.

I like taking old crap and making it work, because each piece of old crap has it's own unique crap aroma. I find recording them is sonically different than trying to imitate the sound with plugins. Add some shelf EQ with a touch of noise reduction (but not killing it completely), filter the sharp frequencies, and it works for me and sounds unique.

I am a bit of a disturbed **** though, and not everyone makes music the way I do, so you do what makes you grin.
Old 2 days ago | Show parent
  #18
Lives for gear
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by gradivus ➑️
Yeah, I could buy another one that had the plug and not leads and get an adapter, but now I can tinker with it until it works, have some fun, maybe learn something, and add another weird tool to my audio shed.

I like taking old crap and making it work, because each piece of old crap has it's own unique crap aroma. I find recording them is sonically different than trying to imitate the sound with plugins. Add some shelf EQ with a touch of noise reduction (but not killing it completely), filter the sharp frequencies, and it works for me and sounds unique.

I am a bit of a disturbed **** though, and not everyone makes music the way I do, so you do what makes you grin.
Haha thank you for the support! A bit of tinkering is a great way to learn, and the more I do it, the more confidence it builds in turn.

My monitors have started to buzz and crackle, so that may be my next project as well. Open em up and see if there are any obvious component failures or connection problems... I'll be sure to post here so us disturbed ****s can help eachother out.
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