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Mxl r144
3.9 3.9 out of 5, based on 3 Reviews

Cheap. I mean super cheap. But in a good way.


24th February 2012

MXL R144 by nugznmugz

  • Sound Quality 4 out of 5
  • Ease of use 5 out of 5
  • Features 4 out of 5
  • Bang for buck 5 out of 5
  • Overall: 4.5
Mxl r144

If you're like me and you wanted to try a ribbon out, but didn't want to save up for a year to get a R121 or something like that, this is a great mic to start with.

Just like most ribbons, it's a bi-directional mic. It does have a lot of low mid coloration, and it doesn't have an extended top end. In other words, dark and warm. You can swap out the transformer in it very easily, and it does sound more open with a better transformer, but the mic costs as much brand new as the transformer does!

The figure of eight pattern is really cool when you need good rejection from the sides. A trick you can use is to put one of these in front of a guitar cab with something kind of reflective behind it. Moving the reflective surface closer or farther away will add more or less reflections while maintaining the isolation and clarity that you want. I like to use them in conjunction with a LDC to have some high end.

It comes with a solid case, shock mount, replacement bands for said shock mount, and a cleaning cloth (?). Not a bad deal for around $100.

If you want to get a inexpensive ribbon, even if you don't have any particular use, get two of these! Guitars, overheads, horns, vocals, whatever you want to sound warm and dark. Just keep in mind that it does take a substantial amount of gain to get these puppies singing, so make sure you run it through a decent pre. It doesn't have to be a SSL console, but definitely something with a lot of gain and very little noise.

28th February 2012

MXL R144 by This Is Barcode

  • Sound Quality 4 out of 5
  • Ease of use 4 out of 5
  • Features 2 out of 5
  • Bang for buck 4 out of 5
  • Overall: 3.5
Mxl r144

I bought this for the exact first point Mugz made, as an entry level ribbon to get a feel for using these mostly pricey mics, the R144 is brilliant.

I use it regularly on double bass and for some vocals. Admittedly it's very cheap, I think it punches above it's weight though.

For the price, well worth having in the locker. Next stop for me, Cascade Fat Heads.

17th March 2012

MXL R144 by amoryblane

  • Sound Quality 4 out of 5
  • Ease of use 4 out of 5
  • Features 2 out of 5
  • Bang for buck 5 out of 5
  • Overall: 3.75
Mxl r144

I was thinking about breaking in to the world of ribbons for quite a while before I picked up these R144's. The selling point was definitely the price, at $130.00, you can't even get a smog check for that these days let alone an actual microphone.

At first they were my primary mics for piano, they had a nice soft quality while staying clear but not harsh. They are fixed figure 8 pattern as are most ribbons. They since have been crushed by my love for KM184's, but money doesn't grow on trees. I must say that if you are looking for a ribbon mic for vocals, these are not them. They sound pretty muffled and don't have the top end that I'm looking for (this is most likely due to a sag in the ribbon in the motor, apparently most Chinese made ribbon mics are pretty saggy). Although they aren't really a vocal mics they work pretty well for acoustic guitar in a blumline position and have now become my go-to mic for distorted electric guitar paired with a 57 for a bit more 5kHz. You just need to do a fair amount of roll-off. I have a shootout of the R144 vs 57 vs beta 57 here:

Shootout

These ribbons are not symmetrical where as most other ribbons are. The front is a little duller and I think is a bit hotter. They rear sounds less like a ribbon and more like a dynamic. I'd definitely recommend the mic if you want a beginner model and you don't have much money but if you want to spend a bit more everybody is making their own ribbons from kits all over the internet.

They take EQ very well.

 

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